The Quest for BigFoot in Social Marketing


Does BigFoot exist? Well, in the digital world it exists in the term: Digital Footprint.

Wikipedia defines "Digital Footprints" as traces left by someone's activity in a digital environment. In social media/ social marketing, "digital footprint" can refer to the size of one's online presence as it relates to the number of individuals he or she is interacting with. How many followers on Twitter, How many friends on Facebook, How many connections on LinkedIn, etc. – these all make up your digital footprint.

The topic of “personal brand” in social marketing has become more and more popular, as a career tool in growing and establishing one's expertise and digital following. Every blogger, Tweeter, and online marketer is competing for their share of YOUR attention. Lucky for me, at this moment I have it!

I have found it to be relatively easy to self-promote, cross-promote, and build my online following. Just as I do in my offline life, I try to be everywhere that is relevant to my career industry and sometimes expand into other categories to meet new people. For the most part, I target who I am connecting to in the digital space.

Check out how one ad agency organized (and branded) its digital footprint on its website:  - I have a feeling that this will become the common format for digital business cards in 2010, as companies and individuals strive to grow their digital footprints.

My concern for growing one's digital footprint is that that social media has become the new “advertising clutter”. In college, I was taught in marketing class that the typical consumer is exposed to about 3,000 advertising impressions a day- magazine, radio, TV, billboard, point-of-purchase displays, etc.

With the impact of today’s digital technology, that extends to websites, text messages, multiple social networking sites, pay-per-click campaigns, keyword searches, blogs, it goes on and on…… So, that makes the daily “clutter” numbers potentially reach into the millions.

So what if you have 67,989 followers on Twitter and 1,918 friends on your Facebook page? Are they paying attention to you or are they just a number to feed your ego or quota? Social marketing does not work if you do not effectively manage all of those relationships. At some point, your “digital BigFoot” could become too large, thus putting you in danger of becoming extinct.

I believe that size of your audience isn’t necessarily as important as the quality of who you are connected to and how much they value your connection. This is something that is “priceless” in terms of measurability and ROI in social marketing.