How to Assemble a Social Media Team

Social Media Team

November 22, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

Social Media Team

Social Media Team

 As more and more businesses begin to accept the fact that they can no longer avoid implementing a Social Media Component to their operations, many are left guessing or are  improperly advised as to how to structure and roll out this Transformation.  If you understand your industry, the task of assembling your Corporate Social Media team becomes increasingly easier(refer to chart) to build out.[Hewko]

When you and your Company decide to incorporate a Social Media Strategy for your Organization, there are a few things you should first consider and plan before you take the plunge… and “yes,” in some instances, there may be no need to build out a Social Media presence at all.  These situations are few and far between and almost every business can benefit from some sort of Social Media exposure.

Do this First!

  1. Aligning your Corporate Goals and not your Social Media Goals = targeting the right audience and increasing the Breadth and Depth of your messaging as it relates to your business objectives and not your ego.
  2. Be prepared – take the time to consult with an Agency or Professional service to Plan, Structure, Create, Educate and then Deploy your Social Media efforts.  There are many things to consider before you haphazardly enter the Social Media Arena and they look exactly like the “Best Practices” you would expect to see in your regular day to day operations.  Governance, education (all staff), policies etc should all be seen to first if you want to roll out a professional presence.
  3. Trust your team – Things move very fast in Social Media and if you have taken the above steps first and are starting to see the results you have been told to expect, NOW would be a good time to scale this effort to all other areas of your business.  Well chosen and trained staff will be able to not only synchronize this effort to all areas of your business but they will effectively grow your Frequency, Reach and Yield far beyond your expectations, if left to do their jobs.[Owyang]

If your Organization has the ability to assemble a Social Media team (in this case we are looking at 5 people), then the following team structures should be considered for your course of business.  It is important to note that 5 people or more is an above average number for most businesses today that are compiling a Social Media team and most businesses will have to work with a much smaller number.  In any case, at the core of our three industries – Businesses, Government Organizations and Non-Profits there are two common positions that should be enlisted.

  1. Social Strategist:  This is not a job for a junior person in your organization that happens to know about Social Media.  This may seem obvious but we see it all too often.  This is a critical “Top Down”  role for some one that is a Leader, understands business (more importantly your business) and is accountable to the goals and targets of moving your organization forward.  This person must be able to communicate with your executive team(s) and relay the business objectives to the balance of the Social Media team.
  2. Community Manager:  This person should be your strongest asset for “customer-facing” roles who understands your Brand and your Social Media Community.  Often times this person will be juggling multiple tasks and has to do so balancing “customer needs” with “business needs”.  A combination of soft and hard skills are required to pull this position off effectively and if your organization is successful in developing such an asset, you would be wise to train as many people on your team or in your Organization to carry out the tasks your Community Manager.[Owyang]

Now that we have taken a quick look at the two essential roles that should be at the core of your team, let’s take a look at some more specific positions you need to consider when hiring for your respective industry.  And for the purpose of this article, the assumption has been made that there is already an in-house person or team to attend to you Web Development needs as most businesses today operate with some sort of web presence and internal tech to support your day to day business operations.

Businesses:  Will want to have a Business Unit Liason – some one that can speak to and interact with the various departments in your company to plan, develop and carry out each of the various departments’ specific needs.  This person will be responsible for making sure your Social Media plan is in line with what your company’s objectives.  You will also want a Social Analyst to track and measure your Social Media efforts.  It is vital to know the effect and reach your Social Media presence is having on your business.  This role will allow you to know exactly what is or is not working so you can either fix or push in the appropriate areas.  Lastly, you will want to consider an Agency Partner to assist you in areas you are not equipped to handle.  This industry is in a constant state of flux and aligning yourself with an Agency Partner will give your company an edge over your competition.  Agencies come fully equipped to deliver in all areas of your business needs and if you can find an agency that produces your desired results on time and on budget they are an invaluable component to your organization.

Non-Profits:  Will want to enroll the services of a Content Strategist that will be responsible for streamlining and coordinating a uniform message and strategy across all areas of your organization.  A consistent delivery of your content that has been well planned will help lead your audience through your funnel producing your desired effect of your organizations objectives.  Add to this grouping a Social Media Manager who will be the driving force of your Social Media plan that is responsible implementing the projects laid out by your Content Strategist… think of the two positions as Architect and Foreman – your Social Media Manager is the Foreman that gets the project built and implemented utilizing your team members and the plan that has been created.  And the same core members of the team are also essential in planning a Social Media Team for Non-Profits – Social Strategist, Community Manager and Agency Partners for the same reason previously mentioned.

