Tag: Conference

How Warfare Tactics Can Help Personalize Your Virtual Recruitment Efforts

The U.S. Army has been recruiting for a long time with its legacy systems, but today they acknowledge that this is a new world and strategies must shift. Their traditional approaches include walking in the mall, cold calls, billboards but they are now focused on two-way conversations and listening more, using social media to do so. It’s important to make sure that their recruits are given the information that’s right for them, and as they are now 100% virtual they are finding that they’re better at targeting conversations than ever before.

During #SMWONE last week, the U.S Army Recruiting Command’s marketing team — including Shauna Clark and Xeriqua Garfinkel — and an enterprise consultant at Digimind joined forces to outline the strategies they’re using to recruit and how you can apply it to your brand.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Preparation and not forcing your agenda will foster authenticity and deeper understanding of your audience
  • Social listening is key to blending messages and creating loyalty
  • The battlefield is always changing so it’s important to adapt.

Understanding what is key to your audience

With Digimind,the global leader in AI-Powered social listening platforms and market intelligence software, they understand the pivot that needs to take place. With everything revolving around COVID-19, it’s important that their team turns out dashboard solutions, outreach programs, and ways to best connect to COVD-19 information from a customer perspective.

Digimind’s platform has given the U.S Army the ability to slice and dice the information out there and help them recruit. In terms of specific adjustments as a result of COVID-19, there’s best practices now put in place around COVID-19 needs, and a new product that is a dashboard-solution only. The team is being reactive to help clients connect to this new normal in any way possible, as Tony Calega of Digimind explained.

How the U.S Army is using data and applying it to their overall strategy and tactics

Shauna says they use The Art of War by Sun Tzu to explain the reasoning behind why they are successful, using the strategies outlined in that book in their day to day work.

  • A wise general makes a point of foraging on the enemy: embrace your fan’s content. Recruiters can create their own content so their voice can be heard and allow their virtual community to engage
  • Let the object be victory, not lengthy campaigns: build your strategy with intention. Know where you want to go first so that you are managing your time well, and you have a measurable deliverable and the benchmarks in place to get you there.
  • Know the enemy and know thyself: understand your target market by using resources to understand what triggers a users response and use a social listening tool to dig down to a user’s sentiment.
  • The first to the battlefield is fresh, the second will be harried and exhausted: it’s important to be prepared first. Readiness and understanding the market is important so you can pivot without having to play too much catch-up.
  • Impose your will on the enemy and do not let you enemy’s will be imposed on you: Have a concrete plan and use a platform that you’re already familiar with.
  • Water shapes its course according to nature’s ground as does a soldier working out his victory in relation to the foe he faces: adapt your tactics to your platform. Don’t force your agenda and have a two-way conversation and don’t treat every social media account the same.
  • Gongs and drums banners and flags are a means to focus on a particular point: conversations are easier to listen to when their intention is focused on a single point.
  • The enemy may not be coming but be ready if he does: social listening plays a key role in understanding your target audience, and the influencers of your target audience.
  • Rapidity is the essence of war: stay current and respond to trends or market changes. It’s important to adapt without losing your strategy.

Adapt, adapt, adapt

The most important tip? The battlefield always changes and it’s important to adapt. It’s also important to use social media as a listening tool to inform your strategies and know where to go next.

The large takeaway: these strategies are applicable to any business and any market that is trying to navigate how they should approach social media. more specifically, how they should approach social listening and a general process for gathering and gaining different insights. Themes of rapidity, flexibility, having intention in your strategy, being prepared are all prescient, relevant, and timely considering where we are today but can undoubtedly be melded to fit the future.

“As long as we are agile and can stay focused on what our overall strategy will be, that’s where we see our success,” Garfinkel said.

Beyond agility, Clark articulated the power of social listening. “Our target market is a very small group. We go after a certain age group, some college, no college, you name it — and we use social media and social listening to blend our message and create loyalty not only in our market and also in influencers. It’s really about understanding what works best and who is there, who is present, and how they’re responding and using that information to inform decisions on where you go next.”

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The post How Warfare Tactics Can Help Personalize Your Virtual Recruitment Efforts appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/how-warfare-tactics-can-help-personalize-your-virtual-recruitment-efforts/

How Neuroscience Can Improve Social Media Efforts and Build Fandoms

In a world of digital chaos, cultivating fandom is a method strong brands have used to grow their reach through pure love. There’s a neurological support network that humans identify with, and fandom is at the core of its connectivity.

During #SMWONE, Fanocracy‘s David Meerman Scott and Talkwalker‘s Todd Grossman discussed our collective hunger for relationships and the fandom that fosters it. Increasingly tech tired and bot weary, people long for human connection. Nothing brings people together closer than mutual enjoyment.

David is an author best known for The New Rules of Marketing and PR, a perennial seller for over a decade, as well as other bestsellers including Fanocracy, Real-Time Marketing & PR and Marketing Lessons from the Grateful Dead.

Todd is CEO Americas at Talkwalker, a conversation intelligence company. Talkwalker delivers social insights that help brands build growth. Their breakthrough AI technology was developed exclusively in-house to offer the best and most flexible video, image, text, and speech analytics across any media type.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Fandom drives buying decisions
  • Neurologically speaking, people feel safest in a tribe of likeminded individuals
  • Building a fandom is the practice of created shared emotions

Fandom is shared emotions

Fandom is essentially the shared emotional experience and “everyone has the opportunity to build a fanbase,” said Meerman Scott Take Haggerty Insurance for example—they insure classic cars, with the owners being a fairly passionate group. Haggerty has cultivated its customer base into fans by creating a proprietary social network and through its Youtube channel, currently with more than 500,000 subscribers. “Haggerty Insurance has one of the biggest fandoms,” because “they’ve created a human experience from the mundane.”

Fandom drives buying decisions, and when people find their tribe they create a positive bond between the emotional experience of the tribe and the company providing those connections.

Let the fans take over

When you create an experience for your customers, through video, marketing, or IRL efforts, it pays to let go. “Once you put it out there it no longer belongs to you,” says David. Some brands embrace a curative method, which means forcing a strict set of terms to subscribe to. Think of Adobe’s prescriptive language reminding us that ‘Photoshop is not a verb, it’s a product name.’ Other brands prefer a transformative method, which means allowing the fans to do as they please with your product, by making videos and memes, embracing it as their own. Think of the Roomba videos of product owner’s pets riding around the house.

Give more than you have to

One way to promote fandom is to give generously and without expectations. Creating a roadblock (like requiring registration before downloading assets) breeds an adversarial environment. When things are given freely it promotes a feeling of reciprocity that can be very rewarding. Look no further than the Hubspot method of giving away all of their educational materials and simultaneously building a huge fanbase.

Take the Grateful Dead approach to recordings of their live shows: when other bands prohibited it, they welcomed it. In turn, they’ve created a fandom that’s still going strong decades later.

Passion is infectious and creates community

Brands that literally and figuratively exist as the sticker on someone’s laptop have staying power that is driven by that community. It isn’t impossible to foster that real human connection virtually, it just takes a few tweaks. David’s hack for making personal experiences from afar? Tighten the crop on your video. Seeing someone’s face close up created the feeling of actually being in close proximity and mimics the emotional experiences of being together in real life.

From a content or messaging standpoint, now more than ever it is crucial to rehumanize your language when reaching out to your audience. Meerman Scott has done a full-blown deep dive into what he calls the Gobbledygook of corporate PR language. In a study of each press release sent out during a 12-month period, he identified innovative, unique, and world-class as the most often repeated words. “If you have to announce that you are any of those things, are you really?” he asked.

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The post How Neuroscience Can Improve Social Media Efforts and Build Fandoms appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/how-neuroscience-can-improve-social-media-efforts-and-build-fandoms/

How Consumer Faith and Social Media Saved Lives: The Story of the #DistanceDance Campaign

If you think TikTok dances are just another form of social media posturing, think again.

During #SMWONE the companies behind the viral #DistanceDance campaign shared the story behind the success and the major learning lessons from the experience. Primarily, how consumer faith in brands and social media have the powerful ability, and responsibility, to directly make a positive impact. The fundraising campaign, which launched late March, is still turning heads all over the world due to the incredible social media following of TikToker Charli D’Amelio who took to the platform with an important mission: save lives by encouraging people to adhere to government and health official regulations to stay home.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Brand propose is not marketing
  • The days of slapping #spon on content is over
  • Don’t negate the power of implicit trust and intuition

The 96-Hour Hustle

The campaign started with a string of phone calls on a Friday night, the first from Ohio Governor Mike DeWine to Procter & Gamble CEO David Taylor with a problem: the state’s younger demographics weren’t practicing social distancing. DeWine was eager to see how the CPG giant could help spread the word about the importance of staying at home to flatten the curve and stop the spread of COVID-19.

Taylor then called P&G chief brand officer Marc Pritchard, who reached out to Debby Reiner, president of global brands at longtime agency partner Grey and the ideas began. Within 24 hours after that, the Grey team, including Gold, came up with the #DistanceDance concept and partnered with TikTok to get D’Amelio signed on. The following morning P&G called Grey with the formal pitch and that rest was Internet history.

Within four days, by the following Tuesday evening, Grey and Tiktok had tapped D’Amelio to create the video. To date, the video has earned the top title of most-watched video on the platform and the most viewed challenge. The challenge has attracted 15 billion views while the video itself has garnered over 191 million views and over 2 billion impressions. As far as original videos are concerned, more than 4 million have been made by celebrities such as Jason Derulo, Ne-Yo, Migos, Ashley Tisdale, and many more.

Picking a platform and influencer

Kenny Gold, Director of Social Media at Grey explained that when Pritchard reached out for help, they needed to navigate to fundamental obstacles. First, find a platform with inventory that could deliver the message in a new way that was right for this audience. And second was time, because every day mattered and Grey and P&G knew time was of the essence. Partnering with TikTok and Charli helped us solve both.

Barbara Jones, Founder and CEO, Outshine Talent, articulated this notion of a true collaboration by explaining, “Charlie and her family really understood the importance of this message from the beginning. They walked the walk and they knew this was important. Because she has such an impact on her fans and her audience…she really had the mentality of having fun and had confidence could spread positivity and do good with this. She was all in.”

TikTok‘s Lauren Birnbaum added, “This was the first branded PSA activation that TikTok funded from a media perspective. We felt so strongly about the cause and that our platform could take this message to the masses with a huge impact.”

The confluence of reach, speed agility

When asked about the nuances of how they worked together and how success would be measured, Gold, Jones, and Birnbaum were unanimous in that it was agility and having trust behind their shared goal of spreading this important message. TikTok delivered the ease of production and serving as the largest megaphone.

“We needed it to be a place of extreme reach and we needed it to be a place that would be breakthrough in the truest sense of the term. If it was anywhere else, we wouldn’t have cut through as deeply. It was the right medium, right time, and the right level of production. Then we asked, who has the voice of Gen Z in her mouth? That’s Charlie. It was truly lightning in a bottle.”

Jones added, “I think for TikTok specifically too, it is a benefit to the platform to not overthink the creative; not to dot the I’s and cross T’s that you may think you have to do for others. The beauty with TikTok is its natural ease. Sometimes when you have big brands and agencies and long lead time it can hurt you.

