Listen up agency friends!
I know there are some of you that find the ongoing creation of social media content to be a bit of a drag.
It takes a huge amount of time.
It is a constant and ongoing requirement.
It can seem fleeting and trivial.
It often doesn’t allow for the same level of crafting as other communication platforms.
But, there is huge creative opportunity here that you really should be excited for.
Conceptualizing and creating killer social media content couldn’t be more on-trend and be capturing more attention than it is right now. Businesses are buying into the power of social media marketing, and big name marketers and advertisers are receiving accolades and awards for the amazing quality of their content.
Creative convergence means everything is content
Creative that used to be well defined by its respective (media) channel is no longer so clearly delineated. Let’s face it, with the proliferation of digital, mobile, online, social media, and countless other technologies, there has been a massive creative convergence happening for some time. All advertising, marketing and communication is increasingly becoming content of one variety or another – text, audio, video, and visual – and being on the cutting edge of acknowledging this will lead to better, more focused creative work.
It can be easier to sell a crazy idea
Let’s face it, not many of us are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars producing a single piece of social media content. In fact, most of us are spending next to nothing (nothing being a relative term), save for our time. Because of this, our Clients are much more likely go along for a ride and test an exciting, maybe even crazy, new creative idea on social media (of course it needs to make strategic sense). And why wouldn’t they? If it works, everyone looks like a rock star. If it doesn’t, it can easily be viewed as a test or learning opportunity. No big deal.
You get to do more work
I know this may seem counter intuitive, but doing more work should be a good thing. Versus traditional media, you typically get more opportunities to think about interesting ways to engage a brand’s targeted consumers, and more opportunity to execute your concepts on social media. Thinking of amazingly smart, creative ideas and seeing them in market is a big reason why many of us got into this business, right?
Social media begs for innovation
By it’s nature, social media is a dynamic, ever-changing landscape. Platforms are being updated, new networks are being developed, usage behaviour shifts, technology enables new features, and on and on. This dynamism carries over to the content we can create for each respective platform. The prospect of using tools in new and interesting ways should be exhilarating, and there are countless ways to engage, interact with, and provide value to your targeted audience. What all of this means is that there has never been a better time to produce work that is truly innovative. Exciting stuff!
The creative opportunity that social media content provides is near limitless, and is hugely exciting.
For those who have come up through advertising, marketing and communications working primarily on more traditional channels, the conceptualization and creation of content for social media can be a shock. It’s a never-ending creative assignment. But it’s also one of the most opportunity rich assignments one can have, and those who are truly innovative on these platforms are getting recognized as being leaders in creativity.
Where do you see the biggest opportunities for creativity on social media?
What work have you done, or see, that is absolutely killer?
It would be awesome to chat with you about this more in the comments, or on Twitter @RGBSocial
I love testing on social media, particularly when running ads.
When running Facebook ad buys, I will create a huge number of ads, allocate a certain percentage of the overall spend to testing, review analytics, optimize, and repeat.
Testing is the best way to maximize the efficiency of your spend, achieve the best possible results, and learn what copy and visuals users find to be most motivating.
Recently, when setting up a relatively small Facebook ad buy for one of my Clients, I was pleasantly surprised by a new feature that allows you to test up to 6 visuals for each ad that you set up.
Historically, while you’ve been able to do something like this, you’ve had to go through the setup process as many times as visuals you’ve wanted to test. Now you can simply upload up to 6 visuals, and presto, Facebook will run a mix of all 6 ads that you can easily monitor and track effectiveness.
The next time you’re running a Facebook ad buy, be sure to try out this new feature. I’m sure you’ll appreciate the ability to more easily test visuals to get the best possible ROI from your advertising budget.
How do you test and optimize your Facebook ad buys?
Let me know what you think of this new feature in the comments, or on Twitter @RGBSocial
During conversations I have with small business owners about social media marketing, I’m frequently asked about how they can acquire more Facebook fans.
As a matter of fact, I continue to find that Facebook fan acquisition is a huge focus of not only small business owners, but also brand managers, marketers and advertisers as well.
For some, it’s as though fan acquisition is the sole measure by which they measure success.
Lots of Facebook fans… success.
Not so many Facebook fans… failure.
I’m not going to spend time in this post to discuss all of the measures by which success on social media can be measured; instead I’ll cut to the chase.
The real reason you’re probably reading this article is because of what’s promised in the title, so here we go.
