Effective Social Media Tactics Part Four: Offseason Game Changers

AA-140609_Blog_V4

We have put together a four part series focusing on how to drive digital engagement for onsite events.

You’ve presented the facts to your client and bosses, and shown that you can handle onsite events. What’s next? It’s time to start building a larger presence for next year’s event.

The time in between events can be used to not only promote the event, but also build a bigger fan base and gain influence within the event’s community. One great way to do this is to promote the event throughout all social media channels. This will help you gain followers and drive home the brand’s key messaging. This doesn’t mean to plainly tell followers when the next event is, but give followers a reason to read what you post. It could be as simple as keeping followers up-to-date on the latest news related to the industry, or posting facts about the event.

Another great way to keep the event top-of-mind during the time in between events is to host the occasional tweet chat or even a webinar. Tweet chats are a great way to interact with the event’s followers. Tweet chats also help you promote your event or brand hashtag and also gain awareness and followers. Use tweet chats to show followers that you follow what is happening in the industry even though the event is months out. If something big happens in the industry, chat about it.

The goal during the time in between events is to keep the event relevant and gain more influence within the industry and followers. This way, when it rolls around to event time, you can guarantee a larger turn out and maybe even attract new sponsors as well.

We hope this series has given you the tools necessary to be an onsite all-star. And if you need anything, we are just a phone call away.

Want tips on how to pull off a successful tweet chat? Download the White Paper here.

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Effective Social Media Tactics Part Three: Post Event to Do’s

AA-140609_Blog_V3

We have put together a four part series focusing on how to drive digital engagement for onsite events.

After the event is over, the real work starts. From putting together reports to thanking everyone who attended, preparation for the next event starts with how you ended this one.

Provide a good summary of the event
One way to make sure attendees get the most out of the event is to put together a post-event summary that highlights the key points that were brought up by speakers and workshops at the event happened. This can be distributed through social media and more traditional routes.

Prepare a report on social media interactions
This report should highlight how many people interacted with the event on social media leading up to, during and after the event. Include the impressions earned, new Twitter and Facebook followers and engagement. These numbers can give insight as to how social media worked for your event. They also provide you with concrete numbers to show how well you performed. Also, you could make a page dedicated to showing off which key influencers had the most mentions, tweets and other vital statistics.

Thank attendees and influencers
This goes without saying, but thanking attendees and key influencers can help make sure you get some repeat customers and also keep a good pool of people coming to your event. Key influencers can turn into speakers at future conferences and events.

Build from mistakes
It is always great to have an event that went off without a hitch, but if something did go wrong or maybe the caterer was late for a lunch, use it as a learning experience. Onsite events can be hard to get perfect every time, but when they are, they are truly a great experience.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Effective Social Media Tactics Part Two: Onsite Social Media

Onsite Social Marketing

We have put together a four part series focusing on how to drive digital engagement for onsite events.

So you’ve done all the preparation and are finally ready for the event to take place. What’s next? Well, being onsite is a big responsibility and your goal is to make it a memorable experience for not only the people there, but also the people on social media. Your presence on social media can help make the event a success. Here’s how you can do it.

Create a memorable experience for attendees
It doesn’t matter if your event is a week long or one-day, creating a great attendee experience is very important. From the event layout to securing industry-leading speakers to providing quality food, all of those things can help an attendee remember the event and walk away feeling like they didn’t waste their time.

Position the event as a leader
Positioning your event as a best in business event is something you can accomplish through tactful social media posts and use of promoted posts. It is important to get industry leaders and known people onboard the event. If you can get people in the industry to retweet and share your posts, then it shows that your event is something to attend.

Engage with attendees onsite using social media
Whether you use Facebook polls or tweet chats, getting attendees talking about the event on social media can help with exposure.  Providing details of what is going on and who is speaking next, or what time the social is happening can give people who didn’t come a virtual experience. By providing people who couldn’t make it with an idea of what is going on, hopefully they will attend next time.

