Wednesday, June 3, 2009

The Brand Can Have its own Personality

A lot of great talk going on about what the Murphy-Goode candidate who lands the job will leave behind in 6 months. It started on Andy's Goode Life Blog and continued over onto Hardy's Goode To Be First blog. The person who lands the job will have a "ton of equity- similar to a TV host or DJ". The Murphy-Goode position may be an anomaly to this, but does a Social Media position have to put so much stock in the personality of the person hired? My response on Hardy's blog:

There are certainly ways to promote the brand in social media without promoting one's self. I can think of several brands I follow in social media that definitely have personality, but I don't really know who the real person is behind it. If the person changed, I wouldn't know so long as the personality stayed the same. If you *create* a personality for the brand without linking it to you personally, someone else could potentially carry on that branding indefinitely. I think any brand looking for a social media professional should consider this, or else end up like Sirius w/ Howard Stern.

This may not be possible with the Murphy-Goode situation because of the publicity, we all know who is applying and eventually who will land the job. However, if I were at Murphy-Goode I would definitely be asking myself "...if after 6 months we don't keep this person on, would we lose all of our followers?".

I think the successful candidate will portray a little bit of "it's not about me, it's about Murphy-Goode".


  1. Great way to keep the Murphy-Goode dialogue a-rollin', Craig.

    I agree with you on most points, the only problem is that the "online voice" for the winery, as Dave called it in his interview with @WineBizRadio, has to have a real person behind it. For sure they'll be a brand evangelist for Murphy-Goode and be talking about their great wines...that's a given (Given...I made a joke, as if you've never heard it before)...but there is a fine line between a person's brand equity and the company's.

    Would Murphy-Goode lose "followers" if/when the correspondent hangs up his or her social media toolbelt? Not if the connections are based on experiences with the winery's product to begin with.

    I'm a big fan of Tobin James in Paso Robles, but if an awesome social media person integrated with their brand for six months and then left, that wouldn't change how I feel about the underlying product.

    Maybe we're both saying the same thing. :)

  2. Great question!

    This is why it is important that MG finds a candidate that is closely aligned with their core values, culture and personality. That way, the "personality" or the person can stay the same (as best it can) no matter who is at the other end of the camera/keyboard. Think SNL, where the cast changes, but the premise and "product" stay the same. Granted, the Belushi, Akroyd, Murphy (Eddie, not Goode), Farleys were more memorable than other eras, but it's the best analogy I can come up with during my quick lunch hour. Cheers!

  3. Hi Todd,
    I think we are talking about the same thing, and I think Hardy is too. So, this is definitely not an argument per say- but I think a discussion about our view/understanding of what a social media corespondent should be (which in itself, is still being newly defined)

    I've been picturing this in the sense of the MG position in the hypothetical situation where I am making a video, say, of the MG crew during harvest (an exciting time at a winery). My video is not "here *I* am at harvest....", but instead is more like "here's Dave at harvest...".

    It will just be important for the new hire to showcase the personalities of the winery before their own to achieve a following, as you said, "based on experiences with the...product".

  4. Great post Craig! I like how you take a hot topic and give it your own twist and bring it over to your blog for further discussion! That is savvy, my friend.

    I see your bid and raise your offer to "systems". Yes, we are going to be "real people" doing a "real job" talking about "real stuff" happening to "real grapes", however as social media whizes you would be expected to be the tech guy to leverage the media while placing great stories, building wonderful relationships and transporting an existing brand and image to a wider populus online--virtually and literally connect here.

    This means you will (in my understanding of what can be expected of a social media person) set up systems which maximise your existing skills to be a personable, communicable, brand-carrier for Murphy-Goode -- essentially setting MG up for continued social media savvyness once you move on to new projects.

    So it would be taking your understanding, Craig, and letting it go viral. (I am thinking of that background work no one seems to mention except me, how to simultaneously upload to multiple video sharing sites is only the tip of the iceberg.) It would be using your savvy media knowledge and sharing it with the people at MG so that they can continue feeding thier pr through the social media stream and letting it flow.

    So I still find it to be a great question: How do you plan to successfully exit your social media job?