It is unwise to adamantly dismiss AI. According to an analysis of over 15,500 news articles and blogs, there was a staggering 550% increase in interest in AI from 2022 to 2023. Social media marketers are swiftly caught on. More companies are planning to double or even triple their use of AI across various activities.
Source: Hootsuite Social Trends 2024 Survey
The Surge in AI Applications
The Hootsuite survey reveals compelling statistics showcasing the surge in AI adoption by organizations. In 2024, there is a projected 318% increase in the use of AI for customer support activities and a 260% increase in AI utilization for image editing.
Consumer Skepticism: Adopt with Care!
It is not all fun and game having an AI tick off some tasks from your busy schedule. A lot of people are having doubts. The survey uncovered that 62% of consumers are less likely to engage with and trust content if they know it was created by an AI application. Adopt with care.
Generational Divide in AI Trust
Your uncle does not really like this whole new AI thing. So keep in mind that different generations perceive AI-generated content differently.
Gen Z appears more adept at distinguishing between AI-generated and human-created content, expressing higher levels of trust and engagement. In contrast, baby boomers exhibit the opposite tendencies, showcasing a greater reluctance to embrace AI-generated content.
Redefining Authenticity in the AI Era
Despite some people’s doubts, AI is inevitable on social media. So marketers will have to redefine authenticity. In 2024, the most successful brands will shift their focus from who (or what) creates the content to the brand experience it provides.
With AI in the mix, the critical questions become: Does it feel right? Does it reinforce the brand? Does it work? By addressing these, concerns about whether a bot created the content become secondary.
Working Smarter with AI
Here is what to do if you’re a marketer or brand trying to effectively navigate the AI landscape in 2024:
Know Your Audience: Understand your audience’s perceptions of AI based on factors like age, culture, geography, or interests.
Delegate Wisely: You should know which tasks to delegate to an AI and which require a human touch.
Establish AI Policies: To avoid potential pitfalls, set clear policies and best practices for AI usage in social media.
To Sum this Up: Do Not Fight AI
AI is not going anyway it’s here to stay. Brands that embrace AI intelligently, consider consumer perceptions, and redefine authenticity, are poised to thrive in this new digital landscape.
Note: The statistics and insights mentioned in this article are derived from the Hootsuite Social Trends 2024 Survey.
Remember, in the dynamic world of social media, adapting to technological advancements like AI is not just a choice—it’s a necessity for those who aim to lead the way in 2024 and beyond.
PS: 2024 is going to be a competitive year for brands on social media. If you’re tired of worrying about when or where the next customer for your business will come from, let’s talk. Contact Shukuru Amos from Tanzlite at +255 742 085 089.
Attention: During the week starting 13th of November 2023, many people in Tanzania received WhatsApp messages from a foreign number. The person identified to be a representative of an agency from Tanzania.
Our agency, Tanzlite Digital was among the brand names these automated messages used. Some of the messages read:
My name is Ayanna, I am a Senior Representative Officer at Tanzlite Digital Marketing agency . Our company is recruiting part-time/full-time online employees, Our job is very simple, May I take a few minutes of your time? I would like to share a job offer for you.
And another similar message came from Vinza Masana
First of all, this is a PURE Scam. Just look at it yourself. It’s bullshit.
Our response to this fraud
Let us reiterate what we posted on all of our social media channels:
First: There are no titles or hierarchical structures at Tanzlite Digital. If you receive a message that sounds corporatey, like some senior somebody from us —that’s NOT us. We don’t have Vinza Masana, Ayanna, or any representative with a foreign number.
Second: Tanzlite doesn’t reach out to anyone. People reach out to us.
Third: We single out talent from LinkedIn only. Not in your WhatsApp app.
Fourth: There’s no one in a foreign country with a foreign number representing us.
And lastly: You’re too smart to be scammed by this automated WhatsApp message. It’s the AI version of “Ile hela tuma kwenye namba hii.”
What should you do when you receive such a scam message?
Block and report that number to WhatsApp IMMEDIATELY. Don’t even waste time to reply because it is probably not a human on the other side. Just automated messages reaching you by guessing random numbers. They will probably come with a different name and company but, you have been warned.
We have entered the Digital Realms where the most talked about topic is “Digital Marketing.” But why has the phenomenon of Digital Marketing suddenly taken the front seat? And what do you think, you are seated in which row?
Yes! One explanation is the sheer amount of technology that has entered our lives, from mobile phones to tablets. Surprisingly, the most significant factor is that one does not need a tech background or an e-based degree to operate as a digital marketer.
