Sircle Sessions: Can you land PR/media opportunities through social media?

Sircle-Social Sessions

Brands are constantly trying to find value in social media (many doubt there really is any) and are often looking at the wrong data points. It cannot be measured solely with a simple ROI calculation and/or traditional KPIs. Your efforts need to be looked at from a different POV and it is imperative to keep in mind that each individual effort is not necessarily intended to have a very specific result. It is more of a long game that needs to be played consistently and needs to pivot as the brand, industry or even social landscape does.

At Sircle we believe that social is not a marketing vertical and is more of a horizontal layer that touches all aspects of your business. By remaining committed to story telling and content marketing (which you should be if you own or manage a brand and want to win in mid-2016) and leveraging social networks, their audiences and amazing targeting and tools, you can do powerful things.

One such “thing” that brands are all thirsting for, is finding writers, bloggers, publications and/or media outlets to help them tell their story. They will shell out PR retainers to get these, and more often than not, they feel very frustrated or short changed by those engagements. It seems like PR has become a necessary evil and some brands see it as a set expense, or a cost of doing business if you will. It is amazing to me that brands will pay for this, which is so micro focused, in lieu of paying a social media retainer and/or an internal salary for social media management.  I would argue the latter brings much better value.

If you want to get coverage or gain influence, you need to roll up your sleeves, get to work and contribute content to the web. Posts, tweets, blogs, statuses, pins etc.. all create potential one-to-one exposure for your brand, which in turn can lead to bigger exposure if and when you come across the right set of eyes.

I was asked if I have seen opportunities surface through social media management and I shared my experience here. You can also click the image above to consume.  Enjoy!

 

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Chirp-Chirp: Are You Listening on Twitter?

13501786_1156139544448026_1069453187647699541_nWe are big buyers of Twitter these days and that is because it is the best place to go fishing for opportunities with people who might not already be following or engaging with your brand. By rolling up your sleeves and putting in the work, you can unlock real revenue driving engagements like the one above.

Here we curated the hashtag #caffeine in a Hootsuite stream which we regularly monitor for potential engagements with users on the platform. This person wrote a pretty straightforward and innocuous Tweet about needing “copious amounts of coffee” to presumably power her through her Tuesday.  Because we are on the ball and watching these things closely for our client Avitae, we replied swiftly and put their brand in front of her as a healthier alternative for her caffeine consumption. She replied almost immediately, and kept the dialogue going.

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We then took the client to a DM (Direct Message) and inquired about her zipcode and once she replied, we teed up various places where she could go purchase the product in her area.  This particular client doesn’t promote E-commerce (at least not yet) and instead relies heavily on social media to help support their wholesale business and to help facilitate foot traffic and improve velocity reports to keep them on retailer’s shelves. This was a really solid win in that regard, and now their sales team can use the evidence of this type of “ground support” from their social team, to help sell the brand into other retail locations too.

Good strategy + the use of the right social media tools + good old hard work and hustle = social media success!

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SircleSquad: Emily Habashy

Emily Habashy

This summer we have an excellent roster of amazing interns on the #SircleSquad and we thought it would be a good idea to share more about them with the world. Talented college students have always been a key component to the Sircle Media offering and most of our current staff members originally began in the intern role. We sat down with Emily, one of our graphic designers this week, and this is what we found out:

Full name and nickname? Emily, and no nickname! (boring, I know.)

Age? 20

University? Pratt Institute

Major? Communication Design

 

What made you choose Sircle Media? I chose Sircle because I wanted to work at an agency that combined advertising and graphic design in its creative process, and could tell Sircle did just that! When I visited, everyone was really nice and the environment seemed fun!

Most surprising discovery/realization after working here for a couple of weeks? I like seeing the “behind the scenes” work on a social post. What seems like an effortless post on Instagram actually may have taken many people, many props, and many, many shots to pull off.

What is the best part of your internship? The best part is working with a variety of different clients that each have a distinct branding flavor, which challenges me to step out of my comfort zone.

What can you tell us about Adam or your supervisor? Everyone in the office is cool, down to earth, and clearly cares about what they do.

Advice you would give to a future intern? Absorb everything. Part of being a good creative is learning as much as you can, from books, movies, websites, and the world. And ask questions. Knowledge is power. Also, read “Steal Like An Artist.” It’s good stuff.

