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By In Content Creation, Marketing, Social Media

Facebook Visual Communication Summit in Belgium

Yesterday, 17/3, MBP attended the Facebook Visual Communication Summit in Belgium. I would like to share with you some of the learnings of the day.

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Together, growth and being mobile are the 3 key terms with which we were introduced into the afternoon of talks on Social Media. Be open, be bold; the world is becoming more and more mobile and we need to adapt. Is your mobile investment following the trend?

The first person to take the stage was Paula Bonomo. She informed us that within 5 hours, people tend to consume 7 hours of content. Multitasking has changed: whereas before people would be knitting while watching TV, now people tend to spend their time consuming information on multiple platforms at the same time. Everything is in competition with everything for attention, so it is harder to be noticed and therefore important to be meaningful.

To communicate with people in a natural and relevant way is to create an engaged audience for your brand, which will feel more connected to you and your brand.

Communication is becoming:

  • Immediate
  • Expressive
  • Immersive
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Facebook Video Section

This explains why the most used apps are messenger apps. You will find 1B people on Whatsapp and 800M users on Facebook messenger.

Because the human brain processes images 60.000 times faster than words, visuals are becoming more and more pertinent for advertisers. This takes us to video advertising on social media. On Facebook we are seeing around 8B video views per day, even on mobile. It seems that emotional closeness compensates for the size of the screen. Facebook has developed a video section which allows a total immersion in video viewing. Later on, Facebook will unroll a storytelling medium called Canvas, which will allow for even more immersion in your storytelling experience as a consumer.

The next step will be Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. We are looking forward to the possibilities Facebook will bring us with Oculus, a new computing platform.

Paula summarised:

  • Reach people where they are
  • Embrace messaging
  • Experiment with expressive storytelling
  • Embrace new formats

Next up was Bert Hendrickx of GfK Belgium. According to him, 29% of people go on Facebook to discover new information. It has become their news platform as well as a place to connect with friends.

A very interesting habit Millenials are picking up is using your mobile in-store for extra information. Not only do they go to websites to compare the market, but also to ask friends their opinion on what they are buying/should buy.

However, we are seeing a trend that if people actually shop online through their mobile, they tend to spend less (€50 on average in their cart) when shopping on their smartphones than they do on tablet and desktop (€110 on average in their cart). Is mobile disrupting e-commerce?

We see separate functions in each piece of equipment we use:

  • Smartphones are for staying connected
  • Tablets are for entertainment (and often shared within a household)
  • Desktops are seen as a work device (larger screen for convenience)

–> people do tend to skip between devices.

Camilla Desmond‘s talk was all about video. Here is what she highlighted during her talk:

  1. Mobile is different
    • People are consuming more video on mobile – >75% of views
    • Consumers are more visual
    • Visual is the way to communicate
    • Virtual Reality will become a key player in brand communication
      • 1.7 seconds are needed to consume content on mobile
  2. Business Outcomes
    • Outcome needs to be measurable
    • Less is more – try and keep them interested
    • Earn attention – learn how to connect with your audience
    • Creative – tailor your communication to your consumer
    • Experiment – it is important to test, learn and iterate
  3. How to earn a consumer’s attention
    • Look for what matters to your consumer.
    • Create longer exposure
    • Use the Facebook function for automated captions (coming soon): Facebook creates captions for your video’s; good for a sound-off environment.
    • Transparency in reporting

Julie Pellet charmed us all with her french accent during her presentation: Instagram, from text to image.

She reminded us that images are a universal language and that if you have a smartphone, you are a photographer. Capturing images has become very easy for us and second nature to a lot of us, a behaviour we see especially in Millenials. Apps such as Snapchat and Instagram make this possible for all of us.

Capture and share the world’s moments – Instagram is a place for creativity and inspiration: have a look at 15-year-old Adeline from Nivelles who was inspired and now inspires more than 17.000 people every time she posts:

There's a whole world out there

A post shared by Adeline Wantiez (@toxicspiritss) on

Each Instagram feed is unique, different, because we all choose who we follow based on our interests. It can be seen as a fingerprint. 80M photo’s are shared on Instagram every day, inspiring many of us.

When placing a brand in the Instagram environment, it is important to keep in mind that you need to remain an inspiration to your followers: place your brand at the center of visual inspiration:

  • 60% learn about brands on IG
  • 75% take action after being inspired by content on IG

As a brand on IG, branding drives awareness: make sure the brand is visible, but in a relevant way. A great example of this is Ben & Jerry’s:

Don't burn up your Leap Day without celebrating. We've got 20 ways to do it – link in profile. #LeapDay

A post shared by Ben & Jerry's (@benandjerrys) on

As well as relevant branding, it is important to create a concept for your IG account. See what your target is into and inspire yourself to inspire others. A concept drives brand lift.