The silver bullet for acquiring Facebook fans is… pay for Facebook’s ‘like’ ad products.
Well, is it really any surprise? Facebook is a publicly traded company, and as such, their number one priority is to their shareholders.
How do they reward their shareholders? Make money.
How do they make money? Sell advertising space.
In Q1 2013, Facebook’s revenue was $1.46 billion, 85 percent of which was accounted for from advertising sales.
Facebook wants – check that – needs you to pay for their advertising products.
What about creating killer content, organic impressions, virality, and fairy dust?
Okay, I might have got a bit silly with the fairy dust, but no matter how amazing your content is, I’m telling you that the fastest way to acquire new Facebook fans is to cough up some of your marketing budget and put it toward a well-run Facebook ad buy.
This isn’t to undermine the value of amazing content – if you have ever read another article on this blog you’ll know that I can’t shut up about killer content – but as a fan acquisition tool on Facebook, it’s really not the most efficient method.
A peek behind the curtain of big brands
Through my career, I’ve worked on some big brands with healthy marketing and advertising budgets. These brands have also had very healthy followings on social media.
Their secret? You guessed it, big money into Facebook ads.
Absolutely they create great content, but they’re also spending healthily to drive traffic to their Pages to get eyeballs on that content. If you get enough eyeballs on your Page, some of them will convert to ‘likes’, though having great content certainly helps this conversion rate.
For a bit of context as to what some brands spend on Facebook ads, you may remember from about a year ago (not one of my clients), that GM pulled $10 million from their Facebook ad budget… $10 million!
All of this isn’t meant to be discouraging. In fact, it should be the opposite.
It can be very difficult to acquire Facebook fans, particularly for small businesses. Once you’ve asked all of your personal friends to ‘like’ your Page, encouraged them to get their friends to ‘like’ your Page, asked your regular customers to ‘like’ your Page, and tried running a Facebook promotion that is against their guidelines in hopes of stirring up some ‘likes’, your fan acquisition can plateau quickly.
Don’t immediately think that your content isn’t great, or that your social media presence is all for not, just remember that it is in Facebook’s best interest to get you to spend a few bucks on ads.
So, if a strong Facebook presence is important to your business, and more importantly to your current and prospective customers, why not try spending a few dollars?
It doesn’t need to be $10 million, but experiment with small increments, whatever you feel comfortable with. Keep a close eye on the ads you’re running, learn and optimize as you go. Finally, when you get a sense for what your cost per fan acquisition is, consider setting up longer-term buys so that you can see a steady stream of new fans joining your community.
What methods do you find most effective for acquiring fans on Facebook?
Have you had success running Facebook ads?
How do you convert a click on a Facebook ad to a ‘like’?
It would be awesome for you to share your tips in the comments, or on Twitter @RGBSocial
For some time, the inclusion of the word ‘media’ in ‘social media’ has sort of rubbed me the wrong way.
It’s that word ‘media’ that I find causes some people to lose sight of how social media can most effectively be used and how it should be measured, and instead they start trying to compare ‘media’ and ‘social media’ on common ground.
They try to calculate the ROI of their business’ social media efforts based on the number of impressions they can achieve with their brand’s content, which is a very ‘media’ way of measuring success.
When they go on to correlate social media impressions to what can be accomplished with paid media they quickly come to realize that comparatively, they’re not getting many impressions via social media, and those that they do get are extremely inefficient. Surprise, surprise!
But, for some reason, they’re compelled to continue pursuing the attainment of more impressions via Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, or whatever other social media platforms their brand is active on.
The fastest, easiest, most obvious way to do this is to acquire more fans, followers or subscribers. The more people you have following your brand on social media, the more impressions you’ll theoretically achieve, right?
These organizations end up placing huge emphasis on acquiring as many social media followers as possible, with little to no regard for the quality of these individuals and any of the benefits that can be experienced through nurturing and fostering quality engagements between their business and social media audience, and their audience members amongst themselves.
But what if you can actually achieve more impressions with fewer, highly engaged followers, than you can achieve with a huge number of low quality fans or followers?
Would this be a convincing way to demonstrate the true value of highly engaged community members?
It’s not as crazy as it seems.
Let’s compare two theoretical social media communities: the first is comprised of 50,000 low quality fans or followers, and the second is comprised of 1,000 super fans that are highly engaged with the brand in question.
50,000 low quality fans or followers
The numbers here are fairly straightforward to calculate.
