Social Media Week London kicked off its 9th annual conference on Wednesday, November 15 and marketers from all of the country converged at the QEII Conference Center in Westminster for a day filled with amazing talks, panel discussions, and demos. Speakers from some of the biggest brands in the world including Facebook, National Geographic, BuzzFeed, BBH, and Poke London took the stage to discuss everything from the future of publishing and brands to AI’s roll in marketing.
Check out all the main stage session recaps below and sign up for SMW Insider to watch future sessions live or on-demand.
Hands up who loves a tutorial?
Be it casseroles or cocktails, gadgets or gore, there’s no denying that visual content is a quick, effective and impactful way to educate and inspire. The UK’s infatuation and demand for video it is reflected in the production growth of it at Hearst UK. Within the past year, a concerted amount of effort has shifted onto video and the company averaged 7 million monthly videos on site. Their team grew and continues to do so.
Betsy Fast graced the stage at Social Media Week London 2018 and mapped out the essential components and considerations for a production pie.
Read the full recap of Hearst’s “A Year’s Worth of Video Evolution” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
For a platform that has gathered 2.6 real people online, what impact is it making, and what responsibilities come with that power?
It all comes down to having an attitude and an ambition that asks how do we maximize the good while minimizing the bad, according to Ian Edwards, Facebook’s Planning Director.
At Social Media Week London 2018, Edwards reflected on the challenges and opportunities technological innovations brings to our industry and discussed Facebook’s and Instagram’s role in enabling communities and driving business growth.
Read the full recap of Facebook’s “Community, Opportunity, and Responsibility” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
What is the value of an impression? It’s a ginormous question and one that differs on a brand by brand basis. Thanks to factors such us GDPR and Cambridge Analytica among others, the landscape on which we measure data that depicts impact. Facebook and Google took up 63.1% of US digital ad revenue in 2017 and there is expected to grow further in the next two years but now, with more data than ever, it is becoming less and less accessible to third parties.
Anthony Macro offered an insight into how to work within a walled garden comfortably. He broke it down to tools and techniques, a mass data epidemic and contemplated change.
Read the full recap of Croud’s “Measuring Paid Social: How to Work Within a Walled Garden” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
No one likes a fake friend, or worse: fake news. In an online world of uncertainty and second-guessing sources, it can be almost too easy to retreat to the warm embrace of your comfort zone. Comfort zones prevent change. Social media amplifies social change, but it isn’t the root cause. There remains a lot of work to be done, but how?
When we’re creating networks that reflect the state of our own lives, how can we branch out to places that are unfamiliar, be more civically engaged, generate solidarity ALL whilst staying true to our own identity and staying safe?
When Bogdana Butnar, Head of Strategy at Poke, Jimmy Tidey and Alex Hogan took the stage at Social Media Week London 2018, they explained how they’d achieve this.
Read the full recap of Poke’s “Real Friends, Useful Bots, and Time Well Spent: Designing Social Media Interactions to Benefit Users” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
Mike Blake-Crawford shared early on in his session “Who Defines Meaningful Engagement?” two requests that he gets often from clients. First, “can you make it go viral?” (No.) But second, and more important to the task at hand: “We want an engagement strategy.” The answer to that, in his mind, should also be no.
“Engagement isn’t a strategy,” Blake-Crawford shared for his crowd of about 400. “It’s a tool to help facilitate real business objectives.” In his opinion, it doesn’t equate success as many assume or hope it does. What’s more, algorithmic feeds on Facebook and other platforms are prioritizing “meaningful engagement”—challenging brands to stand out in a crowded landscape. Blake-Crawford presents the question, then: who decides what meaningful engagement is?
Read the full recap of Social Chain’s “Who Defines Meaningful Engagement” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
You may not realize that popular video channels Tasty and Bring Me! are both under Buzzfeed. Tasty, a food video channel, is now the biggest food network in the world and the #1 content publisher on Facebook; BRING ME!, a travel channel, in just one year, has become the top travel publisher on the internet.
So what’s BuzzFeed’s secret in reaching these numbers? At Social Media Week London 2018, Antonia Bonello, Associate Creative Director at BuzzFeed UK, shared why brands must remain agile and nimble in the ever-changing platform space.
