Building Buzz Without a Budget
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A presentation on how The Nature Conservancy turned to the social news network Digg.com to build buzz and awareness for the launch of a suite of content focused on everyday green living tips. Other ...

A presentation on how The Nature Conservancy turned to the social news network Digg.com to build buzz and awareness for the launch of a suite of content focused on everyday green living tips. Other nonprofits can use digg.com too and see similar results, but they should be aware of the time investment and community research required for success.

This presentation was developed for the eMetrics conference held in Washington, DC from October 20-23, 2008.

You can learn more about Jonathon Colman at http://www.jonathoncolman.org/

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  • thanks, was so beneficial , would be very interested in creating a buzz for community engagement.
    www.almudawin.com
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  • very good example!!
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Building Buzz Without a Budget Presentation Transcript

  • 1. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Followers, Friends and Fans: Expanding Your Online Community A Case Study in Building Buzz… …Without a Budget Jonathon D. Colman Associate Director, Digital Marketing The Nature Conservancy: www.nature.org jcolman@tnc.org 206/343.4345 x368 Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #1 of 16
  • 2. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Case Study: Digg [Buzz-Building] Breaking news, video, and amazing content from all over the world — users find, post, and vote on the best of the web’s newest content. • 169th most popular site on the Web [ALEXA] • Over 22 million unique visitors/month [COMPETE] • 2.7+ million registered users [ESTIMATED AS OF JAN 2008; JOHN GRAHAM-CUNNING] • Largest age demographic: 18-34 years old (40% of total) [QUANTCAST] • Referred 234K visitors to nature.org for FY2008 Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #2 of 16
  • 3. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 With a large, well-connected audience, Digg’s “democratic” algorithm promotes diverse stories, niche news to its homepage Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #3 of 16
  • 4. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 The Nature Conservancy’s first entry into the “Green Living” genre: science-based tips from TNC staff and green bloggers Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #4 of 16
  • 5. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 “Green Living” ads are now mainstream on search engines, not just a niche market, which means a lot of competition = $$$ Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #5 of 16
  • 6. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 flickr: ricko Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #6 of 16
  • 7. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 No Time? No Money? No Problem! • Digg and social news can help you get the word out fast • Among the most popular sites on the web • Diverse audiences, not just kids in college • Free for you to use • Great at driving traffic as well as commentary Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #7 of 16
  • 8. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Our post on Digg earned enough votes to become “popular” and get elevated to the homepage where all Digg users could see it Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #8 of 16
  • 9. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Results: Social News Campaign on Digg 200 visitors/day “Typical” web feature on nature.org Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #9 of 16
  • 10. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Results: Social News Campaign on Digg 20,000 visitors/day 200 visitors/day “Typical” web feature “Typical” visitors/day on nature.org on nature.org Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #10 of 16
  • 11. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Results: Social News Campaign on Digg 20,000 visitors/day 18,000+ visitors in one hour 300+ visitors per second 200 visitors/day “Typical” web feature “Typical” visitors/day Everyday on nature.org on nature.org Environmentalist Digg traffic Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #11 of 16
  • 12. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Results: Social News Campaign on Digg 76,000+ visitors in one day 20,000 visitors/day 18,000+ visitors in one hour 300+ visitors per second 200 visitors/day “Typical” web feature “Typical” visitors/day Everyday on nature.org on nature.org Environmentalist Digg traffic Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #12 of 16
  • 13. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 But Isn’t This Just “Empty” Traffic? • Yes: High bounce rate and relatively few actions taken on our site • And: Motivated much engagement on Digg: 2,200+ total “diggs” and over 600 total comments • Created “spillover” success in other social networks • Drove many unsolicited links from other web sites and blogs (50+) • Inspired links from elite sites (1,000+ authority in Technorati), inc. The Huffington Post, Cisco.com, Mental Floss, and LockerGnome • Increased organic search engine findability, positioning Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #13 of 16
  • 14. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 So: How Much Work/Time Did This Take? • Less than 5 minutes to create the actual Digg post • Plus 2 hours to publicize the post to Digg contacts (via Digg “shouts” to friends, Facebook, Twitter, instant messaging, etc.) Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #14 of 16
  • 15. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 So: How Much Work/Time Did This Take? • Less than 5 minutes to create the actual Digg post • Plus 2 hours to publicize the post to Digg contacts (via Digg “shouts” to friends, Facebook, Twitter, instant messaging, etc.) • Plus 1.5 years to build up a credible, authoritative Digg profile • Becoming a good member of the community, learning best practices • Building reliable contacts, voting for their stories • Creating network of links to/distribution for our posts • Posting content other than nature.org stories (i.e., not spamming) Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #15 of 16
  • 16. eMetrics | Washington, DC 2008 | A Case Study in Building Buzz… Without a Budget October 21, 2008 Conclusions on the Value of Social News • Social news is not always the right tool for all marketing scenarios • Complements a strategy leveraging traditional online tactics • Success generates short-term (and huge) bursts of web traffic • Engagement on social news sites will be high, but will be low on your site (as measured in length of session, conversions, etc.) • Becoming popular can drive coverage on elite blogs, web sites driving many new links, audiences to your web site • Can take time to build up credibility and authority in the network • Offers short- and long-term benefits for search engine positioning Jonathon D. Colman: Associate Director, Digital Marketing at The Nature Conservancy Slide #16 of 16