On Thursday, May 28th, Amanda Lai (MPC 2012) hosted a workshop on social media at BrainStation.
By Jessica Chambers, MPC 2014
On Thursday, May 28th, I had the pleasure of attending a BrainStation social media marketing workshop, hosted by MPC 2012’s own Amanda Lai! Held in Konrad Group‘s gorgeous working space, Amanda shared her experiences working with both Strategic Objectives, and now as the Social Media Strategist at Wattpad. In the spirit of the session, I decided to live tweet the festivities!
To start the session, Amanda explained how she got in to social media marketing. While working in PR, social media work became frequently requested by her clients. In Amanda’s opinion, basic social media skills have become in-demand skills. Her tips were organized into five major categories:
1. Know Your Audience
She started off by using an example from her days at doing social for Cashmere Bathroom Tissue: although everyone uses bathroom tissue, not everyone is actually buying it. Instead, Cashmere’s greatest success came from engaging with women, who often hold the purchasing power in many households.
Amanda’s example demonstrates that social media strategists have to ask: “who is my target audience?” Amanda discovered that Wattpad’s audience is typically made of teenage girls, who are very connected to popular culture, highly emotional, and love talking about themselves. From there, she’s been inspired to create social content that is tailored to their interests.
2. Create Content That Works
Amanda discovered through trial and error that “spamming” (though annoying) can be an educational tool. If you find your comments are self-promotional, it may be because your content is not engaging them properly. If it’s more relatable content, such as asking a question, then more users actually engage.
Another key takeaway was that changing content to fit each platform tends to lead to higher engagement. On Tumblr, Amanda found that using GIFs lead to higher click through rates. On Instagram and Pinterest, photos with writing and quotes perform well.
3. Join the Conversation
Next, Amanda shared her advice on how to actively engage in two-way communication on social networks. She suggested to always “Speak their language.” For Wattpad’s large “Generation Z” audience, this meant using emojis and integrating acronyms.
4. Measure Success
Once social media strategists had content, Amanda pointed to social and web analytics to determine if the content is working as it should. Are users clicking through your content onto your website? If they do, are they staying and reading more, or is there a large bounce rate? Measuring the user’s journey is as important as social-only engagement rates.
5. Stay Ahead of the Curve
Stay ahead of the curve. Finally, Amanda said that while it can be hard to “catch up” to social media, you can always keep track of emerging trends in social. Amanda’s favourite for Wattpad is Facebook’s “Call To Action” button, which experienced 23,000 clicks in one month alone. Another tip was to keep Google+ up to date. Although the platform has lower engagement rates, it’s effect on Google search engine rankings makes it a worthwhile platform.
Missed the Session?
Due to popular demand, Amanda will be hosting a second social media marketing workshop with BrainStation on June 23. Additionally, BrainStation plans to hold additional workshops and courses in digital marketing, web development and user experience design all summer!