Guide to owning
nikolaj birjukow, Managing Director,
Marketing and Content, O&M
Jeremy katz, worldwide editorial director, O&M
Adam kornblum, Social media director, O&M
Social Media/Content Director
Network of Tweeters
Make certain that at least some of the contributors have names/bylines/
reputations that are credible to the event and, ideally, that they can bring
in a substantial following of their own.
*Depending on the size of the event and your budget, you can double-up
one or more of these roles.
This plan is based on the assumption that your organization has a substantial social
presence. A reputation for thought leadership will smooth the path as well.
Before you promise brilliant
performance to your CEO,
figure out what
you are going to
"What do I want to achieve?"
"Who should I reach?"
"What value can I deliver?"
Build a hub and
agree on a hashtag
You can (and probably should) use an existing property
as the underlying engine for your hub.
Brand the hub, but make clear that it is about the event, not your brand.
You must adopt and maintain an editorial posture.
Your #hashtag should be clearly tied to both the event and your brand.
Don’t just send a bunch of folks over there with a fat T&E and good luck wishes.
Work from the published event agenda to plan out what is worth covering.
It’s impossible (and unwise) to cover everything, but it is essential to weigh in where
you can add value. Develop a theme or storyline that fits with your brand’s point-ofview or area of expertise and that of your event team.
Build in the flexibility to change on the fly.
For each item on your editorial calendar build templates for...
1. A single-page sharable infographic for Twitter and Facebook.
2. A deck for SlideShare and other placements.
Research which media outlets would be interested in covering the event
but may not be able to attend. Strike partnerships with them—you supply
exclusive articles/content, and they run it as editorial, not advertising. To
make this work, the writer of the piece must be a contributor the outlet
would want to publish anyway, and the writer must be coached to think of
him or herself as writing for the media outlet, not your brand. By setting
up this partnership, you are giving the writer editorial independence and
must stand behind that.
Precede event with
Seed the social sphere with magnetic content that conditions your
audience to look to you for valuable, perceptive content. Your aim is not
to show that you’re going to be objective. Rather it is to demonstrate how
worthwhile and enjoyable your point of view will be.
at Cannes 2013
- Listen for bias, agendas, and point of view.
- Listen for and extract the structure of the talk
- Accurately transcribe memorable lines/quotes.
- Be prepared to bail if it sucks. Spend your time and editorial resources
on something better, even if it wasn’t in your editorial calendar.
- Grab an interview if you can. Capture it on video, on audio, or even just
with good notes.
- Make sure to cover sessions/speeches from clients and influencers
- Don’t ask your reporter/writer to tweet the session s/he is covering.
Assign someone else.
- Pick up and add your own spin to tweets from others. Don’t just
- Use your #hashtag and the event’s #hashtag in every tweet.
- Use one account and give multiple people access (and VERY
- Use one #hashtag and one account for multiple Instagrammers.
- Treat it as editorial—tell the story with the pictures and people you
- Since you’ve identified your interview subjects in advance (see
editorial calendar), reach out to them through personal and professional
contacts to set up interviews (but be open and in place for serendipitous
- Have a videographer in place to shoot the video.
- Ask 4 questions at most—aim for 3 minutes of final video—and minimize
editing by being fluid and controlling the interview.
- Your interviewer should be on camera and be visually appropriate for the
event and your brand.
Write quick and
- Don’t delay on writing up each session/talk. Your reporters/writers
should aim to have a 600-1000 word piece done within 2 hours.
- Lay out the main argument of the session/talk, but add your own
experience, examples, perspective, and voice. Aim for the provocative,
not the anodyne.
- If there were discrete points made, lay them out as bullets for the reader.
- If not, draw out your own points, and make them stand out in your piece.
Fill in your
- Using the piece you just finished as a guide, take the individual points
you made and turn them into provocative headlines. Write up short,
catchy summaries of each point. Place an emphasis on direct quotes
from the speakers. This is the text you will use to fill your infographic and,
in slightly longer form, your slide deck.
- You can also create an infographic and slide deck from a presentation
that you did not write about. In that case, use quotes sourced from
Twitter and any of your own sources to create an infographic and slide
deck that puts your POV on the session.
- Remember when you were a kid in school and the writing teacher told
you to, “say what you’re going to say, say it, say it again”? While that’s
terrible writing advice (once you’ve graduated from high school, that is),
it’s exactly what you need to do when covering an event. Plan, write/
post, and recap.
- Have a universal recap asset prepared for each night of the event, and
fill it in with something other than the generic what-I-did-last-summer
drivel that your competitors are spewing out. Develop a voice and a
strong point of view, both of which you can combine with a thematic look
back at what the day held.
- Don’t just talk about what you’ve already written. Instead, draw the day
together for readers, linking to your posts and maybe even those of your
competitors. Bring in outside references and ideas. Put your perspective
on the day, and then put your perspective into a larger context. Your
job here is to show your readers not just what happened but why they
- Post articles, video interviews, and daily recaps to your hub and social
channels as soon as they are done
- Submit your content to the media partners
- Tweet shamelessly about your articles, infographics and slide decks.
Retweet anyone who mentions your work.
- Engage with your supporters and detractors, and use your existing body
of thought leadership (if it exists) to buttress your points.
- Enlist the support of those who you are covering by sending them the
links to your work. If you’ve done a great job writing up the sessions,
they’re likely to share it enthusiastically through their own social
- Spend a few bucks promoting your tweets, articles,
infographics, and slide decks. And spend your influence (and
a few favors) getting your material reblogged or reposted
everywhere you can.
"Ogilvy remained leagues
ahead in the hashtag
126 million impressions.
#1 most retweeted
tweet for all of
of Retweets for
13,972 owth: 576%
Shared content on
Source: Facebook insights
on our thought leadership pieces