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Cannes 2012: The big wave called 'Social Media'

By , As the third day of the 59th International Festival of Creativity came to an end, Paul Adams, global head, brand design, Facebook took the stage. However, to everyone's surprise, Adams froze and walked out of the stage, only to come back and accept that for the first time, he would address a large crowd and speak on the topic, 'The psychology and creativity of sharing'.

He said, "All media take decades to stabilise, be it press or television. Internet was first built around content as it was mainly about websites and the kind of content they provided. Then entered the second phase, when internet was rebuilt around people. For example, the site Etsy is a gift site. So when one tries to find the perfect gift for her friend, she can click on a button called 'Gift idea'. Soon, a box opens up, which connects the site to Facebook and directly links to the profile of the prospective recipient. What happens next is on Etsy, the gift preferences show changes as the site personalises to the likes of the person for whom her friend is trying to find a gift.", Cannes | In Advertising | June 20, 2012

The third day of the 59th International Festival of Creativity ended with Paul Adams, global head, brand design, Facebook highlighting the various aspects of the animal called 'Social Media' and how brands can create magical success stories after they learn to tame the animal.

As the third day of the 59th International Festival of Creativity came to an end, Paul Adams, global head, brand design, Facebook took the stage. However, to everyone's surprise, Adams froze and walked out of the stage, only to come back and accept that for the first time, he would address a large crowd and speak on the topic, 'The psychology and creativity of sharing'.

Paul Adams

He said, "All media take decades to stabilise, be it press or television. Internet was first built around content as it was mainly about websites and the kind of content they provided. Then entered the second phase, when internet was rebuilt around people. For example, the site Etsy is a gift site. So when one tries to find the perfect gift for her friend, she can click on a button called 'Gift idea'. Soon, a box opens up, which connects the site to Facebook and directly links to the profile of the prospective recipient. What happens next is on Etsy, the gift preferences show changes as the site personalises to the likes of the person for whom her friend is trying to find a gift."

He next stressed on the need to interact. According to Adams, sharing is a means to an end. People share things because they are trying to build relationships, manage their identity or help each other. The brain is not developing as fast as the world around it, which is changing at a faster pace. A person can recall a maximum of 300 friends at a time, of the 500 friends he has on Facebook. One has to always understand that the motivation for social interaction is the same on online and offline media, and has remained the same for centuries. People or marketers who try to break this chain and create new avenues will never succeed. For any brand to succeed in social media, one has to understand the existing social network behaviour and then support it."

He then highlighted the advantage of social media and how it helps marketers to succeed in targeted advertising. He stated that the biggest advantage for brands is that social networks such as Facebook collect data on consumer behaviour, which further helps marketers to understand the behaviour of consumers online and allows companies to target specific customers with specific offers and experiences.

Adams also spoke on how technology is changing; 'We' as people are still looking at older solutions to be applied to new media. "Marketers who often complain that the ads on Facebook are too small, can use various other options like Page Post which are similar to press ads and are also big in size," he remarked.

Before ending, he gave four tips to marketers on what they need to do when advertising on Facebook.

"First make social interaction a fundamental part of the creative brief. Next, base one's creative on real insight about social interaction. Thirdly, think of Facebook as a new type of canvas that isn't just a depository for print and TV ads and last, focus on designing brands' news feeds before jumping into app development," concluded Adams.

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