Social media in 2013 is all about ‘more’ as Edelman Digital report, “More friends, more fans, more brands, more stories” People are generating and consuming more information through social media on more devices than ever before.
In order for brands to gain a presence and engage with fans they have to develop creative captivating content that stands out from their competitors. 2013 will see brands using analytics and paid media to ensure their content reaches the maximum audience possible, incorporating not just their own content but user sourced creative content.
Brands will need to create social ‘events’ that give their fans the experiential experience that drives brand engagement and creates individual stories that interact with the brand. The Edelman report sets out 10 key points, heres a brief recap of them.
1. Mobile - More people access Facebook on mobile than PC, in fact a report showed that 61% of smartphones are used to access the internet. Second screen is revolutionising entertainment TV with 85% of viewers use a second screen while watching TV.
2. Paid, Earned & Owned – Converged media is where all three meet up. Sponsored Posts in the newsfeed have 46 times the Click Through Rate and attract the visual attention at 92% of users, as opposed to the market place ads on the right. Sponsored Posts give brands the exposure to high-performing content so that it can increase engagement.
3. Amplification – Use your fans to create the content that excites them, they are a brands best ambassadors. Those that generate the most engagement on Instagram are shared on to the brand’s 1.5 million Facebook page. VW are using fan amplification and even launched a website, Why VW, that celebrates fan pictures and stories with side-by-side original VW content
4. Visual Storytelling – As of August 2012 there were 300 million daily photo uploads on Facebook, Instagram even more at 5 billion. Visual storytelling is evolving through mobile as technology enables more and more creative visualisation. Facebook says 82 % of its traffic is focused on just 8 % of its photos. Its cold storage facility is designed to create a more efficient way to store those photos that are not in heavy rotation, so that you never lose the ability to look at them, a bit like looking through an old photo album stored in the loft.
5. Creative Content – As of June 2012 there were 1 billion Facebook posts daily and the amount of content being published is growing exponentially, there is no way that we can absorb so much data, filters are used so in order for brands to connect with consumers they need to use increasingly creative content, brands also need to be reactive as show by Oreo at the Superbowl blackout
6.Keep it light – Fans on average see 50 posts per year from a brand (based on 1-2 posts per day with a 8-10% attention rate on Facebook) If all your messages are ‘Buy, Buy, Buy’ fans will not remain fans for long, to keep your fans mix your content with related stories that are relevant.
7. Experiential Events – the web is great, but theres something about experiencing a unique social event that the internet can not replace, where brands can use the social media to link to the event and drive interest amongst fans, they can build the event into something memorable and leaving a legacy for the company to draw on. 8 million people watched Redbull Stratos, the event was fuelled not just on the actual day of the jump but for months before it and gave Redbull worldwide exposure.
8. Big Data – The most important part of ‘Big Data’ isn’t in fact Data, it’s people. Brands are able to connect to people as people by overlapping the various layers of social profiles, thereby creating personalised data enabling brands to tailor marketing and advertising.
9. Keep up with the Changing Search Game – As the use or algorithms in search grow increasing sophisticated social media and social for search are increasingly, mutually beneficial and essential elements of any integrated campaign. Social media content drives initial scale and engagement. Engagement triggers serve as a signal that boosts organic search results. Additionally, a robust and rich content strategy drives search results. If developed correctly, the content designed for search optimization also integrates with and amplifies social.
10. Brandplay – Have some fun, enjoy interacting with your fans and they will enjoy interacting with you . Brandplay isn’t just for consumer brands. Juniper, a B2B networking solutions provider, isn’t afraid to have a little fun with its Facebook fans. From IT-friendly ecards, to valentines and haikus embedded in lines of code, the brand is engaging its fans using the language, devices and humor that they enjoy. It works. The engagement rate on Juniper’s Facebook page is higher than Intel, Citrix, Zappos, Old Spice, Lady Gaga and Starbucks.
All of these steps build on each other to create an all round social strategy, do you think there are any that were not covered?