Build loyalty
If you put on an event that allows people to have a good time while also learning from industry leaders, then you can bet that many attendees will not only return the following year, but also tell their friends in the industry to not miss out on the event.  A successful event can also do wonders to increase followers and fans, this helps you secure an even larger market share and improves your reach throughout the year.

Download a case study
See how we engaged with attendees onsite during the smart grid industry’s leading event DistribuTECH. By employing the techniques we’ve covered and even a few more techniques, we help make DistribuTECH a yearly success. Download the case study here.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

 


Effective Social Media Tactics Part One: Event Preparation.

Event Preparation for Social Media

We have put together a four part series focusing on how to drive digital engagement for onsite events. 

There is a lot of planning and background work that goes on during the months, weeks and days leading up to an event. Here are some of the techniques and best practices we have developed over the years to make onsite events successful.

Establish a unique hashtag for the event
A unique hashtag can be useful in many ways. Unique hashtags are useful as they allow you to easily monitor mentions of the event on social media and also track the reach and how many impressions were made on people during the event.

Identifying and interacting with key influencers
One of the first things to do when starting to plan for an event is to get to know key influencers related to the event or industry. This gives you additional information when writing and developing content for the event. Also, by searching out key influencers you will be able to familiarize yourself with the industry, gain first-hand knowledge and add valuable assets by gaining their support.

Generate buzz for the hashtag and event
Once you have established what the hashtag for the event is going to be and sought out key influencers, the next step is promoting that hashtag in social media posts before the event. This gives the hashtag exposure and at the same time provides you with more engagement during the event. Promoted Posts and Tweets could be utilized here to make sure you reach your target audience.

Boost registration and social media growth
Great event preparation combined with social media know-how can boost event registration and result in more followers and likes. A pre-event contest or promotion conducted on various social media channels can help the event gain more exposure and lead to greater likelihood of people within the industry attending the event.

Download a case study
Our case study on DistribuTECH’s “Be a WinAIR” contest has valuable insight on how a well prepared pre-event contest can boost registration and gain exposure to help make your event go off without a hitch. Download the case study here.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Only Mad Men Like Advertising; Customers Want Content

4934882110_87025eb586_oMarketers who are driving growth and building stronger brand connections with their audiences are doing so by providing value outside of a purchasing need. 

 

As we’ve discussed in our last few blog posts on content marketing, consumers have crept into the driver’s seat and have virtually shut off the world of traditional marketing as we know it. It doesn’t matter whether you sell to businesses or consumers—a buyer is a consumer and vice versa; their behavior is what they’ve acquired in their retail experiences.

A consumer’s brand experience begins online.

Marketing’s dependence on mass promotional campaigns with goals of reach and frequency are being replaced by messaging, information, tools and interactions that target, position and differentiate you from your competitors. This shift in thinking is much different than the promotional marketing efforts you’ve traditionally launched to publicize your product or service or your brand as a whole.

If you remember, we defined content marketing in a recent post, Content Marketing Is Just Old-School MarComm, as:

the marketing and business process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience—with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”

Selling needs to be kept under the radar. What you’re trying to do is build your case and establish trust with prospective buyers. Make it easy for your buyers to buy from you. Make them want to buy from you. People buy from people they know, like and trust. So get to know your customers. Be likable. And by all means, be trustworthy.

Content marketing helps you get found by the people who matter to your business.

Think about the different types of content that contribute to your buyer’s journey. How can you capture attention and inspire them?

Here’s a simple example of the difference between “promotional marketing” and “content marketing.” Let’s use healthcare marketing, which is one of the industries struggling with the move from promotional marketing to content marketing.

Which of the below scenarios is an example of content marketing?

  • Running an ad touting your joint replacement surgery center
  • Creating a video that provides tips on how to treat knee pain after jogging

The print ad is promotional marketing because it will appeal to very few people who need a specific procedure—joint replacement surgery—at the time they see your ad. The content marketing example is the knee pain video because it will connect with a far broader audience who suffer from knee pain.

