Over the past decade we have seen an immense shift in how advertisers approach consumers. It is largely impacted thanks to two corporations: Google and Facebook.
Google, in my opinion, is winning the advertisement game just by sheer efficiency. Google AdWords has taken out the guesswork for advertisers. AdWords is able to directly bring advertisers to those that are searching for their products. While the applicability of the ad depends on the search phrase, marketers are able to narrow down who is looking for their products. Anthony Young articulates the thoughts of business experts in saying, “Battelle came up with the phrase “the database of intentions” to convey the power Google holds in knowing what we’re all searching for, whether it’s boots, books, doctors, or divorces.” (Young 8) Google serves as a link between consumers and producers. Not to mention it is built in market research. For instance, I love to buy skincare products. I also want to get the best product on a graduate student budget. Beauty can be cheap in my opinion. The first place I will go to research where to get the best skincare lines will automatically be Google. As a costumer it serves me as a research tool while simultaneously letting producers know who will be looking for their products. If I type in the phrase drugstore eye cream numerous advertisements and articles will pop up that relate directly to my needs as a client.
When it comes to social visibility it is hard to compete with the juggernaut that is Facebook. Since it was launched in 2004 people were able to connect like never before across the globe. Before advertisers tried to connect with their clients through emotional advertisements and brand spokesmanship. It was an era where the Don Drapers of the world were able to compel consumers to buy products with just a turn of phrase and well placed artwork. Now consumers are proving to be more media savvy. Young elaborates this in saying, “In a world where consumers are becoming more cynical and dismissive of corporate-controlled brand messaging, Facebook represents the media of the everyday person.” I am more likely to be responsive to a brand if it has that personal element.
Word of mouth is propelling advertisers to change up their game plan. They are now seeking to connect to their buyers on a more personal level. For example, I was recently on Facebook when I noticed a post by Coca-Cola that incorporates that personal affect. If you were to go on the Facebook page for Coca-Cola right now you would see a post referencing the recent win of the Alabama football team. The phrase, share a coke with a champion is spread across a bottle of Coca-Cola. In doing so the company is marketing themselves while at the same time attaching themselves to a particular moment for fans of the Alabama football team. Although I am not personally a fan of the Alabama football team, the company’s ability to give the appearance of being a part of a team makes me feel a sense of comradery towards them. Coca-Cola is one the biggest corporations in the world, yet it seeks to establish a personal connection to their consumers like that of a small town establishment. https://www.facebook.com/CocaColaUnitedStates/ This niche advertising would not be possible without Facebook. The personal connection one feels towards companies would also not be possible.
To put it simply, the world of communications is constantly evolving because of both Google and Facebook. Perhaps in the next few years we will see a change in how advertisers connect with consumers, but as it stands right now Google as the advantage on advertising. Facebook, in contrast, is the dominate player in social media. It is the combination of their talents that we see companies rise and fall in the global market place.