“At TikTok we say we love to run and in this case, we were sprinting as fast as we could,” echoed Birnbaum.

With the notion of one team, one dream when asked about how success was measured the group collectively shared that reach and awareness were most critical as their overarching goal was to get a specific and unifying message out to the intended audience.

Influencer marketing and brand purpose dos and don’ts

If you’re going to entrust your brand and its purpose in the voice of someone else and into the community of someone else you have to work together, explained Gold, “it has to be a true, co-creation partnership. The days of slapping #spon on a piece content is over.”

There is a difference between social good marketing and brand purpose, Jones echoed. “Brands and agencies need to get ahead of the curve, actually talk to their creators versus go out to them as sheer amplifiers, pull some little focus groups together, and start crowdsourcing about what really works.”

Birnbaum added that from a branding perspective in more cases than not it’s more efficient and cost-effective to let go of the reins and lean on the creator to convey the message as natively as possible. “Instead of a huge video shoot you can give that credit and autonomy to the talent,” she shared.

On the topic of brand purpose, the group underscored themes of loyalty, genuity, and making mission the boss.

Gold shared, “Brand purpose is only as good as its ability to permeate through times like this. Brand purpose is not marketing. Marketing is the opportunity to live your DNA in a way that resonates with your audience.” P&G is a prime example of a brand on the front lines standing by its mission to get essential products into the hands of those who need it.

Brands need to put the cause above them now more than ever Birnbaum added. You take P&G in this case, their branding and logos were almost absent.”

The group closed summarizing their brand ethos of the campaign in one word. The outcome: “Inspiring, teamwork, blooming, and helpful.”

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The post How Consumer Faith and Social Media Saved Lives: The Story of the #DistanceDance Campaign appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/how-consumer-faith-and-social-media-saved-lives-the-story-of-the-distancedance-campaign/

Here’s Why Influencers Can Be Considered Part of Your Brand’s Tactical Marketing Team

Influencer marketing captures an opportunity to move outside of pure product push and into communications from a fresh perspective speaking from outside of your brand voice.

During #SMWONE, Takumi‘s Derek Wiggins and m/SIX‘s Keri Drengler shared a vested interest in establishing brand reach through influential means, and joined forces to discuss what companies have to gain—and what to watch out for—in this new-ish arm of marketing. With the right approach, influencer marketing can be used to create, share, attribute, and amplify the right message.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Influencers can be considered part of a company’s tactical marketing team
  • Micro-influencers offer a more bespoke approach to audience messaging
  • Platform use is dependent on customer use and visibility

Drengler is the Managing Director of Digital m/SIX, a media planning and buying agency that specializes in driving commercial and audience growth in today’s data and tech-led media landscape. Wiggins is the US Country Head for Takumi, as well as a public speaker. He is the leading force to driving revenue and developing the Takumi offering to ensure the business remains the market-leading influencer company.

“Influencers are a critical part of the marketing mix,” explained Drengler to kick off the conversation. They meet your audience on their level and where they operate. Picking which creators are a fit for your brand and will help you deliver an authentic message is an entirely different story. Fortunately, she and Wiggins had some advice to share including how to navigate the balance of creativity versus control – that isn’t at the expense of the influencer’s audience.

Choosing the right influencer

In order to amplify your message effectively, you need to project it from the right loudspeaker. Where does your audience consume the majority of their media? Exploring audience platform use can lead you to the right type of influencer. A major medical retailer may not fain much traction with the TikTok crowd. Authenticity counts, a brand is wise to gain an understanding of its positioning and live that message through all of its outlets, even social media influencers. Influencers can be a direct line to your ideal customer and when their position is matched equally a clean partnership is established.

Protecting your brand

Allowing your communication to go through an influencer, essentially a vendor now, does come with its fair share of bumps. Once the posts are out and live, there is no way to contain its audience reach or reaction. The idea of brand safety, mitigating off-topic or harmful conversations, is something to discuss before engaging in the partnership. Influencers know their audience and have a strong, authentic connection, but often aren’t professional marketers. Working with a partner like m/SIX alleviates a bit of the pressure surrounding the hand-off from your digital experts to a handle on Instagram.

“Brands should market when things are good and have to market when things are bad,” relays Keri. Unique circumstances require creative solutions, and influencer marketing is just that. Pairing your brand with the exact people whom you wish to serve is a no-brainer, it’s just a matter of finding the right person.

Test and learn

Before brands embark on a multi-channel approach, go back to basics. What’s the end goal? “Your team doing the cool new dance challenge might align with brand affinity, but not so much with a goal of increased sales,” Keri reminds us. Asking the fundamental question of ‘How can we pair what we do with our customers’ needs will always create a strong campaign.

Reviewing the engagement rates for a specific content type goes far in planning and finetuning a brand’s next steps.

Authentic engagement, regardless of platform, will win every time. Ad Derek reminds us, “influencer marketing is an opportunity to add a tactical member of your marketing team. One who is tuned in to your ideal audience and presents a familiar face in a place they are visiting on the regular.

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The post Here’s Why Influencers Can Be Considered Part of Your Brand’s Tactical Marketing Team appeared first on Social Media Week.

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Capturing the “Older Cousin” Effect of Influencer Marketing with Outloud Group

Long before we had influencer marketing, we had older siblings and cousins who showed us what we wanted to do, be, and try. They were the original influencers. For Outloud Group’s Bradley Hoos, it was his cousins in particular. We followed them, he says, because they had our trust. And today, successful influencers are the ones who have gained similar trust from their followers.

Trust isn’t the only thing that makes influencers powerful. The other reason that reputable brands partner with these individuals is because they can tell a story. They can tell a story in a compelling and relatable way, particularly as consumers are increasingly wary of being “sold to.” The key to a successful influencer relationship, then, is allowing them the space and the autonomy to tell that story in the way they do best.

During #SMWONE, Hoos elaborated on this subject outlining the major barriers to influencer marketing and best practices for success, ways to better understand and scale your organization’s influencer efforts, and his predictions for the future of influencer measurement and what you can do to prepare.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Influencers don’t need our scripts or guidance on brand voice
  • We all need to be able to do more when it comes to measurement
  • Consider influencer marketing as “the Magic Johnson” of your marketing mix

Static = Safe, Live = Legendary

If we select influencers for their ability to tell an engaging story, Hoos says, then we should allow them to do so in a format that captures that quality. Static posts on Instagram, which were at one time the standard for influencer content, have given way to video content. While this has raised the heart rates of more than a few brands who see the potential loss of control that video could offer, Hoos argues that it’s worth the risk. “We screen for good partnership prospects […] and really get to know them,” and believes that any brand working with an influencer should do the same. After all, their followers have made them valuable to us because of their trust; shouldn’t we offer the same?

Hoos thinks that video-on-demand (such as that in an Instagram video post) is one way of doing this, but there’s considerably more power in letting influencers take their talents to live or streaming video. Case in point: the burgeoning world of esports. No longer a “niche” interest, it’s the place to be for males in Generation Z as well as younger millennials. For reference: the League of Legends final streams garnered more viewers than the NBA Finals, finals of the World Series, or the Stanley Cup Finals. “If you are a brand trying to reach a Gen Z male, this is how and the time is now,” he affirmed.

Full-Funnel Growth for Grubhub

Joining the session via pre-recorded video was Grubhub’s Director of Content Marketing Mandy Cudahy. The challenge for her team as they incorporated influencer marketing into their strategy was finding ways to let them engage prospects all through the funnel. By allowing their chosen influencers to authentically share their “Why Grubhub?” story through the content they shared on Twitch live streams, they reached the lowest cost per click and lowest cost per acquisition the company had ever seen.

Hoos was happy to share this as affirmation for the idea that influencers don’t need our scripts or guidance on brand voice. They’re considerably more powerful as brand advocates, able to use their authentic voices – the voices that their followers know and appreciate about them – to sing the praises of your product or service.

The Meaning – and Magic of Measurement

“It’s 2020 and we all need to be able to do more when it comes to measurement,” Hoos says of the impact that influencer marketing can have on company bottom lines. While he acknowledges that it can be harder to do than more straightforward forms of marketing, he also isn’t naïve about the reach that it can have. Referring to “atrributable” and “unattributable” purchases, he cites a study The Outloud Group conducted that revealed for every attributable purchase driven by an affiliate link or from an influencer post, there were between three and four that were deemed “unattributable,” but actually could be traced back to the influencer’s…well, influence.

For this reason, he sees influencer marketing as “the Magic Johnson” of your marketing mix. Not only is it powerful in its own right, but it makes everyone around it – email marketing, paid social, blog, TV spots, etc. – stronger. And if you have Magic Johnson on your team, why wouldn’t you start him?

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The post Capturing the “Older Cousin” Effect of Influencer Marketing with Outloud Group appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/capturing-the-older-cousin-effect-of-influencer-marketing-with-outloud-group/

Tips for Staying Brand-Safe During a Pandemic

With the COVID-19 pandemic, tons of influencers and brands are trying to “influence for good.” In last week’s #SMWONE session, CreatorIQ’s COO, Tim Sovay was joined by Lena Renzina who manages talent partnerships at Ad Council to discuss how to reevaluate brand safety policies during this unprecedented time and how content creators can mindfully manage their channels and influence.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Influencers are leading impact-oriented campaigns
  • Creators have a responsibility with the platforms they have to share positivity and keep people informed
  • The key to brand safety is vetting and testing

Overall, creators have been using their influence for good

“Creators today are delivering millions of posts to their audiences around their interest and involvement in COVID-19,” Sovay states. Specifically, the content and campaigns being pushed out during this time show that there’s a shift from “broader pandemic content to more cause and impact-oriented campaigns,” especially with topics that are centered around thanking heroes and staying at home, plus supporting small businesses. In fact, overall engagement on influencer has surpassed 4.6 billion, and Sovay says this is because of the efforts of influencers, brands, government agencies, and efforts from AdCouncil to rally around this important cause and get people to engage.

Mobilizing the industry for good

During this time, Renzina’s team at AdCouncil had to rally their clients to quickly respond to the crisis and push out messages around critical news. They focused on five issue areas: social distancing messages, hygiene such as washing hands, stay at home orders, mental health, and parenting. The team wanted to hit different markets yet still push out the “general messaging that the public needed to hear, in a quick time period” Renzina points out.

With their talent partners, Renzina really wanted to make sure that the influencers were using their voices for good around the issues that each influencer was most passionate about. Sharing critical and time-sensitive information needed to be fully vetted so that their platforms don’t seem outdated or fake, and should continue to be vetted on an ongoing basis.

The challenges to ‘create’ during this time

Now more than ever “creators have a responsibility with the platform they have, ” Renzina points out, and it’s important that they send out the right message. Her tips during the session included always finding the source before influencers post anything (so making sure the source is credible and they double-check the info) and gut-checking a post with a friend or team before sharing it widely. She also warns that influencers should not shy away from sharing resources at this time that might be helpful to their audience. While influencers are trying to strike a balance between staying positive yet away of what’s going on globally, it’s important to remember that good information should be shared so that it can possibly help others during this time.

