B2B advertisers now have a new social advertising option through LinkedIn. LinkedIn announced the introduction of boosting posts or events directly from your feed. There are conditions as noted below, but this is potentially a major opportunity to get at hard-to-reach business audiences.
Similar to other social advertising, you will be able to choose a goal for the “boost” (site visits, post awareness, event awareness, post engagement or video views.)
There are some conditions: posts can only be boosted one time, and only single image posts and events can be enhanced at this time. Posts containing surveys, documents, job postings or articles are currently not eligible for boost.
How is this different from current LinkedIn advertising? It is already possible to transition an organic post into a paid ad, but it takes more steps and expertise through LinkedIn’s campaign manager tool. The boost button, on the other hand, can be used by anyone directly from their company’s LinkedIn page. At this time, boosting a post is available only for company pages, not personal pages, but there are ways to integrate the two.
Cost is expected to be in line with existing LinkedIn ads.
Unsure how to proceed? Reach out to our team to discuss.
When it comes to creating a successful social media program, three core issues need to play together: build following; create engagement; sales action. What drives this? Content. Great content is not simply posting or promoting a product. It’s really knowing the target (down to stereotyping an individual person). It is also constantly refining and adjusting based on what is trending and being shared and commented on.
This seemingly simple equation works … and quite well for GRM. Playing in the uber-competitive cosmetics category, our team is beating the leading competitor for Milani (our client) in engagement rate by 220%, despite being outspent more than 10x by competitors in overall advertising.
The comments at the end of this blog illustrate the constant change going on … not just in Facebook, but in all social sites. Many are looking for the short cut to garnering legions of followers, but unlike traditional media the playing field is not fixed. The platforms themselves keep revising and adjusting their own rules. What works in one platform doesn’t necessarily translate to another. What works today may be dramatically altered tomorrow.
And one additional myth: Social media is not free. It is a very competitive environment (by design) where placements and ad dollars are pitted against each other. Determining your outcomes and ROI should be carefully considered up front. In other words, a plan with measurable goals … not unlike any other effective advertising or marketing program. And, like great advertising, content is the driver. Ads and sponsored posts can put you in front of more people, but what happens then? If the content (creative in traditional ad speak) is not interesting, distinctive, visual or otherwise engaging, the viewer is already rolling down the page. See ya.
Great content requires first and foremost an understanding of the person (yes, singular) you are actually trying to start a dialog with. You can build large and thriving communities, but it starts by connecting to an individual. Social media success requires creativity. Good writing, visually impactful, a sense of outcome (sales action) desired all play a key role.
This is usually why one person doing this internally at a company (typically in addition to other pressing tasks) is never as good as a team.
So, there is a cost. The cost of engaging professionals, who work multiple sites for multiple clients to understand the trial and error and know how to quickly adjust for successful outcomes (and when to cut losses and move in other directions).
The cost of a team, so that your sites are covered 24/7 and there is timely response to engagements and posts … a critical factor in building the online community of followers most brands crave.
There is also one hidden cost: how are you measuring up to competition online? Because the leading brands understand the value of building followers – it is the best and most economical database you can get. Think about the cost of buying lists, generating signups at events or trade shows, sending out direct mail? What is the real cost there? How easy is it to build that list? Many companies struggle just to build an active and accurate list of their customers, never mind, adding on interested prospects.
If your competition has more followers, simply put, their cost of marketing is less than yours. Your company is at a disadvantage. Even greater, they have the ability to exponentially add more prospects than your company, at a lower cost.
Think about this as direct marketing on steroids. That is what social media can be when done correctly. So, there is the opportunity cost of what may (or may not) be occurring for your company in social media.
Final word: referral.
Social is unlike any other media in history. It is not linear – in that advertisers (or media) push out content/programming/ads and consumers can either choose to read/watch or not. In social, consumers participate in the content. And, their participation is not a private letter or phone call. It is public … on the same site to the same viewers as your original post.
Is that a good thing? It is a great thing in our estimation. Great brands are coveted by their fans. Social has a quick and often viral way of ferreting out the good from the pretenders. Consumers are educated, experienced and not shy to weigh in with their opinions.
