Forget story telling and building a brand narrative, one of the best things about social media is the fact that it allows for fast, fluid communications that any business can turn to it's advantage.
The immediacy of social media is very well illustrated by this weeks E3 unveiling by Microsoft of not just the new Xbox One console, but of the anticipated pricing and DRM restrictions, both critical considerations for gamers.
Whilst the Play Station 4 is set to be priced at £349, the new Xbox One comes in at a hefty £429. So far so bad for Microsoft. The second big reveal was that the rumours were true, anyone purchasing the Xbox One will face strict restrictions when it comes to where they can buy and trade games thanks to DRM (digital rights management) being introduced that will effectively remove peoples ability to lend and trade games. For console gamers, this alone is a deal breaker.
This lead to a witty and quickly delivered bit of marketing by Sony, who released a YouTube video on the same day of the 10th June 2013 announcement - Official PlayStation Used Game Instructional Video.
The Step-by-step Sony video on how to lend games to your friends, humorously highlights how super easy it is to trade used Play Station games, a clear dig at the Xbox One's restrictions.
The speed at which businesses can publish content is one of the greatest benefits of social media marketing. Indeed, this kind of reactive, topical mass-marketing can not be achieved outside of social media. It takes days, weeks or even months to book billboard spaces and design posters, or to book ad space and create radio or TV adverts.
Use social media like Sony
For businesses the message then is clear - make sure you're socially agile. Jumping in and shaping topical conversations as they occur can give you a voice and increase your visibility so remain vigilant and on the look out for all opportunities that present themselves.
It really doesn't get any simpler, or quicker to execute than a 10 second video published on YouTube. Not all successful marketing activities need weeks of planning to implement, jump in and use wit and humour to get your message across and you might just find that your next activity goes viral.
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You can read more about this weeks E3 console announcements at BBC Technology.
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