Social Media Marketing a Hot Topic at SXSW

At Capulet, we do social media marketing for a living, so I was excited to see so many social media marketing sessions on the SXSW schedule. And the sessions were packed.

The panels had plenty of conflicting advice on how to move marketing and PR to the web: drop your e-newsletter in favour of Twitter; put a majority of your time in on all the major social networks; spend marketing dollars on customer service because then your customers will create buzz for you.

I'm not a fan of all these strategies, but it's heartening to know that marketing folks and PR agencies are beginning to take social media seriously. One piece of advice I thought was missing from these sessions was to listen first. Barging into online communities with a marketing message is never welcome or successful.

I hope the marketing types who attended these sessions will take a thoughtful, strategic approach to social media. Of course, with thousands of agencies tweeting, blogging and launching Facebook apps on their clients' behalf, my job is about to get a lot harder!