And their opinions count: in reviews – most consumers view peer reviews more valuable now than professional one; in following – have too few followers and your brand doesn’t seem very credible; and, most importantly in referral.
Those most passionate about your brand will follow you. We prefer to call them your ‘zealots.’ Zealots for a brand or cause willingly recommend, engage, and share … otherwise refer you to their friends. The average person on Facebook has about 300 followers (friends). This is actually consistent with old-school ‘spheres of influence’ an individual has. So, 500 followers offer a potential referral of 150,000 people. Get 5,000 followers and you have your own ‘media vehicle’ of 1.5 million! Many of these are now being introduced to your brand for the first time by their friend, the most credible referral you can get as a brand.
What is your cost of prospect / new customer acquisition? If you understand those numbers, then you understand why social media is not a nebulous cost, but the most valuable marketing asset ever available to companies.
Let’s talk about Instagram Stories.
Stories are seriously such an easy tool to use to connect to and grow your followers in a creative and personal way. Even though Reels is now the king of content, Instagram stories should not be left by the wayside. With more than one billion users, you may as well use every tool in the platform to grow your brand.
Why are Instagram Stories Important?
Instagram stories are a way to let your followers in. They can get a peek behind-the-scenes into who is behind the brand and what it’s made of. It is a great way to tell your followers who you are without crowding their feeds with post after post.
By giving your followers an additional insight into what your brand stands for, it builds trust and offers them a chance to connect with you on a personal level. If you don’t let your audience know who you are, you are forgoing possible connections with future customers.
Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your Instagram Stories.
Tip #1: Tell a Story with your Stories
Instagram Stories can tell a richer story compared to the individual pictures on your feed. Your stories should ALWAYS have a purpose.
Tip #2: Stories are still part of your Brand
Even though stories are your chance to get really creative, they should still follow your brand standards! Align styling and fonts with your overall brand standards!
Tip #3: Add Hashtags!
Instagram will allow you to use a maximum of 10 hashtags to make your stories more searchable. This will increase your potential reach beyond your followers. But no one likes to look at a story full of text. You can shrink your hashtags down, make them the color of your background and hide them behind a sticker to disguise your hashtags from your story viewers.
Tip #4: Consistency is Key
Consistency is one of the easiest ways to increase your story views. By posting stories daily, the Instagram algorithm will begin to favor your stories and show them to more people.
Tip #5: Get to know Story Analytics
Get to know this feature to figure out your performance and what your next move should be. Are people who aren’t following you watching your stories? Are people watching the whole story, or exiting before the 15 seconds is up? Are your hashtags working? Analytics can help you figure out what is and what isn’t working so you can adjust your strategy.
Let us know if these tips help you with your social media strategy!
- Facebook now sees 8 billion average daily video views from 500 million users
- US adults spend an average of 1 hour, 16 minutes each day watching video on digital devices
- What next? TikTok has over 1.5 billion users
- GO LIVE!!
Social Customer Service
- Treat messaging like live-chat
- Engage and respond in a timely fashion
- Customers want to communicate with companies over the same familiar channels they use to talk with family and friends
- 56% of consumers have used a messaging channel to engage with a brand before
- 71% of those customers expect brands to offer customer engagement over messaging channels
- 96% of respondents say a good customer experience over messaging channels is at least somewhat important to their brand loyalty
Groups and Brand Pages
- Connect with your zealots, your ambassadors!
- Insider look, entice them to be your mouthpiece!
- Provide tools and templates
- Ask questions and LISTEN!
- Use the Questions sticker to find out what people want to hear from you during this time
- Provide daily reflections and tips for customers
- Create a Highlight of your COVID-19 updates
- Create a Highlight featuring your most relevant products to make it easy for people to reference and find the things they need right now
- Create fun challenges for people to reshare in their stories and @ their friends
Dynamic Social Advertising
- Go beyond boosted posts
- Using ads to build your email database
- Make sure you have Facebook Business Manager
- Ads are the BEST way to reach a targeted group – your potential customers!
UGC – Involve Your Customers
- Show vibrancy with real people in your community
- Potential buyers want to relate to the current homeowners.