Understand that content marketing as a philosophy alone will not ensure success. If you take the idea of creating a video on knee pain and run a search for “knee pain video,” it will more than likely result in over a million hits. In order to show up through all of the clutter, you have to create a relevant, compelling program that differentiates you.

How do you begin? By asking the same questions a marketer would normally ask:

  • What are our goals?
  • How do we measure success?
  • Who is our primary audience?
  • What are our differentiators?

Once you determine the answers, you will want to think in terms of providing relevant messaging and content to an audience that may not have an immediate need to buy today. Focus on driving actions unrelated to making a purchase, like signing up for a seminar, requesting information, downloading a case study or white paper, or participating in a webinar. In other words, you are striving for engagement.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

 

PHOTO CREDIT: Paul Townsend via flickr

Smart Moves for Getting Started with Content Marketing

Image

Smart marketers understand that today’s consumers have virtually shut off the traditional world of marketing and choose messaging that makes them stop, think and behave differently.

 

It’s no wonder then, that content marketing are now a cornerstone of inbound marketing efforts in business and consumer marketing. So what do you need to get started? This is the first question of many that marketers ask themselves.

For starters, a carefully planned strategy and well-coordinated implementation is required to be successful. In the content marketing efforts we manage for clients and ourselves, we’ve discovered six components that are imperative in getting started on the right foot, regardless of the business you are in.

  • Establish target market. Who will you talk to? Everyone? Think again. That net is much too wide. Is your target a specific age group? Parents? Medium-sized businesses in a specific revenue bracket? This is one of the initial steps to take before one piece of content is created. Establish who your target audience is for your content marketing plan and base it on age, location, income and other demographic information.
  • Create reader profiles (or personas). This technique is fairly simple. Start by identifying the attributes needed for someone to be your customer. The goal is to describe who you will attempt to write for or who might already be reading your content. Going through this exercise will help to personalize your writing, identify ways to connect with your target audience and create more practical content with their needs in mind.
  • Determine digital distribution. How are you distributing your content? Before you create it, decide where you will host, publish and post it. A website or microsite is one of the more common platforms because you can disseminate content through a blog, photo gallery or downloads such as ebooks, videos, podcasts, etc. From it, social media should play a major role as distributor, as we advise in Content Marketing Is Not Social Media Marketing, as it can extend the reach of your content and foster authentic conversations with your customers and prospects.
  • Research keywords. What words do users type when they are searching for your products or services? It’s of the utmost importance to do the research and choose words with the highest number of monthly searches and the lowest competition.

For example, “urgent care” is a phrase with lots of competition, but in spite of the amount of monthly search volume, it isn’t practical to incorporate into a keyword strategy. A good tool to use is Google’s Keyword Planner; it will help you find “long-tail” keywords and phrases such as “urgent care for children in Tulsa, OK” that will garner better traffic results for your site.

  • Think like a publisher. Publishers use editorial calendars to monitor dates and buying cycles, track specifics of content ideas and keep content consistent and relevant. It also allows you to see connections within your content, get ideas on how you can repurpose it and ensures you have key information for SEO.
  • Report, analyze and adjust. One of inbound marketing’s biggest benefits is the ability to track and measure your progress to see what’s working. Then you can adapt to optimize results.

These are the critical components to put in place that will ensure you are on the right path for success.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Content Marketing Is Not Social Media Marketing

multiple-tweets-plain

Marketers have always needed to find ways of conveying important information in useful and entertaining ways and social media is the communication workhorse that can effectively and efficiently do it.

Social media didn’t create content marketing.
Content marketing has been around as long as people have been selling services. What started as published content on the Web, progressed from text to rich content like videos, infographics, e-books, etc. Now that there is more content out there than anyone can reasonably find and consume, we’re applying personalization technology to filter the barrage of information coming at us from all angles into meaningful, relevant, digestible chunks.