I do not back the argument that formal education is not important. If it cannot give you the key to open closed doors, at least it can help you find the keys. Remember, not every school dropout can become Bill Gates or Mark Zuckerberg. The world of Digital marketing welcomes everyone, and anyone can learn it.
A building can only stand on a strong foundation, digital marketing could initially seem intimidating, but with time and your willing to learn new skills you have a potential to become an expert.
Do you want to begin your digital marketing journey? Here is where to start
Lay the foundation by Learning the basics
Digital marketing could initially seem intimidating, but be prepared to pick up new skills. Invest your time learning the basics; a building can only stand on a strong foundation. Today, access to information is easy. Utilize it and educate yourself autonomously. Don’t stress yourself out trying to be an expert in everything. You are just learning the basic concepts and terminology.
There is a plethora of fields in digital marketing. You can pick from options like brand strategist, email marketing, website builder, social media, and SEO content development. Once you start learning the basics, you will be amazed at how interconnected these fields are.
This is the phase where you will put yourself under examination if you want to enter and survive in the Digital realm. Suppose you are not patient and do not feel like spending time learning; goodbye! You better hunt for a regular 9 to 5 job.
Get Familiar with the Tools
Now that you have learned the basics of “HOW TO,” it’s time for “LET’S BEGIN.” Every field in the Digital realm has its tools. Some may act as an assistant, while some may be used to fetch data. Tools refine your strategies and help you play or break the algorithm. Beginning your practice with free tools is a good idea.
Now Help a Small Business with your new skills
Small businesses have a low voice. To make it hear, you need Digital Marketing. Take the initiative to create an online presence for a small business. Here, clicks count, and content is the king. Optimize the content that resonates with the audience, create an advertising strategy, and make it visible in local searches. It will not only be a practical experience, but it will serve as a great motivator.
Build a personal Brand; it is Your Canvass.
Congratulations! Now you are working as a Digital Sorcerer, but no one knows you. You are just another person behind that screen. Let the world know you exist and build your brand. A personal brand is more than a resume.
It is a way to communicate with your audience, display your capabilities, promote your product or services, and win the audience’s heart by storytelling. Your brand is your asset.
Can I learn digital marketing if I’m still a student?
Digital Marketing is not a field meant for adults only. It is a great way for a student to get a glimpse of the real world. Encouraging students to freelance or begin an online business is terrific for navigating the world, exploring inner talents, learning to face failures, and becoming responsible beings. Acquiring extra skills alongside academic education is like icing on the cake.
Unfortunately, our education system relies on rote memorization from books and lacks the ability to equip us for real-life challenges. Not everyone excels in university, so developing digital marketing and other freelancing skills gives a chance to earn and succeed in life.
In the constantly changing field of digital marketing, learning never ends. Keep learning and keep yourself up to date with the changing trends. The digital world has no age limits, and no tech background is required. A mix of soft skills, knowledge of core principles, and determination can make you a “Digital Maven.”
Digital marketing is not just a world of pixels and data but a doorway to countless possibilities.
In GOD DID, Jay-Z raps “OG sold to those, you called kingpin/If those your drug lords, then who are we then?”
A year or two ago, I was reached out by one of these nominated agencies to prepare a digital strategy for a campaign for one of Tanzania’s biggest telcos. It was a rush. I was contacted in the morning and the next day morning was pitch day. Fuck! I cursed. But I did what I could.
So, the next day we pitched after minutes of being put on hold by the people on the other side. They were waiting for some of their members to join the meeting. We pitched. I doubt they were listening.
It was clear to me that this agency was wasting time. The telco already had an agency in mind. But this agency was glad they even got the chance to pitch. Because in Tanzania, agencies don’t compete on competence. It’s something else.
I’m glad I was paid for my time.
A few weeks later we saw a campaign done by another agency. It was so normal the only way you could deem it successful was by taking solace in the number of impressions. Not the conversations it managed to start.
On the evening of October 26, a hilarious thing happened. A fool from the Tanzania Marketing Science Association called me. “This is [name] from TMSA. I’m calling to inform you that you’re nominated for the Tanzania Marketing Awards. I want to confirm your attendance tomorrow”
But we were not nominated. Nothing that I heard of. They posted the list of their friends as nominees and I got a call a day before the event. How could they make such a blunder? I shared about this in this post. Allow me to feature some of the comments:
…niliandika kuhusu Hawa. Wametengeneza kundi afu kikundi kinajiamulia nani apeww kazi ipi…Kwamba usipokuwa mwanachama hupati…what happened to free choices…
…many winners in this ‘system’ owe their success primarily to aggressive promotional efforts rather than the quality or excellence of their services. Regrettably, this has the effect of misleading the public, as it often rewards mediocrity rather than recognizing deserving service providers.
