Community Is King


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Community Is King

  1. COMMUNITY IS KING Reach Your Dream Audience through Social Media BRENDAN GAHAN
  2. This is not a list of 83 Social Media Tips I’m assuming you’re two steps deep into the basic communication framework: 1 2 You have a deep understanding of your audience You understand their hopes and fears, you know what content they respond to, where they like to spend time, and their biggest pain points. Ideally you’ve actually spoken to a few people in your target market. You know the story you want to tell You have a strong grasp on what you want to say and how you want to say it. You’ve paid attention to common themes and insider language. You know the narrative. 2 OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  3. First, get to know media types You start with the three categories of media that are possible to generate online, categorized like this: Earned Media Buzz you generate (i.e., bloggers talking about you) Owned Media Distribution through the channels you operate Paid Media Ads/awareness you buy 3 Let’s dig into each.
  4. Generate earned media step-by-step Within the earned media space and engaging online influencers, take a three-step approach: Identify Relevant Targets Establish Incentive Engage Effectively (i.e., writers, influencers, bloggers in the space) (i.e., what the benefit is to them) (i.e., reach out to them via email, phone, etc.) We’ll break out the individual tasks contained in each of these steps. 4 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  5. How to identify targets IDENTIFY If you know your audience well, you have a good idea of what they’re reading online. 1 3 Start with sites you know. Identify the contributors. 2 Identify additional sites. Visit the site blogroll. Blogs cross promote each other. STARTING OUT? Search for blogs by using any of these sites as a jumping off point: 5 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  6. Collect data points along the way IDENTIFY Collect data on targets you’ve identified in an Excel or Google doc. Break this out into five basic sections (tweak to suit your needs): - Name URL Contact info Why they're relevant Engagement (comments, shares, likes, etc per post) Reach (size of their total audience) IMPORTANT: Whittle it down to the 5-10 most relevant outlets. RELEVANCE OVER REACH 6 A blog with 10M unique monthly visitors that covers a range of topics is less valuable than one that has 1K unique monthly visitors and covers your topic exclusively.
  7. SIDENOTE IDENTIFY The Power of YouTube YouTube creators drive massive engagement– oftentimes more so than blogs. Get started like this: 170 YOUTUBE CHANNELS PASSED 1 MILLION SUBSCRIBERS in the first half of 2013 1. Search YouTube See who’s already evangelizing your brand, product, topic. ...there are now 317 2. Get Contact Info Check the ‘About’ section of their channel. CHANNELS with more than 1 MILLION SUBSCRIBERS You can also search a directory of creators by their channel statistics at 7 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  8. How to establish an incentive INCENTIVIZE When you reach out to people you want to answer two questions: 1 Why should this person share my story? 2 Ideally you help your target achieve their goals (which requires you know what they are in the first place). ! What value can I offer to them and their audience? In a similar vein, make sure your offering actually helps the audience. Make it concrete. Make it easy to say yes. Can you offer an exclusive trial of your product, interviews with the founders? What can you do to build a relationship and make it worth their time to check out your product or content? 8 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  9. How to engage effectively ENGAGE Bloggers, YouTubers, thought leaders, and influencers get pitched constantly. Here’s how to engage them: Have a Pre-Existing Relationship Gets the best results. PHONE TAG Get an Introduction Search Facebook and LinkedIn to see if you have mutual connections. Cultivate the Relationship Comment on their blog, interact with them on Twitter—add value to them over time. Cold Pitch Make it as custom as possible. Never create a template email and spam people. Use their actual name, call out specifics of their work. Tease what you've got in your email, and escalate to a phone call as soon as possible. This allows you to become a person and build a relationship vs. remain just another email in their inbox. 9 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  10. SIDENOTE ENGAGE Pitching can get tricky To make pitching easier, here’s a template. Hi (Name), PITCH 101 I wanted to reach out because [insert brief explanation of what you’re doing – for ex, launching an album]. I thought it might be relevant for [site] because [insert example of similar stories covered by blogger in the past – for ex, they covered a similar artist and the post performed well]. Any chance you’d think it would be a good fit? If you need help framing your pitch or coming up with ideas, I highly recommend you read these two posts on how to pitch a blogger: I’d love to hop on the phone [insert time] if you think its something you’d be interested in [insert reference to incentive – for example, you could potentially provide a sneak peak to the demo before launch]. Just let me know! How to Pitch Bloggers – Make it a Win/Win/ Win Situation Best, [insert name] 20 Tips for Pitching Bloggers 10 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  11. Now we’ll discuss owned media When interacting with target online communities, e.g., through Facebook, Twitter, or a blog, you can break things out into two categories: Proactive Communications Events/initiatives you can plan for. Reactive Communications Responding to the community, current events, or whatever is happening in real time. 11 Let’s hack away at this....
  12. Being a proactive communicator On the proactive side you'll want to create content calendars highlighting: Relevant holidays Events Product launches Industry milestones Then, you’ll want to plan what you're going to say. Click here for a great example of a content calendar template you can use. 12 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  13. Learning to react in real time On the reactive side, create guidelines outlining the tone for the social media profiles: Do’s and don’ts on what can be said Who is allowed to say it When responses should go out How to resolve conflicts Create an escalation chart (if you've got a client that will need to weigh in on some approvals). Use a community management tool to track fan engagement and schedule posts. Examples for Facebook & Twitter: Hootsuite Buffer App 13 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  14. And now paid media (if you have budget) To distribute content quickly, paid media can be a great option. Across Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, buy directly through the platform with small scale buys (i.e., less than $5k-10k). Links to the ad platforms: Twitter Ads Facebook Ads YouTube Ads Each platform has self-serve advertising platforms with varying complexity. Facebook Twitter and YouTube COMPLEXITY 14 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  15. It’s important to track your progress Start out with some of the great free options: PeopleBrowsr to get emails of mentions around key Facebook Insights to get emails of mentions around key words that you choose. Google News Alerts to get emails of mentions around key words that you choose. Topsy to get emails of mentions around key Wildfire social monitoring tool is great if you want to do competitive benchmarking. Each of the above services include a wealth of getting started materials and best practice case studies. 15 INTRO OVERVIEW EARNED OWNED PAID TRACKING
  16. And that’s it. Simple right? Truth is, the basic stuff is simple—marketers, pundits, gurus, and “ninjas” overcomplicate this form of communication. But: simplicity does not equate ease. Successfully executing these tactics takes a great deal of time and effort. However, with this information you can begin to generate awareness and understand what’s working for you. REMEMBER Stick with the fundamentals: Where is my audience spending time? How can I provide value? How do I engage my existing community? Where can I amplify my efforts through paid media? How do I track it? So… what community are you going to reach?
  17. COMMUNITY IS KING BRENDAN GAHAN Visit Brendan’s blog to read more social media strategies.