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Introduction to Social Media Strategy

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These are my slides from a free public workshop I conducted for JCI Beirut about the basics of Social Media Strategy that includes examples of brands that do not have a proper strategy, defining your goals, the sales cycle, asset mapping, defining your audience and creating personas, choosing channels, voice & tone, posting frequency & time, crisis management, and understanding Facebook's algorithm.

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Introduction to Social Media Strategy

  2. 2. @mhijazi Before I start • Tweet me your questions, comments or favorite quotes from the session: @mhijazi
  3. 3. @mhijazi LET’S START with examples of brands or persons who obviously do not have a social media strategy or have a really bad one
  4. 4. 1. Discrimination
  5. 5. 2. False News
  6. 6. 3. Amateurism on Social Media
  7. 7. 4. Grammar/Language Mistakes
  8. 8. 5. Provocative Posts
  9. 9. 6. Not KnowingYour Audience
  10. 10. 7. Responding Negatively
  11. 11. 8. Deceiving
  12. 12. 9. Automation
  13. 13. 10. Fake Followers
  14. 14. 11. Lawsuits & Investigations
  15. 15. 12. Plagiarism
  16. 16. 13. Spamming
  17. 17. 14. Promoting Bad Behavior
  18. 18. @mhijazi A proper social media strategy includes: • Defining your goal • Target Market & Personas • Assets Mapping • Position in Sales Cycle • Choice of Channels • Voice &Tone • Posting Frequency • PostingTime • ContentTypes • Content Calendar • Community Management • Online Advertising Strategy • Influencer Marketing Strategy • Social Media Policy • Crisis Management Policy • Monitoring • Measurement • Analytics & Reporting
  19. 19. @mhijazi STARTING OFF
  20. 20. @mhijazi DefineYour Goals The best goals are quantifiable, so everyone is clear on what you want your social media plan to achieve. It is also important to identify what metrics you are going to track, and how you're going to measure them. Potential goals include: 1. Sales: using social media to create first-time customers. or introduce them to the brand. 2. Leads: incoming calls. contact from submission forms. email subscribers. 3. Marketing:You may simply want to improve your relationship with existing customers and prospects. 4. Loyalty/Brand Enthusiasm: increase retention and/or improve customer service. 5. HR: attract and retain quality employees. DefineYour Message
  21. 21. @mhijazi Sales Cycle Segments of your customers and prospects have different relationships with the brand. Some have never heard of you. Others are raving fans.Which are you trying to reach with social media? What your target audience already knows about you will dictate what you can credibly have a conversation about in social media. 1. Awareness:They may have heard of you. vaguely. 2. Interest: They've heard of you and may have visited the website, but are not customers. 3. Action:They’ve made a single purchase. 4. Advocacy:They are fans of the brand. Frequent purchasers.They tell their friends. Awareness Interest Action Advocacy
  22. 22. @mhijazi MapYour Assets • A common myth about social media is that it's free, or at least very cheap.While it may be free to set-up aTwitter or Facebook account, it requires time and usually lots of it, to effectively manage how those accounts are used. • How many people, and how much time, are you able to devote to your social media plan? • What technical experience do they need? • What tools do they need? • What content do you already have or create on a regular basis that can be used? For example you may produce a monthly newsletter in print form that could be used to create four or five blog posts. • How much money can you dedicate for ads?
  23. 23. @mhijazi DefineYour Audience • A great way to ensure you hit your target and focus communications on the tight people Is to create personas.These are short deceptions of fictional individuals that represent your target.They're not real people, but rather they are archetypes that represent real people.They will help you identify the potential character traits. personalities, habits and attitudes of your customers. • Which networks they use and how much time they spend there • If they initiate conversations, or comment on them • If they would be comfortable engaging with your company online
  24. 24. @mhijazi Creating a Persona • Conduct target market research • Survey customers • Create gated content to website • Analyze social behavior • Utilize an external partner (e.g. Simmons data) • Divide results into persona buckets • Create a story for each persona that you identify • Edit, edit, edit – limit to the right number • Make them personal and detailed.
  25. 25. @mhijazi Personas
  26. 26. @mhijazi Personas VS.
