In this era of social media, brands need to look at their social outreach in a different light. Which means that sometimes, you have to break the social media rules. Spike Jones, Vice President Strategy at Spredfast outlined a new type of social success at the September Minnesota Interactive Marketing Association (MIMA) event.
As Spike shared in his presentation:
“When it comes to social media, sometimes you need to follow the breadcrumbs.”
Why? Because you never know who you might find. Below are some of the top insights and takeaways from Spike’s presentation.
It’s not about the brand.
As marketers, we are often taught to include our brand’s logo, messaging tagline and any other branding we might have on everything we produce and influence.
Instead, says Spike, let the content be about the person. By spotlighting people and what inspires them, you will inspire others to look at your organization or company.
One example is Fiskars, makers of the orange handled scissors. They realized they were the conduit for scrapbooking. By highlighting what people were making with their Fiskars scissors, they were finding true fans.
Not every customer is going to recognize your brand. Seek out your rallying cry and be the conduit, not the brand.
Don’t seek out influence. Create it.
Spike told the story of Jared Gaff who was very active on muscle car forums answering every question he could. Chevy interviewed Jared on video, and made him a Chevy Ignites Ambassador. Chevy did not post the video, but, instead, gave the video to Jared. The video has over 15K views, and Jared is a passionate ambassador.
Not everyone is your customer.
As social media professionals, we are sometimes asked to get likes and followers for our clients. But, don’t forget, that is not getting a customer. We need to look at who is truly our audience and speak to them.
Don’t spend all your time talking to people who don’t know you yet. Focus on fans, too. @spikejones
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Think about content differently.
Spike encouraged us to give people reasons to talk about themselves If you find passion from your fans, elevate it. This is the key behind the best kinds of rewards or fan experiences. When you elevate passion, your fans will be more willing to share it.
For example, I recently had a craving for a Starbuck’s Pumpkin Spice Latte. OK, this is a common fall craving for me. When I got to the store, the line was really long, which I did not expect. I tweeted a photo of the line and Starbuck’s tweeted a fun, witty reply back.
I am a fan, and they just improved my experience by talking to me. They elevated my passion.
This works for B2B, as well. At TopRank Marketing, we connected with an up-and-coming influencer in the IoT space. He wanted to co-create content to improve his personal brand. Our work with him created a raving fan for our client and improved the following a personal brand recognition of the influencer.
How are you connecting your followers and fans to experiences?
Get more from social media.
When you are focused on getting more from your social, think about leveraging the 1 on 1 interaction. Mass audience messaging may not get you the following you need. Instead, show particular fans they are valued.
On leveraging the on-to-one generation:
- 1:1 is growing, in every industry, every year
- Find the right mix between 1:1 and 1:many
- No one answers every Tweet – make sure you’re answering the right ones
The real marketing ROI
Every organization has (or should have) a crisis plan. But, Spike says, what is your ‘love’ plan? How do you get your customers and fans to love your brand?
One key strategy to your ‘love’ plan should include plugging it into every part of the company. Your employees are your best ambassadors. Learn how to leverage them.
People want to connect with people, not companies. @spikejones
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If you never call your PR firm to implement the crisis plan, just think about the money you’ve saved because your ‘love’ plan worked.
Spike ended the with these key tips on encouraging people to engage with your content:
- Feed their Ego
- Give them Info(rmation)
- Touch their Emo(tions)
Then, find a way to meet offline and give them something to talk about.
Refocus social on the customer
The key to true social engagement is moving toward a personal conversation. Brands need to find people to rally for them as true ambassadors. Your love plan needs to include true personal conversations that feed your ambassadors/fan’s ego, share information and touch their emotions.
Everyone wants to believe in something bigger than themselves. What is your social rallying cry?
The post Break All the Social Rules: Advice from Spredfast VP of Strategy Spike Jones appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.
A quick look at Google Trends comparing Influencer Marketing to other marketing disciplines shows a near hockey stick growth trend. Since my team consults and I advocate, write and speak about influencer marketing so often, people often ask me: “Is influencer marketing a real trend?”.
Looking back on my experience in digital marketing over the past 20 years with the advent of disciplines like SEO, social media and content marketing, I’d say the momentum around influencer marketing has many of the same characteristics. It’s here, it’s still early and will continue to grow.
While working with influencers isn’t all that new, my experience talking about influencer marketing with B2B brands (and many agencies) has taught me that many B2B marketers are not fully aware or confident about where working with influencers fits in their marketing mix.
