You’re in a casual Monday catch-up meeting and the client throws you a curveball about a recent social development in our industry.
Client: “Joe, how can we utilise __________ for our brand”
We’ve all been there and as a Senior Social & Content Manager this happens all the time.
In these moments, it’s all too easy to say….
Joe: “sure thing, we’ll get back to you on that” or “we’ll speak to our data team to dig something up”,
…but you’re better than that. I’m better than that!
So, here’s how you can add value to some precious client Zoom time with my quick-fire responses to 5 things your client will ask you about social media this month.
Q1. “Is TikTok something we should be thinking about?”
The answer is YES. Very much yes. There is no doubt here.
Firstly, as with all channel launch decisions, you need to make sure it’s the right one for your brand. Ask yourself these three questions:
- Does our audience use this platform already?
- Can we produce or source video content that suits the platform output?
- Strategically, what business objective will this channel tick?
Because there’s nothing worse than launching a channel for the sake of it, so have your reasons for not doing it ready for the client.
If it passed the first test, then the first thing you should do is reserve a channel name, for extra gravitas in your initial response. Then focus on some key statistics to drive home how important this platform is right now, because it really is mind-blowing:
- 800 million active users worldwide (predominantly 18-24)
- The average session time is nearly 5 minutes, longer than both Snapchat and Instagram
- Our brand has been mentioned _____ times via #________ (a quick hashtag search is required here. For example, one of our brands ‘parent brand’, had been mentioned over 800 million times, so it was an instant no-brainer that we launch a channel)
Finally, it’s good to express a few ideas regarding how the channel can be used by your brand with some topline creative execution thoughts.
Once everyone agrees that it’s the right option moving forwards, it’s time to build out a strategy.
Q2. “Everyone’s having private conversations, so how can we join in?”
This is a tricky one. We’re seeing a percentage of our audience shift from open to closed private encrypted messaging environments, as Zuck predicted last year.
This is because people want to choose whether their opinion is public or not, given that they’re so aware of data privacy pitfalls, like the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Examples of this shift include:
- Ephemeral Stories – Instagram Stories / Snapchat / Facebook Stories (people expressing themselves in a moment that dies within 24 hours and can’t be shared)
- Group video chats – House Party / Zoom (accelerated by the pandemic)
- Private or invite-only messaging groups across a variety of platforms
Depending on your client, audience and business objectives, there are several dark social solutions you should explore for your brand here:
- Brand Advocates – employed to intercept conversations happening away from the feed in a non-obstructive and natural manner.
- Facebook Groups – there are over 10+ million groups on Facebook with over 1.4 billion people using them
- Facebook Bots – 20 million messages are sent between people and businesses every month
However, it’s a huge challenge for brands to intercept data from private environments like Whatsapp groups, so it’s important to consider a balance between public posting (traditional updates) and more underground marketing (finding where communities are to deliver brand messaging).
It’s also tough to truly understand what is captivating audiences via dark social, because the conversations are encrypted. Somebody could share a link to your content privately and people could have hours of conversations about it without you knowing, either positively or negatively.
Q3. “How can we capitalise on people having more time to spend on social media due to the life limitations imposed by COVID-19?”
This is a simple one and we can offer two responses to this, which will cover most brands on the serious scale:
People have time on their hands to figure stuff out right now. Lots of people are rolling out of bed and walking downstairs to a Zoom call, so this is a great time to test trivia and gameplay. After all, everyone’s organising a family quiz! So try some of these out on your community and take advantage of the increased organic reach:
Guess the… / Find the… / What’s the difference between… / What year did…
Basically, demand an action. Take a look at the Mercedes-AMG Driving Academy Instagram channel to see how we’ve been doing this successfully since lockdown.
Play the long game
It’s also a good time to test long-form content because again, attention spans have been far greater than usual during the lockdown period. Try out:
Video – IGTV + YouTube / Interviews / Live broadcasts / Blog posts / Podcasts
But generally speaking, test test test! Make sure you A/B test content continuously.
Q4. “Are we ready for everything to go back to normal?”
Normality is returning, so it’s important we’re prepared.
Put time aside for your clients to really think about how you want to return with a BANG. This is particularly relevant if you’re selling a physical experience. You want your whole community to be ready for your official comeback, in the flesh, to celebrate together.
But the tough nut to crack is how you’re going to stand-out in a sea of brands celebrating normality and the lockdown ending. So think about how you can harness the latest platform developments to spread your message.
Pro tip – we have compiled an internal depository of every single new platform feature, so that we’re fuelling the ideation phase, leading up to business as usual returning, with the latest opportunities.
Q5. “How can we continue to show support for #BlackLivesMatter via our social channels?”
It’s important to sustain the conversation here, indefinitely, so think about how you can incorporate an ongoing narrative to support the movement every month. This could take the shape of a new content pillar or reconfiguring an existing content pillar to include more diverse messaging.
You should also consider some impactful spikes in your campaigns throughout the next year and onwards to show support for diversity, whether it be donations to a project, launching a new scheme or just a big awareness push.
Because Black Lives Matter.
So, in your next meeting, why not respond with a…
Joe: “funnily enough, we were just about to discuss this with you”.
BAM – you’re adding value to the start of the client’s week and everyone feels awesome about their views aligning on some finger-on-the-pulse discussions.
Alternatively, you can cut, paste and deface at will these 5 key responses into an email and contact us for some extra juicy data points to back up your decisions!
Get in touch today via firstname.lastname@example.org