Some things to keep in mind when turning to Instagram to communicate to (potential) followers about your brand:

  • Think about the consumer journey
  • Create and use a distinct visual voice
  • Combine Facebook and Instagram (both have the same targeting options in ads)

 

So, how do you see your brand evolving on social media? Will you be creating more visual communication? Would you like to brush up on your video skills? Don’t hesitate to contact us for more information, we will sure be able to help you with all of these questions, and more: info@mediabrands.pub

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By In Content Creation, Marketing, Social Media

FTC: disclose Native Advertising

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) updated its guidance on native advertising just before attacking the Christmas diner. With the guidance, the FTC tries to make sure to protect consumers from advertising in disguise.

Confused and confusing
A study from contently.com stated the obvious: consumers are utterly confused about what is advertising, and what is not. They have difficulties to detect native advertising within ‘real’ editorial content. The key-findings of the study:

  • On nearly every publication tested, consumers tend to identify native advertising as an article, not an advertisement.
  • Consumers often have a difficult time identifying the brand associated with a piece of native advertising, but it varies greatly, from as low as 63 percent (on The Onion) to as high as 88 percent (on Forbes).
  • Consumers who read native ads that they identified as high quality reported a significantly higher level of trust for the sponsoring brand.
  • 62 percent of respondents think a news site loses credibility when it publishes native ads. In a separate study conducted a year ago, 59 percent of respondents said the same.
  • 48 percent have felt deceived upon realizing a piece of content was sponsored by a brand—a 15 percent decrease from last year’s survey.

While this might look as great and fab to some advertisers and their agencies, it is clear that the FTC is not amused. Their guidance clearly aims to over time enforce a guarantee that native advertising is very clearly labeled as such.

Shared responsibility
The FTC puts the responsibility of correctly labeling the native advertising as advertising jointly to the advertisers, their agencies, and the publishers that own the content platform, be it on- or offline. It expects not only that the commercial piece is clearly labeled as such, but moreover that the visual presentation of the native advertising piece leaves no doubt for the consumer that it is “different” from the regular content.

Ethical behavior
FTC put out a guidance in the US that is completely in line with its view on the commercial use of influentials and bloggers: asking for complete transparency and disclosure. The FTC guidelines and policies historically become textbook best practice guides real quickly in Europe.
Personally, I think that as well the advertisers, the agencies as the publishers have a moral duty to disclose, and be fully transparent. Duping the consumer into thinking that a piece of content is genuinely editorial is just plain wrong. There is room enough to be creative with native advertising without having to dupe the consumer in any way.

FTC guidelines on real time advertising
FTC guidelines on real time advertising

 

(This post first appeared here)

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By In Content Creation, Marketing, Social Media

How my field hockey team used Tinder to find a coach…

We all know how Tinder works and we all know what it is for: dates, a connection with someone of just simply a booty call. But what happens if you need something else, something different, how can you use Tinder for other purposes?

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– Deepak Chopra

My field hockey team needed a new coach and the start of a new season was looming. A slight panic started setting in about a month ago and we brainstormed to find a solution. After a few jokes about how people find bad dates on Tinder we realised what we needed to do! To announce our predicament widely across Brussels, we made a Tinder profile for our team mentioning specifically we were looking for a coach.

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Coach wanted! My great hockey team is looking for a motivated coach (EN/FR/NL) to accompany its first season in the 2nd Regional Division. Are you ready for a challenge?

A week later, our new (at that moment potential) coach turned up and our team as been in a winning relationship with him ever since.

In the last year, Tinder has been used for many marketing purposes. Like that time an animal charity matched people with pets they could adopt. Or how do you remember Ava? The possibilities are endless and (at the moment) free. All you need is a little bit of creativity 😉

tinder

Want to discuss how your business can be the perfect match with us? Unfortunately we don’t have a MBP Tinder profile (yet), but you can always send us an e-mail via info@mediabrands.pub 😉

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By In Content Creation, Marketing

Food For Thought…

contentHorse

 

*Found on contently.com

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By In Content Creation, Social Media

Sharing is caring: 4 sharer profiles to keep in mind

What is it exactly that makes online news and entertaining content go viral? What and why do people share? Finding the key to what people share and why, and adapting your branded content accordingly, might just open the door to that much wanted online brand advocacy. Sarie Robijt and Ike Picone (VUB, When news goes viral: a user-oriented approach to news shared on social networks) analyzed  over 1000 profiles and came up with 4 sharer profiles to keep in mind when posting on social media.