- Testimonials are key!
- Don’t go dark – PIVOT!
- Meet your customers where they are
- Your community is home, communicating to others through the internet and seeking out information
- Virtually bring customers to you through video
Our Chief Zealotry Officer, April Voris, is partnering with Professional Women in Building-Atlanta Chapter to host a webinar on Social Media Tips for 2020: How to Pivot in the Pandemic. Join April via Zoom on Thursday, May 21st from 10 – 11:15 am. Don’t miss this limited-time opportunity to learn how to get the most out of your social media during the pandemic. Visit https://bit.ly/2ST7eIg to register!
Master the Art of Social Media Marketing
Social Media Marketing Bootcamp is an online, hands-on seminar that includes case-studies and interactive exercises to reinforce the information you will learn. Through lecture, real-world examples, and discussion, class participants will have a well-rounded understanding of how social media marketing can be used for businesses, for their job, and even for career advancement.
The Bootcamp is a collaborative effort between the Department of Advertising and Public Relations in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications at the University of Georgia and GRM. Each seminar is limited to 50 participants to ensure personalized learning. Seminars begin promptly at 9:00 am and conclude at 12:30 pm. *Online login information will be delivered once payment is received.
Upcoming Social Media Bootcamp
June 3 – 4, 2020 – 9:00 am to 12:30 pm both days.
Four sessions total:
June 3 – Social media planning and social media platforms
June 4 – Social media advertising and analytics
The Social Media Business Boot Camp price is $199. *Online login information will be delivered once payment is received.
To register, click here.
What is Your Greatest Point of Pain?
A survey of marketing pros by Reveries magazine a few years back remains timely. Three significant “points of pain” emerged:
You. The biggest reported “pain” was someone else, either a client or an agency person. More than 80 respondents identified someone else as their biggest pain; either not understanding issues, plans, goals, strategies, not buying into programs, subverting or discounting them or abandoning them before completion.
Information. The second biggest cluster of “pain” focused on not having enough information. More than 60 respondents noted that they did not have enough sound information to guide them. Of these, there were at least 23 mentions of not having the tools to effectively evaluate ROI or other results, not having relevant information in general, not enough information to develop effective messages, to select or assign media to create plans.
Resources. The third cluster had to do with the “pain of not having enough” – i.e., budgets, people, time to getting things done, or adequate systems.
Several noteworthy comments from respondents:
“Lack of respect within my company for marketing as a profession. We are still in the mode of “anyone can be a marketer.”
“The greatest Point of Pain is to gain the customer insight.”
“The point of pain – marketing people having no clue as to what their value proposition is, with no passion or sense of custodianship. This lack of involvement simply trickles down to the consumer, who in turn is lambasted with tired and frustrating brand messages. The result, consumers devoid of any meaningful relationship with their brand.”
“I’m pained by clients that don’t think like customers, forget that they are customers too, and are too internally focused.”
Insights gleaned and applied:
Have a clear-cut marketing strategy. Define value of planned activities, expectations on results and ensure that it is understood and bought into upfront.
Information is certainly not the issue today. Sorting through data and knowing what matters and what is important to apply is the issue. Forming insights into strategy remains an art.
No passion = no connection with consumers. Act like a consumer, think like a consumer and find the point of passion, not pain.
Certificate of Nonprofit Social Media
We are so excited to partner with the Georgia Center for Nonprofits
for another Social Media class!
In this five-part certificate series in the spring and fall, you’ll rapidly advance your understanding of social media practices for nonprofits, building a broad foundation and focused expertise in topics like advertising and analytics. Each course will feature tools and tips which you can apply immediately.
Learn more about the courses here
Make sure you join us for our social media bootcamp! We’ll be providing a informational and hands-on similar on how social media marketing can be used for businesses, for your job, and even for career advancement. This year, we will be in Athens for the first time on October 27 and 28 and in Buckhead on November 18. Sign up
today to reserve your spot!
Not sure if your social media is all it should be? Need that outside perspective to convince the bosses there is a better way to use social media?
For a limited time, GRM’s social analytics team will offer a complimentary written report
that looks at factors impacting engagement, brand story amplification, driving specific actions, competitive ranking and impact on search and web traffic.
