Posts Tagged ‘hashtag’

Twitter 301: Amp Up Engagement With Hashtags

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

Twitter 301: Amp Up Engagement With Hashtags BurrellesLuce Fresh IdeasNovember has been really good to Twitter, with the micro-blogging site making history twice this month, first with the hotly-performing IPO and then with first-of-its-kind live network TV debut on NBC. For PR and marketing professionals who mastered Twitter 201, The Voice just showed everyone how Twitter 301 is done.

In a live TV first, Twitter hit the stage front and center during the Tuesday’s Live Top 12 Elimination episode of The Voice. The 2 million-plus Twitter followers were given a judging chair of their own when the show introduced the Instant Save, the chance to save a performer from being eliminated through tweeting. Now in its fifth season, The Voice has emerged as the example of how live TV is pioneering its interactivity with Twitter. The micro-blogging site evolved from a gathering and opinion-exchange place for the fans to the sole voting power in the live elimination show.

During Tuesday’s live elimination shows, fans tweeted their votes using #VoiceSave to save one of the bottom three finalists.

Fans Asked, NBC Listened

NBC responded to popular demand with the introduction of voting for the three-lowest ranking finalists.  “That kind of last chance to save a favorite is something the audience has been telling us they want, so we’re giving it to them,” said NBC Reality Chief Paul Telegdy.

But the pioneering decision to give that voice to the fans via Twitter catapults the show to the leading position amongst singing and other competition shows that have been expanding their social media interactivity.  “The Voice‘s Instant Save will be the first time Twitter will be used for an actual voting decision during a show,” says Twitter Head of TV Fred Graver. “It is a huge innovation.”

It is the sort of innovation that is very much in line with the advice of Hugh McLeod, a popular advertising executive and widely-read blogger. McLeod famously said that the future of advertising is “kinetic quality.”  And that “The future of brands is interaction, not commodity.”

PR and marketing professionals who are doing social listening and feel their Twitter communities are ready for the next level of interaction should look to The Voice for inspiration to create their own version of Instant Save.

With Instant Save, The Voice changed their Twitter community from spectators to players.  Since then, their Twitter following also grew by 200,000.

What does your Twitter 301 look like? What is your version of The Voice’s Instant Save or Twitter voting?

Social Media Case Studies: The Candy and Jerky Stories

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013
by flickr user jessdamen

by flickr user jessdamen

The real value of content (the fuel of online media) is gaining the attention of the reader. This was one of the insights from David Witt, Mid-West leader at WCG, former Director of Global and Digital Marketing and Brand Public Relations at Hershey, and former Senior Manager of Consumer Engagement and Brand PR at General Mills. Witt spoke at the Minneapolis St. Paul Social Media Breakfast on November 15. Kathleen Petersen, media director at Space150, also spoke about her work on a campaign for Jack Link’s Beef Jerky jerky. The session focused on social media campaign case studies.

Promoting the Candy in Orange

When starting to work on the Reese’s brand for Hershey, Witt’s team began by looking at the analytics. He said he needed to understand where the conversation was happening on social media. They discovered 40 percent of the conversation was around recipes, so his team promoted user generated content (photos and recipes) on Facebook. One cake post generated 172,499 likes and over 5 million impressions.

The brand did not have a blog, but helped to promote Reese’s recipes and ideas on other blogs. They also started a Twitter account, which worked to extend the reach of the other posts.

Because people congregate around their passion, Reese’s partnered with the NCAA 2013 basketball championship for the #LetsGoReeces campaign. Their website traffic increase five times with the help of social media.

Summer is a slow time for candy, so the Hershey team created the “Summer of Love” campaign with lots of fun art around summer and the image of the peanut butter cup, and included a Facebook contest. The images were promoted via their social media properties with engagement increasing by 150 percent.

A Bigfoot Halloween

Jack Link’s Beef Jerky chose the Space150 team to lead their social media shortly before Halloween. Petersen says they were looking to increase fans, quickly.

The Space150 creative team was sent into the woods with 10 props, three creatives, one Sasquatch and one iPhone to shoot video and photos to be used in a Sasquatch Trick or Treat promotion.

The premise: fans sent a message via Twitter or Facebook to Jack Link’s letting them know if wanted to #tricksasquatch or #treatsasquatch. To extend their reach, Jack Link’s sent email messages to a fan list and a purchased email list.  The Space150 team created fun responses, including photos (utilizing the consumer’s avatar when possible) or video replies and posted them to the @me_sasquatch Twitter handle or the Facebook fan page.

The team discovered the videos took longer to create and approve, so Petersen recommends if you have a limited budget to stick with images only. She also advised working out the approval process with your client ahead of time in order to speed up the turn-around time.

The campaign also targeted a few celebrities who talk about Bigfoot or beef jerky on social media, like pro wrestler James Storm, who replied with a video.

The campaign resulted in 250 personal responses, an 87 percent increase in Facebook comments, 7,500 YouTube views and over 1 million incremental impressions.