Government Organizations:  When we look at the graph above, the position of Education Manager is the only unique position we have not discussed.  Your Education Manager’s job in your organization is to build, train, instruct the various personnel/assets within your organization to carry out your Social Media efforts.  Systematically training and developing your staff to take on and participate in a meaningful way within your Social Media efforts.  Please note the other overlapping members of this team from the graph above.

As the need to address Social Media Implementation grows, more and more employers will be looking for candidates that come to market with some if not most of the skills and tools discussed in the above mentioned roles and positions.  In a very short period of time it is likely that the roles discussed above will be titled in a very different way as Social Media practices become a core set of skills everyone will be accustom to.  I hope your organization can utilize the outline for building out your respective Social Media Team.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to use the message box below.


Work Cited:

Hewko, G. Img. Social Media Team, Web. 21, November 2013

“Jeremiah Owyang.” Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang Social Media Web Marketing Breakdown Corporate Social Media Team Comments., 9 Sept. 2012. Web. 21 Nov. 2013.


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How to Choose the Right Content Marketing Plan Outline

Marketing Plan Outline

November 20, 2013 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Marketing Plan Outline

Marketing Plan Outline

Businesses, Government and Non-Profits… Getting your Content Marketing Plan Outline right is easier than you think…

When you set out to create a Content Marketing Plan or Strategy for your organization you need to understand that your Content is the Engine that drives your engagement with your ideal audience.  Create and deliver Content of value from a human perspective that your audience will want to read, share, collect and spread.  When you can create this kind of content, your audience will follow you where ever you lead them, stand up for your cause, vote for you at the poles or buy and endorse your product or service.

There are four basic strategies to consider when deciding what would serve your organizations’ objectives best.  There is the Layered Narrative or Story Telling approach,  Micro Targetting, Seeking and Converting and finally Social Customer Service.  Choose the most suitable structure for your professional organization and start to learn how to reach your audience.  In many cases it is necessary to use complimenting approaches to tell your organization’s story, so don’t be afraid to use a combination of any of the four strategies to get your message out.

Content is not just blog posts and white papers.  As part of your organization’s strategy, you need to know what your audience responds to best.  It could be a Tweet, a video on Youtube, a paid ad, podcsast, pictures, articles, white papers or any combination of the previous.  Building the right content marketing plan outline or strategy will provide you and your organization with the focus to succeed in giving your audience what they want and in turn,  they will give you what you want… their attention.

A Layered Narrative approach with Micro Targeting seems to work best for Nonprofit Organizations as a combined delivery strategy for telling and relaying their story.  By sharing your story with well written and compelling posts that evoke an emotional connection to your cause you will compel your audience to want to engage.  Use pictures and videos to do the heavy lifting for you.  We are visually wired and when we see suffering, our natural reaction is usually empathetic and over time, proactive.  People want to help, they want to get involved.  As long as they feel connected to a cause worth caring for. They will want to help.

Businesses too can adopt a Layered Narrative approach coupled with a Seeking and Converting tact.  Seeking and Converting allows you as the business to follow your prospect through a number of different points along the path to purchase.  Following along with your prospect’s choice of what they choose to follow allows you as the business to direct the conversation to influence and persuade your prospect through your sales funnel.  Add to that a compelling story describing a  scenario of what position your prospect was in before your product or service, during the use of your product and service and where they are today because of your product or service and you will have demonstrated the potential of what you have to offer prospective customers.

Governments will benefit best by employing a Micro Targeting approach to their content marketing plan outline or strategy .  Providing content to your audience in this way will allow you and your organization to effectively deliver your message as it is focused and targeted.  It will allow you to lead the conversation and help to convert and persuade your community.  Adding polls and surveys that align with your message will not only help to lead your audience but it will also provide valuable data for your organization to build content, revise your approach or promote what is already showing as effective results.  Micro Targeting to audiences of Government organizations is an effective and timely means to correspond with your audience.

