Category: Marketing News

Twitter’s Agency Playbook: Your Complete Guide to Crafting Effective Campaigns

Last Tuesday Twitter published its Agency Playbook targeted to serve as a one-stop-shop guide for improving campaigns developed by marketers and agencies.

“Digital advertising is hard. With new targeting tools, lightning-fast trends, and constantly-changing best practices, it can be overwhelming and challenging to stay on top of the game. Especially when you’re managing campaigns for multiple clients,” explained content coordinator Michelle Lee in an official blog post.

To simplify this process, the Playbook is divided into sections breaking down various campaign types, interest-based targeting and analytics tools, and creative ad specs. Rounding out these tips and best practices are actionable insights from the platform’s Business team and success stories from brands and agencies.

The guide kicks off addressing a fundamental and overarching question: what exactly is Twitter’s specific role in a holistic marketing campaign? In response, the Playbook points to the marketing calendar and events dashboard to help you optimize the planning of content.

To improve your conversations and delivery, the Guide stresses the use of the most clever, conversational and bold version of your brand voice when composing Tweets and breaking any and all brand news to reinforce your timeline around launch updates, promotions, or sneak peeks. Finally, incorporate both a healthy and balanced mix of organic and paid content.

Managing client expectations & setting up a brand account

As far as managing client expectations is concerned, the Playbook points to benchmarking data in addition to other targeting capabilities and stresses that success on Twitter is about reaching the right people—not reaching the most people. It also reminds readers that as with any platform, patience is a virtue and it takes time to build a loyal presence and following.

When setting up a brand Twitter account, key pieces of advice shared in the guide include filling keeping the bio as clear and simple as possible underscoring why a user would want to follow your company, maintaining visual consistency and choosing the best-pinned tweet. Think of your Pinned Tweet as the answer to someone asking your account “what’s new?”

Crafting an effective tweet

Aside from your pinned Tweet, additional dos and don’ts to keep in mind include avoiding more than two hashtags in a single post, keeping copy clear, concise, and bold, and embedding images and media such as emojis, pictures, and short videos when possible. Another habit you’ll want to steer clear from? Setting your campaigns and then forgetting about them. Check on a newly launched campaign every few days to gauge progress.

Choosing a campaign type & identifying your target audience

There are several campaign types offered by Twitter and selecting one boils down to a firm understanding of what you or your client is trying to achieve. The Playbook breaks down, for example, campaigns ideal optimizing for followers, website clicks or conversions, application installs, example app re-engagement, tweet engagement, and video views.

Hitting the right mix often takes multiple campaigns running at the same time in a trial and error system. To help you navigate these decisions, subsequent chapters of the Playbook break down specifications for tweets, media, and various ad formats and cards, as well as important statistics and data points aimed at helping people pitch Twitter to their clients.

As you hone your approach, you can begin to define your target audience through a combination of demographic and behavioral characteristics. Keywords, interests, events, conversation, and engagement are just a few options. You can also create tailored audience lists and use conversion tracking to monitor performance.

Measuring your results

The tweet activity dashboard, audience insight dashboard, account homepage, and campaign dashboards will be your go-to sources for viewing month-to-month performance reports and helpful metrics including impressions, engagement, profile visits, new followers, and mentions.

As Lee underscores towards the closing of the post, the goal of publishing this piece of content is to address the common pain points surrounding Twitter ads and “consolidate the necessary, must-have information in one place.”

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The post Twitter’s Agency Playbook: Your Complete Guide to Crafting Effective Campaigns appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/twitters-agency-playbook-your-complete-guide-to-crafting-effective-campaigns/

How to Use LinkedIn to Target the Professionals That Will Advance Your Business

Between 2011 and 2017, LinkedIn’s user base grew from 140 million to 500 million. Fast forward to today, the company boasts 645 million global users including over 150 million in the U.S. alone and is adding two new professionals to the user base every second.

What predominately used to be known for its résumé job searching capabilities has now evolved into a full-blown platform for marketing including content sharing and establishing a network of connections. In fact, 94 percent of B2B marketers on social media use LinkedIn to publish content.

Most recently, the company has unveiled new tools targeted to help users fill their project gaps by identifying service providers or freelancers who are fit for the job.

“If you are looking for someone to help you with your marketing strategy, simply search for ‘marketing,’ and filter by service provider. From there, you’ll see a list of providers that have shared that they are ‘open for business’ and fit your search criteria,” explained engineering manager Gaurav Vijayvargiya in an official blog post.

Doing so will trigger a list of results of individuals who are open business who you can message regardless if you are connected already or not. You’ll be able to browse any mutual connections you share, services they specialize in, and get a snapshot of their prior experience.

Below are some screenshots of what you can expect to see:

It may seem like common sense, but in the digital era don’t overlook the importance of taking the extra step to personalize your communication. Demonstrate you’ve done your homework and cite something specific from their background that particularly struck you. Spell out why the opportunity lines up and point to credentials that will encourage them to take action.

Under the same umbrella of adding value, LinkedIn has found that 91 percent of marketing executives view the platform as the best place to find high-quality content. With this stat in mind, a good practice to develop is to use your profile to showcase case studies and post relevant articles, stats, and insights that pertain to your business. This will not only serve as an informal sales pitch that can be browsed through at a potential client’s leisure, but keep your profile active and engaging for those already in your network.

In a separate platform update, LinkedIn is also simplifying and reducing the amount of time spent to get recommendations and referrals from both your network and the larger LinkedIn community.

“Similar to how referrals can get you in the door for a job opportunity, our research says that 51 percent of business leaders that hired a freelancer found them through a recommendation; and 36 percent of them found the provider through social media,” said Vijayvargiya.

Here’s the four-step breakdown for how it all works:

  1. On your mobile device, click the share box to create a post, and then click on “Find an Expert.”
  2. Fill out information about the type of provider you are looking for. It’s important to include project details and expectations, so that you get the most relevant recommendations. This section will automatically fill out a draft post for you to share.
  3. Be sure to review your post and ensure everything looks good before publishing. You’ll notice we’ve gone ahead and added in some relevant hashtags to help your post get discovered.
  4. Share your post. You can choose who can see your post – whether you only want recommendations from your network, or if you want to share more publicly. Once you hit share, the audience you selected will now be able to see your post and either comment directly on the post tagging folks who might be able to help, or message you to share their recommendations privately.

Whether you’re looking for your next star copywriter, a job coach to help you navigate your next opportunity, or someone tech-savvy to help you revamp and rebrand your website – with these updates, LinkedIn will reduce the hassle and headaches as you develop your business.

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The post How to Use LinkedIn to Target the Professionals That Will Advance Your Business appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/how-to-use-linkedin-to-target-the-professionals-that-will-advance-your-business/

5 Strategies for Your 2020 Gen Z Marketing Plan

Throughout the past decade, we’ve marketed to millennials and simultaneously made predictions and projections about the next generation: Gen Z.

With $44 billion in purchasing power and devoting nearly 75 percentof their free time online, it is critical to have a social media strategy to target them. Not to mention, come next year they’ll make account for 40 percent of all consumers in the U.S.

To help prepare you, here are 5 key strategies you’ll want to keep in mind:

Capitalize on blasts from the past

Brands steeped in the past are increasingly becoming awakened to the numerous opportunities of nostalgia marketing. Movies, including Disney remakes of Aladdin and the Lion King, TV shows such as Stranger Things, are proven successes for one reason: in an era of impersonal digital media, nostalgia is the tried-and-true avenue for forging sustainable consumer ties.

Digital natives are constantly measuring themselves up to the perfectly contoured, curated Instagram photos. When a brand can forge meaningful connections between past and present, they not only deliver the euphoria of taking that trip down memory lane, but they satisfy a hunger for relatability, authenticity, and trust.

A recent example of a brand that did just this is Nokia. In a major throwback to the early 2000s, the company recently released a 2019 version of the classic flip phone updated with the social media needs of users today like WhatsApp, Facebook, and Google Assistant. “[This] phone is ideal for you if you are looking for a digital detox,” said Juho Sarvikas, Chief Product Officer at HMD Global (Nokia’s parent company), at the launch event.

Champion is yet another example. Through collaborations with trendy products like Supreme and Undefeated that received widespread media attention, paired with celebrities like Kylie Jenner and Chance the Rapper rocking the clothes, it wasn’t long before the brand hit full-blown come back mode.

Don’t try too hard

Being authentic to your communities and audience members means above all, being true to yourself. It truly is that simple, yet something that carries a profound impact with respect to being able to establish and maintain meaningful engagement.

When National Geographic made its first attempt at Snapchat it went in with tremendous efforts to be “young,” “cool,” and “hip.” After finding this felt too forced and was unsuccessful, the brand reassessed and made the more effective move to lean back into who the brand truly was at its core and shift its priority towards emphasizing first-party storytelling.

White Claw, also known as the alcoholic beverage of summer 2019, employed the approach of letting its consumers do the marketing. Aside from a few appearances, including being a sponsor at this year’s Kentucky Derby, the company doesn’t push itself onto the public.

