If you can get that formula right today, you are going to have an outsized impact.
Thomas Sanchez is the Co-Founder and CEO of D.C.-based Social Driver, an award-winning digital agency working with both leading corporations and nonprofits on strategic solutions involving creative, social media, websites and digital marketing. It’s also a WP Engine agency partner. Social Driver was named National LGBT Chamber of Commerce’s Supplier of the Year. Its mantra is “the future is bright, all progress is social, and the drivers make history.”
Sanchez, who’s motivated by the people he works with and their culture, was recently selected by the Financial Times as one of the top LGBT executives in the world.
In this episode of Velocitize Talks, Thomas Sanchez shares his insights on inclusivity, values, mission and increasing access to the metaverse.
You have to build room in the brand for other people to get involved.
According to Sanchez, one of the ways people can get involved in a brand is discovering through research and information gathering. Intention marketing uses the individual’s online behavior data to then target consumers and grab their attention. That’s where shaping the brand’s voice and narrative comes in. “Content is still being underinvested in by most brands,” says Sanchez. “Brands need a new path forward, and content has to be at the heart.”
This is especially true based on your audience. For Social Driver, their audience also includes members of Congress and policymakers. Word of mouth is always an integral component of brand awareness, creating “armies of followers” to spread the word.
For example, brand awareness, along with fresh content, was key to Social Driver’s campaign for ZERO TO THREE, a global association working to give every baby and toddler a strong start in life. The agency partnered with ZERO TO THREE to revamp its HealthySteps website through a cohesive digital platform and content strategy. The changes were embraced by its community and healthcare providers.
Access to the Metaverse
With minorities and underserved communities, technology sometimes leaves those folks behind that need it the most.
One of Social Driver’s priorities is driving social change and expanding access to the metaverse, especially in relation to underserved communities. Since the agency is based in D.C., Sanchez has referred to this initiative as the “District of Metaverse,” or DMV. He’s also discussed how to promote economic growth and business investment through local governmental entities and public policy.
When it comes to expanding the immersive experiences of the metaverse and all it has to offer, Sanchez believes we need to consider who needs access the most. This could include everything from virtual doctor visits to education.
“What if we put this in the hands of young people from underserved communities?” Sanchez says.
Open Source for All
With the open source movement, you put the power in the hands of the developer, in the hands of the entrepreneur, in the hands of the marketer rather than it being locked up in some powerful software company that controls everything.
Open source is the great equalizer of digital platforms due to its highly customizable framework and collaborative community.
“We are just big fans of WordPress and we like to push the limits of what WordPress can do,” Sanchez says. “We bring together the technology, the creative, the strategy, to really help our clients connect with people today.” He adds that the enterprise cares most about speed, scale and security, making WordPress the perfect match.
Headless is also a huge trend for Social Driver’s larger enterprise clients focused on personalized websites.
“You see clients rolling out a lot more digital platforms targeted at very narrow audiences and it’s just getting more complicated to manage,” Sanchez says. “Headless makes perfect sense in that environment.”