I would also like to point out that our perception of the online world of search, content and reach is skewed for big Government, Business and Nonprofit as the level of targeting our audience is in the hands of Big Data and those that can afford it.  If your company can afford it, there are companies like Acxiom, Blue Kai, TargusInfo, Experian and several others that can not only cut through the noise but can deliver your exact target market on a silver platter with the proverbial apple in mouth for the right amount.  I know we are going a little off topic but I do want you as the reader to know that, although we are told content is King… it is King because the more data that is produced, it will infinitely tighten the Loop of the Filter Bubble we all step into when we make our first click….[Pariser]

If that sounded a little obscure or possibly intriguing please feel free to leave a comment below to ask me more about the Filter Bubble and Big Data and I will follow up.


Work Cited: Digital image. Coursera. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2013.
Pariser, Eli. The Filter Bubble. London: Penguin Group, 2012. Print.

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The Importance of Visuals in Social Communication

Visuals in Social Communication

November 13, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

Visuals in Social Communication

Visuals in Social Communication

If you want to effectively deliver your message today… you need to understand the importance of Visuals in Social Communications!

“Did you know humans process images 60,000 times faster than text? Or that people remember only 20% of what they read alone, compared to 80% which they see!”(Clementi)

Well don’t feel bad because this was news to me too and then I started to do a little more research into the matter to see just exactly what was going on.

As it turns out, we as human beings are visually wired for survival.  The need to see what is happening around us served to keep us fed and to keep us alive and any one working in Social Media today knows that things really haven’t changed all that much when it comes to giving your audience what they want.

We all remember writing those epic blog posts of a thousand words or sometimes more, to then be abbreviated by our Facebook posts and shortened once more to our Tweets, now at 140 characters and still people just don’t respond nearly as well as they do to Rich Media.  So let’s take a look at the importance of visuals in social communication.

  • Facebook, photos are ‘Liked’ more than twice as often as text updates, and some 700 videos are shared on Twitter each and every minute.
  • 700 Youtube videos are uploaded and shared every minute.
  • 60% of consumers are more likely to consider or contact a business whose images appear in local search results.
  • 37% increase in engagement is experienced when Facebook posts include photographs.
  • Pinterest generates the 4th largest amount of web traffic worldwide.
  • Engagement on Instagram is 10 times greater than on other social media platforms. (Clementi)

That fact is, “a picture is worth more than a 1000 words“.  People respond, connect and retain far better when given the choice between text and visual.  I would much rather watch a visually compelling documentary than have to read about the topic – for the longest time I thought I was just lazy, turns out – I’m supposed to process information better this way.  What a relief.  I do spend more time imagining myself with a Brand’s product and how I would use it when I see a picture or video of it.  Visualizing leads me to imagining, which turns into feeling or developing an emotion towards everything that image or video had initiated.

Truth be told, I do enjoy that same process when reading a good book but we are talking about Social Media Marketing in this case and so we need to understand that delivering our message as Marketers to our audience needs to be delivered in the quickest and most effective manner that our audience is going to positively respond to.  As our devices advance, our interactions with them seem to cause us to act more instinctively as opposed to cognitively.  The science behind Social Media Marketing is advancing at a rapid pace and the predictability of the consumer is increasingly becoming more and more refined.  Visual Communication and Rich Media taps all of us at our most instinctive core and so if you  want to really move your audience, my advice to you is, “Get Visual!”  


Work Cited:

1. Clementi, Justine. “The Importance of Visual Communication.” Red PR Public Relations The Importance of Visual Communication Comments., 2013. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.

2. Moritz, Donna Moritz. The Shift to Visual Social Media – 6 Tips for Business [Infographic]. Digital image. Socially Sorted. Http://, 15 Dec. 2012. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.

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How to Engage People on Social Media

How to Engage People on Social Media

November 13, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

How to Engage People on Social Media

How to Engage People on Social Media

Are you having are hard time trying to understand how to engage people on Social Media platforms effetively?

Could using a few simple tactics to engage be a game changer for you on Social Media?

Remembering how things used to be done could just be the easiest way for all of us to excel in this digital age, especially when it comes to connecting on Social Media Platforms…


Now, I certainly was not around at the time this photo was taken but I am old enough to understand how important it was to be social, embrace my community, share equally, have manners and respect for others and treat people the way I wanted to be treated.  Before this digital revolution and global community took off, people understood that word of mouth was the most effective way of spreading the word about, well… everything.

