digital marketing, Facebook, Social Media, Twitter

Beware The Audience


It’s strange how certain trends/pet peeves/viral content starts to slap you in the face repeatedly before you acknowledge it’s impact on the industry and common practices. This past week has been a reawakening for me about the topic of the Audience Attention Span on Social Media.

So what am I talking about?

The fact that I refuse to watch a YouTube (or any other form of online) video that’s longer than 3 minutes. The knowledge that as Social Media and our access to information gets easier, our tolerance for information and content which we have to work for shortens. It’s also the idea that unless we

1. Heavily incentivize or
2. Rethink how and what we approach consumers with

we could very well alienate our audience and eventually, lose them.

Today our project manager was looking for a how-to video for our new office tea-brewer and was significantly annoyed that all the videos were over 20 minutes long and it sparked this defining conflict in my mind. I believe that there are subtle differences in the definitions of online content which boil down to how much time, effort and money it costs the consumer. For example, the word “tutorial” implies an in depth and therefore longer video or piece of content, whereas when a user is looking for “how-to”, they’re looking for a short, easy to digest piece of content to help them quickly overcome their obstacle. If a piece of content is wrongly titled (like a 30 minute long how-to), consumers won’t just look elsewhere, but become actively negative towards your channel and your brand- for wasting their time, their data and their effort.

Some time back I ran a simple giveaway on a client’s page, but I warned client that forcing fans off Facebook and onto a tab (which even though it’s been defined as being native, really isn’t at all) would shoot our entries and overall success of the campaign down. This proved to be true, but obviously the reason why consumers didn’t want to leave Facebook wasn’t because our entry mechanic wasn’t ‘native’. From a consumer standpoint, what we were giving away just wasn’t worth the time and effort to waste less than a minute for. If however we asked fans to comment on the post, the uptake would be substantially better because the effort and time to do so had been sliced in half.

My point is this. We keep falling into the same trap of assuming that once we nail content on a platform that it will remain that way, forgetting that Social Media is human, fluid and it’s state of flux is dictated by the users and their preferences- not our shitty Traditional Media turned Digital Experts.

The wisdom? Keep your ear to the ground, so you don’t end up pissing your fans off with a bullshit 30 minute long video.

digital marketing, Facebook, Marketing, Social Media

Social Media Incentives: Breeding Inauthentic Engagement

Content is King

The slap-dash solution for a lack of reach and engagement (I really do use those words way too much) always seems to be running a giveaway. But to what end?

For the brands I work with, nothing scares me more than when my client wants to run a giveaway, especially after months of perfecting the brand’s content, and it really is just an issue of how much inauthentic engagement you end up receiving.

People who aren’t interested in your product will flock en masse to your page, engage, engage, engage, and then just like a hot guy with no personality- will leave you feeling empty and shoot your stats down so fast and far you’ll be back at square one, just trying to get into a good space content-wise.

It’s all good and well that I whine about what shouldn’t be done, but what should the actual solution to increase reach and engagement be?

  1. Think about who the brand speaks to, who the target market is and what sort of content they consume online.
  2. Target bloggers, publications and personalities who your audience will resonate with and collaborate (emphasis on the word collaborate, not to be mistaken for “take my product and my creative and make people love me without any creative input”).
  3. Launch a campaign, it can be on little to no budget, but if it’s well thought out and passionate enough, people will respond. 
  4. Keep the momentum going even after the campaign is done, analyse which parts of the campaign worked best and capitalize on them.

Good social isn’t rocket science, but being one with your consumer takes a bold set of stress balls.

Marketing, Public Relations

Pinterest vs TheFancy: The Death of Social Elitism


When you’ve learnt about Advertising & Marketing in the post-Millennial frenzy that was defined by touching the brands that were marketed to be unattainable, it’s easy to think that Social Media should work the same way.

And funny enough, there are reasons to think that way too.

But Social Media has shifted from being run by Elitists, to being held up by consumers who are demanding that their needs be met by personable engines. For the first time, companies that want to stick around for the next recession have had to start building their brands around what their consumers want and not what they want their consumers to fall for.