“We want to let consumers have the conversation they want to have,” said Sanjiv Gajiwala, 39, the senior vice president of marketing at White Claw. “I’m not interested in forcing myself into a conversation they’re already having about me. I’m grateful they’re having that conversation.”

Doritos, too, is taking note of such trends and is running a new ad campaign sans its own logo. The “Anti-Ad” called “Another Level” relies on its familiar, triangular shape and red and blue bags for familiarity but the marketing stops there. “The following is a paid message for a chip so iconic we don’t need to name it, cause this is an ad with no logos, no jingles, no gimmicks, just those red and blue bags with the stuff you love in it,” the video opens. Added to this, the company created a Snapchat lens encouraging users to turn their face into a triangle.

Adopt a mobile-first strategy

With smartphones being Gen Z’s device of choice it’s not shocking that 53 percent of the demographic are using these devices to make purchases. Platforms are recognizing this and making moves to incorporate ways to make in-app purchases and enhancing the quality of their content boosting its appearances on mobile screens.

Instagram, for instance, recently unveiled “shopping tags,” giving users the ability to tag brands in their photos to promote their apparel and their followers the opportunity to check out the brand themselves. Additionally, a “Swipe up” feature takes individuals directly to that specific product page if they decide to make a purchase.

Forty-percent of consumers report they won’t recommend a business to a friend or relative that they had a bad experience with, so the moral here is making the social shopping process as positive and painless as possible. A few easy ways to do this are:

  • Make sure your site operates as fast as possible
  • Break up large chunks of text with subheads so they’re digestible on mobile screens
  • Design mobile-friendly forms, pop-ups, and opt-ins

Notions of speed aside, videos have become a viral way to communicate on mobile. In 2019, 70 percent of consumers have shared a brand’s video on social media and more than 70 percent of businesses credit video with boosting their conversion rate. Fifty-two percent of consumers say watching product promos instills them with confidence when making online purchase decisions.

Be socially responsible

Per a recent Marketing Dive report, Gen Z is three times more likely to say that the purpose of business is to “serve communities and society.” Whatever environmental or social cause resonates with your brand, identify authentic ways to share this story in your messaging that will encourage your followers to get involved. These positive values are reliable indicators that your brand will stand out in a sea of competition and set the stage for long-term relationships with your audience.

S’well’s Million Bottle Project is a great example. The initiative aims to displace 100 million single-use plastic bottles by 2020. The company recently launched a Million Bottle Corporate Challenge to work with other brands to create positive change and uses the hashtag #reducetheuse to promote positive practices and spread the word.

Similarly, TOMS’ campaign “Stand for Tomorrow” allows its customers to pick an issue area that they stand for and have the money from their purchase of a TOMS product go directly to supporting that cause. Mental health, equality, safe water, and homelessness are a few examples.

Use influencer marketing

Gen Z is notorious for exerting caution when choosing what they buy and who they buy it from. They tend to do a lot of research and are less likely to trust a brand from the get-go. They prefer endorsements from celebrities compared to traditional ads, but only if they come across as genuine.

That said, as marketers, we have a due diligence to ensure our influencer partnerships are the result of a process in which we ascertain the message comes from the right person. In other words, the influencer’s views and values should map onto what you stand for. You may come to find a traditional A-lister won’t fit these criteria and that is totally fine. That’s where micro-influencers are coming into play.

These social-media users typically boast a smaller, yet more impactful following of roughly several thousand to 100,000 followers. Unlike the larger names, micro-influencers could be someone we know and are more likely to facilitate sentiments of likability. Per recent Nielsen research, 92 percent of consumers trust recommendations from people they know.

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The post 5 Strategies for Your 2020 Gen Z Marketing Plan appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/5-strategies-for-your-2020-gen-z-marketing-plan/

PODCAST: How to Massively Scale Your Business through Customer-Centricity with Penny Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer at Hootsuite

This week’s episode of Social Media Week’s Leads2Scale podcast features Penny Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer at Hootsuite.

As CMO, Penny leads Hootsuite’s global marketing strategy, driving market leadership, awareness and demand generation.

During the conversation, Penny discussed:

  • How can neuroscience be used to develop marketing content in various communications
  • Why Hootsuite is so obsessed with being customer and community-centric in their approach
  • And how she sees the social media market evolving over the next few years

Listen to the full episode below:

Subscribe to Leads2Scale on Anchor, Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Spotify, Castbox, Overcast, or Stitcher.

If you have suggestions for who we should interview or what topics you would like us to cover, please reach out to us at leads2scale@socialmediaweek.org.

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The post PODCAST: How to Massively Scale Your Business through Customer-Centricity with Penny Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer at Hootsuite appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/how-to-massively-scale-your-business-through-customer-centricity-with-penny-wilson-chief-marketing-officer-at-hootsuite/

The Audio Revolution: The Essential Podcasting Tools Every Marketer Needs

According to Podcast Insights, 51 percent (144 million) of the U.S. population has listened to a podcast up from 64 percent just last year. 80 percent of the podcast audience listens to all or most of each episode and tunes into an average of seven shows per week.

Podcasting continues to grow in prominence at a steady and substantial rate and those recognizing this are taking steps to innovate and bring their podcasts to platforms not even intended for audio as a strategic way for moving built-in audiences over to new channels.

For instance, a number of influencers including Logan Paul and Emma Chamberlain have launched podcasts within the past year. While they’re all available through traditional audio platforms—like Apple Podcasts and Spotify—they’ve taken steps to translate their programs into video versions that live on YouTube, a move that’s proven successful in growing awareness of their shows. For general reference, some of the top podcasts on YouTube are recording millions of views every few days or weeks.

If you’ve launched a podcast in 2019 and are looking to up your game, or perhaps you’ve made it a goal to launch a podcast in 2020, look no further. Here’s are a list of tools and best practices to help you produce your best podcast.

1. All-in-one hosting platforms

Anchor is a free app with a plethora of features that make hosting your podcast seamless including unlimited hosting and one-tap distribution. You can also customize your shows with background tracks and transitions with Anchor’s built-in audio library, or embed voice messages from your listeners and include them in your episodes. Finally, you can track performance with cross-platform analytics and monetize your programs with sponsorships or by dropping in a button for donations.

Cast and Podbean are other all-encompassing hosting platforms that are easy to navigate for all your recording, editing, publishing and hosting necessities.

With Cast, engage with listeners through live text chat and show notes, easily store and access your audio in the cloud, and edit your shows more effortlessly with presets like dynamic compression.

Similarly, Podbean is targeted to be a one-stop providing both beginners and experts with customizable themes, reliable cloud hosting, unlimited storage and bandwidth, a website builder and an array of analysis tools to track your progress.

2. Record your episodes remotely & on the go

RINGR makes it possible and easy to record high-quality conversations using your smartphone. That’s right, no expensive equipment necessary. A few key features include conference-call capability, which can record up to four guests at a time. With the Green Room, you can opt to talk to your speakers before you begin recording.

Squadcast and Zencastr are additional noteworthy tools if your podcasts center on remote interviews. With their features, you can easily record interviews with guests and co-hosts from anywhere captured in studio quality.

Zencastr, for instance, grabs each voice locally via a separate track to avoid dropped connections. It also offers users the option to generate a single mixed track with curated audio enhancements applied to turn their recording into a professional mix, ready for publishing directly after they’re finished with the episode. Recordings are then delivered automatically to a user’s Dropbox or Google Drive account for easy editing and sharing.

3. Edit your episodes with professional audio platforms

For recording, mixing, and exporting audio, look no further than Audacity and Adobe Audition.

Adobe Audition serves as a professional audio platform for creating, mixing, editing, and restoring audio content. Remix audio to any duration that fits your needs and repair and restore audio with features spanning spectral display, Diagnostics panel, effects, and more.

Audacity is also a multi-track editor with functionality to record live audio through a microphone or mixer, or digitize recordings from other media. You can also easily edit and manipulate your audio through cut, copy, paste, delete, or undo/redo, and export across a variety of supported file formats depending on what operating system you’re using.

4. Turn your podcasts into engaging social videos

Tools including Wavve give podcasters the ability to turn audio clips from podcasts into shareable video highlights for social media. The benefits here are two-fold. Primarily, you’ll be able to attract new listeners to download your show and, secondly, encourage current fans to promote your content.

Eight-five percent of Instagram videos are viewed without sound. With Headliner, you can automatically transcribe your audio into captions that can be shared on social and add some flare to your podcasts with text or waveform animations. Use an audio clipper to create smaller promotional videos, or publish your whole episode to YouTube.

5. Showcase your podcast with creativity imagery

Regardless of where you’re showcasing your podcast, you’ll likely want to do so with images that are professional, polished and appealing. And no, you don’t have to be an expert graphic designer here.

Image creations tools like Canva and Stencil allow for easy design of logos, social media graphics, and much more. Both offer free and paid subscriptions depending on your specific needs and give you access to thousands of fonts, illustrations, stock photos, and templates to guide you.

A standout feature of Stencil is that it’s integrated with the social media management platform, Buffer. This integration allows you to schedule the publishing of images that you’ve created directly through Buffer.

