In today’s world, digital marketers need to keep up with many different contributing factors to a successful social media strategy.

In this Q&A, we caught up with three expert speakers scheduled to present at Social Media Marketing World 2018 who each talked about a different area social media strategists should master. First, we all know video is a powerful tool for engagement, but live video is an even more powerful and authentic tool to draw in an audience. Second, we get into insourcing vs. outsourcing social media and when companies should do each. Third, we dive into how companies can prepare for an inevitable social media crisis ahead of time.

Each speaker will be part of the Corporate Social track at SMMW, which is sponsored by GaggleAMP. You can hear more insights from them by attending their sessions mentioned below.

HeadshotSquareNEW2 (1)-1.jpgCarmen Shirkey Collins, Social Media Lead of Cisco’s talent brand (@WeAreCisco)

Carmen is an award winning social media enthusiast with ten years experience. She has managed Cisco’s talent brand social media team for over three years with the aim of helping the company acquire and retain top talent.

Carmen will be part of a panel of social media experts for the How Brands Are Succeeding With Live Video session.

Q: How big of an effect has video had on businesses using social media?

A: Brands that understand that social is mobile do well. You need content that draws the attention of people who are on their mobile device because most people are. If you post a 5 minute video, no one will watch it. Brands that do short snippets of video see success.

Q: How is live video a helpful tool for businesses compared to pre-recorded videos?

A: Live video is more authentic. Anything can happen when you’re live and that’s what makes it real. It makes it more personable and relatable.

At Cisco, we’re cultivating our employees to be camera correspondents on live video. They show their personality, interview each other and talk about what life at Cisco is like. No one cares what a brand says. They care what people say, so we ask our employees to be our influencers, and it really does work for us.

Q: How difficult is it to implement a video into your social media strategy?

A: Anyone with any budget can do video. You have to think about who your audience is and how you want to do it. Know your audience, what your message is, how to say it, and have goals to show success. If your goal is awareness, it’s different metrics than click throughs.


Brooke B. Sellas, CEO and Founder of B Squared Media, LLC.unnamed-5.png

Brooke runs a social media and digital marketing agency, which she founded six years ago. Her company specializes in “done-for-you” social media management where customers outsource their social media presence. The agency will develop, implement and run a customized social media strategy based on clients’ specific needs.

Brooke will be part of a panel of speakers during a session titled, Organization for Social Success: Insource? OutSource? No Source? Panelists will debate whether organizations should outsource their social media presence or keep it in house.

Q: What is your side of the debate during your session at SMMW?

A: My view is very different because my business offers outsourcing. I believe social media should be in house because no one knows your brand or your company better than you do. But I think there will always be a need for people like us. The average social media manager in the U.S. is making $96,000 a year. Not everyone can budget for that. You also have to get them to work Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. That won’t always happen, so there will always be a need for outsourcing.

Q: What’s a common mistake you see social media marketers make today, and what should they be doing instead?

A: A lot of mistakes are around KPIs. To make your KPIs, you have to know what your goals are. Don’t just go by basic metrics. Not everyone cares about their number of followers. If your goal is 10,000 followers, that’s great, but what if those followers aren’t meeting your other goals?

One of our clients is in a very niche market, so they don’t have a ton of followers on social media. But what they do have is a very high click through rate, and that’s important to us.

Q: What’s a life lesson you learned early in your career that really helped you professionally?

A: For me, business growth is truly somewhere in between company culture and ruthless efficiency. You need to have processes that are shareable and transferable on the efficiency-side, but you also need people who understand the company mission. Somewhere in between is the perfect formula for growth.

As for social media, think conversation and not campaign. If people picked up on that, they would do a lot better on social.

New Fiona .pngFiona Birch, Founder & Chief Digital Strategist of Pro Athlete Online

Fiona is a social media expert that specializes in risk management. Her company helps teams, coaches, and athletes of all levels build a resilient brand on social media in order to withstand future crises and create opportunities.

She will be speaking at the How to Protect Your Reputation by Building a Resilient Brand session.

Q: What is social media risk and how do you help people handle it?

A: It’s about bad situations that happen to you and having a strong enough brand reputation that you can weather an inevitable crisis. I get people to understand they are going to have a situation at some point. What are you doing now to prepare for it?

I’ve worked a lot on social media risk, and my company often does get brought in after the fact. But it’s about building something that withstands those situations before they happen. We look at what’s good to do and what’s bad to do. You should never be in crisis mode.

Q: What’s a best practice you suggest to people to better prepare themselves for social media crisis? 

A: Show people the real you so they’ll accept all of you. If people feel like you are being yourself and they know who you are, even if you’re arrogant, they’ll still think you’re sincere. Always be honest and truthful because you need to deal with perceptions.

Q: What are some examples of crises people need help with?

A: NFL player Laremy Tunsil went through a crisis right before the draft when a video posted on his Twitter account of him smoking marijuana. He needed to protect his password ahead of time.

Look at people like Logan Paul. He apologized and did a fantastic job, but that’s after the fact. What do you do to build a resilient brand ahead of time?

Venus Williams was in a car accident and someone died because of it. If she was drunk driving or had a history of it, you’d say, “here we go again.” There would be assumptions. But she’s been very open, so she didn’t get that type of reaction. People said, “hey, hang on. There must be something more here.”

Q: What’s a life lesson you learned early in your career that really helped you professionally?

A: Someone told me about 20 years ago to show those around you that you are a thinker and not just a doer. If you are asked to do a lesser jobs, show the thinking behind what you are doing. You’ll get viewed differently. But at any stage, show you are a thinker, and you’ll get more professional respect.

Make sure you catch these speakers at their sessions during the Corporate Social track at SMMW, sponsored by GaggleAMP. Feel free to come by our booth to learn how you can use GaggleAMP for free for a year!