What’s one of your most successful social media campaigns?

Debbie Friez BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas Blog Debbie Friez serves as tech editor for the Capitol Communicator and is also a consultant. Previously, she worked as Vice President, Major Accounts for BurrellesLuce. She originally joined BurrellesLuce at their Minnesota Clipping Service affiliate.

Friez was a senior account director for West Glen Communications, a broadcast PR services company. While at West Glen Communications, she was a frequent contributor to the DC Communicator newsletter.

She has a broad understanding of the technologies that are transforming the marketing and communications profession. She serves on the advisory board for the Capitol Communicator, the membership committee for the Minnesota chapter of the Public Relations Society of America, the national marketing committee for the Association of Women in Communications, and is a member and past president of Washington Women in Public Relations (WWPR).

Friez is a graduate of the University of North Dakota. She lives in Minneapolis, MN with her husband Paul Croteau, their two cats, Smokey and the Bandit, and Gus, the dog.

LinkedIn: dfriez Twitter: @dfriez

Hashtag #Six-Second Attention Spans: Adding Twitter’s Vine to Your PR Toolbox

Monday, October 28th, 2013

Adding Vine to your PR ToolboxWhile the Wall Street types are figuring out whether to invest in Twitter’s IPO or wait to buy in, journalists, PR professionals and marketers have been figuring out if and how to invest in Vine, Twitter’s emerging micro-video service. It’s just another example of adapting social media strategy to an ever-evolving landscape of tools.

With Twitter’s hotly-anticipated $1.4 billion early November #IPO trending in the investor community, the company’s micro-video sharing app Vine, which integrates into Twitter and Facebook feeds, is heating up with journalists and advertisers. The app, which takes six-second videos and bets on a short attention span, has taken off so quickly that NowThis News, a mobile news service, has hired a Vine video journalist.

By hiring its first Vine journalist, NowThis News, a year-old network with an 18- to 34-year-old niche market, is betting that video news in Vine’s six-second micro-video loop will be as successful as Twitter’s 140-character text format. Their Vine journalist, Cody Johns, now commands more than 1 million followers on his Vine account.

Vine, which was acquired by Twitter in October 2012, lets users shoot six-second videos and share them on Vine, Twitter and Facebook. It has been seeing success with a steady increase in users, climbing the free app charts with an August overall app rank of No. 18, according to Onavo, an app analytics company. Vine says that its community numbered 40 million active users in August.

NowThis News uses Vine to put out political news, with Vines of Sen. John McCain’s position on Russia’s involvement in the Syrian situation.  Vine Journalist Johns, speaking on CNN Reliable Sources, said that NowThis News is working to get more politicians to do six-second Vines. “Vine is geared toward a young audience between ages 13 and 26. [They] need to be exposed to politics and Vine is the perfect medium for them,” Johns said of their targeted demographic.

And since just 5 percent of people younger than 30 closely follow news on Washington and politics, political journalists trying to reach such a demographic might want to invest in creating Vines.

Other news outlets are also finding Vine a useful news gathering and delivery tool. Meaghan Anselm of KSDK-TV in St. Louis says her newsroom uses Vine to find story ideas by searching local hashtags. KSDK-TV is also using Vine in its own marketing by showcasing newsroom personalities and behind-the-scenes news-gathering processes in a bid to gain viewership. “People think it is just a light-hearted, fun thing, but you can get serious content from [Vine],” Anselm says.

In addition to news organizations, Dunkin Donuts, Target, Samsung and Burt’s Bees are just some of the corporate users of Vine for their marketing purposes.

For journalists, PR professionals and marketers with an existing Twitter and Facebook presence and who are looking to more successfully reach a younger demographic more responsive to a micro-video content strategy, integration of Vine into their present social media mix could maximize Twitter and Facebook followers.

Though Vine is an app for Android and iOS, it integrates nicely with Twitter and Facebook, allowing for a useful role on those platforms and for both mobile and desktop viewing.

For NowThis News, the Vine’s six-second video format has proven more successful than its Twitter distribution, capturing 107,300 Vine followers compared to 23,250 on Twitter. And with Vine’s integration into its Twitter feed, NowThis News can leverage its Vine followers to help extend its Twitter reach. It can also better leverage Vine journalist Johns’ 1 million Vine followers to boost the following of the news organization itself. The Vine format has also proven more successful than its Instagram video strategy, where the news service has 53,000 followers.

How is your social media strategy evolving with a constantly changing social media landscape? Has adaptability been your policy when it comes to your social media strategy? Are you seeing a disparity in followers between your social platforms? What are your examples of cross-leveraging social media platforms to fight those disparities?

Top BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas Posts in 2011 – Numbers 20 to 11

Thursday, December 29th, 2011

iStock_000010469879XSmallAs 2011 winds to a close, no year would be complete without a wrap-up list of some kind. In that spirit, we are counting down the 20 Top BurrellesLuce Fresh Ideas posts in 2011. In today’s post we will be highlighting numbers 20 to 11.