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The post The Audio Revolution: The Essential Podcasting Tools Every Marketer Needs appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/the-audio-revolution-the-essential-podcasting-tools-every-marketer-needs/

A Marketer’s Guide to Creator Studio for Instagram

In early 2019, Instagram unveiled Instagram Creator Accounts as an alternative to the business profile. After a brief beta testing period, the social platform made these profiles available to anyone.

To help attract and cater to influencers, Instagram creator accounts offers a variety of key features and tools for influencers to go even deeper on their follower metrics. These span counts of daily unfollow and follow counts and important demographic specifics such as age and location of your audience. Such metrics give influencers critical background into who exactly their followers are, and how the content is impacting their experience and engagement.

In order to easily track these bits of information, Instagram unveiled a handy dashboard dubbed “Creator Studio” where you can easily manage your Instagram presence.

At its core, Studio offers the capability of viewing and tracking your posts across multiple accounts, refine your strategy through activity and audience insights, and schedule and publish Feed posts and IGTV content from your desktop.

Getting Started

Recently, the platform published an eight-page guide providing helpful details around how to make the best use of Creator Studio. Here are the three-step basics to getting started:

  1. Make sure you have an Instagram account and Facebook Page (and that your Instagram account is connected to the Facebook Page that you manage)
  2. Make sure that you’ve switched your Instagram account to a business profile or Creator Account
  3. Open Creator Studio on your desktop and click the Instagram icon at the top of the page

At this stage, what you select next is dependent on how your Instagram account and Facebook page are connected.

  • If you manage a Facebook Page that’s already connected to the Instagram account you want to use in Creator Studio, click to connect to that Page.
  • If you don’t already manage a Facebook Page that’s connected to an Instagram account, click “Connect to Instagram.” Then follow the instructions to log into the Instagram account you want to connect.
  • If you manage a Facebook Page that’s connected to an Instagram account, but want to use a different Instagram account you don’t see listed, click “Connect another Instagram Account” and follow the instructions.
  • If you have multiple Instagram accounts already connected to your Facebook Page or Pages and want to manage them in Creator Studio, click “Continue with Connected Accounts.”

Now that you’re set-up, let’s take a closer look at some of the features of Studio:

Activity & Audience Insights

Creator Studio allows individuals to track the specific number of actions their audience has taken in a seven-day window including the number of profile visits and clickthroughs to a website. You can also trace the number of unique accounts that have visited your posts and the estimated number of times all of your posts have been seen over the last week.

Audience-wise, use insights to trace the age and gender of your followers, when they’re most active on the platform the most, and the top countries and cities where they’re located. Identify which stories yielded the most positive impact and what types of content aren’t contributing to your channel’s growth.

Publishing: Feed & IGTV

After creating a caption and uploading any desired media such as a video, photo, or carousel to your post, you have the option to cross-post media to your Facebook Page allowing you to connect with more of your audience. Depending on your needs and interests, you can select to either push the post live immediately, or schedule your content out as far as 6 months in advance.

The same holds for IGTV. Once you’ve uploaded the video and filled out the title, description, hashtag, mentions, and any other key detail you want to share with your audience, you can create a Feed Preview or cross-post to Facebook. Like Feed posts, you have the choice to upload instantly or choose a certain day and time up to 6 months out.

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The post A Marketer’s Guide to Creator Studio for Instagram appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/a-marketers-guide-to-creator-studio-for-instagram/

Who Are The Rising Stars in Brand Leadership in 2019?

As part of Social Media Week’s new initiative, The Brand Leaders Experience, it is our goal to highlight the people, ideas and insights that are changing how we as marketers impact the lives of consumers in meaningful and positive ways.

In the spirit of this mission, we are excited to announce the first recipients of our inaugural Rising Stars in Brand Leadership Awards, in recognition of individuals who are shaping the future of our industry in the UK and Europe.

Rising Stars in Brand Leadership: Class of 2019

The recipients of the 2019 award were identified and chosen based on their notable performance on projects within brands, career growth, and previous accolades and recognition within the industry. Welcome to the Class of 2019:

Ali Humphrey, European Senior Brand Manager, Smirnoff at Diageo

Ali is a curious and driven marketer currently serves as European Senior Brand Manager for Smirnoff at Diageo where she oversees campaign planning and communications, sustainability, and is the lead in Smirnoff Europe’s biggest market. In 2017, she oversaw the development and execution of the Stella Artois “Buy a Lady a Drink” (BALAD) campaign in the UK which provided access to water to over 122,000 people.

Alice ter Haar, Senior Manager, EU, Deliveroo

Alice is an experienced marketer with a background in high-growth businesses, including FTSE 100 Whitbread. At Deliveroo, she drives growth in the company’s six continental European markets spearheading key global initiatives. Alongside this role, she has a professional side-hustle as a personal development enthusiast.

Dani Hughes, Senior Marketing Strategist, British Heart Foundation

Dani is a digital transformation leader playing a pivotal role within the BHF’s Strategy team, which raises £121m per year to help fund life-saving research. Part of the larger Fundraising Strategy team, Dani leads the planning, monitoring and evaluating across the portfolio of products of the directorate.

Emily Taylor, Marketing Manager, Zipcar

Emily is a marketing professional with broad experience across product and brand marketing and a passion for creating high-quality, memorable, and effective content. At Zipcar, Emily leads the consumer marketing function for the UK helping develop creative content and strategic partnerships and communications.

Emma Martell, Head of Social Content, Virgin Trains

Emma is an experienced content marketer currently serving as Head of Social Content at Virgin Trains where she harnesses the influence of offbeat humor to engage her audience. Throughout her career, including a prior role at Hostleworld.com, she has led writing and editing efforts for major global markets including the UK, US, Canada, and Australia.

Fátima Diez, Brand Manager, Picnic; formerly Five Guys

Fátima is an ambitious B2C marketer with a background of high-growth, multi-unit global businesses. With experience in introducing and growing companies internationally, her career has focused on innovative brand and marketing strategy.

Fraser Stapleton, Social Marketing Manager, Spotify

As Social Marketing Manager at Spotify, Fraser leads the platform’s execution of social media, influencer and social impact strategy for the UK. Prior to this, he worked agency-side for We Are Social serving a wide variety of clients including Domino’s Pizza, LinkedIn, Walkers, PepsiCo and Visa.

Hannah Burns, Dove Global Marketing Manager, Unilever

Hannah is a dynamic and enthusiastic fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) marketer with over 6 years’ experience shaping both global and local brands within Personal Care and Foods. Currently, she leads communication development for Dove Masterbrand globally, Unilever’s biggest Personal Care brand worth €5bn.

Helen Saul, Brand Manager – Europe, Lastminute.com

Helen is a brand campaign lead at Lastminute.com responsible for innovative award-winning brand campaigns in five European markets including the UK for TV, social media, outdoor and online channels. She is known for effectively bringing internal teams together and coming up with creative solutions under pressure.

James Davies, Head of Marketing, HSBC

James is a marketer leveraging a breadth of experience from working and studying in the UK, Ireland, Hong Kong and Canada. He currently serves as Head of Marketing for UK Commercial Banking at HSBC and has been recognized for his active involvement in HSBC Pride, as well as being one of the bank’s sustainability leaders.

Jen Rankine, Global Social Media Lead, Skyscanner

Jen is a social media pioneer with a long-standing passion for organizing and cultivating communities online. In her current role as Global Social Media Lead at Skyscanner, she helps fulfill the company’s mission in building one of the best travel communities in the world through storytelling.

Kate Peregrine, Global Head of Social Media, Dyson

Kate is an experienced marketing leader with a challenger mindset – specializing in technology. In just three years with Dyson, she has successfully identified a gap in the business and filled it through creating a new social media function that leverages social listening insights and influencer relationships.

Melissa Weston, Marketing Lead UK & IE, Zalando

Melissa is a high-growth marketing lead with a demonstrated history of working in the fashion and advertising industry. After a year in her role at Zalando, she successfully has driven brand awareness in Ireland to a higher point than Zalando had seen in the last six years in the UK.

Susannah Jacques, Senior Manager in Brand, Sponsorship & Experiential, Hyundai Motor UK

Susannah is a Senior Manager at global top 5 automotive manufacturer Hyundai leading their Brand Experience marketing efforts in the UK. Specifically, she oversees strategic ownership of the brand across sponsorships and partnerships, product launches, and experiential activity.

Yoann Pavy, Head of Digital Marketing, Depop

Yoann is a data-driven marketing leader passionate about innovative and creative marketing techniques to deliver growth. In his current role at Depop, he harnesses a customer-first approach to storytelling.

Hear from our Rising Stars at #SMWLDN (31 October – 1 November)

In addition to receiving their Rising Stars Award at an awards reception at the QEII Center on 31st October, recipients will also participate in fireside conversations on our Brand Leaders Stage, moderated by journalists from The BBC and a Special Correspondent from PBS NewsHour.

If you are interested in meeting or learning from the next generation of future leaders at #SMWLDN, then secure your pass today at 10% off. Premium Passholders also receive an invite to the Rising Stars Awards reception.

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The post Who Are The Rising Stars in Brand Leadership in 2019? appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/09/who-are-the-rising-stars-in-brand-leadership-in-2019/

WEBINAR: Prepare Your Brand for e-Commerce Success This Holiday Season with MikMak

Shoppers spent $120B online in the U.S. during the 2018 holiday season, and analysts predict that this 2019 holiday season will see continued growth.