Picture4The social sharer is highly active on social media and rather self-confident online. For him, sharing is not so much about personal branding, but all about staying in touch with others. His primary audience consists of friends and family.

 

Picture2For the reflective sharer, making a good impression and gaining status is equally important as staying in touch with others. More than other types of sharers the reflective sharer is active on all kinds of social media channels: Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, blogs… The reflective sharer focuses not only on friends and family, but shares with a wide and professional network as well. This is the kind of sharer you should want to reach.

 

Picture3The uncaring sharer rarely shares anything. He still turns to e-mail most of the time when sharing something with friends or family. The uncaring sharer scores low on the self-presentation as a sharing motivator and is more worried about privacy than the social and reflective sharer.

 

Picture1The moderate sharer is on all levels moderate. He scores only average on self-presentation and social connection as a motivation for sharing posts. The moderate sharer likes e-mailing and is not too keen on technology. No need in trying to reach him, since he will not share with a large network anyway.

So, next time you are creating content for social media, think about this: What is the goal of your post? What kind of people do you want to reach? Keep in mind these 4 sharer profiles and their motives for sharing when developing your content, and you’ll be fine.

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By In Content Creation, Social Media

Les 3 avantages d’intégrer la vidéo dans votre stratégie de contenu Facebook

Facebook-VideoLes vidéos sur Facebook ne représentent actuellement que 5% de tout le contenu publié sur la plateforme sociale. Et pourtant, ces dernières dominent les interactions une fois intégrées dans une stratégie de contenu. (more…)

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By In Content Creation, Social Media

Storytelling: from Chaucer to Lolcats

The need to tell stories is something that has been part of human nature forever. We like telling stories. We like explaining to someone what we did yesterday, we love telling someone about that guy or girl on we met on holiday and we love making up stories about others that may not seem as innocent after all. We see it everywhere: in Middle English literature such as The Canterbury Tales by Chaucer, which is a story about people telling stories (from fables to gossip), and we see it in the world we, as community managers, are part of: the world of Social Media.

Good storytelling is an art. It is one of the best ways to bring a message to someone, but the most challenging part of it all is captivating an audience. How can you captivate an audience?

Here is Marco Tempest, a man who knows how to captivate an audience: https://www.ted.com/talks/marco_tempest_the_magic_of_truth_and_lies_on_ipods

Well, that is what Community Management is all about. They need to captivate our audience. They want their community to want to read the content and interact with it, because once an audience is captivated, it will come back for more. (Did you look up some more videos of Marco Tempest after that first one? OR are you planning to?)

Now, obviously, as community managers are not expected to be able to do this with their iPhones (although I would be really impressed if some of you could give it a go 😉 ) but they are expected to create magic on social media. Storytelling magic.

Here’s some social media storytelling magic:

lolcats2

lolcats1

Did they captivate you? Did they make you laugh? Did you link the cats with the caption and say “Hey, that goes quite well together!” or “that cat totally looks like it really dislikes humans” (If not, then maybe I chose the wrong content for this audience 😉 ) If so, you will also realize that this type of magic can be just as deceiving as real magic. That cat did not actually say “My fist… bump it”. They did not really “want” the pancakes. There’s the rub. The cat doesn’t care, we all knew that, right? Or did I just burst your storytelling-magic bubble? If so, I do apologise.

All successful stories (including lolcats) have one great thing in common. They provoke human emotion. Whether it is anger, sadness, happiness or even surprise, human emotion is the key to a really good story. Think about your favourite film. Is it a good story? Does it captivate you? Did you want more at the end of it and is that why you can watch it over and over again?

That is what community managers cannot forget when trying to create magic on our social platforms. Captivate your audience, make them believe they are in the wonderful world of your brand and make them feel the emotion that will make them come back for more.

And that, everyone, is the story I wanted to share with you all. So tell me, what story will you be telling your audience today?

*Of course lolcats are not a fit for everything or every brand 😉

 

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By In #SxSW, Content Creation

Content marketing- Let’s get it right: Owned. Paid. Earned.

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To fully wield the possibilities of content marketing, it’s important to get the fundamental basics right. Way too often, content strategy, paid amplification and social (earned) interaction are not, or badly linked from the very beginning.

To maximize return on investment, it is crucial to start with clear definitions in this online, interactive environment. Definitions that might be different from the common use or understanding.

Owned: is your complete online powerhouse, ranging from your website and your blog to your social channels: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat, Pinterest, Instagram, Meerkat etc. Creating successful content begins with a basic insight: what does the consumer want from your brand. Most often brands know what they want from the consumer, and build their content strategy on that. A deadly and quick recipe for failure.