We know that on average, only 16% of Facebook Page fans will see a brand’s content. For any single update, that would mean roughly 8,000 people would see it.
Assuming a business posts 30 times in a month, this works out to 240,000 impressions.
Now, let’s examine what can be accomplished with 1,000 highly engaged followers
Again, assuming only 16% of Facebook Page fans will see a brand’s content, that would mean that only 160 people would see any given update.
Because they’re highly engaged, let’s assume that they create a story out of the business’ update that then appears in their friend’s news feeds.
We know that the average Facebook user manages to reach roughly 35% of their friends with any given update. We also know the average Facebook user has 142 friends, so this means that every story created by a highly engaged fan would reach just shy of another 50 people. This means any single update and related stories would achieve roughly 7,952 impressions.
Assuming a business posts 30 times in a month, this would equate to roughly 238,560 impressions.
This means you would need roughly 50 times the number low quality Facebook followers to achieve a similar number of impressions that you can accomplish with a highly engaged community.
I know, I know… these numbers are flawed like crazy and there are a whole host of variables that aren’t taken into account. But, you’ve got to admit that the numbers here are interesting to look at regardless.
I believe the reality is that most marketers haven’t been implementing social media and content marketing into their marketing mixes long enough to truly understand how their business’ social media activity factors in to their MMAs, and therefore, don’t fully understand how to calculate the true ROI of social media for their business.
Until marketers determine how to confidently measure the true value of their social media marketing efforts, what value engaged social media audience members offer their business, and what conversions are realistic to attribute to social media activity, it’s understandable that they’re looking for relatable ways to measure the ROI of social media, and thus, are comparing it to traditional media.
This said, these direct comparisons completely ignore the ‘social’ part of social media, which completely misses the point and probably results in a gross undervaluation of the impact that effective social media marketing can have.
How do you measure the value of your business’ social media marketing efforts?
How do you factor social media marketing into your business’ MMAs?
It would be amazing to chat about this more in the comments, or on Twitter @RGBSocial
There are amazing businesses and brands producing absolutely killer content every day. This post will highlight the awesome video, ‘Ship My Pants’, created by Kmart to raise awareness of their free online shipping, what makes it so amazing, and present a few strategies and tactics that can be applied to your business.
What they did
Kmart found an entertaining way to introduce a relatively dry offering – free online shipping – with video content that will play well on traditional media and online.
Why it’s killer
Whether you find this video humourous, crass, smart, or just downright stupid, you can’t deny that it has injected Kmart into the consciousness of consumers who probably didn’t even realize they were still in existence.
With the onslaught of noise that advertisers and marketers spew out each and every day, Kmart found a way to get noticed and generate conversations on social media in the meantime. As of now, the official ‘Ship my pants’ video has reached over 6.7 million views in just five days on YouTube, which is pretty killer.
What can be applied to your business?
Try something new
Opportunities in social media and content marketing are abundant, but if you’re not ever willing to try something new, you’ll never know how just how effective your efforts could be. A beautiful thing about social media and content marketing is that even if you try something new and it flops, you can cut it, learn from it, and move on. This is the worst-case scenario. Best-case scenario is that you try something new and your audience loves you for it. So, why not try something new?
Behave like an underdog
A funny thing happens to many businesses when they’re leaders in their category. They get complacent. They stop pushing themselves. They stop reinventing themselves. They leave themselves open to the competition changing the game on them. You should do everything possible to push your business to behave like an underdog, even if you’re on top. If you can gain a leadership position within your category but you keep pushing yourself to be better, your competition will always be playing catch-up.
Don’t let greatness be a one-off
It’s easy to get high on success, even if it just strikes once. When you’ve done something amazing, it’s important to enjoy your success, but you can’t stop pushing. You need to figure out how to continue adding value to your consumers, or the effects of your success will quickly subside, and you’ll be right back where you started.
Create multi-channel content
Maximize your investment in both time and resources when creating content, and consider all of the channels on which that content can add value to your audience. If you’re creating video content, consider how it will work for your YouTube, Facebook, digital advertising, and mass media advertising audiences. With a bit of forethought you can more efficiently produce your content, feed your content pipeline, and fill your paid media.
What do you think of Kmart’s ‘Ship your pants’ video content?
Have you seen any killer content recently that you’d like to share?
It would be great to chat with you about this more in the comments, or on Twitter @RGBSocial