In the spirit of helping your brand prepare early, MikMak CEO Rachel Tipograph and Social Media Week have teamed up to host a webinar Thursday, September 19th, to answer all of your 2019 Holiday eCommerce key questions based on results MikMak saw last holiday season with Fortune 1000 brands:

Topics to be discussed during the webinar include:

  • Fundamental insights for your September – December planning guide across creative, media and merchandise
  • Identifying which social platforms yield the highest conversation rates
  • How you can optimize your brand creative for eComm
  • How you can grow and gain more control over your brand presence on Amazon

You can download the full MikMak holiday e-commerce guide here. As a high-level overview, here are a few of the key findings:

  • Instagram saw the strongest add-to-cart conversion rates (9.5%), while Snap had the lowest (0.9%)
  • The highest add-to-cart rates and time spent on product details pages occurred before Black Friday underscoring a trend to get ahead of the holiday shopping curve
  • Add-to-cart rates were higher in early December versus Black Friday and Cyber Monday indicating people are opting to invest early.

Don’t miss your chance to attend the free webinar taking place on Thursday, September 19th, at 1pm EST. Fill out the form below to join.

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Exploring the Power of Stories with SMW Santo Domingo

As one of the world’s leading conference series, Social Media Week has an undying commitment to equipping community members with the tools, insights, and practices for shaping their business in profound ways that positively define the industry.

This year, with the global theme, “STORIES: With Great Influence Comes Great Responsibility,” SMW Santo Domingo will bring its unique perspective into the power of storytelling in changing how people think and act, and our responsibility to use this influence for the greater good to the discussion table.

We sat down to speak with the organizers of SMW Santo Domingo about the forthcoming event, what sessions have the most intricate ties to this year’s theme, which partners and brands they’re most looking forward to working with, key questions that will be addressed in their specific SMW edition, and much more.

What do you think will be the most important attendee takeaways from this year’s conference?

This year we want our attendees to focus on the power of the stories we tell through digital media. Specifically, we want them to identify new opportunities for using social to move people towards good causes but above all, we want them to connect with their audiences in the midst of so much noise in advertising.

What session is your team the most excited about?

The team’s most excited about the keynote powered by Miami Ad School called “We Help Brands Capitalize on Change.” During the talk, 360i‘s Sam Shepherd will be talking about how we can help brands adapt to shifts in culture, behavior, lifestyle, technology, and commerce.

How does your overall agenda tie into this year’s global theme?

This year we’re opening the doors of the event not only to speakers that work in advertising agencies but also to digital activists, journalists, artists, YouTubers, bloggers and ordinary people who use social networks to truly communicate with their audience and are able to see the global issue from different perspectives while making a positive impact in their communities.

Which partners or brands are you most excited to be working with this year?

  1. Sam Shepard from 360i has a keynote called “We Help Brands Capitalize on Change.”
  2. Verónica Ruiz Del Vizo from Mashup Agency will be telling us “How Good Narratives Inspire Actions.”
  3. Jose Abreu from Sony Music is going to explore “The Secret Sauce for Success.”

What are some local trends you are seeing in your market?

The use of influencers, video marketing, social media storytelling, personalized content and emails, augmented reality (AR), and data analytics software that help you visualize and analyze data quickly are some of the local trends we can see in today’s growing market.

What are some of the key questions that will be addressed during your edition of SMW?

  1. Where is the music industry heading in the digital era?
  2. Are you truly engaging with your audience on social platforms or are you simply filling a blank space instead?
  3. What are the challenges nowadays for the visual creators in an online ecosystem that is currently rewarding popularity over quality content and everything else?

Where can potential attendees find news and updates about your conference?

All information, news, and updates are published on our main website and Instagram account: @smwsantodomingo.

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Exploring the Power of Stories with SMW São Paulo

As one of the world’s leading conference series, SMW has an undying commitment to equipping community members with the tools, insights, and practices for shaping their business in profound ways that positively define the industry.

This year, with the global theme, “STORIES: With Great Influence Comes Great Responsibility,” SMW São Paulo will bring its unique perspective into the power of storytelling in changing how people think and act, and our responsibility to use this influence for the greater good to the discussion table.

We sat down to speak with the organizers of SMW São Paulo about the forthcoming event, what sessions have the most intricate ties to this year’s theme, which partners and brands they’re most looking forward to working with, key questions that will be addressed in their specific SMW edition, and much more.

What do you think will be the most important attendee takeaways from this year’s conference?

Communication can be and should be creative, clear, and responsible no matter what.

This year’s program is organized into 25 unique content tracks, including Community, Co-creation, Marketing B2B, and Business & Entrepreneurship. We carefully curated all of the tracks to stretch the content in more creative and more business-centric ways and deliver added diversity to the conference. It will be an opportunity not just to enhance your knowledge, but also connect with topics you otherwise wouldn’t in your day-to-day.

What is session is your team the most excited about?

The Social Media Management track has some of the more highly-requested sessions. Organic content, metrics, ads, strategy, creativity, and B2B marketing are some of the topics that will be featured within these talks.

How does your overall agenda tie into this year’s global theme?

We’re talking about stories in so many ways this year: from a strategy standpoint (in Storytelling track), as a format (mostly on Instagram tracks), as an art (on Creativity track) and, most importantly, as a driver to move the needle for your business. No matter what format are you publishing, marketing is ultimately about stories and is an important key to great content.

Which partners or brands are you most excited to be working with this year?

We would like to give a special thanks to mLabs & Nuvemshop for supporting us again, not just helping us to make the event possible, but also bringing high-quality content to their tracks. And a big thanks to Logitech for streaming all 270 sessions for people looking to tune in remotely!

What are some local trends you are seeing in your market?

We are definitely seeing prioritization around the development of communities, micro-influencers, and a greater focus on data-driven strategies.

What are some of the key questions that will be addressed during your edition of SMW?

  • How to use storytelling strategically to provide organic results
  • How are the key metrics to work in all stages of your campaign
  • How to create bold but almost risk-free strategies

Where can potential attendees find news and updates about your conference?

All information, news, and updates are published on our Registration page.

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4 Major Platforms Pushing to Overhaul Vanity Metrics and What This Means for Marketers

The internet was founded on the promise of a digital utopia that would enable a natural flow of information sharing and connectivity. Today, however, we face an inflection point in which there are growing concerns that we’ve squandered this opportunity in lieu of chasing reach and scale and prioritizing content that distracts and interrupts, in turn promoting divisiveness and narcissism.

When a post doesn’t perform with big numbers, people instantly feel bad. Conversely, when they see a high volume of interaction they are triggered with an instant feeling of satisfaction equivalent to a hit of dopamine.

Several platforms are hoping to make radical changes addressing this issue. Let’s take a look at some of the latest updates making headlines and what they mean for marketers:

Instagram

Image via Instagram

Following the recent F8 developer conference this past April, Instagram announced that it would be conducting tests for a new feature that would hide users’ public like counts on videos and photos. Kicking off the process with Canada, likes would be hidden in the Feed, permalinked pages, and on profiles.

In a quote shared by The Verge, Instagram stated the motive behind the decision was that it wants followers to “focus on the photos and videos you share, not how many likes they get.”

Initially, the test was met with uncertainty regarding how it would impact how it would influence the way the platform was used, particularly by influencers who heavily rely on such metrics as a measure of how their content is performing. After a few months of testing, however, sentiments have seemed to shift with people acknowledging the benefits of the feature.

One user, Matt Dusenbury, shared, “Without seeing the likes count on feed posts now, I find myself more clearly focused on the actual quality of the content being posted.”

Instagram has yet to officially publish data around how effective hiding likes has been on people’s posting habits, but last week, as of May the test has expanded to six more countries: Ireland, Italy, Japan, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand.

Individuals who are part of this test group can still the number on their own content as long as they tap through it, but must opt-out in order to show the likes publicly.

Facebook

— Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) September 2, 2019

Fast-forward to this month, Instagram’s parent company is taking a few notes and confirmed to TechCrunch the platform is contemplating hiding the Like Counter on News Feeds posts in an effort to dissuade censorship and inhibit sentiments of envy. In other words, there is a desire to take away the popularity contest that comes with engaging on the social platform.

The test was first reported by Jane Manchun Wong who took to Twitter to reveal that she had spotted Facebook prototyping the hidden Like counts within its Android app.

No further details have been shared by the platform regarding exact motives, or any schedule for starting testing but one can assume it would be gradual to allow for implications with respect to response and ad revenue from brands to be identified.

USA Today recently shared some feedback that has already surfaced on the Internet regarding the potential move.

“Bad thing,” said Facebook user Phil Leigh, “Likes give the poster a way to measure whether her content is useful to others, especially as it is tracked over time.”

On Twitter, reviews were mixed, some claiming they have since stopped using Facebook, others pointing to a reduction in scalability. Monica Reddy, however, is an advocate for pushing back against the notion that dominant the social landscape of ‘keeping score.’