It is smarter to concentrate on the expressed needs and expectations of the consumer. Once you have identified these needs and expectations, you can create story-lines that bridge the gap between your brand-essence offering, and the expectations and interests of your target audience.

Reaching out with pieces of content that answer the well-defined needs and interests of your consumer is an ideal starting point for a long term mutual understanding, and a foundation for future interaction and conversation.

Most of the best practices presented at #SxSW show how a strategic view on the owned ecosystem consists of the owned website and/or blog in the center of the content-solar-ecosystem. The owned social presence gyrates around this, and sparks the ecosystem with clever inbound links, SEO references and visual snacks that guide the consumer to the center of the system.

Paid are the purchased media actions you take to get people to your content, or content to the people. Content that is not noticed and not found is like the sound of a falling tree in a desert forest: one might argue it did not happen. Paid enables the communications architects to drive tailored traffic to every single bit of the content ecosystem, or to launch any piece of content in an orbit towards any place an identified target might be. The rocket-fuel is advertising money, pure and simple.

The cleverest paid strategies are carefully plotted to get the targeted consumer (identified and relevant) as deep in the owned ecosystem as possible. They have also one other thing in common: reach is less important than relevance and accuracy.

Strategic masterminds reduce the avalanche of mostly useless big data that results from everything is measurable in true actionable intelligence that fine-tunes the tactical plan, and re-adjusts the efforts permanently. The ability to shift from carpet-bombing to sniping is often the result of a critical factor: true intelligence.

Earned is how your content gets spread, distributed and published on places you do not own, and that you did not pay for directly. People coming to your content-ecosystem, and sharing your content on theirs. Influencers mentioning your content in their ecosystem. Your content being discussed in comments, on news-sites and influential blogs. Your products being used and mentioned by your consumers on their owned and social channels.

To realize this, the credibility and the authority (aka influence) of the brand must first be established. Secondly, the content must be appealing, relevant, interesting, catchy… and easily shareable. Content-ecosystems with content that is not one-click-shareable, deal with locked-in content syndrome and will never foster, or live up to their expectations.

The best-in-class examples of earned all show a clever way of linking the attention back to the core of the own owned ecosystem… a true gravitational pull to the center.

Through the earned part of content marketing, a big portion of the true engagement can be realized. Conversations, remarks, comments, references, word of mouth and back-links provide an in-stream of attention that has a unique quality: it is earned.

The fact that Facebook, Twitter and others increasingly claim their business model has nothing to do with earned (and organic, and viral) does not mean this earned section does not provide value, or is not important.

United it conquers, divided it fails

The value of return on investment of a good content marketing system, can only be established by measuring the performance of the Owned/Paid/Earned system as a whole. The three components need to be carefully aligned to work, much as a DJ masters multiple tracks to create the one sound that makes the crowd go bananas.

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By In #SxSW, Content Creation

Snackability: conversation is more than a hot dog

Digital first” is the credo that drives a lot of current campaigns. Brands are totally buying into the concept that, hey, if the consumer wants digital, let’s give him digital. However, often platforms, formats, intent and content are unceremoniously mixed together for better… or for worse.

The Snackability session at #SXSW gave nice examples on how content can be brought to the consumer in a way that is instantly satisfying, shareable and easy to digest. Content as a snack, consumable in a very short moment, a snippet of information that flavors the taste buds.

Think short-form data — meme’s, textlines, (moving) imagery or video — that consumers can quickly consume, while on the go. Central idea is of course to leave them hungry for more of virtual chicken wings in the future.

Very often good snackability is the combination of three separate elements: cross channel (transmedia) storytelling, clever brand publishing, and smart contextual real time response. These ideas work together to allow flexibility to fully embrace the digital sphere in a beneficial way that creates deeper brand loyalty.

However, let’s threat carefully. Funny factoids that grab your attention for a couple of seconds… it’s all good. But your message, brand value, and product proposition are most often more than a handful of popcorn, and a juicy frankfurter sausage with pickles and mustard.

A connection strategy cannot be built on mini-video’s, snippets, infographics and “10 tips to remember’ alone. ‘Quick and dirty’ brain food very quickly leaves us empty and unsatisfied. The right balance between the ‘bait’ and the ‘catch’ is precious. Use the snack as bait, and reel the consumer deeper into your brand story.

Don’t forget that the snackability should be part of a healthy diet… and needs to be cross-linked to deeper and more empathic content. Just leaving the restaurant after the amuses-bouche will leave you very frustrated and very hungry in a very short time.

Your complete content strategy should never be built on snackability alone.

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