  27. 27. @mhijazi What a persona should include NAME JOBTITLE • Where they work • Details about their role DEMOGRAPHICS • Age • Gender • Salary • Location • Education • Family GOALS AND CHALLENGES •Values and fears MARKETING MESSAGE • Elevator pitch SOCIAL PLATFORMS • Facebook • Instagram • Pinterest • Twitter • Google+ SOCIAL BEHAVIOR • Information seeker • Fan • Influencer • Detractor
  28. 28. @mhijazi ChooseYour Channels • There are thousands of channels to choose from. Which ones are the best fit with your brand, customers, resources and goals? • Do you need to create regular blog posts to demonstrate your expertise? Perhaps your target audience is women who might be found on Pinterest? Maybe you're a professional with lots of contacts on Linkedln. Do you have the resources to monitor and update more than one platform? • Prioritize your channels, start slow and get comfortable even if it means starting with just one platform. Spend time getting accustomed to posting content, answering questions and comments, and the overall level of engagement required. Once you're comfortable, add another platform and slowly build your network.
  29. 29. @mhijazi VOICE &TONE
  30. 30. @mhijazi Voice &Tone • Voice:Your brand personality described in an adjective. For instance, brands can be lively, positive, cynical, or professional. • Tone: A subset of your brand’s voice.Tone adds specific flavor to your voice based on factors like audience, situation, and channel. • Essentially, there is one voice for your brand and many tones that refine that voice. • Voice is a mission statement.Tone is the application of that mission.
  31. 31. @mhijazi Voice is a 4 point formula • Character / persona –Who does your brand sound like? If you picture your social brand as a person (a character), here is where you can flesh out this identity with specific attributes that fit who you want to sound like online. • Tone – What is the general vibe of your brand? • Language –What kind of words do you use in your social media conversations? • Purpose –Why are you on social media in the first place?
  32. 32. @mhijazi The three C’s of brand voice • Culture – What does your company stand for?What makes you stand out from all the others who are after the same audience?Your unique qualities make your culture special, and these should be a pillar of developing your voice. • Community – Listening can reveal how your community speaks and can help you speak easier with them and to them.You can use their language and meet them on their terms. • Conversation – Personality and authenticity are key here. What do you want to add to the conversation? As you think about what you can offer, you’ll start to see a better picture of where your voice might fit.
  33. 33. @mhijazi Template • Content type:What are you writing? • Reader:Who are you talking to in this scenario? • Reader feelings:What’s the reader feeling when they are in this tone scenario? • Your tone should be: Use adjectives that describe how you should sound in this scenario. • Write like this: Give a brief example of how the writing should sound. • Tips: Explain best practices of writing for this scenario. • Content type:Tweets • Reader: Potential customers, marketing professionals • Reader feelings: Eager and engaged to find interesting content and information • Your tone should be: Helpful, informative, clear, approachable • Write like this: “DidYou Know: The 8-hour workday was invented to help people work less?We have the story here.” • Tips: Use lots of questions.Avoid sounding authoritative. Invite others to learn and discover.
  34. 34. @mhijazi DiGiorno Pizza This frozen pizza brand has an incredibly distinct tone onTwitter, keeping things casual (note the lack of capitalization), hip, and witty. They often live tweet events, making pizza-related observations on what’s happening.
  35. 35. @mhijazi IcelandWants to BeYour Friend Designed as a way to get people interested in visiting Iceland, this website and social media presence takes on a very congenial tone with lots of odd spellings and a Scandinavian accent.The whole thing is written from the first person perspective of the country of Iceland.Voice doesn’t get much more unique than that.
  36. 36. @mhijazi POSTING FREQUENCY &TIME
  37. 37. @mhijazi The incredibly short life cycle of a tweet
  38. 38. @mhijazi Facebook’s life cycle is much longer, relatively speaking • Facebook posts reach their half-life at the 90-minute mark, nearly four times longer thanTwitter. • The 90-minute mark was found by Wisemetrics in their study ofTwitter and Facebook life cycles.They found that 24 minutes was the median engagement point forTwitter and 90 minutes for Facebook. For Facebook, a post reaches 75 percent of its potential in the first 5 hours (vs. three hours for Twitter).
