The three pillars of social media success are: BE RELEVANT. BE HUMAN. BE SOCIAL

In The End of Marketing: Humanizing Your Brand in the Age of Social Media,  Social Media Strategist Carlos Gil describes the process of making sense of the digital ocean noise on social media, humanizing your marketing effort and evolving to make the best use of social media.

The Core theme of the end of marketing: Consumers do not want to be sold to, they want to buy from brands that are relatable, that shows empathy and shows they care. The best story teller wins.

Historically, relationships were formed over drinks and golf. Today, Facebook is the hotel lobby bar and Twitter is the golf course. Marketing, as we know it, is dead. The only choice you have is to evolve or die.

Marketing is dead

Consumers don’t want to be sold to any more than you do; they want to be engaged through stories and dialogue, making them feel closer to you and your brand

To understand marketing today is to know psychology, culture, and  human behavior (i.e., know what people want to see, what’s trending, and make your content look the most appealing to capture someone’s attention and on a deeper, human level).

Marketing isn’t a tactic; it’s a science.

Marketing is also a numbers game that requires a considerable amount of time, patience, money, and understanding of what your customer desires to see in their newsfeed. Marketing is manipulation. And… marketing, as we know it, is dead.

Marketing to someone is highly ineffective, whereas marketing through someone is the opportunity.

Engage with Empathy First

Today, marketing and advertising require a new way of thinking and an understanding that the digital landscape is built on genuine communication instead of mass communication—especially post-COVID, whereby consumers’ expectations of the brands they follow should be to engage with empathy first.

Your challenge isn’t how to market to your target consumer; instead, your objective should be how to engage your target demographic to become an advocate for your brand and, in return, have them convince their friends to join—similar to how the “All in Challenge” has built up a roster of celebrity advocates.

Marketing is product storytelling and social media is the gateway.

We are living in a new era whereby people have the power to influence the masses from an iPhone anywhere in the world. The game of marketing is no longer played exclusively by billion-dollar corporations.

Everyone is an influencer, and everyone is a competitor.

Social Media as a listening tool

Building relationships isn’t done through Facebook ads or brand campaigns exclusively; they’re formed individually one by one. Social media gives you the power to identify consumers who are speaking about your brand and your competition as well as the ability to engage them directly. But these relationships need to be carefully fostered. Importantly, the relationship that you form with your customer needs to be a two-way dialogue, otherwise you’re pushing out content for the sake of creating noise.

Attention is the commodity. Marketability is the strategy. Likeability is the measurement.

Whoever is influential to your brand, you should be finding ways every day to form relationships with them; social media provides you with the opportunity to directly connect with and catch the attention of these individuals, rather than having to connect via a third party such as an agent.

Social media is just a tool—it’s not the strategy, and it’s not perfect.

Speak like a human

Just as consumers have become accustomed to flipping the channel any time a commercial airs, we now swipe or scroll past a brand that we perceive to be advertising to us. As such, it’s more important than ever to speak like a human rather than a brand that is selling something.

attention is the commodity, not followers

If you aspire to stand out in the crowded and noisy digital ocean that is social media, you can’t just sit idle; you must have genuinely good content, self-promote, and then slowly build a tribe of followers who will promote for you.

Content is queen and community is king, and they need to work together to create an empire.

Be where your customers are

Getting others to receive your signal starts with having a presence where “they”—your customers—are. Don’t be everywhere for the sake of trying to reach everyone because you can’t possibly be on every social network and be above average. The likelihood is that you work in an industry or offer a solution or service that appeals to a specific demographic, therefore you should only be on the one or two social networks where your target audience has the most significant presence.

Here’s what today’s customer wants: People, not products. Faces, not logos. Stories, not posts. Experiences, not sales.

Don’t act like a brand.

Don’t act like a brand. If you act like a brand, you will remain digitally stranded. Instead, do and say what everyday users do by engaging in dialogue that is unrelated to your brand yet relevant to your intended audience.

Your content is supposed to read less like an advertisement seen on a billboard and more like a personalized text message that you’d send a friend.

Be Entertaining or Educational

The majority of today’s consumers aren’t going on social media to purposely seek out brand content (i.e., they don’t want to be sold to), but it is possible to flip the script and maintain an active brand presence by focusing on being entertaining or educational.

Social media isn’t just a giant digital ocean; it’s also the Wild, Wild West, where listening is your most significant competitive advantage.


You don’t need influencers; you need ambassadors. These are the people who fit the profile of your target customer. There’s a likelihood they are your target customer. An ambassador is someone who can connect with your social media audience in an authentic and relatable manner because they embody what your company does.

Transforming your advocates into the faces of your brand

To remain competitive and stand out in the noisy digital ocean that is social media, you must prioritize humanizing your brand content, which means placing a human face and voice on your digital marketing channels and relying less on your brand’s logo.

We are all consumers, and the last thing that we want in our social media newsfeed is to see another advertisement or salesy post coming from a brand—unless that advertisement includes such good storytelling that it moves us to share with our audiences because the ad itself is a movement.

Be Human

To rise above the noise, you must first stop sounding like every other company (i.e., “Click to learn more,” “Check out this limited-time offer!” and “Sale ends today!”) and instead learn how to be more personable—digitally speaking—and human by implementing the technique of storytelling, similar to the likes of notable celebrities or internet influencers.

Each channel requires its own strategy

Your objective should never be to sell; it’s to “hook” your customers through your content so they will tell their friends and come back for more. That in itself is the power of personality and persuasion.

The humanization of marketing is our last line of defense before technology replaces thousands of marketing jobs—including the role of social media managers—with bots.

Need help with developing a digital strategy for your business? Get in touch.

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