If you were a local business owner, you took pride in delivering the best service or product you could because in your city, town, village or neighborhood, one bad experience from a single customer could spread like wildfire simply by word of mouth and in no time at all you could lose your customer base to the shop across town.  A sense of pride in what you represented parlayed into accountability and more importantly a mutual respect between business owner and customer… who more times than not were very much connected on a personal level to the goings on of each others lives.  This is the type of relationship we should all be striving for when we aim to connect and engage on Social Media.  Embrace the opportunity to have a two way conversation with your customers.  Listen to what they are telling you, as in this day and age, these people are your partners and you should treat them as such.

As an individual back then, business was done on a handshake and having “Face” meant something.  You couldn’t hide and were taught not to… “Say what you mean and mean what you say“, actually made you think before you spoke or acted.  Consider this as “self filtering” and take the time to truly think before you post because once you have posted something to your Social Media Networks it is there for all to see, so make it count.  Being helpful, respectful and timely in your communications will demonstrate to your community that you are listening and that you do care.  Engage with them sincerely on a personal level and leave the Marketing Messages for your Landing Pages…  If your not solving a problem, graciously accepting or giving accolades or legitimately trying to understand your customer better… save it for your website.

Find your community on the Social Media Platforms that they have decided to be on.  Listen to what is being said about you, your business, your product or service first.  Then respectfully join the conversation by adding value.  Answer or ask questions to initiate and direct the conversation.  This is your community and they want to see leadership… not a Dictatorship.  And if you just aren’t sure  how to proceed take a lesson from Hemingway –

How to Engage People on Social Media

How to Engage People on Social Media

I really hope that everyone that has taken the time to read this post slows down just a bit and spends some time truly being Social on which ever Social Media platform they choose… and although I spend my days on just about every Social Media Platform (online), my favorite is my front porch, around 6pm, with cold one in hand, catching up with my neighbors and saying hello to anyone that stops to pat my dog… engage – community – social – sharing – it’s all there and I don’t even need an internet signal.

ps – I want to know what your favorite Social Media Platform is, so take a minute and drop it in the comment box…. Thanks!




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Social Media Insights – Klout vs. Kred Podcast

Klout vs. Kred

November 8, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By


Klout vs. Kred

Klout vs. Kred




Are you a Social Media Marketing Professional?

Are you up to date on Kred and Klout?

If you are looking for the hard and fast on these two relatively new Social Media Marketing Influence Measurement tools, then I suggest you take a minute and strap in for a this short but highly charged Podcast on Kred and Klout.

You will get an easy to understand, no nonsense review of what each of these two platforms due, how they deliver that information to you and whether or not either of them are worth your time exploring…  Let me just say this, “I certainly had one opinion going into this and have come away with a completely different view… I wonder if you will too?”

Thanks for listening and don’t forget to comment, “Like” and share – because as one of my professors likes to say, “sharing is caring!”

Ya gotta love the big “B”


Work cited:

Levy, Scott. “Klout Vs. Kred: Which, If Any, Is Better For Your Business?” Forbes. Forbes Magazine, 04 Mar. 2013. Web. 07 Nov. 2013.

Hewko, Geoff. “Klout vs. Kred”. Img. Web. 3. Nov. 2013

27971_bcjordan_youareontheinternet. Web. 3. Nov. 2013

Shah, B. “Sharing is caring”. Web. 7 Nov. 2013






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Simms Wading Boots – G4 Rivershed Consumer Review

simms wading boots

November 1, 2013 | Posted in Fly Fishing | By


simms banner

This is an exercise in learning how to properly describe to Youtube/Google – what your video is actually about.

As you know, Google does not see video and so it is important to show Google what it wants to see which is text.  That is why you transcribe the dialogue from your video post and put it into the description.  Google wants to be able to understand all spoken languages to the point where typing text into a search becomes unnecessary.  We can already see this in action today with some of the services provided.  For this post we were told to either “pay” to have our videos transcribed or manually retype our dialogue into our Blog posts… we were not instructed to put them into the description of our video posts for Youtube, which is really what you should be doing.

