What do the SAG Awards, NBA Finals and FX have in common? They all have tapped into San Diego-based STN Digital to help amp up their social-media efforts.
Daily Brief sat down with the company’s CEO and founder, David Brickley, ahead of his appearance at the 2019 Promax Conference at LA Live at the JW Marriott June 4-6, 2019, and came away with seven tips on how you and your brand can elevate your own social media campaigns.
1) Have a strategy.
“Back in 2013, everyone had social media, but no one had any strategy behind it,” says Brickley.
Of course, that’s all changing, but it’s not as easy as just declaring you need a strategy — one has to be developed, created and then implemented. That’s where an agency like STN comes into play: “We unlock your brand’s full potential,” says Brickley. “We become a sort of special-forces unit.”
2) Be first to market.
If you’re a content provider and you are offering a major live event — like the NBA Finals or the Super Bowl or the SAG Awards or the Oscars — it is incumbent on you to capitalize on that event across platforms, says Brickley.
“It’s a disservice to your audience if you are not first to market. If you’re the NBA on TNT, and your game is live, that’s your content. You should be first to market and be able to capitalize on those moments in real time, he says.
“If I’m a fan, I’m expecting content. It’s super imperative while anything is going on live to be first to market. Why should whoever soak up that engagement when the brand has the ability to do that itself?””
3) Know how to create compelling content for each specific platform.
What works on Facebook doesn’t necessarily work on Twitter or Instagram or Pinterest or Snapchat — each platform demands its own type of content. It’s imperative that marketers take that into consideration when developing strategy and creating posts, says Brickley.
“What a lot of linear TV brands get wrong is that they create a 30-second, 16x9 commercial, put it on social media, and wonder why it doesn’t work. But it’s like putting a radio commercial on TV,” he says. “I think a lot of people get that wrong. They think they can splash the same content across different platforms but you have to be genuine to each platform. It’s apparent when you aren’t doing that.”
4) If you’ve got exclusive content, use it to the hilt.
If the Golden State Warriors’ Steph Curry makes a clutch three-pointer during the NBA Finals, and it airs on TNT, why would TNT want anyone to show that spot but them?
“That’s the first thing I look at with brands: what do they have the rights to and what do they have the copyright for that other people can’t take advantage of?” Brickley says. “Maybe you have exclusive inside-the locker-room access or social-media influencers backstage. Whatever you have that is exclusive, that you can’t get anywhere else, is imperative for your brand to make best use of.”
“For example, when the [Los Angeles] Lakers fired their head coach, the first way they reached everyone was via a tweet or an Instagram post. The number-one way to reach consumers is on social.”
5) Yes, you need a budget.
You can develop a strategy and create content, but if you don’t have a budget, it’s going to be hard to get where you want to go, Brickley says. Sure, some—really a tiny fraction of—social media goes viral and travels organically, but having a paid strategy allows you to have a precise idea of how many hits you will actually get.
“The budget is growing but not fast enough compared to how important [social media] is,” he says. “There are still some teams and networks who do not get it. This is your biggest event of the year, you have to capitalize on it.”
6) Stop, collaborate and listen.
Collaboration is a big word that everybody uses and almost nobody actually achieves. But it’s important that brands and agencies work well together to accomplish agreed-upon goals.
“Some clients say ‘we trust you,’ while other clients want to talk every day about ideas,” says Brickley. “It’s really up to the client but I think it’s always a collaboration. Some of our best ideas come from our clients because they live and breathe the brand every day.
“Innovative ideas plus a really good execution partner plus great strategy is a win win win for all partners.”
7) You can monetize all of it.
This hasn’t always been true, but the entire social media environment has evolved quickly: “It doesn’t matter what the platform is. If you create good content, you can monetize against it,” Brickley says.
“Every day, every month, every year, I’m seeing progress. Five years ago, social media didn’t have a seat at the table. Today, social media is the main way that all of these brands are interacting with these consumers.”
To hear more from Brickley, check out “The Social Game Changers” session he’s moderating on Wednesday, June 5 at 12:30 p.m. at the Promax Conference 2019 at the J.W. Marriott at LA Live.