Read the full recap of BuzzFeed’s “Here’s How BuzzFeed Agile In The Ever-Changing Platform Space” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
Facebook is dying.
In fact, it’s already dead for Gen Z. The forward-thinking generation that grew up entirely online has already shut the lid on Likes.
Millennials are becoming less and less relevant when it comes social media and marketing. Brands are looking to target and engage the digitally native under 24-year-olds and are battling for their heads as well as their hearts.
At Social Media Week London 2018, MOFILM went beyond data and curated their own case study that shone a light on Gen Z’s attitude towards all things tech and split their answers up into three sections:
Read the full recap of MOFILM’s “Gen Z: What Do Tomorrow’s Creators Think About the Future of Social Content?” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
Why would a dairy company be interested in insights on veganism?
Linkfluence found themselves pondering that question when called upon by client Danone to examine social data surrounding the plant-based food market.
Managing Director Gareth Owens outlined their process in his session, “How Social Data Helps Brands to Create Business Opportunities.” In it, Owens showed how Linkfluence’s strategy helps to make sense of massive landscapes of social data—our posts, forum engagement, likes, shares, “and even poo emojis you use online.”
Read the full recap of Linkfluence’s “How Social Data Helps Brands to Create Business Opportunities” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
We are all a product of conditioning, and it’s not the standard Tresemme. Society has presents when it comes to social order, standards and outlooks and it’s hard to see past them when we’re saturated with them in the form of archetypes, stereotypes and new stories expressing blatant intolerance.
Everyone has an unconscious bias. For June Sarpong MBE, it was whilst she was filming in Las Vegas that she discovered hers. Having grown up in Walthamstow where diversity was second nature, she found herself nerved on set in an unfamiliar country by an unfamiliar man with tattoos. This prompted her to wonder: “how much are we losing as a society to the way that we’ve all been conditioned?”
At Social Media Week London 2018, June sat down with Founder and Executive Director of SMW, Toby Daniels for a conversation about navigating social media without prejudice.
Read the full recap of SMW’s “Social Media Without Prejudice” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
It is in every brand’s dream that they can create something viral on the internet. But instead of creating something that people actually care about, many ended up creating content that their followers are forced to watch.
Why so? Because they don’t know enough about what drives content to go viral, said Saskia Jones, Data Strategy Director of Bartle Bogle Hegarty.
During her session at Social Media Week London 2018, Jones provided advice on how to start behaving like creators rather than “laggards,” and dissected how local culture becomes a global phenomenon.
Read the full recap of BBH’s “Brands Not Hot” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
Everyone knows Mr. Bean. Ever since it was first broadcasted in 1990, this British sitcom has been a global sensation, winning over the hearts of audiences in 195 territories with nearly 30 years in continual distribution.
But more importantly, this TV legend continues to live on today. You might be surprised but Mr. Bean is the biggest TV brand on Facebook globally with more than 80 million fans. In fact, he has a bigger following than Justin Bieber, Taylor Swift, Harry Potter, Manchester United, Katy Perry… you name it. In 2017, Mr. Bean amassed more than 4.5 billion video views on YouTube, which adds up to a total watch time of 38 thousand years.
The masterminds behind these flying colors are Endemol Shine Group and Tiger Aspect Productions. As the world’s largest independent production company in the world, Endemol Shine Group has been in charge of the distribution of the Mr. Bean series since 2009. It has operations in 23 different countries and has produced 800 different shows around the world. Its partner, Tiger Aspect Productions, is the producer of the TV series, which also created Mr. Bean’s animated series in 2002.
Now, what’s the key to keeping a heritage brand like Mr. Bean social? Andrew Crofoot, Head of Digital Distribution & Partnerships at Endemol Shine Group, along with Tom Beattie, Head of Animation and Childrens at Tiger Aspect Productions, gave the audience their answers at Social Media Week London 2018.