  39. 39. @mhijazi Optimal Posting Frequency Summary • Facebook: 5-10 post a week • Twitter: 5-30 post a day • Linkedin: 1 post every weekday (20 times a month) • Google+: At least 3 posts a day • Pinterest: At least 5 pins a day • Instagram: At least 1.5 posts a day • Blogs: 1-2 posts a week
  40. 40. @mhijazi Best time to post on Facebook • Engagement rates are 18% higher on Thursdays and Fridays.
  41. 41. @mhijazi Facebook – find the best time to post your updates • Another study found that engagement was 32% higher on weekends, so the end of the week is definitely a good, rough guide to start experimenting with.
  42. 42. @mhijazi Twitter – when is the best time to tweet for engagement vs. clicks Twitter engagement for brands is 17% higher on weekends according to Dan Zarrella’s research.
  43. 43. @mhijazi Twitter – when is the best time to tweet for engagement vs. clicks On the other hand, anArgyle Social study showed that weekdays provide 14% more engagement than weekends for B2B, so this is definitely one you’ll want to test on your audience.
  44. 44. @mhijazi Twitter – when is the best time to tweet for engagement vs. clicks This could be due to lunch breaks and people looking for something to keep them occupied on the commute home after work.
  45. 45. @mhijazi Optimal Posting Times for Instagram Instagram audiences are engaged throughout the week. Mondays should maybe get a little more attention. • Monday andThursday at any time other than 3–4 p.m. • Videos any day at 9 p.m.–8 a.m. • Experiment with 2 a.m., 5 p.m., and Wednesday at 7 p.m.
  46. 46. @mhijazi Optimal Posting Times for Linkedin • Midweek posting is optimal from 5–6 p.m. • Tuesday at 10–11 a.m. • Tuesday,Wednesday, andThursday at 7:30–8:30 a.m., 12 p.m., and 5–6 p.m.
  47. 47. @mhijazi Optimal Posting Times for Pinterest • Saturdays are your best bet for reaching Pinterest users—and later at night. • Saturdays at 8–11 p.m. • Any day 2–4 a.m. and 2–4 p.m. • Fridays at 3 p.m.
  48. 48. @mhijazi The late-night infomercial effect • There is, as you might imagine, a flip side to scheduling your posts when your audience is online. We’ll call it the late-night infomercial effect. • When there’s nothing else on, you’re more likely to watch an infomercial. • When there’s little else being tweeted, your tweets are more likely to stand out.
  49. 49. @mhijazi The late-night infomercial effect • Being one of the lone voices in the inbox could prove beneficial.The same could be said for social media. • Maybe posting on off hours isn’t all that bad after all?
  50. 50. @mhijazi CRISIS MANAGEMENT
  51. 51. @mhijazi 5Trends in Digital Crisis Management 1. Everything happens at lightning- speed 2. People demand “hyper- transparency” 3. Dialogue as important as message delivery 4. Search reputation delivers multimedia 5. Brand detractors have the same tools
  52. 52. @mhijazi #1: Speed The first 24 hours: • Bad news spreads faster than ever before via Twitter, Facebook and our collective “lifestreams” • Monitor all relevant consumer generated media, not just traditional media • When responding to emerging crisis, you may need to react fast –in a matter of hours, not days • Have a streamlined approach and a team in place • Experience in social media will help you respond fast
  53. 53. @mhijazi #2: Hypertransperancy • There are no secrets anymore –don’t assume you can hide information • Any individual has the power to expose what were once “private” conversations, making them public –expect what you say to be blogged • Be ready to reconcile contradictory business practices • Ensure any CSR efforts are sincere, defensible and authentic
  54. 54. @mhijazi #3: Dialogue Get ready for a 2-way dialogue: • One-way messaging doesn’t work anymore in a world where people crave dialogue • Inviting customers into a conversation is the most effective way to build goodwill and brand advocates who will support you if crisis hits • Communicating solely through press releases and scripted interactions doesn’t satisfy • A system for listening is critical to remaining responsive
  55. 55. @mhijazi #4: Search Regulation is built or broken in search. • 80% of Internet users start their session at search • Organic search is sensitive to social media content due to the cross-linking • Google delivers “universal search” making multimedia critical • Difficult to dislodge content once it is in search results
  56. 56. @mhijazi #5: Detractors Your detractors are resourceful: • An individual voice can travel around the world more easily today • Small organizations can often be fast and nimble with social media • Listening to consumer generated media is critical • Everyone is an influencer in their own circles, so traffic alone can no longer be the only metric for judging influence
  57. 57. @mhijazi HOW DOYOU MANAGE A CRISIS?