I found that if you go into Youtube’s “Caption” settings, you can pull a time stamped transcript right from Youtube.  It then let’s you download it into a text editor (I used Notepad) so you can rework it into a somewhat legible form of what you had said in your video for the hearing impaired and Google to follow along with… still not sure why we were told to pay for a service to transcribe our videos for us.  Anyway, below is an example of the transcript from the above video.  As you read through it you will see that it is not perfect but it is close…. and more importantly, there is textual content for Google to index.  Feel free to watch and read along in two separate windows if you like…

 – “Hi and thanks for joining me today…

Today we’re going to be talking about Simms wading boots, were actually going to  be

reviewing the g4 Rivershed with the Vibrams souls and this is not

going to be your typical fresh out of the box, new pair of boots

let’s take a look at them, review… because there’s lots of videos online

that you can take a look at and see exactly what these

boots are like new and this product review is my own personal consumer review on the

boots that I’ve now owned for two seasons… and in case you

were not aware of what the boots look like, than these are them, the Simms g4 Riversheds are a

pretty decent sturdy boot but then again, like I said these boots

are not new and hence the review.

These boots have probably been out about 30 times with

roughly five hours to six hours a day on them…

and so we’re looking at about 150 hours of use

give or take and I just want to let

everyone know what the durability, fit and feel and usability is like.

So let’s start with fit and feel. So I’m a  size 11 and the boots are  true to fit

and there is still a reasonable amount of  toe room, so that you’ve got your

waders with your neoprene booties on, as well as a pair of liner socks on and

wading Sox to keep your feet warm….and so there seems to be a sufficient
amount of room anyway.

and as I said  I’m an  11D, so it’s a pretty
average size foot and I would probably move up a half
size if I could but

they just weren’t available in half
sizes at the time I bought these boots…

and the toe box on these shoes

are quite good and stubbing your toe is farely normal and

these have come in handy more than once…
and so I’m pretty happy about that. Again the weight of the boot is

farely reasonable… I do walk and Wade as opposed to

fish from a boat, so I’m constantly on my
feet and do a fare bit of hiking into my favorite spots and so they make
a farely good hiking boot and

also a farely decent wading boot… lots of
support throughout the whole boot with good lateral support.

So if anyone has got weak ankles these are a tough boot

for getting you through you know a days worth
of wading and

so all in all I, think I’m pretty happy
with the boot, aside from the fact that

if you look at the separation I’m starting to see
throughout the boot…

it runs on both boots and all around the
boots.  I have had them in to be resoled and

you know it’s certainly do-able as a

but one that would be in vain I’m
afraid to say… simply because

the material that Simms has  chosen to

wrapped these boots in, is a rubberized
material that has

not only started to separate from the sole of the boot
but it’s actually cracked

straight through the boot as well… so much so, that you can

see that these are cracks that are actually not the separation of the soul…
that’s the boot itself that’s cracked.

And now that’s not something that can
be repaired.

It might be a warranty claim kind of
issue and Simms has a pretty solid warranty program, unfortunately I’m past my warranty

date and considering I’m in Canada and the

cost to mail them back down to
Bozeman, Montana to have them inspected and

possibly fixed or replaced is

pretty cost prohibative, so it’s just not something I’m
gonna be doing plus it gives me the

perfect excuse to run out and

try on the new  Boa Rivershed lace-up systems which are the
ratchet laces as opposed to the laces that
you saw on these… So there you go

that’s  my personal take on my
experience with the Rivershed… pretty solid boot, a little disappointed with the

materials that Simms choose to use to

build the boot out in, simply because a you
know the fact that you know that they’re
close to a three hundred dollar boot up here in Canada…

and I would have just like to have seen
a little more than two seasons worth to

use the boots before having to go out
and replace them

and if anyone is listening at Simms it seems
thats something to consider

before buildng out your next line of boots and
I hope I’m the only one that’s got that kind issue.

I hope everybody else that’s

got them enjoys them as much as I do and

thanks for tuning in.” –


I know it wasn’t a perfect transcription but it was close and as I said above “Google now has something to index” aside from the title, tags and basic description.  Remember, Google loves content!

I hope you enjoyed my review and this brief post.  If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to let me know below.