Different animals.
There is plenty of overlap between content marketing and social media marketing, but don’t forget they are two different animals with different focuses and objectives. In social media, the hub of marketing activity lies within the networks themselves, with content being placed inside the networks. In contrast, content marketing’s focal point is your brand’s own content hub, like your website or a product-specific microsite.

 The goals of content marketing are consumption, then behavior. The goals of social media are participation, then behavior. – Jay Baer

 Social media is used by customers and prospects to communicate among themselves and sometimes with companies. Communication in social media is much less structured; it’s conversational and can be reactive. Therefore, its strength lies in brand awareness and customer satisfaction and retention.

 Social media is the new telephone. Content marketing is the new brochure. – Jay Baer

Content marketing is a tool companies use to educate, inform and entertain customers and prospects by creating attention or causing action that moves them down the buying funnel, resulting in leads, sales and advocacy.

A powerful match.
Think of social media channels as the tentacles that can extend the reach of your content and foster authentic conversations with your customers and prospects. Despite the differences between the two, there is a vital interdependence that can make or break a digital marketing strategy. We’ve always needed to find ways of conveying important information in useful and entertaining ways, we’re just using technology as the vehicle to do it.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Photo credit: Thanks to mkhmarketing via flickr for the wonderful graphic available under the creative commons license.

Content Marketing Is Just Old-School MarComm

Image

Content has always been an important part of many marketing plans, but somewhere along the line, something changed old-school marketing into the data-driven digital beast we are all clamoring to master.

That thing is called the internet, and it has transformed marketing communications into a completely new animal.

Your customers don’t care about you, your products, your services…they care about themselves, their wants and their needs. Today’s content marketing is about creating interesting information your customers are passionate about so they actually pay attention to you.

If you prefer a more formal definition, let’s use Content Marketing Institute’s version that defines it as the marketing and business process for creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience–with the objective of driving profitable customer action.

60 percent of business decision makers say that company content helps them make better product decisions.(Source: Roper Public Affairs)

Content drives the Internet. As marketers, we know that consumers are looking for information that helps them solve their problem. In that respect, content marketing isn’t new.

80 percent of business decision makers prefer to get company information in a series of articles versus an advertisement. (Source: Roper Public Affairs)

Whatever the label, the goal has always been the same: to share useful information that helps customers solve their business problems in the hope they do something, like return to your site, subscribe to your newsletter or download your latest white paper.

70 percent of business decision makers say content marketing makes them feel closer to the sponsoring company. (Source: Roper Public Affairs)

Offer useful, informative, practical content. Create content that makes your readers’ lives easier. Share content that makes them laugh and entertains them. Show them you understand what’s keeping them awake at night and offer solutions. This is the path to building brand recognition, trust, authority, credibility, loyalty and authenticity.

Good content marketing should:

  • Be relevant to your reader
  • Close the gap (inform)
  • Be non-promotional/non-selling
  • Be relevant to your company
  • Provide proof

Organizations that are having the most success use an approach to content marketing that involves a high ratio of valuable content with no sales messaging, mixed with intermittent promotional messages. The types of content keep growing, but here is a brief list:

  • Articles
  • Blog posts
  • E-books
  • Case Studies
  • Demos
  • Events
  • Free trials
  • Information guides
  • Manuals
  • Online tutorials, courses
  • Podcasts
  • Presentations
  • Reference guides
  • Surveys
  • Videos
  • Webinars/Webcasts
  • White papers
  • Widgets

Getting started with content marketing can be as simple as implementing one type of content at a time, such as a blog. Then you can begin to layer new content types into the rest of your marketing plan.

