Tag Archives: community

Why is “Community” so Important in Today’s Influencer World?

Written by Holly Pavlika and Brandi Riley 

Companies, organizations and brands everywhere are working for influencers. These influencers are typically a reflection of their target audience or a niche the brand wants to expand their reach to. They will be leveraged for market research, ideation and the creation of content or the amplification of a brand’s content.

There are plenty of places brands can turn to to leverage a blogger’s influence. Many boast hundreds of thousands of bloggers signed, sealed and all ready to cherry pick from a database. But that’s just it…it’s a database and numbers alone won’t reveal everything a brand needs to know about a blogger.

Today it’s all about engagement and social action, which is driven by influence. And influence comes from tribes. Tribes are communities of people who share similar passions: food, technology, beauty, fashion and more. Whatever your passion, you look for others who share your love and enthusiasm. Those passions are the fuel for conversation, the sharing of ideas and growth of that community or tribe. They come with a built-in syndication aspect: friends share their friend’s content and comment on each other’s content. And that conversation is an invitation to bring others into the tribe.

There is so much more content to wade through today.

Do you know what a zettabyte is? It’s trillions of gigabytes of information and according to the International Data Corporation, we filled 57.5 billion 32GB iPads worth of zettabytes in 2012 alone–an unbelievable amount of information. More than any of us could consume in a lifetime.

But influencers talk to other influencers and their social circles. One well-placed tweet can set off a firestorm of sharing from community to community. And friends within communities tend to share their friend’s content in support of each other. The validation of a piece of content can make one piece rise above rather than drown in zettabytes of information being uploaded every day. It’s natural syndication.

A community fosters relationships and results in the whole community benefiting.

We hear it all the time from our community: a community is motivating and gives a sense of purpose as well as bringing out a bit of a competitive streak. There’s a forum for asking questions and access to others who are in the know which has a positive impact on influence and audience growth.

Social platforms aren’t what they used to be.

Social platforms have evolved over the years, and sometimes overnight. The ability to keep up with the technology and the people who use the technology can be a struggle for many who are without the benefit of community. Today, it’s much more likely for influencers to focus their energy on a particular social platform, rather than bounce from one to another. Their audience, in turn, follows suit.

Influencers, with their community building skills, then become teachers and evangelists. They educate the other members of their tribe on how to effectively use each social platform. As they become experts in engagement and learn how to keep up with the people (and the brands) that matter the most to them, they share what they know, bringing groups of other influentials with them.

When you couple the ever-changing algorithms of Facebook, with the overcrowding of Twitter, and dozens of new platforms launching all of the time, community becomes paramount to social success. Unlike social platforms, community is constant. When community is managed properly, it doesn’t matter what changes the social platforms go through. The audience will follow.

What’s Your Social Content Marketing Strategy?

Written by John Andrews

Content is King, or so the saying goes.  Why then, in the most connected era of media ever does content seem to be in such short supply?  For the past few years, many marketers chased and built channels without first having a robust and coherent content marketing strategy.  After all, every new social channel requires its own content stream such as Facebook posts, tweets, videos, pins, etc.  Consequently, we now face the dot-com age web content problem amplified by a factor of 10.  All these channels require constant feeding to build and drive audience engagement.

Most content marketing approaches use a model built for print, broadcast and public relations; they leverage relatively few pieces of content and rely on mass syndication and frequency to achieve mass reach with relatively little efficiency.  Social channels are neither paid, owned or earned media. Social channels are engaged media that is produced, consumed and syndicated by people.  These channels require a massive amount of content to begin turning the engagement flywheel.

Fortunately, the marketing process for effective content marketing remains unchanged.  The integration of people, place, price and promotion still works just fine. It merely requires adjustment for the delivery of messaging across social platforms and integration with other forms of media.  As eyeballs shift to social and digital formats and more information is sourced via some type of search, marketing organizations must shift how they manage the process.

At Collective Bias, we believe that successful social content production requires a careful combination of humans and technology.  The right mix of those inputs varies but people and relationships are always more important than the technology.  Marketing professionals must remember this when putting together social strategies and teams.  While many digital platforms require fewer people than traditional marketing in many cases, success in social content marketing will require more.

 Building and managing a “content” community efficiently addresses this challenge but can be difficult and labor intensive to manage.  Think of the effort required to produce a broadcast spot or print piece. Add in folks to manage the complexity of hundreds of individual influencers and you begin to understand the magnitude of the problem.  Leading brands, retailers and service providers leverage our Social Fabric® community platform to efficiently manage this process at scale.

Give some thought to your plan for social content management. It’s one of the most important decisions you have to make for your brand in the coming year.

Below are two images from recent Collective Bias programs that produced great examples of content marketing.

 

Disney Cinderella post by Tonya of Tonya Staab.

Kraft Cool Whip post by Crystal of A Pumpkin and A Princess.