Content Marketing Strategies for Social Media: Trends vs. Hype


Great Article by Michele Linn published January 18, 2013

These days, it’s tough to talk about content marketing without talking about social media. As the Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs 2013 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends research shows, marketers are relying heavily on social media to distribute their content, and there are increases year-over-year. However, is this a good thing? And are marketers doing this correctly?

Content Marketing Strategies for Social Media - Usage Chart

Continuing the B2B research roundtable conversation from Content Marketing WorldCMI consultants Carla JohnsonMichael WeissArdath Albee, and Jay Baer talk about the biggest challenges with social media and content marketing strategies. Thanks to Steve Rotter, VP of Digital Marketing at Brightcove, for moderating the conversation.

As the consultants mentioned, there are two big challenges with social media and content marketing strategies.

1. Marketers are using channels because they can, not because they make sense

I’m finding that the majority of clients are focusing on where; that’s all they care about. They want to know where they need to be; and I say, ‘STOP! We don’t know where you should be. Let’s figure out who, and what. Who do we want to talk to, and what do we want to say? Once we figure that out, then we know where they are.’ So maybe it will work, B2B for Facebook, or maybe it won’t; I think the increase of Facebook is just because it’s easy.” – Michael Weiss

So how do you know which channels make sense for you? The conversation reveals a few ideas:

2. Not all channels require the same kind of content

I look at how many B2B clients that I see who automatically drive their Twitter posts to Facebook, and it’s harsh when you see it in the wrong format.” – Carla Johnson

You want your content in the right format for the social network you are using. CMI’s eBook 58 Social Media Tips for Content Marketing provides suggestions and examples for all of the social channels included in our content marketing research. Check it out!

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Facebook Ads Booming With CPC Up 23% & CPM Up 15%


Sites include Facebook.com . Published on May 5th, 2012. Written by Anthony West.

With Facebook’s IPO imminent, news that the cost for advertising on its platform is up will be good news for potential investors and Wall Street. This of course is not so good news for advertisers, but let’s look at the numbers.

According to the latest data on Facebook ads CPC and CPOM rates, there has been a marked increase in rates with CPC up 23% and CPM up 15%. And just so there are no naysayers, the data is backed by actual advertiser numbers, one of which is TBG digital. The ads tool developer spends heavily on Facebook ads and according to a report; it saw 15% jump in its CPM rates over Q4 2011. There was even a bigger increase in rates over Q1, and TBG saw rates shot up as far as 41%.

Analysts are very excited about the performance of Facebook ads, not least because Facebook’s main competitor, Google, has seen a slight decline in its rates to advertisers. Google reported a 6% drop in CPC rates for advertisers on its platform and many analysts believe that Google’s targeting and highly personalized platform is becoming very popular among advertisers. Some feel that it is actually the future of online marketing, and if it is, Google will be quaking in its boots.

Social Media Meets The Super Bowl


Social media meets the Super Bowl

Sunday’s game will be a cutthroat match on the field and in social media. Super Bowl contenders the New York Giants have 1.5 million fans on Facebook while the New England Patriots have close to three million. So how does the NFL plan to stay current for the 2012 game? With a social media command center, of course.

According to MSNBC, Super Bowl XLVI will employ a social media team in charge of monitoring and responding to fans before, during and following the game. Based in Indianapolis — home of this year’s Super Bowl — the center will filter social chatter and assist fans with such things as parking and directions to the stadium.

In 2011, we witnessed Audi implement the first Twitter hashtag #ProgressIs during a Super Bowl commercial. The explosive growth of social media has impacted the NFL like any brand, yet as a franchise rooted in traditional media, a unique set of complications have emerged. Actions such as the social media command center and a NFL Social Media policy have been enacted to control and comprehend the overlap between new media and the NFL.

Breaking Down the NFL Social Media Policy

Following a slew of incidents involving Twitter in 2009, the NFL implemented an official social media policy. Amongst the controversy was a Tweet from cornerback Antonio Cromartie criticizing training camp food service and a plot by wide receiver Chad Ochocinco to send out a message to fans immediately following a touchdown pass.

