Meet The Founder of The Bees Awards

Last Saturday, July 3rd, I met up in San Francisco with the founder (Bastien) and the creative executive (Cara) behind the first international social media award for marketing and communication professionals.

I have previously written the overall blog post on what the Bees Award is, and on my personal blog, I have written a bit about the meeting from a more personal aspect.

This post is more about the founders thoughts behind the why, how, when etc.

The team behind the Bees Award have been at it for about a year now. They are six people working full time, an their office is located near South Beach in San Francisco.

The Jury

One of the details they really have been spending a lot of time on is building an international jury for the award show. The jury count is more than 15 members and they are from all over the world. They have found the jury members by asking around, so that all members have been peer recommended, which absolutely is the way to pick a Jury for a social media award show.

People from all continents are represented in the jury – it is truly international, and many of them with great credentials within marketing, communication, branding and social media. The scope and diversity of the jury is for me an insurance that they will be able to pick the best practice and winner in the different categories.

Submit your work

Right now the team at the Bees Award is having a huge focus on getting people all over the world to submit their entry, this is of course absolutely crucial in order to find the best blog, best campaign around the world.

In my opinion, the submissions should be pouring in right now, there is enough social media experts, gurus, ninjas, cowboys around the world claiming they know everything there is to know about social media. The brands and companies around the world is getting calls from experts all the time – so I guess there must be a lot of good cases and best practices out there.

To take a quote from an old favorite movie – “are your mouth writing checks, your body can´t cash” or have you truly done something besides writing some blog post, started a Facebook page for your own business – my appeal – submit your work if you think you are an expert or have done something great for a client within social media – put your money where your digital mouth is!

You can read more of the rules and criteria for submitting here

Overall I had a great meeting with Bastien and Cara – I like them and I like their project, so we are right now discussing how we at Mindjumpers can be of any assistance for The Bees Award. We have a couple of thoughts in the incubator, so it’s not going to be the last time you can read about the award show on our blog.

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Clickbait: Information overload! How can brands cut-through all the noise?

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 10.11.34You won’t believe the hidden message in this blog post! Or rather – there isn’t one, I just wanted you to click through and read this. But bear with me – I’m about to suggest something incredibly controversial – a never-heard-before admission by a social agency!*

As much as clickbait is the emotional catnip of our online experience and can drive consistent traffic for publishers like The Daily Mail and Huff Post who churn out multiple stories each day, it’s still hugely annoying to discover you’ve been duped by an over-excited headline promising to give you all the feels. For brands, adopting the same practice can negatively affect perception and ultimately – sales. So how can brands cut through all the sensational copy and deliver successful results without falling prey to creating clickbait themselves? How do they beat them rather than join them?


Platform crackdown

In the early days of social, Facebook optimised content based on engagement, meaning that if users clicked on a piece of content, it received a higher ranking in newsfeeds. In 2014 Facebook took steps to try and crack down on those gaming this ranking using clickbait, and in February this year it introduced an update based not just on what users engaged with in their feed, but what they wanted to see. Facebook’s advice is that Pages should avoid encouraging people to take action (such as encouraging lots of clicks), because this will likely only cause temporary spikes in metrics that might then be rebalanced by feed’s ranking over time – meaning the latest ranking favours content that users naturally engage with rather than content that users click on through coercion.


Last month Instagram followed suit and announced it would alter user’s feeds to optimise the content users “care about the most”, and Twitter has also adopted a similar change (although users can opt-out and revert back to the chronological feed). The changes will hopefully make it harder for clickbaiters to game feeds with meaningless content, but the real aim for the platforms hosting is to surface more engaging content more frequently so users return often and stay longer.


The same goes for brands on social. If the content they produce is consistently engaging, then users will interact more frequently, leading others to discover it through preferred ranking. Ultimately, these new newsfeed algorithms exist to generate more meaningful engagement, driving not just clicks, but conversations via comments, and shares.


Learn and adapt

Meaningful engagement begins with relevant content that creates value for the user and the brand. While an insight-driven content strategy is key to delivering this, brands should also adapt stories and messages based on the emotional needs and behavior of their audience. This is more than just a case of ‘test and learn’ or refining what has already been done. Brands must also evolve their approach in line with new behaviors, platforms, competitors and rankings or risk being left behind by those who do.


A good example of a brand that does this well is Buzzfeed, who’s CEO recently shared their new strategic thinking, revealing how their objective has changed from getting users to click through to their main site to view stories, to allowing content to be consumed directly on other platforms. The new direction was prompted by analysing which content generated clicks and discovering that users prefer to consume some types of content within the platform they are already on. The company also found a discernable difference between user interactions with the same content on different platforms, demonstrating how content demand and consumption vary across sites. What spreads like wildfire on Facebook might fail miserably elsewhere.


Relevance is key

For brands looking to use social content to drive click-through to their site, it’s important to balance the goal of the company (clicks to eyeballs, or conversions to sales, for example) with the desire and behavior of users on different sites, and monitor response over time. Relevance is key to interaction, and brands that think like publishers will know that relevance is an ever-changing chameleon. While users are bombarded with meaningless clickbait, there is ample opportunity for brands to channel the social zeitgeist by delivering valuable content that meets audience needs in the format, time and platform that suits them. If they get this right, they won’t need clickbait.


At Mindjumpers we help companies and brands to think as publishers and provide end-to-end social media management across multiple markets, encompassing full social strategy, planned and reactive content creation, analysis and reporting.


If you’d like to find out more please get in touch.


*Don’t be naughty and scroll to the last paragraph – I’ve hidden the controversial part somewhere to optimize your dwell time in finding it!