Did your favorite Fresh Ideas posts make the list? Be sure to leave a comment and let us know.

20. The Art of Storytelling

19. PRSSA National Conference Speed Networking PR Student Questions

18. How to Speak C-Suite

17. Disappearing Act: 10 Brands That May Not Be Around in 2012

16. The New York Women in Communications 2011 Matrix Awards

15. When a Hashtag Leads to Help: PR Tips from #BlueKey

14. Zappos, 24/7 Customer Service in the Internet Age

13. Oscar’s Social Media Fever

12. Snooki’s Appearance at Rutgers – Good PR or Poor Reputation Management?

11. Poll Results: Should PR Interns Pitch the Media?

When a Hashtag Leads to Help: PR Tips from #BlueKey

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

Andrea Corbo*

Peacekeeping - UNAMID

Flickr Image: United Nations Photo

We all know there are many reasons to use social media, but why not use it for a good cause? Well, that’s what many non-profits, NGOs, and supporters do! 

Let’s take a look at a recent social media campaign launched by USA for UNHCR. The initiative, called The Blue Key campaign, aims at raising awareness of UNHCR refugee work and raising money through the purchases of blue keys that symbolize a key to a home, which refugees no longer have. Their goal is to “dispatch 6,000 Blue Keys by December 31, 2011.” To date, they have dispatched over 3,400 keys. The campaign has had huge success this year and still has a presence if you run a Twitter search today. #BlueKey

I recently had the opportunity to talk with Shonali Burke, a public relations and social media strategist based in metro D.C., who consulted on The Blue Key campaign (USA for UNHCR is her client), and blogs at Waxing UnLyrical. From our discussion, I was able to see that the tactics fell into several categories.

If you are a PR professional running a campaign, you may choose to set a goal that you can measure such as a set-amount of followers, hashtag mentions, or number of group members. (One of their goals was the number of blue keys.) You can then relate these quantitative metrics to monetary measurements and numbers of people positively affected as a result of such aid. You can also take a look at qualitative metrics, think tone or sentiment, to see how people may be reacting to your campaign and how your campaign may have shifted their awareness – positively, negatively, or neutrally.  What types of response can you get?

To understand how analytics helped UNHCR tell their story, check out this interview between Shonali and Beth Kanter, author of Beth’s Blog: How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media.  

Use holidays and events to your advantage. A great idea in the Blue Key campaign was to incorporate an online frenzy via a tweetathon (on June 13th) that approached World Refugee Day, held each year on June 20th.  These tweets then led to more awareness which, for UNHCR, resulted in a direct increase in support through purchases of blue keys. In fact, the tweetathons were so successful that they were held again in September and again on Monday, October 24th in honor of United Nations Day.

According to a recent email message sent by Marc Breslaw, executive director, USA for UNHCR – The UN Refugee Agency, the tweetathon held last week generated 1, 800 tweets with the hashtag #bluekey and have helped to spread even more awareness and keys.

And as 2011 draws to a close, another tweetathon is planned for November 17th from 9am – 9pm.

Clearly, USA for UNHCR and other organizations can create their own campaigns to raise awareness. But how can people get involved with these organizations if they don’t launch the campaign themselves? That’s where the Blue Key Champions come into play. Social media users, in general, can aid in these campaigns by participating by spreading knowledge, posting info for events or fundraisers, and sending targeted info to their friends.

Community Engagement (In Real-Life)
Since part of the goal is to actually bring real world action to causes, it is important for organizations and the communities to meet in real life, not just online. Today (November 2nd), in the NYC-area there is a  tweetup (NYC #bluekey tweetup) organized by local Blue Key Champions and the D.C. #bluekey tweetup will be on November 10th. These tweetups are a great way for people who are passionate about a cause to come together and meet others who are equally as passionate and foster a sense of active community.


Want some other causes to follow on Twitter? Help promote a cause that you are passionate about. Use your social media power to your advantage. Here are a few Twitter handles I suggest you follow to get started: @UNRefugeeAgency@planuk@unicefusa@Polaris_Project, @PlanGlobal@tkhf, @VolunteerMatch, and @ecoteer.

I hope I’ve encouraged you to get involved and help promote through your social media accounts. It’s easy and it means something important. What organizations do you follow on Twitter? Tell us by leaving a comment on Fresh Ideas.


Bio: After receiving a B.A. in communications, and briefly working at a TV production studio, Andrea began volunteering abroad. This lead her to work in the non-profit world, where she was fortunate enough to learn about international education, women’s empowerment and social issues for the elderly, while traveling to over a dozen countries.  Since joining BurrellesLuce in 2011, Andrea is excited to share her thoughts and views on branding, social media, and communications with the growing Fresh Ideas audience, as well as her passion for cultural awareness, volunteerism, and sustainable efforts. Twitter: @AndreaCorbo; Facebook: BurrellesLuce; LinkedIn: BurrellesLuce