The Thin On-line Between Cool and Irrelevant

In the US today there are about 12.5 million people unemployed and looking for work. So I decided to look into the job market to see if there were any new fun titles I could squeeze my general knowledge of business development, branding and life into.

The number one title out there is Social Media Expert. Generally what this means is that a company has been playing by the old marketing rules for many consistent years and all of the sudden, with the snowball emergence of social media platforms, they have begun to lose relevance, fast.

What the company is looking for in this ‘social medial expert’ is an ability to represent them as if the brand was a walking, talking personality who interacts with the public. At least this is what they should be looking for.
The reality however, is a scramble for relevance with an influx of confused hipsters in the working world tweeting about irrelevant ‘cool’ in their lives, inconsistent with the basic brand value and vision.
What these ‘experts’ should recognize is that they are a crucial part of the marketing mix and their voice should be consistent with what’s going on within the brand based on its subject of monarchy, not personal life.

Social media sites were born because people want to know about other’s experiences with certain products, services, trends and life in general. Smart companies appreciate that they are an expert source in their field. They have maintained their credibility by offering a consistent online personality, like a friend you know you can always come to for specific advice.
And this is how it should be, our favorite fashion brand should be our online best-friend who we trust to tell us things like: colors of the upcoming season, which trends to buy into and ones that are on their way out.

I don’t go to Bloomingdale’s twitter page for new cookie recipe, I want to find an exclusive invite to an after-work shopping event. Just like I wouldn’t look through Rachel Ray’s Facebook photos for a pool party look inspiration.
I want to know what the Vogue staff is wearing to work. I want to know where Jessica Stam shops. Nicole Richie is a fashion designer now right? I actually like her brand Winter Kate, but I really don’t care that her latest obsessions right now are “sleeping” and “dairy” (quoted from her Twitter page).

Here are some brands that we at NL Collective think have it right in terms of maintaining balance between being socially relevant and staying true to their brand.

Interview Magazine on Twitter: my online friend for NY fashion culture advice.

Marc Jacobs on Facebook: shows pictures of collection inspirations and what’s going on with the brand country wide, from in store displays to new releases and shoot locations.

Victoria’s Secret Youtube Channel: a consistent fix of the ‘Angels’ in between the annual shows.

Zac Posen on Tumblr: pieces he’s working on in his studio, events he’s at and beautiful people in his clothes. Pinterest: style, style, style. Everything that is relevant right now: shown in pictures with a perfect balance of inspiration and wear ability.