  58. 58. @mhijazi Acknowledge First response from company should be “we know” • Slows the flood of “hey company, did you know?” messages. • Do this immediately, even if you have little additional information at the time.
  59. 59. @mhijazi Fight FireWithWater 1. Respond first wherever the crisis broke 2. Then respond in all other venues 3. It’s imperative that you have established social presences on all outposts, even if you don’t routinely use them. • Are you ready for a Pinterest crisis? (it could happen) • Do you have a list of all blogs and blog authors that cover your category?
  60. 60. @mhijazi One Place to HouseAll the Facts Much easier to direct people to an updated crisis FAQ, then to answer every question viaTwitter, Facebook, blog comment, and beyond. Crisis FAQ Ingredients: o Acknowledgement of issue o Details about occurrence o Photos or videos, if available o How the company found out o Who was alerted, and how o Specific actions taken o Real or potential effects o Steps taken to prevent future occurrence o Contact information for real people at the company
  61. 61. @mhijazi GroundYou Control • People want to vent • The BEST case scenario is that they do so on a venue you manage and control • It is imperative that you proactively open a channel for dialog (even negative) • If you do not, other venues that you do not control will serve that role • Also keeps most conversations in a single place – easier to track • Early warning detection for new crisis dimensions • Gives customers a place to come to your defense (sometimes)
  62. 62. @mhijazi Crisis is a spectator sport • It’s not about winning, it’s about damage control • There are no victors in online tit for tats • Encourage vehement critics to contact you via email or phone • Gives them an option • You’re seen as extending that option • Rule of 3: Never send a third reply. At that point, take it offline
  63. 63. @mhijazi Reconstruct and Deconstruct Document every element of the crisis • Make copies of all tweets, status updates,YouTube comments, blog comments, etc. • Make copies of all emails • Analyze website traffic patterns • Analyze search data • Which venue came first, and when?
  65. 65. @mhijazi Reach is decreasing big-time Reach is now less than 5% for most Facebook pages. And those numbers have been dropping steadily for several years.
  66. 66. @mhijazi Understanding the algorithm • Facebook’s algorithm, formerly known as “EdgeRank,” determines what content people see in their News Feed. • We spend 40% of our time in the News Feed, so this is a very big deal. News Feed is how people find information on Facebook.
  67. 67. Graphics by PostRocket
  68. 68. Graphics by PostRocket
  69. 69. Graphics by PostRocket
  70. 70. Graphics by PostRocket
  71. 71. @mhijazi Getting through to your fans The goal with every post is to get here. Sweet spot! But that’s hard to do because Facebook blocks most people from seeing your content.
  72. 72. @mhijazi Facebook’s weighted posts Videos/ Photos Links Text-Only Posts by you have weight: Actions by others have weight: Shares Comments Likes/ Clicks MORE WEIGHT LESS WEIGHT AFFINITY
  73. 73. @mhijazi QUESTIONS Thank you!
  74. 74. @mhijazi Sources • An Introduction to Social Media for Small Business, Community Futures • Utilizing Personas in Social Media Contests, Kendall Bird & Katy Katz • How to FindYour Social Media MarketingVoice:The Best Examples, Questions and Guides, Kevan Lee • A Scientific Guide to PostingTweets, Facebook Posts, Emails, and Blog Posts at the BestTime, Belle Beth Cooper • The Social Media FrequencyGuide: How Often to Post to Facebook,Twitter, LinkedIn And More, Kevan Lee • The BestTimes to Post on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedIn & Other Social Media Sites [Infographic], Lindsay Kolowich • Social Media for Crisis Management, OgilvyOn • State of Facebook 2015, Derek Belt Let me know In case I forgot to credit someone, I will gladly update the list.