How to stay brand-safe

Savoy notes that some areas brands can takeaway are:

  • While individual companies guidelines and risk tolerances are unique, brands and legal teams should think to adjust guidelines for COVID-19 content. This is an entirely new subject matter, so content needs to be revisited for both “subject and tone”.
  • As these are fast evolving topics, content that might be brand-safe today can be super risky tomorrow, so staying nimble and adaptable is key too
  • To respond to some of these challenges, Creator IQ can screen influencers for brand safety keywords so that brands remain careful in who they choose to partner up with

How future and current content creators can stay on top

Vetting talent is really important, according to Ranzina. With so much uncertainty, she shared her screening test “the good, the bad and the ugly” to vet influencers. The good means the creator is uplifting or brand-safe for a specific campaign or organization, the bad can be a red flag like posting something that might be tone-deaf in the past, and the ugly is a deal-breaker that you don’t want to align your brand with. So, it’s important for brands to really look at the content creators channels. Brand safety is especially key during these times.

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The post Tips for Staying Brand-Safe During a Pandemic appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/tips-for-staying-brand-safe-during-a-pandemic/

Consistency, Not Uniformity: Humanizing the Boeing Brand with Talkwalker

“Our posture needed to change because the world had changed.”

This was the take that Boeing’s Vice President for Global Channel & Content Marketing Georgina Goode took to heart when shifting the company’s communications with the onset of COVID-19. The airline industry has been among the hardest hit as billions of people remain grounded at home. But for Goode, the focus was less about the bottom line and more about the people and relationships impacted by this shift. In conversation with her longtime colleague, Talkwalker CEO for the Americas Todd Grossman, Goode elaborated on the “relevant, relatable, and human” stance that Boeing has maintained, even as a company often considered B2B by category.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Be consistent, not uniform with your messaging
  • Don’t be something you’re not
  • When adapting, especially during a time of crisis, be king to others and yourself

Forget How We “Should Show Up”

In truth, Goode bristles at the classification of B2B, instead preferring to focus on what groups need, not how the brand should show up in their digital communications. “Let’s not try to be something that we’re not,” she shared as her guiding philosophy on crafting communications that can meet the moment we’re in. “When you hone in on needs and expectations, that’s how you stay relevant.”

Highlights of how Boeing has met those needs and expectations include honoring VE Day earlier in the months by sharing archival footage of Boeing aircraft from the 1940s, sharing interactive footage of the 777X aircraft ahead of its introduction to the fleet in 2021, and even creating virtual field trips for those in need of a digital escape for the little ones at home. “For a company that’s 104 years old, we don’t struggle for content,” she shared. And that wide breadth of content has afforded flexibility in how they show up in this moment.

“Consistent, Not Uniform,” and More Guiding Principles

When asked how to manage the many stakeholders that Boeing has as a brand, Goode shared six guiding principles that were helping teams all over the world weather this storm with a sense of stability that other areas of life simply aren’t providing. A key one: “consistent, not uniform.” Using common data processes, technology, and tools are ensuring that no matter whether communications are aimed inward toward other parts of the company, or externally to shareholders and stakeholders, that the message is coming from a common place.

“We have diverse audiences and diverse needs, but we set teams up around stakeholder groups and adapt based on what they need or expect.” This includes how social is used to communicate to Boeing employees; recognizing that the needs of a team in South Carolina or Chicago might differ sharply from those in Arlington in Washington State. And while that messaging is in some ways the same, Goode sees it as “a single narrative, deployed differently based on what people need and how people need to hear it.”

Be Kind. Including To Yourself

Given how technical the nature of Boeing’s work is, it might be surprising to hear the level of humanity Goode is committed to bringing to her work. When asked about how her teams are adapting to these fast-evolving and often stressful circumstances, she shared a list of axioms she found online, including the crucial “this team’s success will not be judged the same way it was when things were normal.” Even as the team evolves its work to meet the current moment, it is not lost on Goode the toll that such evolution might be having on her team members.

“Relationships are at the core of how we build content,” she shared, extending that idea not just to the content being created, but also to the people creating that content. She’s committed to connectivity with her team, and to the idea that those check-ins are about more than just business. The kindness that she’s committed to infusing into her work, is a kindness that she extends to her team – and asked the session attendees to extend to themselves. “We’re more connected now than ever before, but it can still feel lonely,” she admitted as she encouraged viewers to mix in a few memes with their still-important (but not the most important) memos that are flying around our inboxes at record speed.

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The post Consistency, Not Uniformity: Humanizing the Boeing Brand with Talkwalker appeared first on Social Media Week.

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Using Data to Make the Most of Social Media Conversations in an Uncertain Time

“What is my role? is the one question that every brand should ask before they make their next social movement.”

Henk Campher, VP of Corporate Marketing at Hootsuite, is passionate about connection. Henk heads Hootsuite’s global marketing strategy, with the goal of driving brand awareness and market leadership. He is fairly fresh to the role, and he brings 20 years of experience storytelling for some of the most reputable brands around the world, crafting compelling stories that change behavior. Brand awareness and leadership part and parcel to a brand’s integrity, and there are plenty of examples of the method perfected.

During #SMWONE, he discussed how we might reimagine the use of social media in an uncertain world.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • By year’s end, half of the world will be online
  • Two-thirds of consumers identify as ‘beleif-driven’
  • Social media isn’t just using a megaphone, it’s 1-on-1 conversations

For individuals, a smaller circle often means economic survival. It’s tightknit efforts with like-minded family and friends all combining their work to contribute toward a greater good. For business, an ever-widening circle of customers means economic survival. So how can these two groups coexist in a natural, unforced, and symbiotic way? Social media.

It’s an overused saying, but it is still the truth: We’re more connected now than ever. By the end of 2020, we’ll find half of the entire world on social media—this is more than just a moment, this is the new normal.

As brands seek to join the social media conversation, they must remain true to their audience and true to themselves by asking What is my role? Like State Farm, are they a good neighbor? Or are they more like Gym Shark and a daily coach? Perhaps a cheeky friend to grab a beer with, like Burger King? Before all else, establishing a brand’s role in the conversation keeps it flowing smoothly. If you want to enter the larger conversation, you must do it authentically.

Getting involved in the bigger conversations

The real talk is happening on social media, in public forums and in DMs. Having a voice in that conversation powerful for a brand. It’s a matter of being aware that the conversation is happening, realizing what matters to customers, and staying in the moment. A fine-tuned brand identity will create the blueprint for exactly how and when to comment on any given situation—if at all.

Creating experiences to remember

Maya Angelou said it best: people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Social media engagement is an opportunity to create a memory of a shared experience that will resonate. There’s a growing sentiment that consumers want to hear from people just like them. A modern brand might add in communication from fellow buyers or even employees. One on one private chats lend to the overall emotional experience of being connected, and “emotion impacts loyalty more than anything else,” Henk adds.

Going deeper with data

Henk advises against being “like the awful guy at the party who only talks about himself” as a brand. Social media is a tool for connection that goes both ways. The best communicators are good listeners. Advanced analytics, like those offered by Hootsuite, make brands smarter and faster than their competition who isn’t listening. Through social listening, you can ask the important questions: How well is this brand loved? What are competitors talking about? Is our customer happy? This emotional data deepen efforts to foster authentic and valuable communications.

Henk mentions Bimbo as an example of a successful social listening stand out. In the U.S, Bimbo launched a special edition of its Gansito in a red velvet flavor. Bimbo had never considered doing something similar in Mexico, as the much-loved cake had not changed its original recipe since its creation in 1957. Word had got out in Mexico that the U.S had a special edition of the Gansito and the Mexican consumers were furious that the product wasn’t available locally. ‘Gansito Red Velvet’ became a viral trending topic across the whole of Mexico.

Bimbo brought the limited edition product to Mexico and experienced immediate double-digit percentage sales increases. Listening is a powerful tool.

Beginning a conversation with open ears and a strong sense of brand creates an environment conducive to authentic dialogue. Analyzing communications develops messaging even further. Social media is a powerful tool for growth and research, but at its heart, it’s still a means for connection.

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These 4 Companies are Humanizing Business Content for the Mainstream

The Internet has democratized business just as it has nearly every other industry. The way people consume business news is changing thanks to disruptors like Morning Brew and an ever-growing pool of content creators like Bullish, which specifically focuses on the financial markets.

And what about traditional business education? Studies show that MBA admissions were already down across the board pre-COVID 19—and remote learning is primed to surge as people increasingly question the high price-tags of IRL higher ed. That’s a big advantage for online education startups like Section4, which is on the mission to democratize access to business strategy training.

During the #SMWONE panel “Business, But Make It Human,” creators from Morning Brew, Section4, and Bullish joined Public.com’s marketing lead Katie Perry for a candid conversation about how new media and education companies are translating business-speak for mainstream audiences. Public is an investing app that puts a social layer on the stock market, allowing investors to easily share the “why” behind their trades and exchange ideas in the comments and in dedicated group chats.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Authenticity is the name of the game
  • New formats like video and audio increasingly helping
  • Humanize business content for the mainstream

Business goes mainstream

While traditional business outlets like the Wall Street Journal still play an important role in the way people learn about happenings in the financial markets, new players are playing an important role when it comes to analyzing this information for younger audiences who prefer to get their news from people who act like they do.

Kinsey Grant should know. She cut her teeth working as a traditional business news reporter before joining the Morning Brew as Business Editor and host of the Brew’s popular “Business Casual” podcast, which you can check out on Apple and Spotify.

“We are our core reader and listener. A lot of the people who are creating content for Morning Brew are the kinds of people we would target with that content,” Grant said. “I know my audience well because I am part of that audience.”

On the podcast, Grant sits down with executives and entrepreneurs—recent guests include Mark Cuban, Arianna Huffington, and Chamath Palihapitiya—to give listeners an inside track into how today’s business leaders think.

Her interviews also tend to give listeners a rare glimpse into these leaders’ humanity. In a recent interview with Palihapitiya, she gets the VC to disclose his daily routine, which includes striving for 10,000 steps a day by pacing around his home during calls.

Brian Hanly, CEO and Founder of Bullish, says he started the media company after realizing that there was a gap in the market for people who are “curious” about the public markets. His company focuses on enlightening its audience through unique formats, like mini-documentaries and even a satirical series that links astrology to personal finance.

“We’re focusing a lot on video storytelling,” he said. For example, Bullish just launched a series called, Trendline, which tells the stories behind public companies in straightforward and conversational language.

Time to reimagine the MBA?

With universities wrapping the year early and the 2020 fall semester called into question, the debate around the rising costs of higher-ed has accelerated in recent weeks. Regarding advanced business degrees like MBAs in particular, Section4’s head of creative product Jerllin Cheng says that a myriad of factors play a role, but cost is the big one.

“The MBA is not dying,” she said. “There are very few people who get an MBA and think, ‘I got nothing out of that.’ But what you do hear people say is, ‘That cost so much money.’”

Section4 is an online education venture built around the insights of Scott Galloway, the outspoken entrepreneur and NYU professor who recently inked a deal with VICE for a new business show designed for millennials.

