A Facebook Primer for Small-Agency Owners

The Seven Personalities Who Roam the Social-Media Plains

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Peter Madden Peter Madden
As everyone rushes on the covered wagons to find marketing gold in social-media land, I thought it made sense to provide some color as it relates to users of social media. I will preface this by saying that given a number of interests I have, and my primary job as connector at large, my friends and their friends of friends collectively represent a good cross section of people using Facebook. (I am saving Twitter for another day. One medium at a time, please.)

So away we go on the top "Lucky Seven" personalities on Facebook, with a little insight for the marketing gurus out there on how to approach each type.

1. Super Mom. As Tupac said, we got our name from a woman and our game from a woman. But make no mistake, no one has game like FB moms! Running marathons, running after kids, running a business, going to every sporting event under the sun. They still have time to post photos of the kids doing everything from sitting like a mushroom to throwing a temper tantrum because of a lost pacifier. Man, are they candid, too! Can someone please help me understand why Olivia got up at 4 am AGAIN? Another Soccer Game -- aaaaargh! I can't believe I'm at the Jonas Brothers -- Blah! Marketer angle: You better give it to 'em straight. They don't have time for fluff. Unless it's on "Oprah."

2. The Thing. If they're into biking, running, sailing, going to concerts or sheep herding, every single update, and I mean every one of them, is going to relate to their one thing. Whatever the activity, I will assume that these people would make flapjacks during their run/bike/sail/etc. if they could. Marketer angle: Unless you have something that is laser-focused on appealing to their thing, making them better at their thing, or the new thing for their thing, fuggedabouit.

3. BraggaBROcious. Don't let "Bro" confuse you. Men and women alike share this title, given to those who save all updates for incredible adventures that are typically reserved for the wealthy, or the Jonas Brothers. Just bungee jumped in Chile -- what a rush! Can't believe I'm hanging with Jay-Z -- he's taller in person! First-class flight to Vegas here I come! Marketer angle: If it's going to make them feel like a master/mistress of the universe (even in their own mind), go for it and save no bell or whistle.

4. Emotionally Yours. These types are in search of therapy from their friends. I'm blown away by the honesty! From figuring out or trumpeting their love life, work life or other life, they're in search of being heard. I just had a total blowout with my husband. Why are people so mean to me? So tired of being used. What a way to wake up! Hello, is anyone listening? Marketer angle: Are you listening? Or are you just part of the noise? Feel their pain/joy and have an answer to get them from A-Z. Or even A-B. Simple, right?

5. Constant Contact. I assume members of this group bring the laptop into the bathroom. They don't miss a beat, constantly updating on every possible thing they're feeling, person they're with, or activity they're partaking in. Up at 6 a.m. -- hello world! It's 6:05, can't believe the phone is ringing! 6:07, it was my mom calling -- WTF?! 6:09 -- guess it's time for a shower. Marketer angle: These people want to be played with, entertained and engaged (though online only, please). Just make sure that whatever you're selling is something enhancing their virtual world, because it's the only one they're livin' in, baby.

6. The Drinker/Eater. We know our food and alcohol supply will forever be in danger with this group at the grill/restaurant/bar. The margaritas at the Concord are unreal! Grilling mahi mahi for the Ms. Half price Peroni at the Princeton (never). Marketer angle: If you're selling anything that can be ingested, fire away. It just better be good or prepare for your dish to be dissed.

7. Honored Mom/Dad. I wish I had grown up with my parents thinking I was the superstar that prevails in parenthood thinking today. Or maybe they had the theory that makes the Irish so tough -- let him get his a** kicked and figure it out. Timmy scored 2 goals! Laura painted the best picture I've ever seen! So proud of Jamie -- what a report card! Marketer angle: Nothing is too good for the super kid in mom and dad's mind, so let the love fly and make sure you also realize how incredible Junior is. Look out, world!

What will we do with all of these thoughts at the end of the Facebook rainbow? Where do all these thoughts go? Will there be scrapbooks that parents keep of their updates? In any event, there's a wide world out there, but I still wonder if fans actually convert to real dollars. My jury decided that social media is a part of the marketing pie, though it's a small one.

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