The NFL’s current Social media policy allows for players and members of the league to use Social networks, but not for the 90-minutes leading up to a game and not until post-game media interviews have been conducted. Not only that, messages cannot be sent out on a player’s behalf (by a friend, manager, or otherwise) during a game. While many fans would covet a picture Tweeted from the sidelines or an update from a player following an injury on the field, according to the policy, it just isn’t going to happen.

The policy has been met with criticism by players and fans alike.

Super Bowl ads and Social Media


It’s funny, I tell people all the time that I think websites are dying. I say the internet will live on but websites as we know them are dying. As we view more and more from our smartphones and tablets we will depend less on the browser. This becomes clearly evident this weekend with the Super Bowl. That’s not to say that we will never go to websites or that there isn’t a strategy for websites, but we will rely much less on websites and lean heavier on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other social channels. Sorry, its just the facts.

Will you go online during the Super Bowl to follow what people are saying about the game? In the age of Twitter and Facebook, many Super Bowl viewers will be. This year, advertisers want them to tweet about their favorite commercials as well. You will find lots of real-time voting tools and APPS that will allow you to engage with the Super Bowl. To become part of the event and to share your thoughts with 100’s of millions of people around the world. I, as a Giants fan, will not be, but many of you will.

At over $3 million per spot, global brands from #Coca-Cola to #Volkwagen are looking to leverage social media to extend the buzz and reach of their ads.

It is my belief that the social media conversation has put more value on a Super Bowl ad, fans will be discussing ads on Twitter and Facebook and then go to YouTube to watch it on demand over and over again. That is the power of social media. The creation of a digital asset will live on forever and talked about for years to come.

NFL games are so valuable to advertisers that the league increased its rates to the Superbowl content and will bring in about $6 billion a year from Walt Disney Co’s ESPN, broadcast networks and satellite TV provider DirecTV for rights to air games and sell the advertising time.

The average price of Super Bowl ads have risen more than 50 percent in the last 10 years, defying economic downturns and secular industry issues. NBC sold out all 70 spots around this year’s game shortly after Thanksgiving weekend in November and reached a new high with one slot selling for around $4 million.

The game, could easily generate over a quarter of a billion dollars in ad sales.

Consumer research forecasts that 60 percent of fans watching the Super Bowl will also be tied into a second screen such as a smartphone or tablet.

COKE Vs PEPSI ON SOCIAL MEDIA

#Anheuser-Busch, which typically buys exclusivity as the only beer advertiser during recent Super Bowls, is again the biggest spender.

Not unlike past Super Bowls, #Coca Cola Co and #PepsiCo Inc will face-off. Both beverage makers have come up with campaigns that attempt to leverage social media after their commercials air.

#Coca-Cola’s TV commercials, which will air during the first-and second-quarter breaks, will center around its computer-generated Arctic polar bears watching the game. The bears will then be brought to life on Twitter, Facebook and on a dedicated Website doing such things as responding to fans and commenting on the game. They will even have their own Twitter hashtag –#GameDayPolarBears — for fans to follow.

Fans who catch #Pepsi’s commercial with “X Factor USA” winner Melanie Amaro performing the Otis Redding song “Respect” will be able to download a free video of the performance by using the Shazam app on their phones to capture audio from the commercial.

There are also partnerships with online radio service Pandora Media Inc and social TV specialist GetGlue centered around the game and other free content.

AUTOS SPEND BIG AGAIN

The biggest spender by category is the autos industry, which made a big comeback last year and was noted for one of the most memorable spots — #Volkswagen AG’s ad with a young child dressed in a Darth Vader outfit believing he can control the Passat car’s lights.

This year, #Volkswagen’s #Audi is hoping to win more creative kudos with a spot that taps into the “Twilight” teen vampire pop culture phenomenon. The 60-second spot, which will air during the first break in the game, will highlight the new 2013 Audi S7 and its LED headlight technology, which has unfortunate consequences for a party of young vampires.

#Audi hopes to continue the conversation about the ad via the Twitter hashtag #SoLongVampires.

