“We are at the beginning of a massive revolution.” Michael Stelzner, CEO of Social Media Examiner.

April 17 – 19 saw top influencers from around the web gathered in San Diego for Social Media Examiner’s Social Media Marketing World, who graced us with the latest insights on snapchat, live video and content marketing and provided spicy take-aways for Social. Here’s our run-down on what was hot on everyone’s lips.

First things first, our top 5 event gems:

“Content with images gets shared 40% more than without images”

“40 years worth of content is consumed on periscope each day”

“100 million hours of video are consumed EVERY day on Facebook”

“Snapchat is the best of Twitter and YouTube but with higher engagement” 

“Where brands are going wrong is thinking that influence is reaching 5k people via a tweet. That means nothing”

Next up, the insights that we feel needed to be shared from two key talks we attended:

How to Thrive and Not Just Survive Your Next Crisis Management Situation

Fiona Birch (Founder of Tonic Global), Justin Levy (Head of Social Media at Citrix),  Cassie Roma (Senior Social Media Manager at Air New Zealand) and Umang Shah (Global Director, Social Media & Digital Marketing at Campbell’s Soup Co.) took us through the essential pointers for staying alive to thrive and survive under a crisis.

Taking risks is important even if it means a bumpy ride;

Risk can be good when placed in the right hands and in the right platform. Whether it pays off or means having the power to turn a bad campaign back on itself to resonate with the people who matter (your customers) it’s important for brands to really stretch into the unknown – simply – it’s a case of try and see what happens. However, perfectly summed up by Cassie Roma, risk taking is situational – you’ve got to know your brand, your market and your product inside out. It’s also about having the perfect balance between bending to the wants of your community base and being bold and sticking to your guns, even if this means repolishing your branding according to the response, or admitting you’re wrong and turning it back around to win your customers over again.

Bridging the conversation

Every company department speaks their own language, which means really putting a new meaning to the term bilingual if you all want to be on the same page. Establishing a connection across the board is crucial to setting up crisis guidelines and  a solid response structure. Having a go-to person for each department and knowing their response times is fundamental to dealing with crises and knowing how the company connects – seems too obvious right? But no matter how experienced or qualified you are, you never truly know what will happen when it’s launch time. Best practises on what to comment on, reply to and find a solution for will also prevent employees jumping in on the defensive when something goes against your brand, but it only works if communicated clearly before the launch of a new campaign.

Build communities from mistakes

A good buzz is great, but a good buzz from a bad buzz can be just as good. No one goes out with the intention of content producing a bad response, but if it does happen it can be turned around. The panel used Walmart as an example, who flipped over a publication with bad press, to only red line and re-post it to their blog in it’s redrafted state with complete success, winning round the buzz. In the end all you can hope for is harmony in getting your side of the story out there in the thick of the chatter.

And what about automated programs?

These, it seems, are great for putting the advertising steps in place when you know every piece in the content lineup, but it’s evident that the days of not letting your audience write your brand story are long gone and there will never be a time where automation truly allows you to engage with customers, and for them to help mould the brand story with you.


How Businesses are Building World Class Customer Service

Of course we made sure to head over to see the #SocialCare panel with Kriti Kapoor (Director of Social Care for HP, Inc.), Laurie Meacham (Manager of Customer Commitment and Social Media for JetBlue Airways), and Jessica Mack (Senior Social Media Manager for Otterbox) to hear what really drives these iconic brands world-class customer service, and to see if we could pick up and hints and tips whilst we were there.

(Source: @js_mack)
(Source: @js_mack)

The talk focused on delivering superior customer service to bring in business results.

How to handle customer service incidents;

With all the insights shared what really resonated long after the talk was over was the quality honest examples from Whitney Drake and Kriti Kapoor about a customer service incident and how they prevented these becoming a nightmare. Drake shared first, discussing the blip when a spotify ad was run offering an upgraded spotify account for free – which was ‘inaccurate and a big deal’. The social care team’s clean-up operation was no walk in the park, mitigating unhappy customers, but also especially when you come across those who claim they clicked on the add when they didn’t – how far can we take that the customer is always right? She concluded that you are always going to come across people who are unhappy and that you just have to persevere, treat them like a human and hope that they will remember that you are only human in return. Kapoor followed giving us an example of the times when social media exposure can work against you. A blogger with thousands of followers complained via twitter of a problem with her device. Stage one was to resolve the issue with the affected party. Job done? No: next there is the implication of all the other spectators that were exposed to this negative press. Kapoor’s advice, if they have a genuine concern for the problem you can deal with these too but all others just let go.

With the key concepts captured and the social sights set for next year, now it’s time to put all the new found knowledge into action. Social Media Marketing World we’ll see you next year, it was a pleasure.
Wish you were there? Here’s some snaps so you’ll feel like you didn’t miss thing.

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