Read the full recap of Endemol Shine Group’s “Making Mr. Bean Social” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
In the opening sizzle reel for National Geographic Partners, director Ron Howard says, “Television has become very ambitious, and National Geographic as a network is embracing that.” The same can clearly be said across the company’s properties, based on Vice President of Global Strategy Nadine Heggie’s opening assertion: “I can honestly say that the past 18 months at National Geographic has been the most exhilarating and exciting of my career.”
In an expectedly visually stunning presentation, Heggie detailed the brand’s ambitious strategy for engaging with its sizeable audience on social media. And indeed, its reputation for “world-class visuals” that “solicit wow and wonder,” has led it to an enviable ranking: the #1 non-celebrity brand on social media, for the fourth year in a row. With a laser-sharp focus, aided by a community of talented creators, the brand continues to grow and dazzle in the online space.
Read the full recap of NatGeo’s “Thumb-Stopping Social Storytelling” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
“Can social media really offer an opportunity for brands to get closer to their consumers?”
This is the governing question that Amelia Brophy, Head of Data Products at YouGov, aimed to address in her session “Social Media: Bringing People Together?”
Delving into the considerable insights from their recently released whitepaper of the same name on consumer habits, the answer seems to be “yes.” But in order to create that closeness, social media marketers will need to bridge a few gaps.
Read the full recap of YouGov’s “Social Media: Bringing People Together?” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
“Live neuroscience testing on stage. What could possibly go wrong?”
Neil Davidson apprehensively started HeyHuman’s session with this question, as he and Aoife McGuinness aimed to show the audience how their behavioral communication agency’s apparatus informed their research. This research aims to examine what happens to our brains over time when we connect with social media. And they shared their insights in “Why You Need to Rewire Your Social Strategy: 6 New Learnings from Neuroscience.”
In the live demonstration (which went off without a hitch!), attendees got to watch as they measured in real time the brain’s motivation, high engagement, and cognitive load through cortical engagement. After viewing a pair of Instagram Story ads, we were able to see how the brain reacts differently to different types of content- namely, between emotional and high-energy content. Davidson and McGuinness believe there are lessons to be learned for brands who want to succeed in this highly competitive landscape, and these lessons are scientifically backed.
Read the full recap of HeyHuman’s “Why You Need to Rewire Your Social Strategy: 6 New Learnings from Neuroscience” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
We all want to be in the know. It’s human nature – through fear of missing out and the desire to have and to be the next best thing, we gave birth to the business-boosting and abolishing baby called trend.
At Social Media Week London 2018, Kieley Taylor stepped forward with a bold statement. “Today’s consumers are on demanding,” she quipped, “I am on demanding.”
Today’s tech and social media tools make demands easier and more accessible and reduce the “small talk” and transactions. Taylor wanted the likes of clerks when flying, for example, to know everything about her so she was not compelled to partake in providing a back catalog of information prior to her flight.
She took her fundamental desire and constructed universal demands in order to decipher key components and trends for brands to take into account.
Read the full recap of GroupM’s “What Digital Trends are Right for Your Brand?” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
At Social Media Week London 2018, Founder and Managing Director of Digital Voices, Jennifer Quigley-Jones, hosted a panel that featured Creator Brian McManus, RAF 100 Senior Campaign Manager Emma Mouchet, Head of Communications at the Red Arrows Andrew Morton and Flight Lieutenant and Engineer Officer at the RAF Marcus Ramden and picked their brains in order to understand what has made RAF 100’s YouTube channel so successful.
Building a YouTube community is not too dissimilar to entering a relationship, except with hundreds of people and the watching warranted.
The Influencer marketing agency, Digital Voices, did just this with the RAF. As a result, the RAF 100 YouTube channel was born where exciting, diverse and engaging content was created and influencers were partnered in order to capture and curate refreshing content that showcased the energy and ethos behind the RAF.
As a brand, it’s difficult to ‘do’ YouTube. Your content has to give audiences something they can take away. The format is different, too.
Together, with help from Quigley-Jones, the panel agreed on the main themes they thought helped them achieve a vibrant and wealthy community.
Read the full recap of Digital Voices’s “Building a Community on YouTube: RAF Case Study” session and watch the full session playback on SMW Insider.
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