By the way, the Tanzania Marketing Science Association should be called for what it is — Tanzania Association of Marketing Lobbyists.
My agency is younger than these nominated agencies. But in the past four years, we have beat all of them on SEO. We are number one on organic search. None of these nominees even make it to the second page of Google Search results. But you are being told they are the best.
Our Swahili articles reign supreme on digital marketing-related queries. Every day, tens of Tanzania’s small digital entrepreneurs read our actionable articles and leave “thank you” comments. Ask the nominees to show you their Search Console Analytics, if they even know what that is.
If you come to LinkedIn, my agency is the most followed Tanzanian agency. We beat all of the nominees on important metrics like engagement, and impactful writing. You won’t even see most of those nominees on LinkedIn.
Smart Codes is not smart enough to even get three comments per month. And that is the effort of both humans at the agency and ChatGPT.
Don’t even get me started about me. I am the most followed Tanzanian marketing professional on LinkedIn. I have authored a book that has sold TZS 1,187,600 in the first two weeks of launch. I have all the transactions in case you’re doubting Thomas.
All that demonstrated competency in the open, online market but we didn’t even show up on their list of nominees. Our only fault is that we are sons and daughters of the dispossessed nobodies. We hate the soul-selling approach of lobbying and simping to big corporations.
Thankfully, I get clients from foreigners who judge from what they see not who knows who. Sometimes I get clients from diaspora Tanzanians or outliers who hate the endemic Uchawa system that has plagued the agency landscape in Tanzania.
Next time you see these awards, just know that it’s a cohort of chawas gathering to give each other little pats on the back. All of the nominees here are also unashamedly the sponsors of the awarding body. Who do they take a Tanzanian public for, fools?
If God forbid one of these individuals holds higher government positions, it is time to weep.
This article was first published on Shukuru’s newsletter, the Social Rhetoric.
Are you a founder sitting behind a mahogany table, the old CEO way, and with zero online presence? Then you have to consider what that does to you and your company.
Social media is where successful brands are built. Brands that gain, not just followers, but interests and revenue. To achieve this kind of success, a brand needs a human element. Who best to do it if not the founder?
If you are not making your online presence felt to the world, you are sending your brand to the realms of the unknown.
Now is not the time to play low-key and leave it all to the marketing department. It is time to become a Chief Storyteller. If you don’t know how to do it, ask your marketing team for assistance.
CEOs can use social media to position themselves as industry leaders and brand storytellers. And by doing so, the interaction they generate will bring traffic to their business. This is by far the best digital strategy; founder + company marketing.
Brand/Company Marketing is Good, BUT..
Companies realized a while ago that going digital is important. So they flocked there. Most companies are spending a lot of money on promotions. From influencers to ads –you name it. But for some reason, they struggle to establish a genuine connection with the target audience. Why? Well, that’s because there is a missing part to their online marketing efforts.
Why a Founder/CEO Marketing is Important?
CEOs who have abandoned social media may be ‘quiet quitting’ on their own business. You will lose a big chunk of people to your competitors who, in addition to company posts, have a digitally outspoken personality that gets eyes to their brand.
Professor Ndubuisi Ekekwe, faculty lead at the Tekedia Mini MBA program, is an excellent example of founder marketing. He is one of LinkedIn’s top voices from Africa, engaging an audience of over 165,000 people. He is aware that a company alone (Tekedia Institute) alone will not suffice. So being active, and writing extensively on his personal profile draws students to the Tekedia Mini MBA program.
Ndubuisi’s posts are more than simply his company updates. He contributes value and knowledge in his posts. This strategy fosters his image of a thought leader and a person that has wisdom.
Undoubtedly, a post on the CEO’s profile will gain more attention than one on the business page. Speaking from a human perspective is more impactful.
Founder’s Personal Brand: A Brand’s Best Ally
Founder’s (or CEO) marketing will complement your company’s brand marketing in a way outsider influencers can’t. It can help earn genuine engagement of the Brand and the audience.
