advertising and other stuff. no, really.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Conan rules social. Or does he.

Now that the Hypla has died down and Conan O’Brien’s ratings have returned to more human levels, time to to step back and chill on the Conan For Social Media President talk. As one comment in that Fast Company piece nicely points out:

“Sure social media played a part...the success of Conan's launch is the acknowledgement that in the world we live in today - you need to be influencing people in every channel through a combination of owned, earned, paid, and created media.”

While I discuss social with clients relative to their overall marketing efforts, people still aren’t getting the message about what’s realistic in terms of results. Conan’s “success” is mostly due to one simple thing: The dude was already popular. He’s a celebrity. If you work in advertising and marketing and can’t take one part celeb and add one part (pick any media channel) to get a successful campaign?

You should quit right now.

His fans would’ve followed by fax. (I’m not really sure how that would’ve worked, but they’d find a way.) Seriously though, this idea that he did groundbreaking things in the online space puts a little too much emphasis on the tools as savior of Team Coco.

These *things* are just the way we will live moving forward.

From what I saw, the buildup to his return was bigger than the payoff. I see a show fundamentally the same in terms of house band, sidekick and slightly funkier set. If people weren’t watching him before, all the things he did from blimp spots to concert tours to live-streaming work cams would have never happened. All TBS did was give his fans a different channel to watch him on.

That ain’t social, that’s just basic network TV programming. NBC cut off your fix and new dealer on the block TBS hooked you up.

YouTube for its part did more than anything to help because people were able to go and replay all of his spots, concert clips, etc. Do you think though that Google wants YouTube to be marginalized and thought of as *just* a social media tool? They’re going up against Hulu and Netflix as a major content channel and provider where the lines between broadcast, cable and the net blur a little more each day.

Conan fervor is no different than when we took Letterman as our own in college, watching him in the 12:30 a.m. spot, stupid human tricks and all. Fanboys? Sure. But the point is that we would’ve watched him on anything.

Get past this idea that this or that tactic equals instant social media success, because it does a disservice to the clients who get sold on running the same type of campaign tactics expecting the same results.

Only they can’t afford the star.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why is he so popular? Back up before the social media banzai. Why him? Is/was there a first-step to get to this point?