YouTube

Per a recent Marketing Land report, as of this month, YouTube will begin showing abbreviated subscriber counts for channels with 1,000 or more subscribers.

“Beyond creating more consistency, ​this addresses creator concerns about ​stress and ​wellbeing, specifically around tracking public subscriber counts in real-time.​ ​We hope this helps all creators focus on telling their story, and​ experience less pressure​ about the numbers,” explained a YouTube team member on the site’s Community Forum Blog.

Creators and Developers instantly had questions and expressed a desire for more details about how the YouTube Data API Service would change. The platform clarified describing that Creators will still be able to see their exact subscriber numbers in YouTube Studio and YouTube analytics. Examples outlined how public-facing subscribers counts would now appear. For instance, channels with 12,345 subscribers would show a subscriber count of 12.3K, channels with 1,234,567 would show 1.23M, and channels with 123,456,789 subscribers would display a subscriber count of 123M.

As far as reactions, one individual, Martyn Littlewood pointed to the impact this would have on brand partnerships and their accuracy stating on the forum thread, “Business partners could go elsewhere if they believe their quota can’t be met — alternatively it could low ball initial offers from them and undermine brand deal opportunities. Sure, you could argue that they [brands] will get in touch, then you can send accurate information, but what if they never call at all?”

Another, Terry Ghast, raised similar concerns about authenticity claiming, “If this is to discourage ‘cancel culture,’ make this an optional setting that is defaulted to abbreviation but still allow viewers the ability to turn it off so they can track sub count to celebrate milestones together…Showing full sub count would be a badge of authenticity, and more believable than abbreviated. Please listen to the community and not be caught in your echo chamber.”

LinkedIn

This past Spring LinkedIn rolled out a new assortment of reactions targeted to provide ‘more expression ways to respond to the variety of posts you see in your feed.” Added options including Love, Celebrate, Insightful and Curious also serve the purpose of helping users better understand the impact your posts are having and additional insight into why someone is engaging with the piece of content.

“We took a thoughtful approach to designing these reactions, centered around understanding which ones would be most valuable to the types of conversations members have on LinkedIn,” said LinkedIn’s Cissy Chen in the official announcement. She pointed to examples as to how each could be used for instance using Celebrate to praise an accomplishment or work milestone, Love to express deep support around topics of work/life balance and mentorship, and Insightful or Curious when you encounter a thought-provoking idea.

What does it all mean?

Now that we’ve broken down the latest proposed and existing changes across these major platforms, let’s dissect what this means in the grand scheme of marketing.

Influencer content specifically will pivot to more higher quality content as metrics they’re accustomed to leaning on won’t carry as much weight as they previously did. What the hope is with this transition is that we will ultimately see cases of deeper, more meaningful engagement through incentivizing users to focus more on the content and not on the competition. For instance, it may pave the way to a spike in commenting behavior which arguably is more productive than a simple ‘thumbs up’ or ‘thumbs down.’

On the flip side, without such easily trackable metrics, influencers inevitably become harder to scout.

For brands, hiding the number of likes makes it more challenging to legitimize their partnerships and in fact, may discourage them from working with influencers and instead lean on targeted ads as guaranteed drivers of the results they’re after. If they do decide to collaborate with an influencer, they’re more likely to put paid media support behind their influencer posts, and also opt for ephemeral content that has a finite lifespan before it disappears.

Ultimately, there are pros and cons to this movement but one thing remains clear: it has the potential to radically change the social media system we’ve come to know over the past decade.

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Privacy Matters: Giving People The Right to Connect Freely and in Safe and Trusted Spaces

Our industry faces a fundamental reorientation around notions of trust and privacy. Users desire the freedom to connect freely in safe and trusted spaces and that their information won’t live permanently online. In an era of information overload, they’re plagued with the questions of who is sharing my information and how is it being used? Will it be targeted to deliver me an ad I don’t want to see?

With this shift, marketers have the opportunity to innovate and build business opportunities including creating platforms for private sharing. Privacy and safety are much more than protective measures. If people know that their privacy is a priority beyond a multi-page policy, they’ll be much more inclined to connect authentically.

Explore Social Media Week’s 2020 Global Theme: HUMAN.X

Learn More

Let’s take a look at a few key themes and trends paving the way for a more permission-based, personalized future:

Group culture

Small groups are by far the fastest-growing areas of online communication. Users increasingly want to connect privately in the digital equivalent of the living room. Groups are a means of encountering new ideas and people within platforms that form around the causes they are passionate about. They are a source for community-building.

For businesses, a few key benefits to a Facebook group, for instance, would include an added personal touch where users feel like they’re interacting with a human as opposed to a business. Marketers can also more easily drive a call-to-action or receive immediate feedback from their audience.

The Reddit community is a good example of this. The platform’s admins have and continue to learn invaluable insights from the platform’s hubs for genuine conversation, where vulnerability powers remarkable experiences. Specifically, unique subreddits for civil discourse like r/ChangeMyView or honest self-reflection like r/AmITheAsshole have informed Reddit’s transparent approach to communicating with its own users – and in turn – become the core playbook for Reddit’s Brand Strategy team.

Ephemeral stories

In today’s digital landscape, people are more cautious about having a permanent record of what they’ve shared. Enter the rising popularity of ephemeral stories.

The key elements of ephemeral marketing include authenticity, informality, and spontaneity, Audiences favor this type of content as it fosters a greater sense of excitement, trust, and loyalty. To execute this successfully, however, involves an astute understanding of your brand and what exactly you hope to achieve.

Sephora goes beyond advertising makeup products in its strategy by tapping into Instagram Stories to show shoppers how products work and look on actual people. The short videos also take the opportunity to offer additional product details than can be found on the website, as well as tips and reviews.

In the same vein of giving followers an educational “behind the scenes” look, NASA’s Stories often take viewers on tours of space labs across a mix of photos and video allowing for a more interactive experience. The majority of images are themed, employing consistent visual elements that create unity and clarity. This is important as different Stories from different brands play right after each other in the app.

Private messaging

According to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the future of communication will increasingly shift to private, encrypted services. This is due to the overwhelming preference of social media users to interact one-on-one or with just a few friends. In addition, they want the confidence that they have clear control over who can communicate with them and who has access to what they share. Simple, intimate ways to engage will continue to dominate our industry’s services and products around these ideas.

Messaging apps, for example, have outgrown social networks as the connective tools of choice and paved the way for brands to promote more consistent, private sharing.

As marketers, we have the unique ability to drive top-of-mind awareness and participate in conversations we were never able to before. We must begin to rethink relationship marketing in a transitional environment where users are favoring experiences over products.

Safety

As technology evolves, the consequences of ignorance about privacy policies have become increasingly severe. At the same time, younger generations aren’t guarding their online privacy with as much focus as older generations. They’re likely to put more of their lives online and won’t pay as much attention to the policies that dictate what happens to that information. That isn’t to say they don’t care.

In fact, a study across the United States and the United Kingdom suggested that 70 percent of Millennials believe online privacy will be further compromised in the coming years.

As an industry, we have an important responsibility to acknowledge this trend. In support of this, platforms should state make it easy for users to change the settings so that they are conscious of and comfortable with the information that they are sharing and feel in control.

This is reflected in recent findings including a joint study by IBM and the National Retail Foundation, which found that a full “55 percent [of Zers] want to decide what information they share with brands, [while] 54 percent want to control how brands contact them.”

There is also the urgency to more concretely define brand safety in the midst of growing cases of fake news and extremist content. We’ve seen this discussion brought into the limelight through a number of recent scandals. In turn, 80 percent of people in the US now claim they would reduce or stop buying a product if advertised next to extreme or dangerous content online.

Data portability

Under GDPR, the right to data portability entitles an individual to receive a copy of their personal data; and/or have their data transmitted from one controller to another controller.

For example, if Facebook knows about a given user’s interests and the content they shared (status and photos), then data portability would allow that user to take their data with them should they decide to delete Facebook.

Given brands fund the platforms, do those with the influence of ad budgets have a responsibility to push for this generally accepted privacy measure on behalf of their audiences?

Privacy has extended beyond the topic of risk management. It is vital to a company’s reputation and a central component of brand building and strategy. Paired with an obligation towards a profound respect for people’s time and attention and an agenda that fosters deeper connection with our audiences through understanding and shared experiences, we, as an industry, can begin to introduce a more human element to marketing.

Learn more about Privacy Matters, Empathy Economics, and The Attention Revolution as part of our 2020 global theme: HUMAN.X and help us establish a human-first, experience-driven approach to digital marketing. Read the official announcement here and secure your early-bird discount today to save 40% on your full-conference pass.

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5 Questions With Influencer’s Caspar Lee and Ben Jeffries

On average marketers feel they’ve tapped into only 47 percent first-party data’s potential though 67 percent anticipate realizing their first-party data goals in the next 18 months or less.

On Friday, 1 November, during Social Media Week London, Influencer’s Caspar Lee and Ben Jeffries will participate in a fireside chat and explore the ways marketers can harness first-party data and how it will shape the future of social media advertising.

View the full #SMWLDN agenda

Ahead of their session, we sat down to ask them about the biggest misconceptions about influencer marketing, key characteristics of meaningful brand partnerships, insights for traditional brands entering the social world, and more.

