This is Part 2 of the review of the “Get Your Story Straight: Aligning Social Media and Content Marketing Strategies,” a Content Marketing Institute webinar featuring Ardath Albee, noted B2B marketing strategist and CEO of Marketing Interactions, Inc., and Paige Musto, Sr. Manager of public relations and social media at Act-On Software. You can listen to the webinar recording here, or check out the whitepaper Best Practices for Creating a Content Marketing Strategy for an overview of some of the more effective content strategies companies are employing.
Agile marketing – embracing the new speed of business
“The need for agile marketing has evolved out of the growing use and adoption of mobile and social, the new speed of business, the multiplication of communication channels available, and the transparency and accessibility social fosters,” said Paige, as she kicked off the second half of the webinar. Being an agile marketer means being relevant, and taking advantage of the conversations and trending topics being discussed to increase brand salience. If you’re wondering whether your business is ready to embrace agile marketing, Paige outlined five signs to look for:
- You’re outgrowing a static annual plan which no longer suits the speed at which you do business. Changing the game plan is preferred over following a static plan.
- You experiment, add variety, incorporate resources, and make revisions to your marketing activities.
- You use big data and analytics gleaned from your experiments to trial, test and refine marketing campaigns, instead of using employee opinion and company conventions.
- You understand the power of social media and the changing buyers’ journey. Individuals and interactions are more important than target markets these days because your marketing target is always moving.
- You foster collaboration and team unity over silos and hierarchy, and understand the benefit of having multiple minds sharing and collaborating.
Metrics for social media contribution
Measuring the effectiveness of social media contribution is necessary in order to identify what is and isn’t working for your company, and where your focus should lie.
Use unique tracking codes for each campaign and platform in order to measure social media success and to gauge which channels are most effective. You can also track company share of voice (SOV) by taking the total # of company mentions in social and dividing that by the total number of competitor mentions (# of your company mentions / total # of competitor mentions). Look at SOV month-to-month against your key competitors to get an idea of whether your campaigns are moving the needle and generating increased awareness for your company. Another way of measuring your contribution is the engagement of your content and tracking how often it’s being liked, retweeted and shared. You should also keep track of how often you company’s hashtag is being used on various social channels.
Content and social media working closely together
Social and content go hand in hand – in order to have a successful social strategy, you need to have content to drive your followers to. It’s key that your social editorial calendar complements and supports your content marketing strategy. The marketing team and PR/social team should work closely to ensure that all company-wide initiatives are tracked in the pipeline. “Each key initiative coming from the various departments should be tracked and distilled down to a content sharing and social sharing component to make sure that you are actively promoting on social relevant eBooks, whitepapers, surveys and infographics that your company has on deck that tie back and support the overall marketing strategy,” concluded Paige.
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