Constantine Panagiotatos: Publicity, Content Production and Branding

Archive for November, 2013

Branding and sales love digital, human relationships: not so much

When we were young (my sister, our cousins and friends) did alot of socialising in our backyard, in a suburb outside of NYC. Our uncles would amuse us by kicking a soccer ball higher than the two massive elms we had, sending the checkered ball onwards past Olympus, it seemed, and eventually back down in a matter of open-mouth awe-induced seconds. The privileges of youth have always been born out of ignorance, and of course undeveloped reason. We thought these adults were kind of super human, and funny. As we grew, it took more and more to get our attention, as our educations and own ideas of the world clouded in to sully any last attempts at extracting enjoyment from parlour tricks. So, we got old and boring like everyone else. Just kidding, some of us have retained our fun-side, but it takes more than a picture of your french fries or that trip to the – wait you’re on the bus – that somehow procured so many likes on your social media page, to get us excited.

Brands have it easier, they can, with smart strategy, an understanding of their audience, and a product that taps into our wants (or better yet, creates wants we didn’t even know we had) use the digital age, particularly social media, to entertain us just like when we were kids. By entertain I mean entertain thoughts and by entertain thoughts I mean those ones that make you and me pull out cash we may or may not have to just spend it. Shiny new toys LOVE social media and it is the perfect platform to engage and personalise our BF brands.

Social media is where I get my brand information, read up on editorials, read through Liverpool match photos, watch short music videos and find out when Alkaline Trio is on tour. But in terms of peoples lives, relationships happen in real life, with people I actually like and have relationships with. The computer screen is great for interacting with brands, not loved ones.

Digital platforms can only be taken as tools for spending, especially when things like substance, for instance literary prose, happenings from the world of art or credible news sources or even peoples extraordinary accomplishments, are not as popular on these sites as “selfies”. Depth lacks the requisite simple unattractiveness that, unfortunately, most people want to see. In other words, your trip to the zoo, not your showcase of game-changing creative work, is what belongs on your Facebook page.

Like most grown men, I’m a big baby when it comes to everything. So I started taking this less seriously when kids I grew up with, who now do advertising photography, work with mega brands, have their projects in movies or fashion spreads, and travel the world, have equal to little less fanfare on facebook, than I do. If that’s the case, I may be becoming as successful as them. Or maybe I just need to instagram my cheerios the next time they spell OOOO to grab people’s attention. – Constantine Panagiotatos