Top Takeaways from PRSA Boston Social Media Summit

Jessica Payne

Did you know you’re more likely to become a Navy Seal than click on a banner ad? Or the fact that mom bloggers only read about 20% of emails a day? Or that Dunkin Donuts knows to tweet during the 2-3pm hour because studies show that’s when we all have a hankering for sugary products?

Plenty of data and insights were shared at this week’s PRSA 2013 Social Media Summit. A packed house participated in lively discussions of best practices surrounding everything from blogger engagement and pitching to communities and measuring success. When not hosting my panel on measurement featuring Kathy O’Reilly (Philips Healthcare) and Dave Armon (Critical Mention), I, like many attendees took to Twitter. According to show organizers, our tweet chatter drove the #PRSABOS hashtag to the #2 spot on Twitter -- so a great day for all and the organizers.

For those who couldn’t attend, here’s a highlight of biggest takeaways – credit goes to event speakers and panelists who can be found here:

Blogger Engagement – Keep it simple.

  • 78% of bloggers surveyed said they do so because of their love of writing (making money is 5th)
  • 70% of bloggers feel long term partnerships are most successful. Only 6% are frequently asked to have them
  • New study finds 97% of bloggers get email pitches daily, 40% say none are a good match
  • 34% of bloggers say compensation rarely or never matches the amount of work required
  • Couldn’t nail the pitch the first time? Give bloggers a chance to offer their “better” ideas – they appreciate tailor made engagement
  • The fewer asks the better with bloggers. Ask for a tweet or FB post versus a video every time – they are busy and don’t necessarily have editing skills

Brands bank on community engagement and try new platforms.

  • All brands emphasize that social media is no longer silo-ed to marketing or one department but MUST be seen as something that empowers the entire organization/network – your network is your biggest sales tool
  • LoJack provides auto theft bloggers/influencers with auto recovery success stories to garner coverage and raise awareness beyond their B2B primary audience
  • Dunkin’ Donuts just launched a vine account to engage donut lovers, put community first
  • Stonyfield yogurt uses Spotify playlists to engage super users and regularly taps a group of active moms called the “yo-getters” for product feedback, R&D and advocacy
  • LifeIsGood uses embarrassingly simple positive messaging to easily engage their Facebook following on an ongoing basis (e.g., ‘like if life is good’)
  • Some brands are using paid-for Facebook ads but strongly encourage shared, earned, owned as proven, more powerful method for engagement

Measurement – Stick to KPIs and leverage available tools.

  • Be careful with third-party scoring. (e.g., relying on Klout) Mapping back to your program KPIs is the best measurement you can provide c-suite
  • Consensus is that social media measurement can’t always draw a solid line back to lead-gen/purchases (so up to us to continue educating c-suite) BUT can yield that and so much more – engagement, desired actions which lead to potential customers and purchases
  • Dashboards – bite-sized summaries of analytics is a must-have skill set and deliverable
  • Google + is underused; doesn’t take much to populate and influence the Google algorithm
  • Google now penalizes for extremely short content (e.g., 10 second videos) and duplicative giveaway commenting on blogs (seen as spam) so the emphasis is on rich, unique content

More takeaways from the PRSA Boston Event are available at my @jpaynebu Twitter feed and the #PRSABOS hashtag.


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