Cheng says that the primary format for Section4’s curriculum is video, and its focus is on training professionals with tools needed to solve business problems in the modern era. It’s not designed to replace the MBA, she said. Rather, it’s a tool for bringing this level of thinking to a wider audience.

“If you take our courses, it’s okay if you don’t know what EBITDA means,” she said. “We try to make sure there’s a safe community where it’s okay to ask. We don’t need you to know the terms. We’re really trying to teach you how to think and give you the tools to get to the insights yourself.”

When leaders tweet

It would be difficult to have a conversation about the humanization of business without broaching the topic of CEOs who now, thanks to social media, can share their thoughts with the world in real-time.

Some recent examples of this: Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky’s heartfelt memo to employees regarding layoffs and Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield’s illuminating tweet-storm about how COVID-19 was impacting his company. And then there’s Elon Musk, who has never been shy to showcase his personality and opinions on social media.

“What we’re seeing pan out is a true 21st-century leader. It’s not only about shareholder value and returns, but also employees,” Hanly said. “What is happening at a lot of companies is a lot of indecision, so I respect the directness of leaders like Elon.”

Grant added that consistency plays a role when it comes to whether a CEO humanizing themselves is seen as negative or positive. And for leaders navigating a crisis, there are few things more important than transparency and communication.

“Now, more than ever, the CEO as someone who is willing to be open about their own experiences is more valuable than ever,” she said.

The big takeaway: Whether you’re a brand marketing to a new generation of consumers, a media outlet informing and entertaining them, or an education platform training them, authenticity is the name of the game.

Want to start investing alongside friends and experts? Use this link to download Public’s free investing app and get started with a free slice of stock. Valid for U.S. residents 18+. See Public.com/disclosures.

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Live from Living Rooms, Live from Los Angeles: How iHeartMedia Pivoted to Virtual Events

Among the core values that iHeartMedia aims to address with their programming are connection, community, and experiences. So seeing a tweet from a virtual prom attendee, gushing over the fact that she got added to a new group chat at the end of the night, had to make their Los Angeles Digital Programming Director Michelle Lin feel good.

“[We’re trying to] make it so we don’t miss out in the community to celebrate,” Lin said, as she talked about the massive task of rethinking events and engagement in the wake of COVID-19. Alongside Netbase Quid’s Robyn Lindars, Lin shared with #SMWONE attendees what it’s looked like to reimagine the role of radio stations in the community, in a digital space.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Don’t go dark because you can’t figure out a way to connect.
  • Amplifying key information is key to forging online communities
  • Dats is important to adapting thoughtfully and responsibly

Data-Driven Adaptation

In Los Angeles, which recently extended its shelter-in-place orders to late summer, Lin has had to focus her team’s digital work to address four goals:

  • Providing news, entertainment, discussion and interaction daily;
  • Demonstrating sensitivity toward their audience and providing comfort;
  • Filling voids that have presented themselves in the wake of the pandemic; and
  • Creating consistent and sponsorable content that drives engagement.

These are tall orders to achieve, all while transitioning a team that was accustomed to in-person engagement and collaboration to working from home, but it was a challenge that Lin’s former life as a biologist equipped her for. “Whether it’s biology or entertainment, data is important.” Armed with the data that NetbaseQuid’s Brand Pulse provided, she was able to adapt thoughtfully.

From Chaos to Community Building

Lin cited a comparison of frequently used terms from iHeart LA’s target audience, and pointed out a clear shift from fear and chaos, to one of adaptation and community. The tone and scale of programming, she said, were heavily informed by how people were posting online. “This,” she said, referring to the lockdown and its impact on daily life, “is becoming normal in a way. This has become our life, until it’s not.” With that in mind, outreach went from amplifying key information to finding ways for listeners to gather online. Their guiding question: what is the need, and how can we fill it?

They filled it with virtual interviews to replace the frequent in-studio interviews that would take place under normal circumstances, created happy hours and game nights to meet listeners where they’re quickly learning to gather, and used existing talent to craft branded DJ mixes on Instagram a la DJ DNice. Manageable successes in these arenas paved the way for big wins in programming efforts to follow.

Live in Your Living Room: The Concert for America and Virtual Prom

On April 6th, FOX broadcast of iHeart Radio’s Living Room Concerts for America, one of the first efforts to create nationwide live programming – and has built up the confidence for countless other offerings from other networks. Lim’s team played a part in bringing this event to life, not only to replace the normally in-person iHeart Awards, but also as a heartfelt opportunity to generate giving to Feeding America and the First Responders Children’s Fund. The success of this event drove them to seek opportunities for similar event programming on a local level.

The result? 102.7’s KIIS Virtual Prom, held under #KIISVirtualProm and featuring appearances from Dillon Francis, Joe Jonas, Lewis Capaldi, and host Ryan Seacrest. The metrics from this event were encouraging: over 2000 social posts, nearly 34,000 engagements, and 212 million potential impressions. The highly positive reception for the event is giving Lim and her team hope that later efforts, including a forthcoming event to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Pride, will yield an engaged and appreciative audience.

Both Lim and Lindars are encouraged by what has come from paying close attention to these insights. And both insist that these sorts of virtual events, while at times intimidating, are worth trying. “The worst thing would be to not do any kind of virtual event,” Lim shared. “Don’t go dark because you can’t figure out a way to connect. Just try.” As we learned in the session from the KIIS prom tweet showing a connection made in an otherwise lonely time, you never know who might gain something invaluable from your effort.

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Lessons in Focus, Free Space, and Fighter Planes with Falcon.io

You know that the people attending a session got what they needed when they refer to it as “the best support group” in the chat. And Falcon.io Senior Strategist Casper Vahlgren definitely understands why some support might be needed for those doing this work. “We have an enormous amount of data available to us, which can be exhausting and overwhelming.”

In “Using Benchmarking to Inform Your Social Strategy,” during #SMWONE Vahlgren paired his considerable knowledge with actionable advice and suggested exercises to lower the depth of the pool that many feel as though they’re drowning in.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Seek out the space where very few seem to be
  • Don’t overlook the learnings from unsuccessful campaigns
  • Focus on the markets where sales are outpaced by the size of the current audience

Positioning Where There’s Potential

For many who design social strategy, the prospect of determining how best to use budget can seem fraught. External parties always want to weigh in, and even when the decisions are left to us, it’s not always easy to figure out what to do. Vahlgren offered a metrics-based and thoughtful way to decide: benchmarking as a guide to what markets have potential, versus those which might be saturated or dead ends for your brand.

Vahlgren recommended looking at the three market states alongside each other and focusing energy and budget on markets where the potential audience and sales are outpaced by the size of the current audience. It is there that you have room to grow, he points out, and it is there where you should invest your time and money accordingly. This isn’t always going to yield the sprawling multi-channel campaigns that competitors may be putting up, but it will be the best and most efficient use of your time.

Working Within the White Space

There was a consistent theme of economy in Vahlgren’s talk; another example came when he answered the question of how to use benchmarking as a tool to stand out in your industry. His answer? Working within the whitespace. By that, he means plotting the results of your benchmarking data on an axis-based visual map. Do your competitors lean toward an achievable use of their product or service, or an aspirational one? Does their content come from a place of observation (we make your life easy), or of perspiration (we make it easy for you to work hard)? And crucially, what place on the map is free and clear?

To stand out, Vahlgren posited, you should seek out the space where very few seem to be and go there. Position your brand in a way that deviates from the more heavily trafficked places of the map. Differentiate your tone, your visual signatures, and your content themes. Once you’re authentically there, the customers who didn’t see themselves in your competitors’ approach, can see themselves in – and with – you.

Beward of Bias

Vahlgren cautioned the audience at the beginning that there would be some cursing, and delivered on that promise with his final exploratory question of the talk: “how do I not f*** this up?” His answer: beware of biases that you may bring to the data.

As an example, he shared charts of WWII fighter planes that returned to the airfields, shot up but ultimately still flyable. These planes were studied heavily to determine where to add additional armor to make them safer for future missions…until someone pointed out a neglected argument: shouldn’t we also think about the planes that didn’t make it back? The lesson: while we tend to focus our learning and future actions on the successes that benchmarking surface, there’s as much or more to be learned from the campaigns that don’t go well. But no matter where we choose to pull our lessons from, Vahlgren encourages asking why…a lot. “Once you’ve asked ‘why?’ five times, you’ve probably found the right answer. Keep asking why.”

While Vahlgren poses a number of questions in his session, this one may be the most important one for social media strategists to ask as they embark upon their benchmarking efforts. With a solid, unbiased, and well-informed “why?” in mind, chat boxes shared by these professionals will hopefully go from places with calls for support, to ones with stories of success.

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Here’s Where Influencers Belong in Your COVID-19 Marketing Strategy

In a pandemic that seems to suck the productivity and optimism out of the country, there are some individuals and some companies that are seeing creativity in ways that may be here to last. Two of those individuals — Harvey Schwartz, SVP Talent, ViacomCBS — and Miki Rai, a registered nurse with 1.2 million followers on Tik Tok sat down during #SMWONE to discuss how they’ve managed to navigate these difficult times.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Influencers offering a sense of positivity and normlacy are winning
  • Choosing trusted partners ise essential, especially for healthcare influencers
  • Be true to what you preach or don’t bother

Miki Rai didn’t follow the path of  your typical “influencer.”  She was born in Japan, moved to the U.S. when she was three years old and decided she wanted to choose a life-changing profession as a nurse when she was in high school. She was a natural, always had a love for posting videos, and when she was in nursing school she would post what she was learning. But who knew sharing a photo of her and a few friends in scrubs out front of a hospital at 6AM before their shift would go viral.

How does a nurse — or any non-celebrity — manage to build 1.2 million TikTok followers? Schwartz has an idea. “Influence has always been kind of a buy product of someone delivering and entertaining a useful connection to an audience whether it is a musician delivering an emotional performance, a yoga instructor teaching spirituality, a nurse tik-toking,” he said. During a pandemic that has serious global implications, the typical ways for building good content have to shift.

COVID-19 changes to the world

This has been an unprecedented time in history where no one is sure what the future holds, and days are blending together. Influencers are unknowingly finding organic opportunities to connect with their followers without a roadmap. On the other hand, followers are looking to influencers for a sense of positivity and normalcy.

Miki Rai couldn’t be a better example of this type of influencer. Rai’s reputation went from 0-100 on all of her social media platforms. By posting content that seemed so simple to her, her engagement levels went through the roof, and she’s so pivotal and useful to a growing list of followers on every channel during the pandemic. Even her handwashing videos are getting close to 15,000 likes on Instagram, all while it not being her main channel. Connecting her knowledge of nursing to social media during a crucial time, was the perfect recipe for her fame.

Choosing Trusted Brand Partners is Essential for Healthcare Influencers

Every content creator, ambassador, brand, and/or sponsor are all trying to figure out the right way to tell stories. Being a licensed professional, Rai is already held to a higher standard. Specifically, she cannot promote unhealthy habits because it would be a recipe for disaster for one’s health and essentially a double standard. In terms of content Rai believes, “when working with healthcare professionals it’s important that when choosing a brand/sponsorships to be careful of brands putting words in your mouth.” In other words, content creators need to stay true to their personal goals when agreeing to partnerships and be sure not to lose control of their own brand.