Respond to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Facebook live is … well, a video that is posted “live”- in real time on Facebook.
While the guests at The Kahala’s beach were likely more preoccupied with relaxing matters, viewers on Facebook apparently wanted to dream they were there. GRM’s recent video on at The Kahala drew 18,000 viewers in the first hour or so and over 33,000 viewers within a day!
What makes people share?
One recent research piece indicated people are provoked to share their “awe” when a visual hits an emotive chord. Such a picture transcends merely the place or building and connects the ‘experience,’ often in a very personal way. This recent photo was commissioned by our friend and photographer Jimmy Williams for Miromar Lakes. Great photography is like a beautiful painting. No caption or copy is needed.
At GRM, our passion is helping good companies and brands succeed. Which is exactly why we’ve made a BIG move at our agency.
Social media is a large part of what we do for our clients. Creating content, managing accounts, and providing strategic insight and planning are critical parts of our day-to-day.
However, beautiful photos and witty tweets can only take a brand so far. Which is exactly why we are putting the most emphasis on the last point made above. Strategic insight has become the core of everything that we do at GRM.
Enter: Simply Measured
At the beginning of the year, we began using the social analytics solution to help us bring each of our clients to the next
level. It’s about making informed decisions, which allow us to provide exceptional results.
Here are a few of the reasons why we have started using Simply Measured:
- It allows us to analyze our brands paid, owned, and earned activity from all of their social networks. We now have a greater ability to discover and communicate meaningful patterns from social data – giving GRM, and our clients, the opportunity to grow and develop their programs.
- It has become our full suite analytics arm that helps us research conversations, competitors, and audience across all social networks.
- It quickly highlights the impact of brand activities, as well as helping us see, share, and optimize real business outcomes for our clients.
By providing a complete social analytics suite and process, we are able to better understand the impact of our social strategies. Simply put, Simply Measured gives us access to information, analysis, and insight necessary to plan our clients’ strategies, measure their performance, optimize their tactics, and tie social activity to larger business outcomes.
is an exciting tool.
We have learned that sharing real-life facts of EV drivers are popular amongst our EV Facebook audience. Users that are on the fence about driving an EV can hear first-hand from their personal experiences, enticing them to learn more. When it comes to electric vehicles, we never want to communicate like car salesmen to encourage a sale but instead highlight the benefits and improvements that driving an EV adds to the average user’s life.
Up until December 2015, FODAC (Friends of Disabled Adults and Children) hosted the majority of their fundraising campaigns in a traditional manner: meetings, mailings, and checks. But this December, FODAC had an immediate need for a new delivery truck. And we were confident FODAC’s social community could rally together to raise the $30,000 needed, which would be matched dollar-for-dollar by a donor. A steady email campaign, Facebook posts, video, and a social ad budget worked wonders. And by December 31st, their fundraising goal was not only met, it was exceeded. The new truck is being ordered and FODAC is going to be able to reach twice as many people, delivering and picking up equipment for those living with disabilities. What a great first-run with an online-driven fundraising campaign. We can’t wait to see what FODAC will accomplish in the future!
It’s time for our viral post of the month and the winner this month is FODAC! A video for their FODAC delivery truck campaign reached over 22,ooo people and received over 11,000 views and the number continues to grow!
Check out what you are missing if you haven’t sent someone from your team to the GRM / UGA Social Media Bootcamps. Yep, they are back and the dates are already set January, March and April. Our Social Media Marketing Bootcamp
is a full-day, hands-on seminar that includes case-studies and interactive exercises to reinforce the information you will learn. Be sure to sign up today
Our success in social media is due in no small way to practicing the same fundamentals used in traditional ad campaigns … and not simply pushing out ‘posts’. Content (or creative) has always mattered. Greatly. More from our friend Patrick Scullin: www.EmpatheticAdman.com
When people can envision themselves in the setting… A recent post for The Kahala Hotel & Resort went viral, including 6,755 engagements. Cost per engagement was $0.02, versus travel & leisure industry average of $0.35. Breathtaking … both the view and the numbers!