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Learning How to Use Google Analytics – SMD103

How to use Google Analytics

October 31, 2013 | Posted in Uncategorized | By

Do you want to learn how to use Google Analytics to improve your website rankings?

 Follow along with me as I learn how to use Google Analytics in an effort to increase my websites traffic, ranking and visibility…

Let me first start by saying I have had my website up for a short period of time and it is primarily used as a place to post my assignments for Seneca College’s course on Social Media Marketing.

The posts on my website are exercises in developing my abilities to produce content that is relevant to my assignments, optimized for Search Engines to see and to serve as items to be shared on the many platforms of Social Media that are used by Businesses, Government Organizations, Not for Profits and your everyday Social Media user… who by the way, are really the most important out of the four.

So let’s take a look at a screen shot of what my website is doing and then we can have a decent place to start to learn how to use Google Analytics to improve.

geoff hewko analytics Oct 2013


As you can see, we are starting with a clean baseline except for 1 visit… thanks Mom!  When learning how to use Google Analytics it’s important to know what we are looking at so we can figure out what we could be doing better, promote what is already working well, see who are visitors are and where they came from.  My website started off with a few posts that had no optimization, no keywords or keyword phrases selected for posts or pages and no action was taken to promote to any Social Media Platforms to let anyone searching for this type of content know where it could be found.  In other words, Google Analytics is clearly showing me that I need to go back to my posts and pages and assign effective keywords and optimize them correctly.  Once that has been done I can then share these pages and posts through my Social Media Networks.  In taking these two simple actions I will increase my chances to be found through Google’s Organic Search and also be able to direct my own stream of visitors from letting my Social Media Networks know where they can find this information.

Although there are no visitors to the site to speak of, it is important to at least discuss a few of the areas on your Google Analytics page.  The first thing we see is Visits.

Visits and Unique Visitors are not the same thing.  You are striving to gain as many new Unique Visitors (people new to your site in a measured timeframe) all the time in most cases but it could be equally as important to have a high number of visits to your website depending on the type of site or business you are in or operating.  Repeat customers coming back to your site to take an action.

Pageviews are the total number of pages seen, including if there are repeat pages viewed.

Pages/visit tells you the average number of pages that were viewed by visit and include repeat pages viewed.

Visit Duration lets you know how long the average visit to your site was.  Typically the longer you can keep a visitor on your site the better but that may not always be the case.  Your visitor may find exactly what they came for immediately and be off your site to do something else with that information.  In this case you will have provided an excellent user experience and can expect either a return visit from that person or possibly a referral to your site due to it’s effectiveness.

Bounce Rate indicates to you how quickly a visitor came to a page and then left without any further action taken.

% of New Visitors gives you an estimated idea of how many new people came to your website.

These are just the basic insights that Google Analytics provides you at first glance, a point of quick reference before you actually dive in deeper to track, measure and truly begin to understand who your visitors/audience really are, where they came from and what they want to see from your website.  Click the link for a more detailed explanation of how to use Google Analytics.

I will be going back over each page and post to add keywords to my content and make sure that they are correctly optimized so Google can index them correctly.  Then I will be promoting each post to my Social Media Networks and when there is an opportunity to comment on a related blog post that allows me to link one of my related articles, I will be adding my websites url and adding anchor text for my keyword phrase pointing it back to it’s related page.

Make sure you check back with me as I update my website and show you how my Google Analytics page has changed or feel free to add any comments or suggestions to help me improve this site.









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3 Hootsuite University Lecture Summaries to Review

Hootsuite University

October 28, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

Hootsuite University

Hootsuite University

Hootsuite University

Hootsuite University

Summary of 3 Videos From HootSuite University Lectures Series:

The three videos I chose to watch from the Hootsuite University Lecture series were:

  1. “Be Local Everywhere – Grow Your Online Community Globally” with Dave Olson.
  2. “5 Decisions that Drive Customer Loyalty” with Jeanne Bliss
  3. “Where Context Meets Content” with Gary Vaynerchuk

Be Local Everywhere – is a great place to start when you are trying to learn and understand the importance of connecting with your potential audience on a Global scale.  Here are some excellent tips to follow as you attempt to make those connections.

