2

Tear-Down-The-WallWhen it comes to social media strategy, we’ve been busy creating lots of content over the past two years since we first published a compilation of our social media strategy framework. In conjunction with a half-day workshop I’m leading today at the 14th annual Marketing World sponsored by Frost and Sullivan (#FrostMAR).

As a resource for both the workshop participants and all the Brainzooming readers, this updated social media strategy framework contains seventy-one links to both Brainzooming content and other key resources to help maximize your brand’s social networking impact, with a particular emphasis on its application to B2B brands.

If you’d like to talk more about how we can help you apply solid business strategy to your social media efforts, we’d be happy to help in applying our Brainzooming methodology to build a solid strategy and maximize the social networking impact of your investment.  – Mike Brown

OVERVIEW

STRATEGY

1. Integration

 2. ROI

3. Guidelines

SOCIAL NETWORKING

4. Listening

5. Building Relationships

6. Getting Noticed

INFRASTRUCTURE

7. Platforms

8. Time and Talent

9. Minimizing Risk

SOCIAL BUSINESS

10. Content Marketing

11. Customer Engagement

12. Innovation

B2B Social Media Case Studies

 Regulated Industries

Other Group Topics

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If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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3

I wrote an article for an upcoming issues of The Social Media Monthly magazine about how high visibility tragedies are affecting brands’ social media strategies. While much is written about what a brand should do DURING a tragedy, The Social Media Monthly article focuses on what brands can do before the next tragedy, and includes interviews with social media luminaries Jim Joseph and Lisa Grimm.

Deepak_Chopra_TweetSocial Media Moments of Silence

One norm developing relative to tragedies and social media management for brands is the “social media moment of silence.” This phrase reflects an expectation that for certain tragedies, some or all brands are expected to curb or completely halt social media sharing out of respect for victims of tragedy.

Something I didn’t cover in the article was our exploration on what defines a tragedy warranting a social media moment of silence.

Both Jim Joseph and Lisa Grimm acknowledged there are no hard and fast rules for which tragedies necessitate a social media shutdown. Yet reviewing 2012 and 2013, the Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, CT and the Boston Marathon bombing represented the tragedies where expectations were greatest for shutting down social media sharing for brands…and others.

5 Areas to Monitor for Social Media Moments of Silence

In the absence of fully-defined norms, here are five areas to consider before and during the next tragedy to help shape your brand’s social media sharing:

The Tragedy’s Geography – Social media moments of silence seem confined to First World tragedies, and more specifically, those taking place between Washington, DC and Boston. Much of the news media is concentrated in this corridor, and events here receive more attention than shootings, weather, explosions, and disasters elsewhere.

The Volume of Immediate News Coverage – Use CNN as your gauge for how much attention a tragedy is broadly getting. The more continuous coverage a tragedy receives, along with a high degree of immediate live coverage, raises expectations for a social media moment of silence. Greater uncertainty in determining the extent of a tragedy can also argue for keeping silent – in case the tragedy suddenly gets much worse.

The Familiarity of the Story Surrounding the Tragedy – The easier it is for the members of the general public to place themselves within the story, the more likely a moment of silence is expected. It was clearly easier for the public to see themselves with kids at a school or at a major public event in a major city than to be located in a small rural town with a major explosion.

The Types of Victims Involved in the Tragedy – The larger the number of victims, the younger the victims, and victims felled by human-on-human violence all drive higher expectations to shut up your social media voice.

The Tragedy’s Current Status – A lack of closure seems a major factor affecting how long a social media moment of silence is expected to last. The longer the period of uncertainty (whether that’s if the tragedy is over or the time to understand the reasons), the greater the likelihood the moment of silence needs to extend for a longer period of time.

What do you think about social media moments of silence?

As we said at the start, the norms aren’t all formed on how to approach a social media moment of silence. What do you think of this list? Are there other criteria you would add?

We’ll be monitoring these five criteria (and others that emerge) going forward toward solidifying stronger strategic guidelines for modifying brands’ social media behaviors during various types of tragedies. – Mike Brown

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If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download 6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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4

Creative-Ideas-Diversity-TEDxWyandotteOn April 2, 2013, I had the wonderful opportunity to present for the first time at a TEDx event: TEDxWyandotte. This inaugural TEDx event took place at Kansas City Kansas Community College (KCKCC).

Creative Ideas and Diversity at TEDxWyandotte

My topic of my presentation and the video is “Diversity and Ideas in the Porous Community.”

Its focus, which is right at the heart of the Brainzooming message on creative ideas and diversity, explored the importance of creating communities open to ideas from diverse and external perspectives. In keeping with the presentation theme, I invited audience members at two different points to select the story they wanted to hear next from among three options. This approach, which I call a “live blog,” puts the audience in control of shaping the talk they most want to hear from among, in this case, nine different possible versions.

