Dan Fatigato | @danfatigato
On April 13, Social Media Delivered hosted more than 60 attendees at our Downtown Carrollton headquarters to hear about what disparate entities like NATO, Virtuoso and Cane Rosso have in common. They all leverage the power of social media to connect with their audience and achieve their business goals. From Neapolitan pizza to lifestyle magazines to local and world government, our guest speakers covered a lot of ground, but the common theme in each presentation was how to use social media to spread your message far and wide. If you missed the event, don’t worry, we captured the entire evening on Facebook Live.
Meet our guest speakers:
Kelli Lewis, Marketing Director at The City of Carrollton, TX
Carrollton’s Kelli Lewis kicked off the evening by giving a glimpse into the many facets of city government that social media touches. An active social media presence allows Carrollton to engage with citizens in a transparent fashion, perform crisis communication and promote community events. Kelli advised the crowd to stick to a clear and consistent voice on social media, while using humor and interesting visuals to reach the right audience.
Sharon McGrath, Managing Director, Marketing & Communications at Virtuoso
Virtuoso is the premier travel network of the top luxury travel agencies in the world. Sharon emphasized the importance of “Keeping it Real” on social media. Given the nature of Virtuoso’s business, imagery from exotic locales around the world play a central role in the company’s social presence. But social media audiences are astute and are able to recognize stock photos and videos when they see them. Sharon talked about leveraging user-generated content via photo contests - “It turns out people like to share their vacation photos” - and they’ve seen an exponential uptick in engagement and impressions when using real imagery on Facebook.
Jeff Amador, Director of Marketing & Business Development at Cane Rosso
Jeff manages the social media accounts for Cane Rosso and enjoys a generous amount of leeway to make jokes and take risks over social. His social media strategy is “comedy gold and pizza porn”, which he pulls off with tactics like photoshopping famous people eating Cane Rosso’s Neapolitan-style pizza. He strives to inject humor and irreverence into the company’s brand identity. Social media is the most effective outlet for the restaurant to get its unique brand voice out to customers.
Kate Crouse, Brand Manager at D Magazine
D Magazine’s mission is to “Make Dallas even better.” The lifestyle brand uses Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Pinterest to amplify their content to the right audience. Kate shared how crucial it is to understand what different social audiences are looking for. For instance, while humor works great for Cane Rosso on Facebook, D Magazine’s followers would rather receive hard facts: where to go this weekend, what to eat in town, etc. Instagram, a visual-driven platform, gives Kate’s team a chance to perform powerful branding. Kate uses idealistic images (especially skyline shots) of the city to allow users to follow in the footsteps of a true Dallas man/woman-about-town.
Franky Saegerman, Head of Digital Insights at NATO
Franky visited us all the way from Belgium. Unlike Jeff, he has to be extremely careful and measured on social media as NATO represents 28 nations’ governments and the risks of a poorly executed social post are vast. Trust is always key for NATO, as is timely, relevant and interesting content. Franky extolled the virtues of social media measurement, saying, “If you’re not measuring your content performance you will keep making the same mistakes”.
For instance they’ve recently grown their Facebook following from 10K to 1.2M in part by discovering that pasting word-for-word web site content onto FB posts delivered almost zero engagement. Now that NATO tailors content to each social media platform, engagement is up and posts are being shared to a wider audience. In 2016, NATO averaged 3K interactions per day on Facebook alone. However, Franky warned against measuring the wrong metrics. “Measure what matters, not what flatters” is one of his mantras. It’s great to know how many actions you are driving, but it’s more impactful to understand how many of those are advocates for the NATO brand. Though it will always be a smaller number, it’s a much more valuable audience to target for future content.
Q&A With The Panel
Following the individual presentations, our attendees got a chance to ask follow-up questions and gain valuable advice on how they can apply the panel’s learnings to their own brands and organizations. A sincere thank you to our panel for taking the time to share what works for them on social media and what doesn’t.
In addition to the amazing content we heard from our panel speakers, we also had great food! Dilla’s, a local DFW restaurant chain provided an American take on quesadillas that were a huge hit with attendees, speakers and Social Media Delivered employees alike. Very bueno!
Thanks to everyone who came out - you made it a memorable event!