SMW: Influencer marketing is a buzzword that the vast majority of brands have come to know but often don’t quite understand or use to full effect. What is the biggest misconception marketers hold about influencer marketing and the opportunity it presents?

CL & BJ: There are a number of misconceptions about the influencer marketing industry, but the one that recently we have been discussing a lot internally is reach; the belief that influencer marketing is all about audience size.

Of course, sometimes the audience size is important, especially if it relates to your KPIs. However, at Influencer, we believe that in order to best measure their campaign success, brands should instead be focusing on the metrics that indicate highly engaged communities, purchase intent and increased sales. Instead, what indicates that someone is influential is much deeper metrics; saves, shares, clicks etc.

Metrics that show true engagement and brand relevance. These are the metrics that we are currently encouraging our clients to focus on!

Instead of simply enabling brands to buy an influencer’s time and account access, your business is all about creating lasting bonds and helping improve marketing campaigns. What are the key characteristics of a sustainable and meaningful partnership you’ve observed?

Our aim is to create meaningful relationships between brands and creators and we believe that there are a number of defining features when it comes to fostering and growing these partnerships.

The most important is authenticity; relationships between brands and creators must be authentic to both parties. Influencer marketing is run on trust. Followers trust the creators they follow to only promote brands that they truly believe in and in a way that is authentic to them.

With trust comes the ability to collaborate well and openly share ideas with one another to produce the best results for everyone involved. The Influencer platform builds these meaningful relationships by facilitating a space where brands and creators can exchange ideas around campaigns and content.

For traditional brands, who are crossing over to the social media marketing world for the first time, itis hard to know where to go and which platforms to use. What piece of advice would give to them as they navigate this new space?

One of the main pieces of advice we can offer is before starting your social media marketing strategy is to define what your key goals are. This will allow you to choose the platform best suited to you, measure campaign success and put together a strategy for the future.

For example, if you’re looking to raise brand awareness, we would recommend working with Instagram content creators, to produce content that can be easily amplified to your target audience across most social platforms.

Our industry is experiencing a clear and distinct sentiment shift around notions of privacy that is redirecting even the most established tech companies. Regulatory bodies around the world are supporting this reorientation as privacy legislation becomes a more ubiquitous component of our online environment. Do you feel brands have a responsibility to harness their influence to drive a new privacy-centered culture?

Yes, they should hold a sense of responsibility. Of course, brands need data to target their key audiences and be efficient in the deployment of their resources. However, we feel they also need to be respectful of people’s personal lives and ensure the data is handled confidentially and only used where necessary.

Most people are aware of the notion of being ‘watched’ by some of the big tech companies. Brands should be doing what they can to reduce the feeling of invasion within society. Whilst huge brands and platforms bare the brunt of responsibility to change this culture, those they sell the data on to too also play a role.

What are some key examples of brands tapping into first-party data to drive more personalized and targeted campaigns that foster long-term customer loyalty?

At Influencer, we recently ran a campaign with Vans, which used first-party data to maximise authenticity. We asked creators to tell us their experience of the brand, including their fondest and oldest memories and providing any examples that highlighted their relationship with Vans. Creators were then selected based on their responses.

Knowing that the creators had a previous and genuine relationship with the brand and product allowed us to select the creators that would produce the most authentic content and whose followings would reflect the brand’s target.

Don’t miss your chance to explore the power of first-party data and the future of social media advertising with Caspar at Ben at #SMWLDN (31 Oct – 1 Nov). Claim your pass by 27 September to take advantage of our current discount before it expires.

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Announcing the Final Agenda for Social Media Week London 2019

Social Media Week London kicks off at the QE II Conference Centre in less than two months and today we are excited to announce the final agenda for our forthcoming event.

View the final #SMWLDN final agenda and start bookmarking your favorite sessions!

This year’s conference will feature the inaugural #SMWLDN Academy and over 60 sessions, keynotes, panels, and workshops across 13 distinct tracks.

For everything new, check out the highlights below:

New and Noteworthy Speakers

Jane Kinnaird (Creative Strategist, Instagram)

Jane Kinnaird is an awarded conceptual Digital Creative Director with a passion for working in the digital space and forming ideas that can translate across all platforms. With experience in design, UX and Strategy as well as conceptual thinking, her projects emphasize the creation of fun, engaging solutions for the modern brand.

During #SMWLDN, Jane will take the stage with Gareth Leeding, Group Creative Director at We Are Social for a discussion on the very best and most innovative uses of Instagram Stories and why vertical video is the future of storytelling.

Bookmark Session

Christopher Cox (Head of Marketing Science, UK & EMEA, Snap Inc.)

Christopher Cox has dedicated the last three years to researching and understanding the consumer trends shaping the motivations of the mobile-first generation with the fundamental goal of helping the largest advertisers in the world communicate with this demographic.

Join Chris at #SMWLDN and get early insight into the next generation of consumers, Gen Z, a growing group of digital-natives markedly different than their Millenial predecessors. How have they been shaped by—and responded to—emerging technologies, recent history, and a shifting economy? Just how distinct are their media consumption habits compared to Millenials?

Bookmark Session

Steven Bartlett (CEO, Social Chain)

Steven Barlett was 22 when founded Social Chain Group a global, social-first marketing agency and production house. Now, at 26, he leads a company that is quickly disrupting the ever-changing social sphere and has been named Great British Entrepreneur of the Year in 2018 and Most Influential Agency Figure in 2018.

On the second day of #SMWLDN, hear from Steven as he shares his entrepreneurial insights to help us distill the state of social media in 2019.

Bookmark Session

Caspar Lee (Co-Founder & CMO, Influencer)

With over 18 million subscribers to his YouTube channel, Caspar Lee is no stranger to social media and community-building. His knowledge as a creator has since led to his role as Co-Founder and CMO of Influencer, a data-driven platform that connects brands with the world’s most influential content creators on social media.

Join Caspar and his Co-Founder, Ben Jeffries, and learn how to harness first-party data to achieve more personalized and targeted campaigns.

Bookmark Session

New & Noteworthy Sessions

Putting Customers First in Innovation: Social Listening Insights from Danone

Staying abreast of trends in our industry is imperative – but what does the phrase ‘trend prediction’ really mean?

Linkfluence CEO, Guillaume Decugis and Danone’s Chief Strategy and Insights Officer, Elaine Rodrigo, will address this key question by exploring how Danone uses social listening as a data-centric way to put customers first in their innovation.

Bookmark Session

Think Forward 2020: The Social Trends Brands Need to Know

What are the key trends to know and pocket for 2020 and what are the social behaviors behind them? How will these trends affect brands and agencies eager to connect with audiences on social?

We Are Social’s Chief Strategy Officer, Mobbie Nazir, will answer these questions through a preview of Think Forward 2020 – the latest edition of the company’s annual global trends report, comprised of the platform innovations, social motivations and cultural trends set to shape society and advertising.

Bookmark Session

How The World’s Most Valuable Brands Deliver Great Customer Experiences

Understanding the ever-shifting expectations of the modern consumer is no small feat. Combined with a push towards a more automation-powered world dominated by emerging technologies like AI, the need to create more human-first, experience-led content is more valuable than ever.

Join Sprinklr’s Chief Marketing Officer, Grad Conn, as he discusses this topic in-depth, unveiling best practices for incorporating cohesion across all customer-facing functions of your business.

Bookmark Session

The Inaugural #SMWLDN Academy Program

The #SMWLDN Academy program will feature a two-day track of classroom-based learning that will explore a number of key category topics spanning B2B marketing, data-decision making, creative strategies to improve social content, driving conversions, paid media models, and more.

Below are a few highlights of what will be covered across the sessions:

  • How B2B businesses can harness the power of Instagram and create innovative social media campaigns using the creative app
  • How to benchmark, understand different measures, and track influencer campaigns
  • How to utilize sponsored stories ads on Instagram to generate leads and sales
  • How to tap into the power behind social listening
  • The role paid social plays within a larger, omnichannel marketing plan
  • How to develop an aligned creative idea and strategy
  • How your brand can make an impact on emerging platforms like TikTok

Pre-registration is required to attend an Academy session and will open up on 18 September. Instructions will be provided via email to all confirmed pass-holders. Seating is limited at these events, so don’t wait too long!

There’s still time to join us in Westminster this fall at the QEII Conference Centre 31 October – 1 November. Browse the full agenda and secure your pass by Friday, 27 September to take advantage of the current discount before it expires.

Thanks to Our Sponsors & Partners

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PODCAST: Getting to the Humanity of a Brand with Josh Dean, Chief Marketing Officer at S’well

This week’s episode of Social Media Week’s Leads2Scale podcast features Josh Dean, Chief Marketing Officer at S’well.

Josh is an award-winning, seasoned marketing executive with over 15 years experience across CPG, Apparel, and Direct-to-Consumer at brands like Unilever, Chobani, and Tommy John.

During the conversation, Josh discussed:

  • What it takes to transition from a major CPG company like Unilever to the fast paced and somewhat chaotic world of brand-startup
  • Why brand purpose should be about getting to the soul of a brand and not just a phrase we use to talk about brands who attach themselves to the latest cause.
  • Where are we at as an industry today and how does social media fit in the broader marketing landscape.

