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CTAM: FYI -- Social TV Needs An OMG Experience

It took a 10-person, all-black a capella gospel choir from
the Southside Church of Christ of Orlando to drive home a message about social
media to a CTAM Summit panel Sunday.

By the end of the session, titled "Moving the Needle with
Social TV," the choir sang a religious song to the melody of Stevie Wonder's
"Master Blaster" and "Isn't She Lovely" at the request of Procter &
Gamble's Dustin Garis.

Garis, corporate innovator at P&G, had brought the choir
to the session to the panel to prove a single point he pushed throughout the
session: "How can TV be the gateway to people experiencing a richer life?"

Pushing the same tired, old marketing messages - even in the
spanking-new world of social TV - simply doesn't work, he said. "People want to
live memorable lives. There's a gap between aspirations and reality.  How do we use social media to close that

Garis, showed a heart-tugging P&G TV campaign that ran
during the Olympics about thanking moms, who are the biggest buyers of P&G
products. He said the commercial was a spark to a broader conversation. The
company then developed specific unique social-TV apps that allowed people to
thank their moms.

He said marketers today need to find richer ways to enhance
people's lives, and close the gap between what people "would do" and what
people "could do." The gap, he said, is a term he calls "life profit."

Programmers (and distributors) need to find a way to break
through the increasing volume of noise and chatter in the social media
ecosystem, in part because the space is becoming more crowded. The compound
annual growth rate for social media activity is 275%, averaging 18% growth a
month for social TV activity, according to Meghann Sills Elrhoul, a vice
president of client services and analytics at Trendrr.

Despite that growth, social-media platforms still lack a
mass user base that is attractive to advertisers, so focusing on one distinct
driver will make more of difference, panelists agreed.

When asked if campaigns work best during a show or in
between, Elrhoul pointed out that, for example, 73% of the conversation for The
CW's Vampire Diaries happened during
the show.

The panelists disagreed over whether social media drives
tune in to shows; Sean Besser, executive vice president of business development
for GetGlue, said his research showed 17% of viewers tuned into the show
because of social buzz. "As we as human beings become less social, social TV is
a tremendous opportunity to reclaim that socialness in our lives."

Brands - not just TV shows - have much to gain, Adam Naide,
executive director of marketing for Cox Communications, said. He mentioned that
Felix Baumgartner's successful skydiving freefall - breaking the speed of
sound, as well as records - was sponsored by Red Bull energy drink.

"This shows how brands like Red Bull can be as much of
player in the space as as networks," he said.

But what matters most is how the message is received, he
said. "Social media is the world's largest focus group," said Naide. "If
content is king, context is emperor."