This power-shift from Brand to Consumer has made itself striking in the e-commerce based Social Media engines like TheFancy and Pinterest, but what’s interesting is how the age-old theory of Elitist Marketing Wins was disproved, and by housewives nonetheless.

TheFancy was geared to be a success from the get-go, founded by a good friend of Kanye West (which I’m ashamed to say, how I stumbled upon it), and endorsed by the likes of Coco Rocha, Ashton Kutcher and a Yoko Ono looking woman (or man, I’m not entirely sure), but it’s content was where it should have steamed ahead.

Coco Rocha

TheFancy offers products and packages that you really won’t find anywhere else, niche gadgets and tools that are perfect for gift giving, not to mention fun to “Fancy”, but TheFancy‘s allure was also it’s downfall.

My humble Infographic explains it all.

My Infographic


Facebook, Marketing, Public Relations, Twitter

To The Personable Mass Psychologists

Lots of people tell me that my job isn’t really a job, that I don’t actually ‘work’, that Digital Marketing is just a bunch of geeks fiddling around at their keyboards. So here’s what Social Media does, and why you need people who, quite frankly, know their shit, if you want your brand to go anywhere worthwhile.

I’m talking about The Pass On Effect of Social Media, as explained for people who think that Social Media Marketing is a joke and unworthy of a job title.

Let’s say you own a Nokia 3310, you eat a Red Velvet Cupcake (in the time BH: Before Hipster which therefore makes them unpretentious) and you love it so much that you write about it in your journal. At your next book club, you tell your 5 best friends about the bakery, and they tell 5 of their friends so that within a week, 25 potential customers are drawn to the bakery.

That’s how Marketing is meant to work.

It’s called Word of Mouth and when you use these tactics on Social Media, it’s the same concept as the Cupcake Scenario, only magnified significantly. Instead of 5 women at book club, you can tweet something at hundreds of people, who can retweet it to hundreds more, expanding your reach as a brand within minutes.

But here’s why you have to give kudos to Social Media Marketers, good Marketing takes exceptional content, and even more exceptional timing.

Anyone can schedule a tweet, but knowing which times will attract the most views by your chosen demographic, the text:visual content ratio that your target market responds to, the key words to initiate interaction and tailoring your posts and tweets accordingly is not something any keyboard junkie can do. We’re in the business of making Mass Psychology look friendly, it isn’t numbers or big terms, but instinct and opportunity recognition.

So count this as a shout out to the Digital Marketers who do more for their brands than just tweet and post, but interact, associate and network, in order to set their clients apart from the millions of robots putting up mediocre content. We see you. And we appreciate.

**by ‘we’ I mean me, along with my alter-ego Portia Menendez who is an illegal immigrant living in the US in T.S. Elliot’s poems. #NotaTrueStory

Facebook, Marketing, Public Relations, Twitter

The Battle of Reach vs Engagement

It’s an internal war that countless Social Media Managers battle with, whether your focus should revolve around the Reach of your posts and tweets, or whether you should judge the success of your strategy based on the level of engagement it attracts and initiates.

So what should you get your knickers in a bunch about anyway?

I thought the answer was simple, Engagement trumps Reach every time, but I still find myself looking at the Reach stats underneath every Facebook post, regardless of whether it has 10 comments in 15 minutes. A reach of less than 50 scares the pants off me, and it all boils down to your purpose as a strategist.

Unless you’re managing a big brand like, let’s say, Blackberry, your purpose is to grow the Reach of a brand, to build it’s following, to sway more people in favor of your client, so should it really make you blush when you engage with a loyal fan base when in essence, your activity is redundant?

Well actually, it should make you blush, it should make you swoon, because while you may hook your clients with the words “i can double your fan base”, what you also mean to say is that you’ll maintain the good relationship with the brand’s current consumer support base while drawing in new fans.

Ding Ding Ding. So who wins the battle, Reach or Engagement?

I say both, because a wors roll is not a wors roll without a roll (Engagement) and Championship Boerewors (Reach). Now, who’s hungry..