Listen to the full episode below:

Subscribe to Leads2Scale on Anchor, Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Spotify, Castbox, Overcast, or Stitcher.

If you have suggestions for who we should interview or what topics you would like us to cover, please reach out to us at leads2scale@socialmediaweek.org.

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Empathy Economics: Advancing Our Business Goals Through Shared Understanding & Deeper Connections

Conflict can be good for business, but as marketers, we have a fundamental responsibility to push a different agenda, one that seeks a deeper connection with our audience through understanding and shared experiences. We believe this can be an even more important driver of business success and is what we are calling Empathy Economics.

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When trying to capture attention, our anger has transformed into a powerful signal amidst all of the noise. This phenomenon is exacerbated on platforms like Twitter, which prioritize the type of short, pithy commentary that tends to dramatize our intended points. The more we engage, the less of a chance there will be that we encounter a viewpoint that’s not our own. This is not only a societal issue, but one that also impacts businesses and brands.

The platforms are here to stay and our reliance on them is unlikely to change over time. It is almost impossible to imagine a world without them, so rather, our goal as an industry should be finding solutions to address what isn’t working.

“Empathy is a muscle: The more you use it, the stronger it gets. So, flex those empathy muscles through storytelling and expand your notion of who is in your group. Or, be willing to fall prey to the increasing ideological polarization of our time and face the global consequences.
It’s up to us.” – PJ Manney

Let’s look at some examples of where brands and platforms are providing leadership in this context.

Positive Virality

According to William J. Brady, a researcher at NYU, social media posts using moral and emotional language receive a 20 percent boost for every moral and emotional keyword used. This shines a light on a very important pattern: when trying to capture attention, our anger and negativity reign supreme. Further, platforms are algorithmically programmed to mirror back our own biases.

Due to our dependency on social media, and the behaviors we’ve gradually come to adopt, we are less likely to practice empathetic behavior online. As an industry we have a crucial role to play in closing the gap between morality systems and technology through encouraging the viral spread of positive and productive content.

Microsoft‘s 2019 Super Bowl Commercial “We All Win” is a great example of this. The ad’s story not only emphasizes the company’s commitment to building accessible technology but reiterates that we are more alike than different. The video, shared over 29 million times, is a beautiful representation of what every brand’s message should seek to promote: the acceptance and celebration of differences.

User-Controlled Feeds

As efforts to identify misinformation in a ‘fake news’ era have continued to gain steam, s, reliance on black-box algorithms persists and more users lack access to editorial processes that determine what they see. A few ways to begin solving this problem include the creation of dashboards, in which users can filter their own content by politics, rudeness, and virality, and providing users with curation tools for their own algorithms.

Designing feed control for users begs a conversation about what constitutes a healthy ‘information diet’ — something that is currently obscured by platforms. Putting users in the driver’s seat of such decisions would encourage them to learn more about the kinds of unhealthy triggers they are being regularly served and tailor the feed to their preferences.

For instance, twice a year Pinterest users show a significant change in intent specific to how they’re thinking and feeling when engaging on the platform: once during the new year as resolutions are in full swing, and again right before fall as people get inspired after an energizing summer. During these times, they show a desire to make changes to refresh their routines, set goals, get organized and stay positive.

Recognizing this, the company taps into audience data to more accurately and effectively meet their interests and match their mindset. The result? A user-controlled feed that is primed for success in helping Pinners reach their goals.

Algorithmic Fairness

As described by empathy expert, Tobias Rose-Stockwell, “Algorithms are representations of human intelligence — and just like any human creation, they can inherit and amplify our perspectives and flaws.” To summarize the idea into a single term: algorithmic bias.

Many platforms, including Facebook, already train their algorithms around the metric of what is “meaningful” to its users, however, emotions including anger are broadly considered meaningful. Ultimately, metrics are not specific enough with respect to what they’re actually measuring.

By employing metrics that measure content that users don’t want to see more of, we can better deliver a menu of choices that accurately represent their preferences, not just what they will click on. What users define as unhealthy content is an entirely different conversation.

Being empathetic and establishing a deeper understanding of our audience will continue to be good for business. By tailoring opportunities that enrich the lives of our audiences, we can create a ripple effect that results in more human-first marketing.

Learn more about Empathy Economics, Privacy Matters, and The Attention Revolution as part of our 2020 global theme: HUMAN.X and help us establish a human-first, experience-driven approach to digital marketing. Read the official announcement here and secure your early-bird discount today to save 40% on your full-conference pass.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/empathy-economics-advancing-our-business-goals-through-shared-understanding-deeper-connections/

The Attention Revolution: Our Obligation is to Establish a Deeper Respect for Consumer’s Time & Attention

Marketing is about telling stories that meet people where they are and solve real-world problems for consumers. Having a deep and profound respect for our audience’s time and attention is, therefore, one of the greatest obligations of our industry.

A decade ago the formula for increasing traffic and leads was simple: publish more content. In today’s digital landscape, this approach simply no longer holds.

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Where we spend our time and our attention impacts much more than what we buy and how much we spend on it. The narratives we share as marketers have the power to influence our audience’s mental and physical health, as well as interpersonal relationships. When defined as a crucial investment, attention becomes the world’s, and every individual’s most valuable resource.

“A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention, and a need to allocate that attention efficiently among the overabundance of information sources that might consume it.” – Herbert A. Simon

We face an important inflection point where there is increasing trust in curation, metrics advertisers emphasize are being challenged and reevaluated, and there is a concrete opportunity to impact the role emerging technologies play in our lives. We call this The Attention Revolution.

Trust in curation

Content curation extends beyond merely researching, organizing, and sharing content on a social platform. There is an inherent trust that a curator will provide context to the story that will convey intrinsic value to an audience.

In the current attention crisis, these individuals will shape the future of culture and commerce differentiating brands, retailers, and media companies that matter — and those that are simply part of a social platform’s profit margin. Indeed, we will see a new generation of media technologies and a holding company that helps us optimize our “attention diets.”

The online publishing platform Medium, as an example, offers an open forum for contributed articles, but in parallel has built up a strong editorial network of subject matter experts designed to lead specific niche topics. This gives the Medium community the freedom to post and explore the content with the knowledge that a trusted authority is curated content in specific sections of the website.

Measured metrics

The current metrics our industry emphasizes, including “views” or “impressions,” are vaguely defined and intentionally propped up in order to keep advertising prices low. In turn, we have facilitated a trend in which our stories are less correlated to what people are actually paying attention to and cases of fraud are on the rise.

Businesses with quality attention are undervalued and others are losing value by chasing meaningless metrics that favor the fake and the negative for no other reason than these posts are cheap and have a higher tendency to go viral. With an understanding of the possible solutions, we have an opportunity to shift this agenda in favor of stories that are meaningful, trustworthy and conducive to a healthier society.

Our industry has seen a number of important existing and proposed changes across major platforms designed to address the issues related to like counting and related behaviors. These include Instagram’s testing of removing likes in seven key global markets, YouTube abbreviating its subscriber counts for channels with 1,000 or more subscribers, and LinkedIn expanding its catalog of reactions.

VSCO is yet another platform that has done the same, giving people an opportunity to share artistic visual content without the drive toward likes. You can follow other VSCO users and see their photos, but that’s it.

VSCO CEO Joel Flory shared with Business Insider that the initial premise behind Grid, “was that the social currency wasn’t likes or comments or popularity, but curation, quality content, and people being inspired by others.”

Good AI

Artificial intelligence is hoisted for its ability to optimize for immediate engagement and drive advertising margin. The best margins for advertising are on the lowest cost content—typically favoring content that is fake. However, this is not to say that AI is inherently ‘bad.’

AI can be utilized to surface new ideas and inspire. Platforms like Pinterest achieve this through unlocking new areas of creativity as opposed to spitting back the same kind of content that users have already engaged with. Outside of social, tools like Duolingo use AI to help people improve themselves – in this case by learning a new language. Thus, the AI supports a positive use of attention that makes us more human, not less.

We, as marketers, can use emerging technologies without ceding control to the machines. We have the ability to shift the role AI plays from that of an “enabler,” incentivizing us with any means to stay engaged for a few seconds longer (regardless if it’s “true” or “good” for us), to that of a “trainer” that helps us practice good behavior online.

Learn more about The Attention Revolution, Privacy Matters, and Empathy Economics, as part of our 2020 global theme: HUMAN.X and help us establish a human-first, experience-driven approach to digital marketing. Read the official announcement here and secure your early-bird discount today to save 40% on your full-conference pass.

The post The Attention Revolution: Our Obligation is to Establish a Deeper Respect for Consumer’s Time & Attention appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/the-attention-revolution-our-obligation-is-to-establish-a-deeper-respect-for-consumers-time-attention/

Will Facebook’s Forthcoming “Off-Facebook Activity” Tool Fulfill the Promise of a Clear History?