Practice what you preach

Being open and honest builds trust. Brands need to remember that if they are not true to what they preach, they are going to lose trust from their consumers. This works both ways for the influencer as well.

If the brand doesn’t match the influencer’s mission statement, influencers should not partner with brands. Influencers should not risk losing their credibility for just any brand/partnership opportunity. It is not worth losing your followers to distrust.

“When every content creator starts out, it is really important to outline what your mission is,” explains Rai. From the very beginning, before the coronavirus pandemic, her mission was to educate/inform. Post coronavirus, her goal is still the same. Harvey went on to ask if there would ever be a ‘fork in the road’, splitting two lanes one becoming a full-time influencer and the other continuing to be a telemedicine nurse. All in all, Rai explained that she would never give up nursing, this is her main priority no matter where social media takes her.

“Influence is an undercurrent and is deep-rooted in our culture, in the last 10 years it has been amplified by our social feeds,” said Harvey Schwartz.

The big takeaway: People want relatable exchanges so they can connect on a different level. Sometimes all they need is a light-hearted distraction that speaks the truth through entertaining content during these difficult times. While this pandemic reaches new places, it’s equally as important for credible influencers with significant audiences to make useful information go viral.

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The post Here’s Where Influencers Belong in Your COVID-19 Marketing Strategy appeared first on Social Media Week.

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How Social Listening Powers FOX’s Programming and Beyond

When you work for a global entertainment brand, there’s more to look out for than when a star says or does something bad. With that said, it definitely does come up from time to time.

“We do have to protect the brand if a star does something stupid,” admitted FOX’s Associate Director of Social Analytics David Sager. But, as he dove into during his #SMWONE session with Talkwalker’s Regional Manager for the West Coast Nate Bonsignore, his time spent monitoring social dives far deeper than that…and has a far greater impact on the brand overall.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Tweets, posts, and memes that you think are dominating the conversation, don’t always reflect reality
  • Don’t overlook the impact of “unstructured data”
  • Be open to experimenting and playing around when communities need it most

Protect: In Which FOX News Learns, “It’s Not All About You”

A telling lesson about our perception of social media emerged during the session, as Sager and Bonsignore conducted a poll: what was the most retweeted tweet of summer 2019, about? Given the opportunity to select between politics, music, and sports, the audience overwhelmingly chose politics. In actuality, the topic was music – the band, BTS. But it confirmed an assumption that many of us make: the frequency with which we see topics elevated in the media, doesn’t always reflect their actual prevalence in societal conversation.

This was a lesson that Sager shared with FOX’s news division, after concerns arose that Twitter was swimming in negative mentions about the network. The truth? The first mention of FOX News didn’t enter a list of most retweeted tweets until after entry 5000. “I had to stop scrolling,” Sager admitted. The lesson for marketers? Tweets, posts, and memes that you think are dominating the conversation, don’t always reflect reality. And more to the point, the degree of protecting you may think you need to do for your brand isn’t as high as you might think.

Measure: Monitoring the Massive Rise of The Masked Singer

One can only imagine the fun that comes from getting to track the chatter around, and success of, shows like LegoMasters and The Masked Singer. When it comes to the latter, Sager said, it can be fascinating to watch the aftermath of a celebrity reveal. “It’s always cool to measure how they make the reveal,” he shared, “and to watch what impact it has on the show.” This data has the potential to impact programming down the road; watching the data about how celebrities reveal their presence on the show, along with data about how fans make guesses and who else they’re fans of, could dictate who shows up on the show next—or even what shows enter development in the years to come.

In this conversation, the panelists also brought up a metric that is proving difficult to measure: the spread and impact of what Bonsignore called “unstructured data” like memes and other media not conveyed with text (think videos, podcasts, etc.). The Masked Singer yields a great deal of chatter online, but it has also given rise to a number of memes…which are difficult to measure with the same accuracy. “When something is memeable, the text [data] doesn’t always bear that out,” Sager noted.

Promote: Charting the Contributors, for FOX Sports and Beyond

Speaking of data that doesn’t always make it to the decision-making table, Sager also mentioned how he has widened the scope of where to look for impactful data. His team works with a social media ecosystem that charts the genesis of data from platforms like Reddit, Tumblr, 4chan, and Discord; through its amplification stage on a platform like Twitter; and finally its entry into mainstream consciousness on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Of Redditors in particular, Sager notes, “These are the really smart first wave people on the internet, and they’re self-segmented into communities.” What they’re identifying as popular early on—take 2017’s “dress” controversy or 2019’s “Yanny/Laurel” debate—eventually enters pop culture forcefully.

Sager’s used this ecosystem model in conjunction with FOX Sports as a way to identify talent that would succeed on the network, in one example of a framework that Bonsignore encourages organizations to use when grounding their decision making. The framework for FOX Sports included looking at prospective guests and their presence on Reddit and Twitter; both their audience reach (number of followers) and engagement (how people interacted with their content) were considered. “A healthy audience balances the two,” Sager pointed out, also noting that a good presence on Reddit could mean stronger numbers on Twitter (and, per the ecosystem, later on Facebook and Instagram) could help them find a guest that would resonate with audiences.

As Bonsignore mentioned as he opened the session, “the digital voice of the customer, the consumer, [and even] of trolls, [can] play out in organizations like FOX.” Sager highlighted a number of different ways in which the digital voice is more than just noise; to the contrary, when thoughtful and attentive social listening is taken seriously, it can reveal valuable data that highlights immediate steps to take to improve the work you do.

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Tapping into the Power of Collective Data During Times of Crisis

Want to know what your audience is talking about? Grab a seat and join the conversation. NetBase Quid turns chatter into usable data that drives successful communication strategies through social listening. Social listening reveals and pinpoints the discussions that resonate at the highest frequency within a target audience.

During #SMWONE, Kelsee Wilson, Account Manager, NetBase Quid, sat down with Brandon Billings, Vice President, Social Media & Content Strategy at MMGY and Laura Forester, Vice President, Strategy & Engagement, Chemistry to discuss how they utilize social media analytics to build consumer profiles, adjust communication priorities, and identify emerging trends that inspire winning campaign strategies.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Social listening is here to stay
  • Empathy goes a long way in disappointing situations
  • Social listening tools work best in conjunction with channel-specific metrics

Social listening is here to stay

Culling conversational data to inform decisions is a relatively new concept, but one that’s gaining speed in light of recent events. We’re online all day long—ingesting news and interacting with the brands we trust, connecting through our personal channels, and making public our thoughts on everything from purchases we’ve loved to frustrations we’ve encountered.

“People always want a real-world example of this new concept,” says Kelsee, who has been with NetBase for more than five years. Laura Forester VP of Strategy and Engagement at the full-service agency, Chemistry, is happy to provide one. “One of our clients, a Western PA utility company, was with us for just 50 days” when an unprecedented storm hit their service area. That, paired with more than two-weeks long Stay At Home order in place, created a situation that demanded a pivot in communication strategy.

Stepping away from their initial plans to build up the utility company as a thought-leader in the industry, they instead began to focus on a community-powered communications effort. For Laura, social listening revealed commonalities that exist when dealing with multiple crises. Framing the eventual repair of the services as a combined effort from the consumers’ point of view drove collective empathy and in turn, passively prompted community inclusion. Before long, people were sharing videos of the workers, posting words of encouragement, and contributing to the “we’re all in this together” vibe that the country has been thriving on.

Understanding what the customer wants, right now

Indeed, empathy goes a long way in disappointing situations. Brandon Billings, VP of Social Media and Content Strategy with MMGY, an integrated travel- and hospitality-focused agency knows it well. “I’ve never seen such downtrodden emojis,” he says when discussing what was revealed by his deep dive into recent social conversations surrounding travel.

Understanding the travelers’ perspective requires real-time data even in normal times. In times of uncertainty, it’s been key in his understanding of what people are thinking and feeling, presently. For MMGY, social listening has revealed a red thread of “dreaming” of travel. People literally and figuratively need to escape and are just waiting for the moment when they can stop dreaming of travel and instead announce that they’ve booked their trip and are counting down the days.

Tools that work best together

Both Laura and Brandon agree that social listening tools work best in conjunction with channel-specific metrics, so long as you keep the brand goals at top of mind. For Brandon, this means reassuring clients that travel drives economic recovery, and travel buys are influenced by social media escapism. For Laura, this means tapping into the Human Truth that fosters all connection.

By harnessing the power of collective data, we’re able to continuously shift strategy in alignment with consumer needs and create real impact from important data.

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Why Vulnerability is Key to Authentic Influencer Content

“The simple, aspirational aesthetic is over,” Takumi’s Group CEO Mary Keane-Dawson declared early in her #SMWONE session alongside her colleague Derek Wiggins, USA Country Head. about the current state of influencer marketing. She punctuated her sentiment with a pair of photos: the first, a prettily staged image of a sun-kissed woman holding a daisy in her mouth; the second, a less staged image of her sputtering to spit the flower out. And while this pristine and staged aesthetic was on its way out before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, the latter has us all feeling as discombobulated and uncomfortable as the woman in the second photo.

As it turns out, that’s making what influencers do now, and will do next, so appealing.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Platforms that can elevate imperfect content will shine
  • Influencer marketing content will favor more raw and unpolished stories
  • Be open to experimenting and playing around when communities need it most

Veneers Down, Vulnerability Up

“Reality has come in and slapped us all in the face,” said Derek Wiggins shared, going on to say, “what it’s done is it’s humbled and changed our opinions, making us more open and vulnerable.” He shared a quote that reveals the resulting work is not only more raw and unpolished, but more fun for the influencers themselves:

We’re just being ourselves and making sure we’re having fun behind each piece of content – we really think having fun and genuinely loving what you do is SO important to stand out.

And who wouldn’t want to engage with content, or with creators, who are enjoying themselves? As it turns out, a vast majority of social media users. A 2019 Takumi survey revealed that 8 in 10 followers of influencers said they’d stop doing so if an influencer misrepresented themselves or their lifestyles to followers; 78% said they’d do so if they realized an influencer’s lifestyle promoted unrealistic or unsustainable life habits. Now that we’re all at home, there’s figuratively and literally nowhere to hide…and the content these professionals create could change significantly as a result.

It’s TikTok’s Time to Shine

As the aesthetic fades away, platforms that can elevate imperfect content will shine…and for Takumi and Wiggins, this means TikTok. Coaxed onto the platform at the urgings of his wife, he now finds himself one of the 522 million users (and fast-growing, as new data is showing) who returns to the site multiple times each day to be entertained. It’s a fantastic space to “be relevant, [to] make it yours,” he said, adding, “as a minority, looking for things to relate to [when I was younger] was difficult. Now, it’s a market for everyone.”