  • Always start with listening – you want to find as many mentions of you or your company as possible – including all misspellings or other possible references
  • Look for who the influencers or animators of those conversations are and connect with them by identifying who you are in relation to the conversation
  • Before you ask for anything it is important to start by giving something that is helpful or is something of value that contributes to the conversation
  • Always be respectful
  • Geo target your audience to ensure that you are going to be relevant to them
  • Be aware of the Time Zones, Cultural Differences and any other Social Differences that could affect how you and your message is perceived

Our customers are no longer anonymous today.  If you take the time, you can find out everything you need to know to about your customer in order to better serve them which ultimately will better serve you and your business.

5 Decisions That Drive Customer Loyalty – teaches us or should I say “reminds us” of what it truly means to be authentic.  When 22% of buyers today are influenced by traditional advertising and 78% from Social Media, this boils down to “How They Felt”.  Following these 5 tips will help you and your Business deliver your message authentically and build life time customer relationships by connecting with the emotionally.

  1. Believe – in your customer first and they will believe in you.  Start your relationship with trusting the fact that your customer is on your side as opposed to you convincing them why they should believe you.
  2. Clarity – we are all in business to make money but why are we in the businesses that we are in.  There is a higher purpose or reason behind why we choose our particular business and when you can clearly convey this sentiment to your customer you can truly make an authentic connection.
  3. Real – By being real or genuine and dropping your attempts to be slick or everything to everyone you will yield your true customers.  You are not going to have everyone as a customer… ever.  It is better to identify who your real customers are and serve them better.
  4. Be there – You have to be committed to your responsibility of servicing your customers.  On Social Media platforms today, it is imperative to be timely with customers trying to connect with you.  You aren’t always going to be able to solve their problem on the spot but the quicker you can acknowledge their attempt to connect with you shows them that you are there and are listening.
  5. Saying your sorry – Truly apologize when there has been a problem.  Do so with humility and remorse.  People can tell when you are not sincere.  Solve the problem and thank your customer for pointing out this issue.

A couple of other interesting take a ways from this lecture were to hire “memory makers” and not necessarily the most skilled or highest educated employees.  People truly connect with other people and not systems or procedures.  Put yourself through your company’s process first so you know exactly what your customer is seeing first hand.  And finally, get rid of all the things that just don’t work anymore or that don’t make sense.

Where Context meets Content – This video lecture echoes human kinds history of communicating through storytelling and how it translates into today’s role in Social Media.  We are witnessing the end of Traditional Media’s strangle hold it had on all of us in one-way conversations from advertisers to consumers.  Today’s marketplace revolves around a two-way conversation between advertiser and consumer and Gary’s analogy of “the deer having shotguns” sums this point up the best.  What is important to understand now is that each and every different Social Media Platform calls for a unique approach to the kinds of actions we take there.  What you do and say on Facebook would not be what you would do on Linkedin for example.

Understanding how your customers use each of these platforms and adopting an appropriate delivery for your message to them on each platform is vital.  The truth is that Social Media is still a relatively new medium of communication (about 10 years) but communication from one person to another has not changed.   Word of mouth marketing has historically been the best way grow your business over the centuries.  It is as true today with the only difference being that your reach which may have only been a neighbourhood or city just a few short years ago has now become the entire planet if you so choose.

I hope you have found these short summaries useful and are now ready to take on a new approach to interacting with your audience and communities on all the various Social Media Platforms that best suit you.  Practicing these simple techniques will undoubtedly set you apart from your competition and become easier to do as you grow your Social Media Presence.

If there is something I have missed that you would like to add, please feel free to comment below.

Cited Works:

Jeanne Bliss. 5 Decisions that Drive Extreme Customer Loyalty . Hootsuite University Lecture Videos. Web. May 2012. 28/10/2013

Gary Vaynerchuk. Where Context Meets Content. Hootsuite University Lecture Videos. Web. November 2012. 28/10/2013

Dave Olson. Be Local Everywhere: Growing Your Online Community. Hootsuite University Lecture Videos. Web. July 2012. 28/10/2013


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Defining Your Social Media Audience with Social Media Management

Social Media Management

October 23, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

Social Media Management

Social Media Management

With a little attention to Social Media Management you will have no problem defining your audience in Social Media.

Let’s take a look at three things a Business, Government Organization and Not for Profit should consider as they enter the world of Social Media Marketing…


Who Are They Already?