Using the TEDx constraints (limited time) and admonitions (share stories you’ve never told) created an opportunity to weave together a completely new collection of content about creative ideas and diversity, including a childhood story no one outside my immediate family had ever heard before the audience selected it.

“Diversity and Ideas in the Porous Community” Video – Mike Brown – TEDxWyandotte

I really appreciate the invitation and opportunity to participate in TEDxWyandotte from its curator Shari Wilson and Jay Matlack, Workforce Development Coordinator at KCKCC. The overall theme for TEDxWyandotte was “Core Impact,” and I’d definitely invite you to check out the work of the other presenters to see how they interpreted the theme in their own TEDx talks:

It was particularly rewarding to present at TEDxWyandotte because KCKCC feels like home in many ways. My wife led the student activities at KCKCC for ten years at the start of her career. Because of that, prior to TEDxWyandotte, I’d been on stage at KCKCC many times playing the scary monster at Halloween parties Cyndi organized for students’ kids! It also felt like home because my parents attended, marking the first time they’d visited Kansas City in many years because of illnesses my dad has since put behind him.

And when it came to telling untold stories at TEDxWyandotte, my father was more than happy to share any stories I didn’t tell with anyone who stopped by to chat before, during, and after the event. He just didn’t have to keep his stories to less than 18 minutes total! – Mike Brown

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Learn all about Mike Brown’s creative thinking and innovation presentations!

 

 

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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1

MOA-FacebookI was writing a story for The Social Media Monthly magazine recently on the Mall of America and its social media strategy. In the course of interviewing Mall of America Senior Public Relations and Social Media Manager, Bridget Jewell, she discussed how the Mall introduced each of its social media presences based on a specific opportunity or seasonal campaign. Instead of immediately hopping on every new social network right away, MOA creates a presence when there’s a clear business reason to do so.

Not surprisingly then, as Bridget reviewed the content strategies and specific content media shared by channel, each had a different purpose. While its multiple social media presences are brand consistent and integrated, the Mall of America Twitter and Facebook sites are used differently (i.e., not simply sharing the same links), and Instagram isn’t simply for sharing photos from MOA YouTube videos.

Can you answer these 5 social media strategy questions as well as Mall of America can?

Taking a cue from the smart social media strategy at MOA, here are five questions any organization should ask about its own social media content strategy:

  1. In what ways is our content well-suited to the specific social media network and our current and prospective users on each of them?
  2. How is our content across the channels integrated and collectively representative of our brand?
  3. How does our social media content vary across our different platforms?
  4. What is included in our social media content to move the audience toward progressively beneficial behaviors for our organization?
  5. What do we incorporate into our social media content that makes it worth remembering, sharing with others, and returning to in the future?

All five are very rich strategic questions. That means you need to be able to provide strategically rich answers.

Need some ideas for your social media strategy?

If you want to go to school on an organization doing it right to get a sense of how these questions should be answered, check out the varied social media presences for MOA. You’ll learn a lot – trust me. – Mike Brown

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If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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Photo by: Bastografie | Source: Photocase.com

There is value in increased web traffic and brand reputation from being more frequent and consistent with business blogging. But achieving a multiple times per week business blogging schedule can be a challenge when an organization does not have enough people to handle everything it needs to get done.

In those cases, it is beneficial to consider easy ways to enhance your social media productivity by taking advantage of normal business activities to create one more easy post weekly.

Seven Ways to Enhance Your Business Blogging and Social Media Productivity

A key to improving your social media productivity with business blogging is to tie the extra weekly blog posts to typical weekly business activities you (or your organization) are doing any way. Here are seven ways to take advantage of your:

  1. Online Reading – Create a compilation blog post featuring links to valuable articles you read in the past week.
  2. Tweeting – Put together a post with ten of your most pithy tweets (or use Facebook or Google+ status updates instead).
  3. Customer Service Calls – Feature a customer service question of the week along with the answer.
  4. Email Inbox – Summarize the most intriguing upcoming webinars and conferences related to your industry that you’ve been invited to this week.
  5. Web Analytics – Create a compilation post listing previous blog posts receiving the most recent visits related to specific keywords of interest.
  6. Sales Calls – By using a three- or five-question set of guest blog interview questions, feature a written or video interview with a client or business partner of interest to your readers.
  7. Business Conversations – Share insights and industry commentary from discussions you’ve had with business associates and clients.