The platform is about more than dance challenges and whipped coffee; Wiggins highlighted two examples of influencers using the space to contribute to a larger social good. Calls for cause marketing were put out to their influencer community; creative spots came back for campaigns like Oreo’s #CookieforaCause (to benefit Save the Children) and #HaagIndoor and Secret Cinema’s campaign to keep people indoors. And independent of brands, pro bono campaigns emerged for #SafeHands (promoting frequent and thorough handwashing“Influencers have to adapt and rethink things like never before,” Keane-Dawson noted, audibly marveling at their community of creators as she continued, “this is where their creativity comes out.”

Play Around When the Community Needs It Most

For those worried that their work wouldn’t be as polished as normal, Wiggins and Keane-Dawson are in agreement that now is the time for that sort of work. Because consumers increasingly care less about the curated aesthetic and more about genuity and realness of content, now is precisely the time to play with the form, especially on platforms that reward that sort of playfulness like TikTok.

“Lead the charge and don’t be quiet,” Wiggins insisted, noting that people will remember down the road who didn’t want to speak up for fear of getting it wrong. Partnering with people who know what they’re doing means everything here; Keane-Dawson heaped more praise on the influencers they work with, saying they’re meeting the moment just how so many of us would hope: “they find the humor, and they find the connection…it’s amazing what these creators can do.”

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Here are the Video Marketing Strategies You Need to Know from Vimeo’s CMO

Gone are the days where video is deemed a ‘nice to have’ in a marketer’s strategy. More than ever before, video is an essential medium for marketers no matter what your brand goals are or how big your business is. But, while businesses of all sizes are looking to create more content across multiple formats, there are still significant challenges faced in making good video at scale.

On the second day of #SMWONE, Vimeo CMO Harris Beber sat down with SMW Founder and Executive Director, Toby Daniels, to take a closer look at these barriers to entry, the state of video storytelling, tips for adapting content to today’s shorter attention spans, and much more.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Fear, cost, and complexity are the leading barriers to video
  • Frequency is the key to driving reach
  • Gradual engagement boils down to telling authentic brands stories

Bringing scalable video creation in house

Ninety-six percent of SMBs report that if obstacles like time, cost, and complexity were removed they would be integrating more video into their marketing approach. Only half (50%) are actually making video and of that percentage, 92 percent claim that making more video would help grow their business aren’t due to a lack of time and money, and a poor understanding in how to approach their video efforts.

Enter Vimeo Create. Available on desktop and as an app, brands can pick from pre-made, professionally curated video templates customizable to their specific needs or start a new video from scratch, integrating their own video footage. After the video is finalized, they can automatically tailor the content for each of their social channels in distinct versions depending on the format and aspect ratios needed: square, vertical, or horizontal.

Drive reach through frequency

Seventy-five percent of video views happen in the first four days. More frequent video is necessary to keep an engaged audience,” explained Beber.

For optimal reach, creating daily is ideal though this is not always feasible especially for smaller companies who are under-resourced. A simple hack to overcome this obstacle is creating in bulk, “Spend an hour or two a week on creating content so you can schedule that content out for the entire week,” explained Beber. Not every platform is the same, so testing the waters regularly will allow you to gauge how to share your story across different platforms and formats successfully. With each post, you’ll see the areas of improvement and you’ll feel less overwhelmed, Beber assured. “The first video is the hardest. Keep evolving,”

Despite that not every platform is created equal, a general rule to keep in mind to ensure your content is thumb-stopping? Capture your viewer’s attention in the first three seconds. “Start with the peak of your story, use bright colors, show faces, pets, motion, and your brand. We are fighting in 3-second increments when it comes to social engagement,” he explained.

Build engagement over time tell through authentic stories

Offering a powerful reminder on the impact of storytelling in videos, Beber urged attendees to prioritize authenticity over perfection and pushing the “shiny object.”

In a world where you have three seconds to capture someone’s attention, there’s still room to tell a longer story. “People buy from people. Tell your story; don’t sell products… If you can’t demonstrate value through the consumers’ eyes it doesn’t matter how great you think your product is.” he said. Now more than ever people crave community and brands have a significant opportunity to use this moment to cut through the noise in profound and positive ways.

But how exactly does a brand define authenticity in its own lens? Start at the end. Define the mission or purpose behind your message at the ground level. Once you’ve answered the “why,” the next question becomes what type of video will help you most directly in achieving this goal and every else — the format, the channel, the message — will fall into place in a holistic package.

“You may be 50 percent less likely to create, but 100 percent more likely to succeed if you do take the leap and try,” Beber shared to conclude the fireside.

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http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/here-are-the-video-marketing-strategies-you-need-to-know-from-vimeos-cmo/

Here’s How to Use Data to Speed Up Your Marketing Decisions

Now more than ever it’s important for marketers to make smarter data-driven decisions. Instead of just monitoring, more brands and businesses are looking for actionable data that can help push the business forward, from both a strategic, marketing, and operational standpoint.

During their #SMWONE session, NetBase Quid’s Zen Ahmed and Zachary Mesenbourg used the current state of COVID as a timely example of how brands can uncover important themes — using the NetBase Quid platform — that are top-of-mind for consumers during this time, plus how to extrapolate conversation drivers and audience segments from those themes uncovered. The result was a real-time analysis that shows brands how to “make decisions faster with more reliable data” as Mesenbourg pointed out, and stay one step ahead.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Start with the “why” or the challenge
  • Be the artist around your data sets and analysis
  • Deep dives help build context around key entities

There’s a wide variety of data sources at a brand’s disposal

By inputting any search query, NetBase Quid’s “web” functionality gives brands a visual way to understand the news and topics around it. Through this, brands “can compare and contrast articles that are leveraging similar language” states Ahmed, and identify clusters of articles around certain topics that users can then dive deep into.

The platform also gives an insight into trends taking place and the conversations that have been evolving over time through a timeline map. From there, the platform can break it down by audiences – some specific examples Ahmed showed were splitting up the audiences into things like institutions mentioned, gender breakdowns, and top people or sources covering the topic. “This allows us to look at our audiences from a segmented perspective,” Ahmed adds and gets into harder to reach insights than more “conventional analytical tools” may provide.

From data to actionable insights

Brands can now understand a more comprehensive “state of affairs” around any topic through Netbase Quid, breaking it down through a central topic, island clusters, unique clusters and largest volume that are all shown on the map. With so much data out there, it’s especially important to listen and analyze first, before you connect with your certain teams and disseminate the information. It’s important to start with the challenges you want to solve, then find an analysis approach that makes sense for you.

Mesenbourg also adds that brands should “not only be smart with the questions you want answers for when it comes to the analysis types you’re running” but also the audience segments that are “going to be pretty critical to the decisions that you make.”

Being creative with both your data analysis and the results

This platform aims to create a holistic analysis around given topics or questions that a brand, marketer, or agency might be trying to answer – whether from
a media intelligence perspective or a consumer intelligence perspective. With so many capabilities and ways to display information, Metenbourg points out that you’re not just getting a “word cloud of top terms” but instead you can see the “true driving catalyst behind certain conversations” and how these conversations can transition and shift over time.

“Utilize different sources to your own brand’s advantage to drill home the decisions you’re trying to make,“ says Ahmed. Ultimately, he suggested that brands be the “artist around these data sets” developing whatever use cases fit their needs. The result? By going a next level deeper to see what consumers are talking about right now, brands get a real-time picture to what challenges consumers are facing, based on their conversations, plus how they’re interacting in a certain category, and much more. Based on this data, brands can make decisions faster with more reliable data to support it, especially with the NetBase Quid visualizations to drill home those messages.

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Listen, Learn and Adapt: The Keys to Embracing the #stayathome Lifestyle

Small quakes formed late-February all around the world. The initial shock was dull with growing tremors indicating that something wasn’t right. Come mid-March, a seismic shift was felt by brands across the globe.

Companies have weathered dramatic situations for sure—the bubbles bursting, the regulations, the recessions—but this a novel situation. We’re living in times with unparalleled access to information coupled with unmatched uncertainty.

Eric Dahan, co-founder and CEO of Open Influence, notes that historically, there have been “three options for economic recovery following a crisis: V, U, or L shaped recovery…with L being our most likely scenario.”

L-shaped recoveries are characterized by persistently high unemployment, a slow return of business investment activity, and a sluggish rate of growth. So, with all this in mind, how are brands meant to move forward in a meaningful way that creates a positive impact? During #SMWONE Dahan took a closer look at our new reality and what we can expect on the other side.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • People do not connect with ads, they connect with other people
  • Empathy goes a long way in disappointing situations
  • Social listening tools work best in conjunction with channel-specific metrics

The #stayathome lifestyle

Extreme economic impact partnered with social media data collection proves the theory that the #stayathome lifestyle is here to stay, so get comfortable in it. While we aren’t in the ‘crisis’ phase anymore (stockpiling toilet paper anyone?), we are settling into the resilience phase quite nicely. Eric says that this resilience phase is marked by a need for consumers to “seek enjoyment from everyday rituals.”

Open Influence understands that people do not connect with ads, they connect with other people. This is what drives them to send the right message through the right messengers to the right audience.

Navigating the resliience phase

There are industry-specific shifts happening in messaging and delivery, a brands job is to recognize what it has to offer right now to its audience and convey that message. Consumer packaged goods have moved from a utilitarian necessity to a lifestyle choice. It’s not about stockpiling canned goods anymore, it’s about selecting the best option for this new homestead-style endeavor we’re all embarking on. Beauty brands have shifted their messaging from being about how we look to focus on how we feel. Fashion is empowering its audience to dress to feel their best (at least from the waist up anyway).

The events space has seen the most interesting shift in the past few weeks, says Eric, with a shift toward attention on live events with a predictable outcome. “Typically, only the types of events with an unknown ending have drawn live crowds, sports events and the like.” Virtual conferences have moved from curiosity to necessity in just a few months’ time.

What’s next?

Moving forward, brands will need to continue to adjust their value proposition to meet their audience at the right time. Instead of asking ‘how can we market to them?’ the question should be ‘what is my audience getting from this?’ A brand’s ability to create value in alignment with this new lifestyle will be the test.

“People are still people and connections last,” Eric says when discussing the future of influencer marketing. Understanding the consumer in today’s context is the most important step in moving forward. Collective anxiety is driving the need for trust and connection, and third-party social validation will go a long way in galvanizing a brand and its place in a buyer’s lifestyle.

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How ViacomCBS is Creating Cultural Connections with Gen Z

Ghosts, zombies, and zumpers—oh my! The study of symbols and language is called semiotics, and for ViacomCBSAngel Barron and Hawa Arsala, it’s a part of their 9 to 5. Working together as Directors of Creative Strategy and Cultural Intelligence for Viacom Velocity means keeping culture at the core of everything they do. Culture is ever-evolving so monitoring tiny imperceivable shifts that ladder up to overall changes in the zeitgeist is part of that work.

More immediately, the rise of social distancing, reprogramming of the traditional family unit, expansion of desire, and friendship beyond the human are affecting the expectations and values system of Gen Z. The way young people relate to each other is in massive flux, and thus the way they connect to brands. During #SMWONE they explored the current culture of relationships to help brands understand how to reach Gen Z during this time of crisis.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Express the importance of a good, healthy relationship with oneself
  • Let the talent drive the conversations
  • Don’t discredit the value and gravity of digital experiences driven by physical isolation

Physical boundaries drive virtual experience

“Connection is essential,” Angel says, to us as humans and it’s instinctual that we name and brand each new experience as it happens, hence the birth of ‘zumped’ (which means being dumped via Zoom, btw). As we come together and create new experiences brands that are able to respond to and reflect on those experiences will take the lead.