In an order to define your audience in Social Media Marketing it is necessary to first be able to identify them.  Traditionally, in whatever business segment your organization falls into, you already know or have a very good idea of who your audience is and it’s demographic.  This is an excellent place to start for any Organization to begin monitoring the various platforms in Social Media to know where and to understand how your target audience chooses to participate in Social Media.  By calling for your audience and identifying their choice of platform you can then identify and segment the level at which each member fits into your Social Media hierarchy.  Defining your overall audience also includes your community which are your strongest Relationships, Evangelists and your “who are these people” people.  From there you will  also have Connections, Acquaintances and Followers.  In my opinion, it is necessary to spend some time working on building a connection with these last three because you never know where your next major influencer is going to come from.(Jennex)(McKinsey)

Social Media Management calls for a clearly defined Social Media Policy in an effort to keep both Company and Participant engaged effectively…

Your Social Media Policy will guide you and your Organization in accomplishing its mission.  It is important to define your goals and objectives so you can lead the conversation in your Social Media Campaign.  Your audience wants leadership.  They have identified themselves as either “interested” in what you are doing or are already “buyers” of your ideology, product or service.  Your Policy should also provide transparency, privacy and security for all of its users.  And let us not forget to have measurable Analytics and Metrics to clearly identify areas that need improving or areas that are working well and need to amplified.(Macy)

Be prepared for the possibility of your audience defining or redefining you…

It is part of the implied deal you agree to when you transition from conventional marketing to electing to participate in what is to be a two way conversation (if you are listening to your audience) in Social Media Marketing.   Your audience should be seen as your partner in all that you do from here on out.  You and your organization can benefit in all areas of your business ranging from product development, better customer service, to what your position at the polls are or how you can make your next charity fundraiser better.  If you fail to pay attention to or acknowledge your audience, you run the risk of your audience determining your fate online in Social Media… It does happen.  Embrace the conversation and show your audience you are listening and do care.  Remember, you need them.  They will tell you what they want and if you are not prepared to give it to them they will go somewhere else to get what they need.




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Creating an Approach To Suit Your Needs – SMD102 – Business, Government & Non-Profit


October 13, 2013 | Posted in Social Media Engagement | By

When Companies  look to bring their presence to Social Media Platforms in an effort to keep up with today’s changing times, it is important to understand the basics we have gone through in the above Infograph.  This graph is by no means a comprehensive evaluation of all of the areas that need to be addressed but it is certainly a decent place for you to start.  If you have vetted your industry and qualified your intentions to be active in Social Media and are not already participating, then it is time for you join the conversation.  Your customers, constituents and contributors are already there and there is a good chance your competitors are too.

The truth is, if you are in business at any level, you cannot afford to not figure out a way to be present on one Social Media Platform or another.  There is probably ample reason for you to be present on several but it is for you to determine and decide which one(s) will be most effective.  Set Measurable goals.  Identify a core team within your organization to build from that is already active on Social Media.  Enroll those people in your organization that may not be on Social Media… provide training or in some cases be prepared to be trained yourself by those you least expect.  Just because it is called “Social Media”, doesn’t mean that those that participate in it have a clue as to what it means to be social.

Developing a Social Media Policy for you and your organization to follow will help to ensure continuity, good etiquette, positive and successful engagement.  Not having a Social Media Policy in place may leave the flood gates open to disaster from anyone in your organization.  Equally as important is a method or means to analyze your effectiveness online.  There are many ways to measure your success in Social Media, so setting clearly defined targets and measuring your performance in achieving them is vital.  There is always room for improvement.  The trick is to know what needs to be improved upon and doing it and what is working and amplifying it.

I hope this sheds some light on bringing your organization into the arena of Social Media Marketing and if I could leave you with just one more piece of information to consider it would be this, “Social Media is simple, but not easy!”[1]  But who ever said maintaining any relationship was easy.


Social Media Strategy Workbook: The 12-Step Guide to Creating Your Social Media Strateg

Moving from Stakeholder to Weaver: Social Media Strategy for Nonprofits

Social Media Strategy for Government Organizations

[1] MarketingSavant Group. “Digital and Social Media Marketing Planning Workbook”. N.d. Web. 13/10/13




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