Businesses cannot succeed without trust. The online visibility of the founder opens the way for credibility and trust in the Brand. See the image below:
If Microsoft promoted this from their company page, they wouldn’t get this much engagement. Why? People don’t often interact with a company page. Microsoft has over 10 million followers but likes on its posts rarely pass 200.
People need a face, not a logo. A logo cannot achieve the level of trust that a CEO of that Brand can establish. Founder Marketing contributes to the Brand’s increased visibility.
As a social CEO, you must engage with your audience meaningfully. That can take the shape of Tweets, Linkedin Posts, TikTok videos, or whatever platform you like. Just be careful not to post all about your business. Share your opinions on pressing matters such as geopolitics and how they affect business. Sometimes remember the youth and share experience-based career tips. You will be likable.
Real personalities breathe life into brands. Especially now that demand for business transparency is greater than ever. A CEO can win over consumer trust and create emotional bonding with other people.
A social CEO consequently becomes the public face of the Brand or business. Furthermore, it is comforting to learn from their engagements that CEOs are not distant figures who only attend meetings.
A Tweet or a Post by a Social CEO is not just another noise in the realm of Social Media. It is an echo of their remarkable Leadership.
P.S.: If you are looking to see how a mix of founder and company marketing will help grow your business, click HERE to contact us.
The world is full of brands echoing in every corner. Everyone claims to be unique and the best. But in a hurry to identify as a brand, everyone is doing what is already being served to the audience. It is easy to choose a path that is generic and become mired in mediocrity.
When so many companies offer the same thing, you may stand out by developing a unique content strategy and engaging with something your competitors do not.
You can have a perennial presence by posting Happy Sunday, Monday, and Friday; Happy Holidays or Morning Wishes, but will this help you make an indelible presence?
Being distinctive doesn’t just mean being seen; it also means having the power to establish your presence by creating a persistent impact. Your efforts to foster trust, authenticity, and value for customers are just as important as financial investments in your company.
Anyone can use images from photo stock, but you must work exclusively to establish yourself as ‘Exclusive.’ It is entirely up to you to stand out or be generic and give up your Uniqueness.
What everyone is doing
Companies that are unfamiliar with the game copy exactly what another company does. This is what makes them the same as any other company. They usually post:
Their team: You will only attract job seekers wishing to work at your company.
Holiday wishes: If every company does that, why do it?
Overly Promotional Content: They aggressively market their goods or services and engage in direct sales instead of building genuine connections with the audience.
Scarcity Mindset: Companies with a scarcity mindset only focus on the now. They fail to invest in things that take time but guarantee long-term returns, such as a content strategy for authority building.
Creating content and doing activities that demand effort and resources establishes credibility and proves that you are confident in your offering. It gives the impression that you want to provide the best for your customers. Your customized marketing means you have put efforts to understand the needs of your target audience. It is a way to create an emotional bond with your customers or audience.
In social media, you can break away from the herd by signaling your investments in long-term relationships with your customers. This means posting opinionated and experience-driven insights. Not the generic stuff. It is how you can build a powerful brand presence:
1. Share case studies or testimonials
Social Validations are the voice of your credibility. Case studies are a great way to show how your product helped the real user instead of mere claims. It is human psychology to seek out references and experiences of others to help them make their choices. By considering other people’s decisions, it can aid in personal decision-making.
2. Organize webinars
There are numerous platforms available to get on a live conversation with your audience, including X Spaces and Linkedin Live. Webinars can showcase your brand’s online presence, engage and educate your audience, and turn leads into actual clients.
3. Diversify your content
Nothing makes you fall into the pack more than being overly promotional. Sharing opinionated and experience-driven insights give your customers something they don’t usually see from other companies. Brands that know what works have a combination of educational, entertainment/Inspirational, and Promotional content. They don’t focus on promotional content alone.
4. Play the long game
Valuable content may take longer to give results, but it will have a lasting impact. Your communication and engagement with the audience should all show your authenticity. Play the long game and you will benefit from the compounding return of your efforts.
A crowd of brands is out there, and people’s attention spans are short. Unique content imprints your brand image in the mind of customers. Which leads to word of mouth, the magic of business growth.
Your content should address their pain points, offer solutions to their problems, and serve as a bridge between your brand and the customers. Customers who are happy with your services or product will be your most loyal advocate.
The generic approach might appear quick and simple, but you must go above and beyond to establish your brand authority. Don’t have some Brand B; replace your Brand A. You can stand apart from the noise by giving your brand a distinctive voice.
Remember, uniqueness lives on the edge, where there is less crowd.