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Gifting: The gift that keeps on giving…

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Gifting influencers can really throw gasoline onto your social media efforts, if you are smart about your approach. Tactically, we are always looking for exposure opportunities to expand our reach and engagements for our clients and people with influence (fans and followers) in tow, afford brands an opportunity to land grab a bunch of both, with very little effort.

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 6.48.03 AMAbove you can see the impact of just one tweet for our client, Black Halo. They gifted the actress, Jennette McCurdy @jennettemccurdy and then tweeted out an image of her wearing their product. She went ahead and retweeted it to her 6.3million+ followers and it earned a ton of exposure and interactions. Just look at the metrics in the shot above and you can see the power of this one piece of communication.

We have advocated before that you shouldn’t sleep on Twitter as a powerful marketing tool. Every platform has its own place in your messaging plan and it just comes down to understanding how to natively communicate and navigate each. If you remain committed to the long game and don’t get lost in the clutter and confusion of the short game, then you will reap the benefits.

Above and beyond the amazing reach and exposure this brought us, we are especially interested in the small ball, one-to-one engagements it surfaced. You see the goal was not just to get eyeballs, the hope was to drum up a dialogue that could lead to sales on the website.

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To round out the strategy, you need to have someone closely monitoring Twitter on the daily to seek our conversations like the one above. This user (who has 4800 of her own followers mind you) engaged with our media and is clearly interested in the product. Important to note that she is a follower of Jennette’s and not Black Halo, which means that our gifting and Twitter game played out perfectly. This user most likely knew nothing about this brand prior to this interaction, but as a fan of the influencer and how our client’s product looked on her, we now have created a positive impression with this user, for their products.

Who needs TV commercials and magazine ads, when you can make that happen with just one Tweet?

 

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Sircle Sessions: What the key areas of focus in social media?

Sircle-Social Sessions

Many brands are not taking a holistic approach to social media and are treating it like its own silo of activity.  The team responsible for social, is usually understaffed and is often not in sync with the rest of a company’s digital initiatives, which is a big mistake.

Social media management is a full time job and pulls from a lot of different talents.  You need to be able to write, create, navigate various social platforms and be able to have the understanding of digital, to have it all working pursuant to a make sense strategy. Once you have the right person or team in place, then it comes down to a lot of small ball work. Click the image above or here, for an excerpt from a recent interview on the topic.

It really needs to be a balance of content, engagement and growth tactics in order to have transformational social media results. Brands need to really invest equally in all three, if they want to experience a really meaningful impact:

  1. You must contribute to the community with good content that people will enjoy and want to consume.
  2. You cant just put out content, you must seek out conversation opportunities and then close the loop.
  3. You also need to have a content and engagement strategy that aims to satisfy bigger marketing or company growth goals such as: fan and follower aggregation, traffic to the website, email capture, awareness (reach, impressions, branded searches) and of course – sales!

Social media affords brands a very inexpensive way to speak with and listen to customers and prospects.  So many marketers spend so much time talking about why social doesn’t work, why it isn’t trackable or how it dosnt have an ROI, and if they spent half of that time actually putting in the work, they would be singing a very different tune.

In order to win you must be a daily practitioner, and continue to tinker around.  Small moves, can produce big results- but only if you are really in the game.

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Sircle Sessions: Where do brands go wrong with social?

Sircle-Social Sessions

I sat down for a recent interview and we went deep into a discussion on social media and how brands approach it the wrong way. Most get (or pretend to get) that they need it, but do not invest the right resources into making it work. Click the image above or here, to watch some of that conversation.

It has to be an all in mentality to win and you cannot be half pregnant. You must plant the seeds and then water them with time and dollars to make sure that they not only grow, but flourish. The brands who get this and approach it as religion rather than just tactics, are winning and I am proud to say we work with many of them.

Garyvee said it right when he stated that “social media is just a slang term for the internet-the math is straightforward: people’s internet consumption now happens on mobile, and the thing people do the most on mobile is use social media platforms. That is the internet now. If you don’t understand this, you’re behind. There is zero difference between “digital marketing” and “social media marketing.”

Social media is not a fad, it is the current state of the union. Not creating and putting out content and of equal importance not listening to and engaging with the community, is just not acceptable for any business in today’s day and age. Brands need to wake up and participate, or they are going to put themselves out of business.

 

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