My last Performance Insider column raised the issue of whether to view lead gen via social media as closer to PR or DR (Direct Response). You provided a lot of valuable feedback. So it's clear how many marketers are really engaged in this topic -- there's a thirst for more discussion on the overlaps of social and performance marketing.
Right now, every dollar in a marketer's budget has to stretch even further and show even more ROI than ever before. Email marketing is now the method of choice for marketers, because it's grounded on the cost per acquisition model.
The important question during a downturn isn't whether or not the economy will recover. It will; it always does. What's important to ask is whether your company will be in position to surge as the economy begins to grow. To a large degree, the level of your success will depend on your marketing efforts and capabilities -- what you have done during the downturn and what you put in place now to win business during the recovery. You will need to make strategic decisions about choosing new media, entering new markets, and positioning products.
Last week, I hosted a panel at OMMA Global about the intersection of social media and performance marketing. I love how in the early days of a new ad medium -- like the Web in the '90s or interactive telephone before that -- everyone searches for analogies to more familiar marketing methods. And it generally takes a while before consensus appears. In the panel and in the hallway, one of the best debates concerned whether using social media for prospecting was more like direct response or public relations.