The Social Newsroom – How To Make It Happen

spokes-179x179-01“Companies and brands are becoming media outlets”, by now that statement is a few years old, but what does it mean, and how do you best leverage this way of thinking for a company or a brand?

In the last two years, we have been working closely with some global brands and industry experts to create our framework in order to incorporate “think as a media”. We call it “The Social Newsroom”.
First let’s look at why the social newsroom is important.

The consumer journey is more fragmented than ever, and multiple touch points are influencing the consumer. Relevance is thus key to break through the increasing consumption of content.

The following key points are some of the ingredients you need to leverage. They are in no particular order:


News

Context and timing is everything. The key is to catch the specific news that people talk about when standing by the digital water cooler that is the Facebook news feed. Is it the Harlem shake, sky diving from outer space or maybe something very local as misplaced horse meat in food (Europe)? Just remember – the conversational topics must be in context with your brand. If there is no relevance between the topic and your brand, you will loose the potential – it will just be corporate bull****.

 

Social behavior

Back to basic – social is per default in our DNA, think human behavior, and think social at heart. Some of the best content and some of the best digital social experiences are not groundbreaking inventions. They speak to the simplest things inside us – we are social beings.


Objectives and goals

Have clear objectives and goals for your newsroom. Strive to focus these objectives towards the core objectives for the company – e.g. sell more products, increase loyalty etc. The number of fans and engagement are not business objectives; they can merely be tools to leverage business objectives.


Organize

In order to fully leverage the potential of the newsroom within the organization you will need a “Hub and Spoke” structure. Most successful companies have implemented this structure and it’s key that all spokes understand to feed into the editorial planning of a company’s social channels.

Your system needs to be agile to fit a world that moves fast and at the same time be automated and effective. You need workflows and systems that can enhance the collaboration with both internal and external partners.


Actionable Data

Data is not just for measurement – some of the global brands at the forefront of actionable data have systems that recommend what content should be presented to the community, at what time, and in what context. Systems that are based on data can guide the editorial team to curate better content and increase the success.


Platform

You need to deeply understand the functionalities of the different social platforms. They work on different premises and a ‘one-size fits all’ approach – will not work! Your platform managers need to be highly adaptable for change, did someone say, “Facebook is changing something again…”


Creative skills

If you really want to stand out, you need to understand that a Community Manager by default might not be the greatest Designer or Copywriter even though they have a basic Photoshop knowledge. You should have a Content Team of content strategists and content creators – all with excellent creative skills within art direction, design, and copywriting.


Localization

Localization is pointed out to be one of the biggest trends in 2013. The recent emergence of Facebook’s “Nearby” feature and the new structure of Global Pages proves that Facebook tries to make more brands consider adapting their social media strategies’ focus from a global to a local markets perspective.

Global Pages make it possible to create one global brand identity on a single page with customized local targeting, focusing on the value of local content. For international brands and companies tactics should include local community management, in order to engage local markets with authenticity and thereby create business revenue.


Performance measurement

You need to measure the performance of your content and conversations across channels on a daily basis. As a media company, the performance and trends of your efforts will show you the focus and direction that your social newsroom needs on a given day.

Create a simple performance dashboard based on different internal users focus. Your Executive Management Team needs to see performance in order to keep funding your efforts.

 

Please don’t hesitate to submit your thoughts or learning’s on leveraging the social newsroom.

Why Oreo’s ‘Daily Twist’ is one of our all-time favorite social media campaigns

Few cookies have reached the same level of iconicity as Kraft Foods’ Oreo. Its round shape, blackish color and white cream stuffing have undeniably added to its success but as a social media agency we wonder: where would the crowd-pleasing, twistable cookie be today without effective social media marketing?

Let’s zoom in on one of their global digital and social media campaigns that reached millions of hearts (and mouths) and delivered proof that even cookies can provide endless food for thought. We are talking about the wildly successful ‘Daily Twist’ campaign that saw a 110% growth in fan interaction per social-media post only a few months after the campaign was launched. Even though the campaign dates back to 2012, in our view, it earned a spot among the best food branding campaigns on social media ever. Here’s why…

It used milestones and pop culture events to create engagement

2012 was the year that America’s favorite cookie turned 100. Needless to say, it was a cause for celebration.

Every day for 100 days, the Oreo was given a different “twist” – styled to look like Elvis, a panda bear or like the surface of Mars after the Mars Rover had driven over it. On the ‘Daily Twist’ site, users could suggest their “twist”. The campaign was driven on Facebook and also featured on Twitter, Tumblr and Pinterest.

The Oreo twists were especially created to spark conversation and sharing, referring to milestones or pop culture events that people could relate to and share their thoughts about.

It had timely and shareable content combined with an element of surprise

While some of the cookie designs were planned ahead like the Olympics or Labor Day, others were more agile, tapping into events like the premiere of ‘Batman: The Dark Knight Rises’, the release of the iPhone5 and the birth of a Chinese panda bear. Monitoring trending topics and utilizing current events ensured the content was always relevant and timely. Couple that with the surprise of what each day would bring, and you’ve got a campaign worth tuning into.

They exercized strong brand values

The campaign kicked-off with the Gay Pride rainbow cookie in recognition of the LGBT community, much to the chagrin of conservative crowds.

The Facebook post set off a heated online debate that even led opponents of gay marriage to call for an Oreo boycott. But while supporters and opponents were fighting their online battle, the rainbow cookie doubled Oreo’s fan growth.

By having a strong stance and sticking to it, Oreo established itself as a courageous brand amongst its more liberal fans.

The campaign had an integrated marketing approach, combining the offline and online worlds

The campaign finale took place at Times Square in New York. They set up a pop up agency there, from which they designed the last ‘Daily Twist’, based on suggestions from fans. Earlier that morning, the brand had asked its Twitter followers and Facebook fans to offer ideas, which were going up live on a billboard. Creatives would select the best ones and three of them were then put to an online vote. The winning cookie, celebrating the anniversary of the first high five, was designed on the spot and was displayed on a big billboard.

A seamless flow between the online and offline worlds, and the mix of social and traditional marketing allowed for a greater experience and showed that Oreo mastered the integrated marketing approach.

It put the product in the center – without being self-centered

Oreo’s ability to put their product at the center of the campaign and still make the content relatable and entertaining for a massive range of users is (in our opinion) the most important factor in the success of the ‘Daily Twist’ campaign. The content was heavily branded, yet still relevant, timely and shareable – without ever begging for likes, comments and shares.

Lessons learned

The ‘Daily Twist’ campaign set an example of how important it is to create content that resonates with your audience. There are many ways to find out what moves your fans. For Lurpak®, we identified what kind of recipes the audience was searching for. As a result, we created content that we already knew people wanted to engage with. Read how we did it here.