Word Of Mouth Will Always Win
I think the whole Idea of marketing these days is getting blurred. We are on the verge of exploding marketing channels. As days pass by marketing channels are going to increase and mass is going to fragment exponentially. And marketing is going to be tougher and tougher. And no wonder even in this space big marketers will win.
According to me, the word "Social Media" is not appropriate, because it makes you think only few selected channels where you have to market your brand. I believe in the word, "Social Marketing". That 's it. Which makes you think from the base, like how can we market a brand socially v/s on social media. When you want your brand to be recognized socially, what you will do? What spreads socially? Word of Mouth? If yes then how is word of mouth generated? Through a great service or a product. When you go deeper and ask how and why of everything it will boil down to only one aspect.
Focus on building something remarkable and great, that people desperately want, can't live without. And allow the product do all the talking and have a presence where people can just connect. Finally simply listen, listen, listen to followers.
I don't go to Chipotle because they are marketing on Facebook. I like their Food. Even if they stopped marketing on all the channels still they will win. Word of Mouth. And do you know when people talk with each other (and spread word of mouth) when they are are in groups. These groups hang out at different places. Social Media just creates a medium where word of mouth is amplified.