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February 27, 2013

#rtm Passe already?

by KevinW

This AdWeek article (http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/real-time-marketing-during-oscars-fails-deliver-much-brand-buzz-147552)  poses an interesting question: Is the real-time marketing (#rtm) strategy already past the prime of its relevance?

The phenomenon of brands using Twitter to capitalize on real-time events to promote their products started to create buzz only as recently as the Super Bowl. Nabisco’s Oreo brand tweeted during the infamous blackout, and the message was re-tweeted over 14,000 times. Those marketers trying to capitalize on the Oscars a couple nights ago were not as lucky: The top tweet from that night garnered only 700 or so re-tweets. The mild success of Oscars efforts has prompted some pundits to question whether #rtm is done before so soon.

While the results of the Oscars were not very promising, I do not believe that #rtm will not become irrelevant any time in the foreseeable future. First, the author’s  use of the Super Bowl as a benchmark for the Oscars is not exactly a fair comparison. The Super Bowl is a monumental marketing event that seems to set new records on Twitter volume every year, while the Oscars is a much more low-key event that stretches into later night hours. Second, Twitter by its nature is a very unpredictable medium. A tweet has to strike just the right chord to catch a great deal of momentum, and not every mass audience event provides the right circumstances for a marketing opportunity. Finally, #rtm is something that marketers has only just recently grabbed marketers’ attention. As they become more practiced with these events, the effectiveness of the #rtm efforts should increase significantly.

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