Photon ‘spins’ Oz’s first/fourth Social Media agency launch

We’re seeing the (editorial) launch of what’s inaccurately billed as Australia’s ‘first pure Social Media Marketing agency’ ( Julian Cole has scored a gig at the ‘The Population’). Tad embarrassing for noo agency and journos, no-one researched the ‘first’ Social Media agency claim (yet Smart Company used the erroneous PR soundbite). Photon shareholders will be encouraged by the headline clips, though.

Other Soc Med Marketing agencies in Oz might include Zest, Shifted Pixels and Sticky. And several PR firms like Edelman, Text 100 and Howarth are certainly active in the Soc Media area from a PR/marcomms stance.

Population MD says their “…first goal is to simply educate the market about developing new ways of using social networking as a marketing tool, and merging the use of technology and branding.” So, pretty much treading turf similar to that taken by Ozzies like Lee Hopkins, Gavin Heaton, Trevor Cook, Laurel Papworth, and myself (and others like Paull Youngie in the US) over the last 2-3 years or so?

I welcome The Population, hoping their intellectual input will enrich the sector’s knowledge base and their Photon parentage will add weight to the validity of Web2.0 as a two-way Comms conduit, not just a marketing channel.

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12 Responses to Photon ‘spins’ Oz’s first/fourth Social Media agency launch

  1. Tony Thomas says:

    Thanks for the welcome Gerry. The Population is certainly looking at the opportunity more upstream than at the end of the communications process.

    As you would clearly know, brand perception is shaped from all the combined experiences an individual has with the brand, both within and outside the traditional marketing channels.
    There is alot of work to do with business’s to educate and understand the opportunity that Web 2.0 provides. Right now the perception is very technology and media focussed – I know because I’ve been in the commercial business and marketing environment for a pretty long time.
    We are looking forward to the ride!

  2. Julian Cole says:

    Thanks Gerry for the welcome.

  3. Gerry says:

    Ta guys; no matter where you/Photon see The Population, or perceive others to be, in ‘the stream’, all I’m saying is you aint the first to go ‘swimming’ in Oz soc media. Gerry

  4. Mike Hickinbotham says:

    Regardless who was the first, I think the bigger issue is the expansion of social media services in Australia.

    Additional resources could lead to greater adoption of social media technologies by corporate Australia.

    Cheers,

    Mike

  5. Gerry says:

    Sure Mike; but consulting to corps and orgs, I dont see resource as the main issue barring adoption…lack of understanding of its potential influence/failure to want to resign ‘command and control’/it’s just for the kids etc all regularly come up. Tho more orgs are seeing the ‘issues management’ benefits, G

  6. Agreed Gerry and as you know, traditional agencies make a false claim of FIRST! and it’s accepted as good P.R. – in a conversation industry it’s a little…well, foolhardy… at the very least. *shrugs*

    As Mike says more resources – competition even- ensure more coverage. More choice of consultants and agencies implies a growth area and becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Even if it’s the dreaded ‘bandwagon’ tag…

    To Tony, congrats on the new job and it will be interesting to see what The Population does. :)

  7. Gerry says:

    All true Laurel; & as you say, Soc Med is a conversation (not just a ‘market’), which is where Marketing-oriented SocMed agencies may miss the essential Cluetrain spirit. But the sun is shining and I’m smiling!!

  8. Lee Hopkins says:

    Personally, I’m giggling at the sillyness of claiming to be the *first* pure social media marketing agency. In which case I am the *first* pure social media marketing guru in Mylor, Gerry is the *first* pure social media marketing guru in his street, ditto Laurel in hers…

    I would have thought that such hyperbole had been removed from the Aussie lexicon by virtue of the fact that no one can stand packaged bullshit, no matter how nice the bow around it is.

  9. Gerry says:

    Giggle on Leo!! The prob is that a lot of clients dont even look at Soc Med channels right now, so will just read the trade headlines (re-runs of ‘first agency’PR claims) and, literally, believe the hype. Least Julian Cole got sheepish about it when challenged on his blog, Tony just skated over it completely.

  10. Hey Gerry,

    Just catching up on the feeds after a frenetic few weeks. I can confirm that Howorth has a social media practice. :)

  11. Julian Cole says:

    Gerry thanks for interpreting my actions. But come on mate is that really being ‘sheepish’, When I realised I was wrong, I then changed the headline, I think it is a virtue of online content production, being able to change the content.

    I guess on that rule, you were sheepish to come catch up for a beer on the weekend as well. I was looking forward to meeting you in person, I guess it is your shout next time I am in Melbourne. ; )

  12. Gerry says:

    Julian; was enjoying peninsula sunshine rather than city beer on Grand Final Day. Another time for sure. P’raps I shouldnt have tried to suggest you/The Population might have been embarrassed by feeling foolish. Maybe cos of my PR background, I was schooled to get the facts straight b4 we publish big claims (online or offline). Plus, I dont believe online provides any case for making a headline-grabbing boast, then correcting it when challenged.
    (PS I may be up in Sydney b4 end Oct; hope to catch up then). Gerry

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