The good news is that we’ve been in the thick of B2B influencer marketing and content marketing for the last 6-7 years. Starting with experiments, we evolved our offering by practicing what we preach and introducing best practices and process to our clients. Today we’re delivering influencer content marketing services to major B2B and B2C brands including SAP, LinkedIn, State Farm and 3M.
To learn what we’ve learned, I invite you to check out the following 5 events where I will be talking about influencer marketing from essentially 5 different perspectives. From New York to San Francisco to Milan, there’s something for everyone.
Learn Influencer Marketing for Influencer Marketers
Sept 26: New York
Influencer Marketing Days #InfluencerDays
Keynote: B2B Influencer Marketing: Top Trends, Examples & Opportunities
The irony of this presentation is that I will be in New York as an influencer for IBM and while there, giving a presentation on influencer marketing at an influencer marketing conference! It’s like influencer marketing inception!
Learn B2B Influencer Marketing
Oct 4: Boston
MarketingProfs B2B Forum #MPB2B
Solo: From Why to ROI: B2B Influencer Marketing Case Studies for Success
One of my all-time favorite conferences of the year, B2B Forum is where I get to truly geek out on B2B influencer marketing with some of the smartest B2B marketers in the world. And there’s Ann Handley too – who would want to miss hanging out with her? No one!
Learn About ABM & Influencer Marketing
Nov 7: San Francisco
Solo: The ABCs of Influencer Content for ABM
Salesforce event staff have told me I will have a room that can seat 800, which might not seem like much for a conference with 90,000+ attendees, but I’ll take it. Companies that use marketing software are definitely great potential clients for TopRank Marketing.
Learn About SEO & Influencer Marketing
Nov 9: Las Vegas
Keynote: In Search of Influence
Brett Tabke gave me a shot at speaking early on in my career and because of a longstanding client conference date that conflicted with Pubcon, I haven’t been able to attend in many years. Now I’ll be giving a keynote to the community where I got my start in marketing and I can’t tell you how much that means to me. My hope is that the presentation will mean something to the amazing search community.
Learn About Content & Influencer Marketing
Nov 15: Milan
Masterclass: Content Marketing & Influence Integration
I will be back in Milan to talk about content marketing with an influencer marketing flavor to the hungry Italian marketers converging on Milan. This event will also give me the opportunity to connect with my European search marketing pals.
5 Steps to Influencer Marketing Awesome
I know it’s possible you might not be able to attend the conferences listed above. So I’ll share a few tips to provide some direction for those just getting started with the idea of incorporating influencer collaboration with their marketing. Broadly, there are some universal truths to influencer marketing where content is the marketable asset produced. Here are 5 worth paying attention to:
1. Be specific. When setting goals for what’s possible, define your topic of influence specifically. Focus topics drive influencer identification as well as influencer content, SEO and social media themes.
2. Be the best answer. Map focus topics to your normal content, SEO, advertising and media relations plans.To be the best answer wherever customers are looking and influenced, it’s more effective if there is continuity of message across channels where buyers discover and consume solutions content.
3. Give to get. Brandividuals that play the game of influence will respond to compensation early, but most niche and brand influencers require romance. Start recruiting through social engagement long before you ask influencers to collaborate.
4. Collaborate to create. Invite influencers to make something together that drives the influencer’s objectives while at the same time, fuels brand objectives. At a minimum, influencer engagement results in content co-creation that can be repurposed by the brand for demand gen programs. Also consider the power of pride. When influencers invest in creating something that makes them look good, they will be inspired to share and help your brand reach new audiences.
5. Measure smart. Inputs, outputs and outcomes of influencers and their communities relative to your content collaboration is essential. When content is part of your influencer collaboration, then you’ll have all the measurement opportunities with any other content marketing program as well. The key is to map KPIs of working with influencers to business goals for your brand.
Whether you are in New York for Advertising Week, Boston for Marketing Profs B2B Forum, San Francisco for Dreamforce, Las Vegas for Pubcon or Milan for SMXL, I hope to see you so we can connect and learn from each other about the amazing world of influencer marketing.
Do you have proven community management, content and influencer engagement skills? Work with TopRank Marketing! If you are an experienced influencer marketing professional and would like to join a team that is fast tracking growth and working with some amazing brands, then be sure to check out our careers page or contact me directly: lodden at toprankmarketing .dot com.