Through these ideas, it is possible to create an easy one or two additional blog posts weekly. If you’re better with video or images than writing, there are even more possibilities. This boost to your social media productivity can move our business blogging from one post weekly to a consistent multiple times per week blogging frequency. – Mike Brown

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If you’re struggling with determining ROI and evaluating its impacts, download “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track” today!  This article provides a concise, strategic view of the numbers and stories that matter in shaping, implementing, and evaluating your strategy. You’ll learn lessons about when to address measurement strategy, identifying overlooked ROI opportunities, and creating a 6-metric dashboard. Download Your Free Copy of “6 Social Media Metrics You Must Track!”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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3

CNN-Boston-MarathonAny time we have an all eyes on the news tragedy, there is a question about what brands should do with their social media content:

  • Do you act like major networks and news programs and start exclusively sharing updates and (second hand) news about the tragedy?
  • Do you act like a cable network and keep up with whatever social media content was already planned, irrespective of the news?
  • Do you go completely dark out of respect for the tragedy and its victims?

So, what do you do with social media during a tragedy?

David Armano offers five pieces of advice for brands and how they should conduct themselves. It is great advice oriented toward a brand with a larger collaborative social media effort, although some of it (review your scheduled content and remove anything sensitive) applies across the board.

Another piece of advice from David Armano, summed up as “Do the Right Thing,” is a great sentiment, but there’s no one answer to what the right thing to do is.

One safe answer seems to be sending out your brand’s thoughts to a tragedy’s victims. Thoughts are nice, although not particularly efficacious. Some brands take advantage of their large audiences to help broadcast emergency and relief updates. Some brands are willing to go out on a limb and offer prayers. Since many times all you can do in these situations is pray or pay (i.e., donate), prayers are at the top of the heap to help victims.

Other brands, keep on with what social media content was already planned (or inappropriately chosen amid the tragedy), as others (typically individuals) spend their time calling these brands out for their social media miscues.

Perhaps the safest answer is to go dark in the face of tragedy. The challenge is there are tragedies and victims daily.

So does that mean a brand should NEVER share any social media?

No, it doesn’t.

But when there’s discussion about the importance of being “human” on social media, it’s not some b.s. social media strategy mumbo jumbo. You DO have to be human with your social media content, no matter how big or small your brand is.

And if you’re human with your social media sharing every day, you have a lot better chance of getting it right when a human tragedy is close enough to intersect with your social media content.  – Mike Brown

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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9

April-Fool-PrankI’ll admit I was tempted to create an April Fools blog post for today on “The Top Ten Reasons Creative Thinking Is Overrated.” It would be a funny and quick post to write (ten spoof reasons followed by “April Fool”) during what’s going to be an already hectic week.

Then I remembered a post author Jim Joseph wrote last year extolling brands creating April Fools social media as a way to show a human side. I replied to Jim’s blog saying I’d considered writing a post with reasons why a brand shouldn’t do April Fools prank social media.

Well, fundamental brand strategy won out over blog writing expediency!

5 Reasons April Fools Prank Social Media Is a Joke for Your Brand Strategy

Here are five reasons April Fools prank social media content is a joke when it comes to your brand strategy:

  1. Your brand represents a promise, and unless you’re Penn & Teller or Stephen King, tricking your most important audiences is likely not part of your brand promise.
  2. Just because another brand creates April Fool prank social media doesn’t mean you should. If another brand jumped off a cliff, does that mean your brand would too?
  3. Your brand doesn’t use “funny” and “surprise” as a part of its brand strategy and brand experience any other day of the year. Doing it one day a year doesn’t make your brand seem human. It just makes your brand seem confused or that it is a mindless follower.
  4. Since your brand is more conservative than it is fun, you will only approach April Fool prank social media half-heartedly. If you are going to introduce humor into social media, you should be broad and/or consistent with it so your audience gets it.
  5. Self-deprecating humor is safer than “at your audience’s expense” humor. Can you turn your April Fool prank social media idea into one where your brand is the butt of the joke? Would you want to? Probably not.

What do you think about Aprils Fools prank social media and its fit with brand strategy?

You can say I’m too much of a stick in the mud, but if a brand tries to make fools of its customers, that doesn’t seem to be part of a great brand strategy and brand experience. And on that point, I’m serious. No joke.  – Mike Brown

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“How strong is my organization’s social media strategy?”

9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social Strategy

Is your social media implementation working as well as it can? In less than 60 minutes with the FREE Brainzooming ebook “9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social Strategy,” you’ll have a precise answer to this question.

Any executive can make a thorough yet rapid evaluation of nine different dimensions of their social business strategies with these nine diagnostics. Download Your Free Copy of “9 Diagnostics to Check Your Social  Strategy.”

Mike Brown

Founder of The Brainzooming Group, and an expert on strategy, creativity, and innovation. Mike is a frequent speaker on innovation, strategic thinking, and social media.

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