 

AcrobatAnt Marketing & Advertising
AcrobatAnt.com
1336 East 15th Street Tulsa, OK 74120
918-938-7912

Photo credit: Catherine Snodgrass via flickr

The Ants are hiring a social media digital producer

The social media space is ever evolving and we need someone that can keep up with all of it. Do you feel lost without your phone always at your fingertips? Are you dreaming in #hashtags? Are you questioning how other companies have handled their last social media crisis and wishing you could offer up your point of view? If you answered yes to these questions, you might just be the perfect addition to our happy Ant farm. The nuts and bolts to this job are below. Please submit your cover letter and resume to info@acrobatant.com. We are excited to hear from you!

Social Media Digital Producer

THE SOCIAL MEDIA DIGITAL PRODUCER is the agency’s primary advisor on all social media channels, including social networks, content sharing sites, blogs, micro-blogs and wikis. This person must demonstrate extensive social media experience.  The social media digital producer actively participates in a wide variety of social media activities such as blogging, community development and management, social bookmarking, commenting, etc., and is well-connected with the broader social media world.  The social media digital producer must be able to think strategically, but be willing and able to roll up his/her sleeves to help implement social media programs for agency clients.

The social media digital producer must be a storyteller, a tribe-builder, someone who knows how to connect with people in a real and genuine way and help them to be part of something big… and who also can change hats to be the agency’s social media data, numbers and analytics expert.

This person recommends social media channels appropriate for client marketing, and guides clients in adopting social media strategies.  The social media digital producer coaches clients, and agency staff, in how to participate in the social media conversation to help grow customer-brand relationships.

The social media digital producer advises on and monitors the agency’s social media initiatives and participation, and works to grow agency staff participation in and understanding of social media as an agency self-promotion and engagement tool.

The social media digital producer should have experience, or be willing to acquire such experience, in as many of the following areas as possible: social media tools and techniques; traditional, new media, guerilla and “word of mouth” marketing; strategic planning; product marketing; press and analyst relations; business development; technology; operations; sales; financial and quantitative analysis, and project management.

Reports to the Account Director, Manager IPM Team.

Responsibilities:
•    Creates comprehensive social media strategies, defining programs that use social media marketing techniques to increase visibility, membership and traffic across all client brands.

•    Implements and manages social media programs.

•    Experiments with new and alternative ways to leverage social media activities (“marketing R&D”).

•    Monitors social media trends, tools and applications, and appropriately applies knowledge to increasing client use of social media.

•    Strategizes with and educates the client service team as well as clients on incorporating relevant social media techniques into the corporate culture and into all company products and services.

•    Measures the impact of social media on overall marketing efforts including reports.

•    Prepares or assists in client proposals, estimates, timelines, creative briefs, invoices, and marketing/media/public relations planning.

•    Receives client briefings.  Writes client contact reports and meeting notes for all client meetings and distributes to appropriate agency personnel and clients. Quickly and accurately relays client change orders to the appropriate agency personnel.

•    Effectively presents, sells and defends all agency work/proposals to clients.  Supports other client service team members in same.

•    Keeps apprised of clients’ products/services/marketing developments and industry related knowledge.

•    Checks and approves creative/production materials, copy, layouts, production art, and interactive demo materials, and coordinates client approval of same.

•    Renews and grows existing client accounts.

Are promoted posts worth it?

shutterstock_141262171

 

Since being introduced last year, Facebook’s promoted posts have been a big hit with small businesses and have undergone some significant changes to help you reach even more potential clients. According to Facebook, “a Brand Page’s content is only seen by 16% of the Page’s fans.” Promoted posts were introduced to help businesses reach more than the 16%.

Over the past year, Facebook has released new features to let you really hone in on who is seeing your promoted posts, and even sends you an itemized receipt on how your money was spent and how many impression your posts garnered.  You can now choose to focus in on a single demographic or city, and even promote posts to “Friends of Fans.”

The full article can be found here: http://mashable.com/2013/07/08/facebook-promoted-posts-business/.  In addition to exposing how promoted posts work, they lay out a basic strategy to use them effectively.

Do promoted posts work for your business? Let us know in the comments!