I have read that the auto makers are leading a trend toward long-form campaigns of 60 seconds or more, allowing high-end creative concepts to be fleshed out in the commercial’s narrative rather than just going for a quick gag and punchline.

#Chrysler, #Toyota, #Honda, #Hyundai, and other automakers will also be advertising during the game.

#GM mainstream #Chevy brand will run seven TV commercials before, during and after the game. It will also center its overall campaign heavily around Web-based partnerships with NBC, Twitter and Facebook.

SOCIAL MEDIA HELPS SELL

With the conventional wisdom being that consumers are more likely to make a purchase if recommended by a friend or family member, chief marketing officers are keen to insert themselves in a Facebook or Twitter conversation about the products and services they sell.

Bluefin Labs, a start-up company that aggregates and analyzes TV viewer data and comments on Twitter and Facebook, has been hired by several advertising agencies with Super Bowl campaigns to help understand how football fans react to the commercials during the game.

While advertisers are eager to experiment with social media during a big event like the Super Bowl, there are still questions on how we measure its impact with a consistent, industry-accepted method. A tool like GetGlue, lets TV fans share their viewing experiences by ‘checking-in’ in exchange for online rewards. A pretty cool concept.

So have fun watching the Super Bowl and the commercials and watch how many of you are commenting on the game or commercials in real-time.

Go Giants!!!

Steve Rockman

3 Digital Trends To Watch In 2012


When you read about the CES happenings this week, two technologies dominated the show. Television and tablet technologies. How will these technologies affect how we interact each day? I believe there are 3 changes and or advancements these two technologies will have a major impact on.

1. Social TV. Contrary to some early reports about the effect of social media on eroding the television viewing audience, people are now watching more TV than ever. Just not necessarily sitting on a couch and connected my a cord to a cable connection. And because of social media, they’re more engaged in what they watch, we go to Twitter and Facebook with reactions in real-time. To the tune of millions of tweets and posts per second, in some cases. To the tune of 9420 tweets about Tebow per second when he throw the game winning touchdown last week.

The TV ad business is a $90+ billion and tech companies, social media firms, TV hardware companies, mobile carriers, and everyone else wants a piece. All this social TV engagement will help grow that revenue. It will drive participation in social shopping. And it will makes or break new shows, stars, and even commercials.

2. Gamification. Consumer engagement with gamified activities has exploded. What’s gamification? Really no different than the loyalty programs we are use too, but today we will see the integration of social sharing and the opportunity to make real dollars from these interactions. Consider that in the fantasy sports arena alone there are now more than 30 million Americans spending an estimated $800 million a year on their make-believe franchises. Gamification finds new ways to make money.

Gamification encourages people to perform chores that they ordinarily consider boring, such as completing surveys, shopping, or reading your web site.

3. Location-based entertainment. NFC (Near Field Communications) will integrate and change the way we interact with our mobile devices. They will begin to be proactive knowing what we want and they will deliver what we want when we are a near a place we can get what we want.

The real benefit to a brand is the unprecedented amounts of data about these consumers that is generated via social and location based engagement. That geo-targeted or even geo-fencing data is used to research and identify segments of the fan base to launch geo-targeted ad campaigns and custom messaging according to each micro-demographic.

2012 will be an exciting year and the age of shareable, personalized content will explode. We will begin to see the changes in how we communicate, finally in an impactful manner.

Steve Rockman

How do we need to think about Social Media?


I was asked last night for my thoughts on where is Social Media is headed? What’s going to be next? My friend expected me to say, “I love this new app or there is a great new social platform she must try that’s really going to change her life.” Sorry that’s not my answer. Social isn’t about an APP, a network, a tweet or a Facebook page.

Here’s an insight, it’s not about PR and it’s not about marketing and it’s not about advertising. This isn’t fun, it’s not a game or something that must be gamified (not sure that’s a real word), nor is it easy to succeed. This is about social interaction. It’s about the principles that the great sociologists; Pierre Bourdieu, Herbert Spencer and George Herbert Mead, defined over the past years. Study them a little bit to understand Social Media. It’s about how and why humans interact. When we understand this, and only when we understand this will we be successful Social Media professionals. I see progress in this direction everyday but it all starts with education, passion and intellect. The easy path, the obvious path won’t accomplish your or your companies’ missions.

