So, Facebook just bought Instagram. A company founded 2 years ago with 30 million users is worth $1 Billion.
I’m not going to touch on the strategy around buyout or the value of the investment. It’s about a word that’s been repeated in news about the buyout… COOL.
An article in CNN declared (after buying Instagram), When Did Facebook Become So Uncool; and another from Social Media Today, Instagram, You Sell-Out, you’re no longer cool. To top it off, my Dad also said to me with confidence, “I hear Facebook is no longer cool”. Thanks for the heads up!
Cool stuff used to be about discovery. The new band, that awesome pair of shoes, the hidden coffee shop with real hipsters. The joy finding something that is yours to share…it’s what makes it COOL.
So what happens when the band goes platinum, everyone owns those shoes, and the hipsters are now a lot of hipsters? Boo. It’s no longer cool.
So, enter social media. Oh cool how far you’ve come!
- You provide a service that connects 800 million people around the world. Everyone’s a hipster.
- It takes 1 post (and an instant) to reach hundreds, thousands, millions. Your tweet went platinum.
- Your discovery, thoughts & ideas are now instantly global community property. Everyone has your shoes.
So, is anything really cool anymore after you push send? There is still hope…
In social, cool is no longer being the first to discover, it’s being great at what you do. It’s always been and is still about sharing.
The same applies for brands with a bit of extra care..
4 Brand Tips to Gain Social Cool Cred
Your strategy must first start with the value of your product or service and how it best meets customer needs. Look at the US based Real Estate Agents Century 21. At the surface, a seemingly uncool product, but they have created a sensational social presence providing customers with real-time service and connectivity.
2. Promote sharing within your community
Don’t just talk about your product or service, but what is means to your consumer. Insurance agency Allstate have created an app called GoodRide – a social platform that lets motorcycle riders (not just Allstate customers) connect with others, track and share their routes, and offers planning tools to make the riding experience safer and easier.
3. Be transparent
Brands aren’t perfect, but they can be honest. It wins trust and will build affinity with your consumers.
…and social cool should follow!
Facebook admitted their photo sharing app was crap, so they bought the best one to make their service better. Instagram wanted to expand their service by linking with the biggest sharing platform on the planet. I don’t mind if Facebook or Instagram are no longer deemed the old cool (thanks Dad & CNN) – they are both still great at what they do.