For example, Net-a-Porter has partnered with Animal Crossing to allow you to dress up your avatar if you meet up for virtual drinks. Sound weird? Consider that 70 percent of 18 to 24-year-olds are down to meet online for a pre-date gettogether. If all goes well on the island, you can take your date IRL and have the actual outfit delivered to your door.

Love thyself

Another trend spotted by Angel and Sawa is “the evolution of self.” In an age of social distancing, self-care is turning into self-love. Specifically, there is a growing focus on soul searching over face masks. Examples supporting this trend include Spotify unveiling a ‘Self-love’ playlist for its Valentine’s Day listeners this past February. More recently, the platform has announced the launch of a curated “Daily Wellness” playlist that will include a range of specially selected podcasts and tracks to help one practice mindfulness.

In addition, Calm, the popular meditation app, announced a partnership with LeBron James to give away free subscriptions in an effort to help consumers keep their mental health in check during these difficult times. These are but a few examples of efforts by platforms to step up and offer resources for brands to deliver on consumers’ breathing a little easier and keeping our minds at ease amidst the uncertainty.

Beyond humans

As we move further into “always online” territory, people have found innovative ways to connect in search of their bases instincts: love, partnership, and affection included. By chance or by choice, the vast majority of our connections are online now, and one-third of people have established the habits of making and maintaining friendships through gaming, streaming, social media, and by sharing tête-à-tête any way they can.

For example, in February 2019, 10.7 million people attended a DJ Marshmello concert inside a Fortnite game. And that huge number doesn’t include attendees who experienced the concert in-game. If you factor in those who watched it live-streamed on Twitch and other platforms that number jumps to an estimated 27 million people. All together, but apart.

How might a brand position itself in alignment with those innovations without appearing inauthentic? Sawa notes that “letting the talent drive the conversation” is always best as they’ve already gotten the ear of the audience and know what’s likely to connect best.

Relationships thrive by tending to what creates them: connection. Once the spark is ignited, it’s just a matter of maintaining the heat.

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Small-Budget Social Media Marketing: How to Do More With Less

For small businesses online, sometimes it feels impossible to outbid the big guys. Falcon.io‘s Dino Kuckovic and Leora Novik — two minds that have changed the game in small-budget social media marketing — are the true groundbreakers when it comes to small-budget media marketing, and they shared their best insights on the topic during #SMWONE.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Know what to outsource and what to keep in house
  • Creative ideas don’t need to break the bank
  • Setting goals and benchmarks are fundamental to optimizing budgets

They kicked off the conversation by dispelling one of our most misunderstood notions: “if you have a huge number of social media followers you’re obviously doing it right.” Brands often get confused by spitting out too much content and forget that quality is the key to success. But if follower count is overrated, what else don’t we understand?

Optimization is pivotal

Brands now have to be smarter about where their dollars are being spent, to ensure all marketing budgets are being worked to their fullest. There are a number of different approaches as to how to optimize media budgets which Novik outlined through several examples. Repurposing existing creative assets, leveraging partnerships, thinking outside the box for how internal team members can be used, stretching limited budgets, and being smarter about maximizing an investment are but a few of the ways to optimize at scale.

What this all boils down to is prioritization. Think hard about where you absolutely need to outsource and what you already have at your disposal in house. Kuckovik echoed this insight with a slightly more data-centric approach. Specifically, having a measurable approach and setting tangible goals and benchmarks. Both agreed and emphasized that there are plenty of ways to optimize budgets and that it’s not always about quantity.

Who wants to be friends?

A major strategy for smarter media budgets is strategic partnerships and collaborations. Creative ideas do not need to break the bank. Some of the best ideas are the simplest and least expected. Who’s to say you need a fancy photoshoot in Dubai with the most famous models to send a message? You do not need a familiar face! Novick reiterated this point with the reminder that despite there being a dominant and traditional sense of the word “influencer,” there are numerous categories of these creators including macro (500k-1M followers), mid-tier (50-500k followers), micro (10-50k followers), and nano (1-10k followers).

What your brand may need doesn’t necessarily have to fall under the umbrella of what every major influencer is following. Think outside the box and emphasize the “fit” factor when gauging whether the person will be relevant for your brand. To help answer this question, refer back to your mission and determine whether the message will map onto this in the way you intend.

Another pro-tip: utilize the talent you already have in your office to help maximize your budgets. The key is to be resourceful with what you already own. “Send out the bat signal,” said Novik, “raid houses and bring back what you have.” It does not always take much to be creative! More often than not the most engaging messages are those that are simple and genuine in nature.

Are you being smart about your social media budget?

Social media is typically the largest part of small business media campaigns. As a result, outsourcing is not as cost-effective as many may think. To address this, consider hiring part-time specialists as opposed to a full-time staff. Be diligent about setting SMART goals and benchmarks so you can hold yourself accountable when establishing and optimizing budgets.

Determine whether social pays off for your business begins with measuring ROI. Check your metrics daily and if a tactic is not working, you will have time to adapt your approach over time and apply the learning lessons. But what does it really mean to measure ROI? For small businesses especially it comes down to having the right tech stack at your disposal. Among the tools in their arsenal, Kuckovic and Novik mentioned their very own Falcon, Native Insights, Google Analytics, Facebook, and UTM tracking, particularly for gauging attribution.

ROI remains one of the most the-most debated topics but with a few simple steps, you can establish a framework for justifying your social media budget year-on-year. Among the primary steps to focus on when reporting social media ROI include:

  • Using templates
  • Using plain language
  • Checking metrics daily
  • Set a timeframe and stick to it
  • Build your case with third-party insights
  • Propose a low-risk pilot

“Marketing doesn’t have to be expensive. You don’t have to operate in the dark,” Kuckovic offered in a closing remark.

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Documentation, Crisis Management, and Agility: Tips for Building Your Social Safety Net

Today, social media “standards” are far from standard. These guidelines and procedures need to be agile and flexible enough to be revised at a moment’s notice to keep up with the speed in which social media, and therefore consumers, operate.

During their #SMWONE session, Christy Kirby and Jenny Blanco from the customer engagement platform Khoros detailed the people, protocols and processes needed to put in place to create your social safety net, in order to effectively make “empowered decisions at the speed of social,” as Christy noted.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • Shared responsibilities make your social presence safer and better
  • Agility is essential to an effective crisis management plan
  • Don’t discredit the value of frequent documentation

It takes a village

While brands traditionally have people directly serving its social media audience, working on writing, publishing, and engaging with the social community, there are also people and departments needed to review, or flag, certain posts, or potential pieces of content. This helps to “protect your brand,” says Blanco, and ensures that there are other teams in place to get involved at the right time.

“Shared responsibilities make your social presence safer and better,” says Blanco. Creating this internal web helps to protect against certain things like security fraud, which an IT team or security team can assist with. If companies don’t have too many departments or are smaller in scale, team members can wear different hats, so long as all relevant roles are still covered and all boxes are checked. Plus, third party consultants and groups are there – like Crisis PR firms – to assist and be a part of the overall social safety net when needed.

In terms of security, social accounts, as Kirby notes, are the “biggest vulnerabilities companies can take an active role in fixing.” She suggests having a primary and secondary owner of all account creation and passwords, updating passwords monthly in apps like LastPass, and making them complex. It’s also important to involve legal counsel (internal or external) to ensure that necessary regulations and laws are followed.

Documentation is key

Once the key people and safety standards are established, it’s important to form – and document – ongoing processes and workflow. “You essentially need to create SOPs for updating your SOPs,” Blanco notes to ensure that the process runs smoothly for all involved. She recommends auditing your crisis and safety plans on a quarterly or annual basis and having a paper trail. “Your operating procedures will only be as valuable and accurate as your approvers to approve them,” says Blanco.

Don’t be too descriptive

Once the people and roles are outlined, it’s important to create a crisis management plan that is both flexible and agile. “A crisis management plan is never finished,” says Blanco. Aside from the roles and responsibilities once a crisis arises, it’s also important to establish a workflow of what different people need to do if and when a crisis does arrive. “Workflows are the most important part of a crisis plan,” Blanco adds.

But where does a workflow start? Establish the right content and resources available to provide to customers in a crisis, and then training and practicing this plan with teams help to optimize the plan and help others adapt. If something does happen, you might not have the perfect e-mail or response crafted, but you can have a communication channel set up between employees and customers in order for them to know the “single source of truth,” to trust during this time.

With platforms like Khoros, companies can have brand quality control that protects controls access, especially so that all processes are pre-approved and compliant.

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Here’s How to Unlock Authenticity as a Competitive Advantage in 2020

At just 27 years old, Steven Bartlett heads a global team of more than 700 innovators delivering opportunities for today’s brands to be disruptors of the digital age. He built the firm from his bedroom in Manchester at age 22 with the goal of creating a company that changes the world and took it public in 2019 with a market evaluation exceeding $200 million. On the first day of #SMWONE, he shared his entrepreneurial insights to help us distill the state of social media in 2020.

Here are the primary insights and takeaways:

  • The opportunity in distrust is authenticity
  • Influencer marketing is dying
  • The future of social media is private messaging and groups

Navigating fundamental reorientation around truth and trust

Our industry faces a fundamental reorientation around notions of trust and privacy. We’ve experienced scandals like Cambridge Analytica that ushered buzzwords such as privacy and “fake news” into the mainstream and we continue to see the scapegoats and the larger impact on public perception across virtually every industry dating back to late 2016. Pointing to stats shared from Edelman’s annual trust report, Barlett explains that we reached the “crisis point of trust” in early 2017 and have yet to fully recover.

Fast forward to today, less than a quarter of individuals believe what they see on social media, more than half (57%), say the media they use are contaminated with untrustworthy information, and 76 percent claim they worry about false information or fake news being used as a weapon though according to Barlett every threat presents an opportunity however and this opportunity, in a word, is authenticity.

Be a consistent glass box brand

With these threats to transparency, however, Barlett stresses there’s a genuine and powerful marketing opportunity to redefine our engagement with consumers. He boiled this down to a simple transition of becoming glass box companies versus black box brands.

“In a world we don’t believe the person holding the paintbrush..you have let down the rules and let people see inside,” explained Barlett.

He used Everlane as an example of a brand whose attempt at being a glass box brand failed due to inconsistency when they laid off entire customer support staff during the pandemic just days after the staff asked the company to recognize the union. By essentially using a pandemic to union bust, the company’s values and glass box attitude came back to haunt them because they weren’t consistent.

And this applies to personal brands too. Using Elon Musk as an example, Barlett stressed that
people who have the courage to be glass boxes and show the real-life which we can all relate to, those are the ones who are winning. The secret sauce to achieving this goal is bringing culture and emotion together in a unifying, emotion-provoking message.

The fraudulent influencer space

The influencer marketing industry is on track to be worth $15 billion by 2022, but that isn’t to say it hasn’t met its fair share of problems throughout its growth.