Eighteen months after its announcement (and almost six months after we last wrote about it), Facebook’s history clearing tool has finally taken shape and been deployed in three countries for testing. Called “Off-Facebook Activity,” it provides users a clearer look at the other apps and websites that are sharing their data—and offers them the option to “disconnect their historical browsing data from their accounts entirely, or to remove data from individual sites and apps. The tool also lets people turn off data-sharing from all sites and apps off Facebook,” the New York Times reported in their coverage of the tool.

Evidently, their arrival at this version of the feature took longer than expected; Facebook officials asked about the multiple delays noted that this sort of endeavor is unprecedented. With no models to follow, they forged ahead—reportedly with user input guiding them:

Facebook said it initially hoped to provide an option that would let users delete the entire repository of data that the company collected from other sites to improve its targeting of ads. But Facebook said its research showed that people did not want such an all-or-nothing option. Instead, Facebook said, users frequently asked for better visibility into which sites were providing browsing-habit data to the company, and more control over how the information was shared.

The language choice is deliberate: at one point, they apparently considered an option to delete, whereas now they’ve arrived at a “disconnect” option. “Disconnect” means that identifying information will be removed from what data is collected. But make no mistake: Facebook will continue to collect it. What’s more, this “transparency and control” (to emphasize the terminology Facebook has deployed in all efforts dedicated to this goal) applies to any data shared with non-Facebook entities. The process to disconnect the data collected from your in-app activity is separate…and, as I learned once when trying to complete it, tedious.


Image via Facebook

Limited images of the tool are available on the company’s Newsroom post announcing the tool’s debut, but these images show little about how the tool can actually be used. But even with a simpler process, they’re reportedly prepared for this security to compromise their wildly lucrative ad business. “If this were widely adopted, it would mean less overall revenue for Facebook […] and that’s okay,” Director of Product Management David Baser shared, acknowledging the conflict between their business model and their promise of heightened security—both to Facebook users, and in compliance with their multimillion-dollar settlement earlier this year. This aligns with how Facebook Business sought to prepare users of their ad placement tools back in May:

When someone disconnects their off-Facebook activity, we won’t use the data they clear for targeting. This means that targeting options powered by Facebook’s business tools, like the Facebook pixel, can’t be used to reach someone with ads. This includes Custom Audiences built from visitors to websites or apps. Businesses should keep this in mind when developing strategies for these kinds of campaigns in the second half of the year and beyond.

In any case, Facebook will be closely watching the tool’s deployment in Ireland, South Korea and Spain. According to AdWeek, the rollout is happening on a small scale “in order to ensure that the tool is working reliably, with plans to make it available globally over the coming months.”

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The post Will Facebook’s Forthcoming “Off-Facebook Activity” Tool Fulfill the Promise of a Clear History? appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2019/08/will-facebooks-forthcoming-off-facebook-activity-tool-fulfill-the-promise-of-a-clear-history/

Who (or What) Killed YouTube’s Direct Messenger?

YouTube Messenger made its debut in August 2017 as a way to enable sharing of videos (and, as a result, increases in traffic) between users and their friends or followers. The service was added to the web interface in May of the following year. But this week, its shuttering was quietly announced, not with a blog post but with a post in YouTube’s support forums.

“Heads Up: we’re removing the ability to message directly on YouTube after September 18,” the post was titled, with a four line note about its removal. Although their brief message cited a desire to focus on the quality of the platform’s public conversations, such an answer feels incomplete. Further, given the larger move that other popular social media networks have made toward private communication, it’s difficult to justify from a market need perspective. While we may never know the precise reason (or combination of reasons) that led to this decision, we break down a few possible options here.

Possible Culprit #1: Spam

It’s possible that, like Google Plus, the Messenger feature was plaguing users with spam requests, messages, and videos. For my part, I do recall using the now-defunct platform primarily for the Hangouts function, only to find that random users would hop on and off the calls I shared with friends and colleagues. Critics of G+ repeatedly used the term “drowning” to describe their inundation with unwanted or uninvited messages.

But this doesn’t seem like the likely culprit for YouTube’s direct messaging. For one, it’s not as popular enough of a feature to merit that type of throttling from spammers and bots. For another, if this were the case, it’s likely that more users would have noticed or reported the issue. But in this explanation, lies a second, more likely contributor to the tool’s shuttering.

Possible Culprit #2: Underutilization

Even a company the size of Google, which has…everything to burn: money, time, resources, and the like, can choose to not pursue something that isn’t worth the team’s attention. And direct messaging on the site could easily be counted among those things. The company isn’t afraid to shutter products that underperform (see also: Allo, Spark, or even Google Plus when the time came). And has someone who was only fully aware of the feature within the last two months or so, it’s easy to imagine that many other users had similarly overlooked—and therefore, not used—the tool.

This seems like the most likely cause for the feature’s coming shutdown. And yet that doesn’t mean that the brief announcement didn’t come without complaints. Who those complaints came from, though, could hold the key behind the most likely reason that direct messaging is leaving the platform.

Possible Culprit #3: Further Crackdowns on the Kid Experience

Sarah Perez’s examination of the decision for TechCrunch focused on one very specific element of the blowback on the Support post: the most vocal dismay seemed to come from the site’s youngest users. As she highlighted selections from the comments, she pointed out some of the common sentiments. “A sizable number of commenters are complaining that YouTube was the “only place” they could message their friends because they didn’t have a phone or weren’t allowed to give out their phone number. Some said they used the feature to “talk to their mom” or because they weren’t allowed to use social media.” And, to use Perez’s words from later in the piece, “That’s not a good look for YouTube at this time.”

Given their recent struggles with the content being served to kids, as well as the discovery of a pedophile ring in the comments of several videos, it makes complete sense that a space that allowed younger users to flout the authority of their parents would get shut down. Moreover, this could be the “improving public conversations” charge that is mentioned in the support post. As they do that, they claim to be focusing on comments, posts, and Stories (yep, YouTube has those); no one would argue that YouTube and Google should spend their time correcting the ongoing consequences of these scandals.

In the grand scheme, I think YouTube had the right idea when they added direct messaging to the platform a few years back; it allowed them to increase circulation of videos within their own domain. With that said, in the face of scandal around their youngest users’ experience and low utilization in other market segments, I think it also has the right idea in shutting it down. It stands to have a minimal impact on the platform experience for most users, and prioritizes the safety of those who did depend on it most.

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Why Google Photos’ OCR Compliance Could Predict a Major Step Forward for Social Media Managers

An accidental find by a Google Photos user has the potential to make images more accessible, and make digital marketers’ lives easier in the process.

Twitter user Can Duruk made the realization when using the app last week, sharing with his followers that “@googlephotos has OCR to turn screenshots into copy/paste text!” The Google account replied, “Starting this month, we’re rolling out the ability to search your photos by the text in them.

Once you find the photo you’re looking for, click the Lens button to easily copy and paste text.” This is a major discovery for anyone using the tool and struggling to search for images that have text in them, but the announcement of this technology could have major implications for digital marketers, or anyone wanting to make the internet more visual…and more accessible in the process.

The Promise of OCR

OCR, or optical character recognition, is an invaluable feature for those using screen readers or other accessibility tools to experience an increasingly visual internet. Whereas now, images and PDFs that are not OCR-enabled can be difficult for anyone using a screen reader (a challenge when things like transcripts or forms are uploaded in PDF or JPG formats), the power of OCR can make more types of files accessible to visually-impaired internet users.

Google Lens has enabled it since its inception; major apps like Photos enabling this technology could pave the way for other Google properties, like Google Images or Google Slides, to similar deploy this capability. I liken it to the ubiquity of QR code reading capabilities, a feature once only available by downloading “unitasking” apps to do it.

The result? Simpler interpretation of images that also feature text, in more and more places across the internet. And in an online landscape dense with inspirational quotes overlaid over scenic landscapes or pensive men, this could unlock a far easier way to make this experience seamless for the visually impaired.

An Alternative to Alt-Text

At present, if we upload an image with text to a website or social media post, users who can’t see the image are at the mercy of our ability to describe the image (including the text within) in the alt-text or the image’s caption.

But if OCR recognition of the type currently found with Google Lens and Google Photos were to spread, it could spread some of the “work” required to make these images usable out, requiring less description from social professionals who frequently must include it as part of the photo-posting process. Especially when platforms like LinkedIn or Medium severely limit the characters permitted to do this (generally around 125 characters), tools that pull text from images can widen the scope of understanding.

What To Do in the Meantime

At present, this capability only exists in Google Photos, although users of Google Lens can apply it in a variety of other spaces. For those of us currently in charge of creating common understanding with our posts, the following can serve as helpful measures until OCR support becomes more widely available:

  • Use alt-text, every time. Be as descriptive as possible in the limited characters provided. As with crafting a tweet, it can be challenging to get the point across in a small space. But with practice, it becomes easier.
  • Supplement overlaid text with captions or additional inline text that could help a reader glean understanding even if alt-text is incomplete.
  • Be thoughtful about how information ordinarily presented in images or “flat” PDFs is presented. Are there more accessible formats you can have available? If so, lean toward those and encourage colleagues to do the same.

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The post Why Google Photos’ OCR Compliance Could Predict a Major Step Forward for Social Media Managers appeared first on Social Media Week.

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