Top Takeaways from Social Media Marketing World 2019 #SMMW19

by | Mar 25, 2019 | Uncategorized

For the third year in a row, I set out for sunny San Diego to be part of Social Media Marketing World (SMMW). This year, I volunteered pre-event as well as served a few hours on-site which was definitely a change, but one that was welcomed. This was the first year that I attended as my own entity, as the owner of Oh Snap! Social. It felt good, it felt scary and I loved every minute of it. Why? Because I had one goal while there – to make five new meaningful connections with others.

Now for a conference, this goal may sound strange, but for SMMW this is the reason so many people (4,700+) come to San Diego for this event. It’s about networking and making connections with others in your field. You’ll often hear the event dubbed as “marketer summer camp,” and it is! There’s always opportunities to mix and mingle with people you met pre-event or even speakers in the hallways between sessions. Everyone is personable, there’s no one left “behind the curtain.”

Here’s Michael Stelzner, CEO of Social Media Examiner, talking with a group in the hallway after his session Friday afternoon.

Mike Stelzner CEO Social Media Examiner

Build Relationships

This is what marketing is all about and even more so in the digital space – it’s about building those relationships with your customers, with your fans, and prospective clients.

Relationship Marketing expert, Jessika Phillips shared this during her workshop which I thought was spot on.

Jessika Phillips relationship marketing

How can you be personable with them, delight them and more importantly, know truly who they are? It’s all about turning those lookie-loos into lifelong fans and consistently reaching out to them where they’re hanging out online to stay top of mind.

Press Record

The best way to continue to build upon these relationships and spark new ones is by producing video content. This was a deeply engrained theme throughout the entirety of the conference.

In listening to the Queen of Facebook, Mari Smith’s keynote, she suggested that dividing your content mix like this:

  1. 70% video
  2. 20% images
  3. 10% links/ updates
The queen of Facebook, Mari Smith keynoting at SMMW19

She also mentioned that the consumption of Stories content (both in Facebook and Instagram) are growing 15x faster than feed content, according to a 2018 Techcrunch report. So you may want to start developing a strategy for your Instagram and Facebook stories as well. Need some ideas? Here’s how to develop a kick ass Instagram story.

Feeling totally overwhelmed by producing your own video content? I get it, it can be challenging at first. Here’s what’s awesome though, Instagram stories are a great place to start to get a feel for video content and how to showcase your personal brand or the brand of your business on a platform that doesn’t have staying power. Instagram stories disappear in 24 hours. Give it a try!

Now, if LinkedIn is more your speed, consider video – now we’re not talking overly produced pieces of content, but content that allows your customers and prospects behind the scenes of your office, your product, your brand. Why? Because according to LinkedIn expert, Viveka von Rosen, 75% of B2B buyers and 84% of C-Suite use social media to make purchasing decisions. In addition, 62% of buyers will research the individual sales representative they are meeting with before they meet – so you need to get your team on board when it comes to sprucing up their own social media accounts, primarily LinkedIn.

Not sure what kind of videos you should start producing for LinkedIn here are a few ideas from Viveka’s presentation that I thought were gold:

–      Tips or tricks

–      Testimonials

–      Book or product reviews

–      Interviews

–      Teach a skill

–      Product demos

Just aim to keep the content professional!

Add Admiration To Ads

What about videos for Facebook advertising? OK, Mari totally shifted my mindset here. For YEARS, I’ve been saying Facebook is a pay to play social media channel and she flipped that on its head by saying “invest for success,” which I thought was brilliant.

So, when you’re investing for success with your business by hiring someone like me to run ads for you, please know that it’s all about nurturing your ideal customer audience down the buyers’ journey. It takes multiple touch points with multiple messages to get those desired conversions or sales. During Dennis Yu’s session, he talked all about developing “why,” “how,” and “what” one-minute videos for your advertising to serve as those multiple touch points. Doing these multiple touch points often results in lower CPM (or cost per mile/1,000 impressions). Why?

Facebook ad expert Dennis Yu of blitzmetrics

Don’t put crap in a box. K? Be intentional and…

Tell Stories

Now that we know video content is a must-have yet again for your social media strategy – it was a hot topic last year as well — what type of video content should you produce? The simple answer: video content that tells your stories.

During Mark Schaefer’s closing keynote he wants people, mostly us marketers, to “stop doing what people hate.” Can I get a mic drop? And he’s right, today there is no excuse for posting content that doesn’t make sense for your overall brand and how it relates back to your audience. Using the data to measure what content is working – taking note of those reaction spikes as Andrew and Pete mentioned in their keynote — and doing more of that!

Andrew and Pete content marketing machines

Time to Rebel

According to Mark Schaefer (pictured below), we are in the third marketing rebellion.

A rebellion where there’s more emotional connection to a human, not a product.

A rebellion where we are predominately unreachable by advertising (or just flat out ignore it, fast forward it, block it).

A rebellion where there’s no traditional marketing or sales funnel.

A rebellion where the customer is the marketer.  

Marketing Rebellion author Mark Schaefer

You have to be more human. There’s no getting around it in this rebellion. And if you work for a big company, your culture is your marketing. Schaefer gave the example of Wistia and their about page and how it highlights their employees in a unique and personable way. Using your company’s about page is a great way to add personality to your team and your brand.

Another example that I would like to highlight is Appian. Appian’s social team is taking their culture is marketing up a notch with “Appian Life.” They’re utilizing Instagram Stories to share day-in-the-life style content from their employees, highlighting their work, and their story, as a way to showcase the company culture with the goal of attracting like-minded job candidates. Their tactic echoes what Schaefer was saying throughout his keynote that “the personal brand is now the company brand,” and business owners and employees alike have to become the spokespeople.

All in all, you have to be human to build relationships that need to be nurtured overtime to build your business. Building and maintaining relationships both on and offline takes time and effort, but showing your customers your human side makes them even bigger fans. What’s one thing you could do today to continue to build (or maybe reignite) a business relationship? For me, I’m writing five handwritten notes to the five new connections I made while attending the conference and sending them snail mail style.

SMMW19 friendships well-made