Influencer fraud costs brands $1.3 billion annually. And that’s not all, many brands are focused on the wrong metrics. Specifically, many agencies rely on vanity metrics such as likes, comments, and views to mask unproductive business results. Barlett described how the majority of influencer campaigns lack strategic insight or creative direction, they are merely a glorified product placement focused on driving reach. “A majority of posts from influencers are static, emotionless billboards that are fundamentally void of truth.”

He used this argument to make the case for opting to work with micro-influencers instead for three key reasons:

  • They are more honest in their review of your brand
  • They are responsive to their audiences
  • They hold more authority for their truth and emotion by reserving their branded posts to only those companies they authentically support

The post-organic reach era: private messaging, Stories and group culture

Social media is designed to magnify what is already being magnified. Strong emotions will continue to trump mild ones and in the post-organic reach era where reach continues to decline and people are sharing less than before this will only continue to be the case. Mild emotion simply won’t get its fair share of attention in the presence of a strong emotional message.

“It could well be the case that in 10 years we don’t have just five social networks we use every single day, we have 15 centered around our interests.” In support of his projection, Bartlett pointed to a Facebook stat revealing there are more than 600M ppl in groups that they find meaningful as of April 2019 up from 100M in February 2017.

In the same vein of private, trustworthy spaces, Barlett explained that messaging apps have surpassed social networks yet a staggering number of businesses aren’t tapping into the opportunity. In a joint study with Buffer, Social Chain found that a staggering 71 percent of marketers weren’t using messaging. Similarly, Stories are getting disproportionate amounts of attention compared to public news feeds. This is being enforced by new efforts from Instagram to test additional Stories feeds within its platform alluding to a possibly a future of platforms being solely centered on Stories and the newsfeed becoming an accessory to the Story.

“Fail faster, win more. Success is not the outcome, success is the completion of the experiment,” Barlett said to close the session.

There’s still time to register for #SMWONE at smwone.com. Save 20% throughout the rest of the month!

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The post Here’s How to Unlock Authenticity as a Competitive Advantage in 2020 appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/05/heres-how-to-unlock-authenticity-as-a-competitive-advantage-in-2020/

Arianna Huffington Joins the #SMWONE Lineup + New Sessions with Vimeo, HBO, and more!

The world is now a different place due to COVID-19 and it is our job to help our audiences navigate the monumental change we’re experiencing with humanity. #SMWONE will embrace this mission wholeheartedly and as we continue to prepare for week 1 next week, we’re excited to share some exciting updates to our program.

Noteworthy Sessions & Featured Speakers

We’re thrilled to announce that Arianna Huffington, Founder & CEO of Thrive Global, has joined the #SMWONE lineup! During a session hosted by Grey, Arianna will be joined by Discover’s Executive Vice President and CMO, Julie Logan, and Grey’s Worldwide Chief Creative Officer, John Patroulis, to discuss how mindfulness can deliver clarity and productivity in responding to financial obstacles.

Here are several other speakers you won’t want to miss:

Harris Beber, Chief Marketing Officer at Vimeo: In a fireside conversation with Social Media Week’s Toby Daniels, Harris will help us gain a better understanding of how to make video — the most powerful tool we have for staying connected at a time we’re forced to be apart — work for your business.

Steven Barlett, CEO of The Social Chain: Steven Barlett was 22 when he founded The Social Chain Group, a global, social-first marketing agency and production house. Today, he is 27 and The Social Chain is a team of 700+ innovators reaching over 1.8 billion people a month. In a session leveraging his experience and business learning lessons to date, Steven will help us prepare for the future and utilize advances in social media to inform innovative and needle-moving decisions.

Emily Giannusa, Vice President of Digital Marketing at HBO: Connecting authentically with younger demographics including Gen Z is a common challenge in our industry. Alissa Tofias, VP of HBO Media, and Catherine Lee, VP of Program Marketing Design, will join Emily in offering clarity and best practices pointing to ways the network captured Gen Z’s attention around the summer hit Euphoria through proactive social responsibility and mission-driven talent usage.

Orchid Bertelsen, Head of Digital Innovation at Nestlé USA: Any marketer today is redundant tapping into emerging technologies and using influencers for the sake of innovation. Understand the “why” behind using these trends and the importance of not falling victim to chasing the next shiny object with Orchid.

Sabena Gupta, Brand Marketing Lead, Alexa at Amazon: What does purposeful, value-based driven marketing actually mean? Now more than ever, shaping our strategies around this definition is critical and involves establishing a common thread that helps consumers make sense of what you’re trying to communicate, and more importantly, why. Sabena will offer the insights needed to build a successful approach.

Creating Meaningful Connections During #SMWONE

Over the course of our four-week virtual conference series there will be thousands of incredible opportunities to network that will be valuable to your business and career long after the event.

Included in our Community offering:

  • Slack community with different channels for deeper networking and conversation: All participants will be invited to join the official #SMWONE Slack community to network with each other, connect with speakers, get technical support during the conference, and connect about job opportunities.
  • Attendee Directory: Via our platform partner Bizzabo, registered participants are automatically added to the #SMWONE Community Directory. Use the Directory to create a formal profile, Star, and Direct Message other community members, and more.
  • SMW Mobile App: All participants will be able to utilize the app to access the #SMWONE Community Directory and connect with fellow community members, and view sessions, speakers, and sponsors.
  • Live chats, breakouts & hangouts: Share comments, links, reply to one another and ask questions during any session and keep the conversations going within a breakout session or hangout.

Content is the driving force behind conversation and it is during these meaningful conversations that businesses will grow and our industry charts a path where we can imagine the future of marketing. It is our goal to help facilitate this on our platform and wherever our community meets.

Browse the agenda and register for your pass at smwone.com.

The post Arianna Huffington Joins the #SMWONE Lineup + New Sessions with Vimeo, HBO, and more! appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/04/arianna-huffington-joins-the-smwone-lineup-new-sessions-with-vimeo-hbo-and-more/

Arianna Huffington Joins the #SMWONE Lineup + New Sessions with Vimeo, HBO, and more!

The world is now a different place due to COVID-19 and it is our job to help our audiences navigate the monumental change we’re experiencing with humanity. #SMWONE will embrace this mission wholeheartedly and as we continue to prepare for week 1 next week, we’re excited to share some exciting updates to our program.

Noteworthy Sessions & Featured Speakers

We’re thrilled to announce that Arianna Huffington, Founder & CEO of Thrive Global, has joined the #SMWONE lineup! During a session hosted by Grey, Arianna will be joined by Discover’s Executive Vice President and CMO, Julie Logan, and Grey’s Worldwide Chief Creative Officer, John Patroulis, to discuss how mindfulness can deliver clarity and productivity in responding to financial obstacles.

Here are several other speakers you won’t want to miss:

Harris Beber, Chief Marketing Officer at Vimeo: In a fireside conversation with Social Media Week’s Toby Daniels, Harris will help us gain a better understanding of how to make video — the most powerful tool we have for staying connected at a time we’re forced to be apart — work for your business.

Steven Barlett, CEO of The Social Chain: Steven Barlett was 22 when he founded The Social Chain Group, a global, social-first marketing agency and production house. Today, he is 27 and The Social Chain is a team of 700+ innovators reaching over 1.8 billion people a month. In a session leveraging his experience and business learning lessons to date, Steven will help us prepare for the future and utilize advances in social media to inform innovative and needle-moving decisions.

Emily Giannusa, Vice President of Digital Marketing at HBO: Connecting authentically with younger demographics including Gen Z is a common challenge in our industry. Alissa Tofias, VP of HBO Media, and Catherine Lee, VP of Program Marketing Design, will join Emily in offering clarity and best practices pointing to ways the network captured Gen Z’s attention around the summer hit Euphoria through proactive social responsibility and mission-driven talent usage.

Orchid Bertelsen, Head of Digital Innovation at Nestlé USA: Any marketer today is redundant tapping into emerging technologies and using influencers for the sake of innovation. Understand the “why” behind using these trends and the importance of not falling victim to chasing the next shiny object with Orchid.

Sabena Gupta, Brand Marketing Lead, Alexa at Amazon: What does purposeful, value-based driven marketing actually mean? Now more than ever, shaping our strategies around this definition is critical and involves establishing a common thread that helps consumers make sense of what you’re trying to communicate, and more importantly, why. Sabena will offer the insights needed to build a successful approach.

Creating Meaningful Connections During #SMWONE

Over the course of our four-week virtual conference series there will be thousands of incredible opportunities to network that will be valuable to your business and career long after the event.

Included in our Community offering:

  • Slack community with different channels for deeper networking and conversation: All participants will be invited to join the official #SMWONE Slack community to network with each other, connect with speakers, get technical support during the conference, and connect about job opportunities.
  • Attendee Directory: Via our platform partner Bizzabo, registered participants are automatically added to the #SMWONE Community Directory. Use the Directory to create a formal profile, Star, and Direct Message other community members, and more.
  • SMW Mobile App: All participants will be able to utilize the app to access the #SMWONE Community Directory and connect with fellow community members, and view sessions, speakers, and sponsors.
  • Live chats, breakouts & hangouts: Share comments, links, reply to one another and ask questions during any session and keep the conversations going within a breakout session or hangout.

Content is the driving force behind conversation and it is during these meaningful conversations that businesses will grow and our industry charts a path where we can imagine the future of marketing. It is our goal to help facilitate this on our platform and wherever our community meets.

Browse the agenda and register for your pass at smwone.com.

The post Arianna Huffington Joins the #SMWONE Lineup + New Sessions with Vimeo, HBO, and more! appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/04/arianna-huffington-joins-the-smwone-lineup-new-sessions-with-vimeo-hbo-and-more/

Announcing the Department for International Trade as a Partner of #SMWONE

In these extraordinary times, the power of technology to bring us together has never been more vital. Our decision last month to pivot our NYC and LA events to #SMWONE embodies this notion at its core.

About #SMWONE

This year’s event, taking place May 5-28th, would not be possible without our sponsors, including the UK’s Department for International Trade (DIT), who are supporting several mission companies specializing in creative and technology services including Epic, FlashPack, Good-Loop, PingPong Digital, Planable, Sparkol, The Bot Platform, Tommy, and WIREWAX.

In addition to our 300+ mainstage speakers, our sponsors, affiliates, and partners will play a key role as we seek to chart a new course for the future of our industry, by providing critically important insights as to what is happening right now, what our roles need to be, and how we can leverage the tools of social media to support those who have been impacted the most by the current crisis.

About DIT

As a specialized government department, DIT is responsible for:

  • Promoting British trade and investment globally
  • Increasing demand for British products and services
  • Attracting foreign direct investment to the UK economy
  • Bringing together policy, promotion, and financial expertise to break down barriers to trade and investment and help businesses succeed

For more information on how DIT can help you, reach out to Daniel.halpin@mobile.trade.gov.uk. To check out the full list of sponsors and the #SMWONE agenda, visit smwone.com.

The post Announcing the Department for International Trade as a Partner of #SMWONE appeared first on Social Media Week.

http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2020/04/announcing-the-department-for-international-trade-as-a-partner-of-smwone/