We have a name problem. Social Media isn’t really media at all. Media is something you buy. What we do is influence. Whoever named this space did all Social Media professionals a disservice. The agency, Razorfish, has come the closest to getting the name correct. They have coined the term Social Influence. I liken what we do as social professionals as going to a networking cocktail party. If I wear my badge and expect people to come talk to me, it will be a long evening. If I greet someone with a, “Hi, I’m Steve, you should buy my widget”, or “Hi, come to my store, I’m having a sale” or these are my hour or my specials or here is a coupon, I will be ignored. It’s all about very basic and simple communication so friends or potential new friends know what my business is up to. It’s done one-on-one and personal.

Social channels are more scalable. Information moves faster, impacts more people exponentially and influence spreads before we no it, it’s not controllable. Think about what would be if our great leaders like George Washington, Martin Luther King Jr. or Paul Revere had social channels like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube to spread their messages quicker and influence more people? Paul would have gotten good night sleep. Dr. King would have spread his dream to all corners of the world, in real time. They had important messages that “end-users” needed to hear. Today, we can start changing the world quicker, just ask Tunisia or Egypt, but don’t forget social media was just the delivery channel, the message of one man in the street is what started the revolutions.

We need to be more accountable. From individuals, to influencers, government and media, we must start taking this new way of communicating more seriously. It is 24/7, 365 days a year. During the Japanese earthquake and tsunami CNN’s twitter account went MIA for a few hours during the most crucial timeframe. We can’t get that time back. CNN television did not go down for a few hours, but their Twitter account did! The CNN Twitter bio says they will bring breaking world news to more than 2 million people. Unfortunately not when people needed it most.

We must keep pushing the boundaries of what these channels can be used for. Its no secret social change is among us. How are you approaching it?


Steve Rockman

Companies Still Don’t Understand Social Media.


Just a few factual pieces of information you might be interested in reading.

1. Spending – Social media spending is extremely low. Almost two-thirds of respondents to a recent survey said they spend just 5% or less of their marketing budget on social media. While social can be less expensive than other marketing elements, this is surprisingly low. Social represents a big opportunity to get a high return for spend, if properly resourced. This level of investment would suggest that marketing departments are looking at social as an experiment or, at best, a campaign, rather than an ongoing effort that requires the programs and staff to build and maintain relationships over the long haul.

2. Don’t Know What To Do – Companies are still broadcasting, not interacting. Social tools are meant to be used as two-way communications devices. Over 60% of companies surveyed felt that social media was very important in brand building but less than 20% thought it was very important to product ideation. Really??? A surprising 58% stated that social media was not important to product or service testing. Really? Talk to Mountain Dew. This would seem to show that social media is considered more like one-way advertising and less like a channel for understanding customer needs and leveraging valuable and available customer insights in product development.

3. Not Understood – Social’s value across business functions not realized. Just under 40% view social media as very important to demand generation and under 30% are using social media for employee engagement. This shows that the potential of social media to engage prospects, customers and employees is not fully understood. Most of the respondents to this survey were in marketing so they may not be reporting on activity in other functions but the cautionary note is that each part of an organization can benefit from well designed social efforts, particularly if they are not siloed but allow insights to cross functional lines and be shared more effectively.

Steve Rockman

Top 3 reasons to train your executives in social media.


1. Sense of Urgency. Your senior teams should understand the fundamentals of social media and the implications of real-time communication as it relates to customer service and sales. Your legal and HR teams should be able to articulate the liability to the company and the responsibilities of the employee as it relates to social media.
2. Opportunity. Whether B2B or B2C, a solid social business approach can help you find new opportunities to attract and retain customers globally and increase the bottom line. Your managers need to be effective in reaching your target markets with participation over public social networks and platforms. You need to be in continuous improvement mode, not hesitating at the starting line.
3. Competition. The hunt for new customers has never been more fierce. Your competitors know how to reach your customers, stakeholders, and suppliers via social channels – do you? Understanding how to use Twitter and LinkedIn search tools for business and competitive intelligence is critical.