The mostly official blog of the Hodges Partnership and Hodges Digital Strategies.
March 18, 2013 | by Jon Newman
OK, another cheap attempt to tie blog content into March Madness, I know.
But in this case I feel pretty justified.
Ask anyone who works with me, ask my wife and kids. I’ve been obsessing over this #PRSARVA presentation on content I’m giving on March 27 (I hear tickets are going fast so register here). I actually wrote a first draft during the VCU-A10 finals yesterday. If that’s not madness I don’t know what is.
Contributing to the madness is the fact that the recent Facebook poll on the topic (please vote on our page) shows that you the content curators are a bit mad over the topic as well.
There is no real consensus on the question of what is “the toughest part about managing content?” The votes are split among finding the content itself, time management, finding content that breaks thought, and the dreaded “other.”
Previewing my presentation a bit, I’ll try to focus on the following “brackets” (couldn’t resist):
- Content and context
By breaking those down my hope is that it might ratchet down the level of daily madness felt by all who manage content.
And notice I haven’t used the “SM” phrase yet. Talk about things that drive me mad…0 commentsPosted in: Marketing | Public Relations | Social Media
February 12, 2013 | by Jon Newman
Speaking helps me think. Actually it forces me to think, especially given the fact that meetings, work and life sometimes doesn’t always allow me that luxury.
By speaking I mean speaking opportunities and the research that goes into them. At the end of March I’m speaking to PRSA Richmond about “content.” So when VCU PR prof extraordinaire Bill Farrar asked me to speak to his social media class yesterday, I jumped at the opportunity since it helped me begin to form my thoughts and frame my research.
After Googling about content, etc., I found myself drawn to a recent Google study on “multi-screening.”
This is the act of bouncing from screen to screen to do, well, everything we do. Some interesting facts from the study:
- 90 percent of all media interactions are on one of four screens (TV, PC/laptop, tablet, smartphone
- We spend 4.4 hours a day of leisure time in front of screens
- Most people use screens sequentially or simultaneously and how we use those screens inform everything from buying habits, to how we work, to how we consume media.
So now that I’ve drawn your attention to multi-screening, what does that mean for PR folks and marketers who work with brands every day?
Isn’t it bad enough that we’re all competing for the same social media real estate and that social media platforms are forcing us to buy ads to ensure our content breaks through the clutter? Now the very screens we use to consume information and be social in the first place may be the same instruments that are disrupting our social experience. Think about how different your Facebook experience is on a browser compared to an app, or even how your Twitter experience is from app to app. How can we make sure our messages (and our clients’ messages) are getting past the screen of choice?
The answer is we have to get better.
We have to:
- Force ourselves not to settle for ordinary writing and posting
- Break through the clutter with engaging imagery and videos
- Look for engaging stories and tell them better
- Post insightful and entertaining information to our blogs
- Promote all our content across all platforms and make certain that we’ve aligned it strategically and consistently
We just need to get better.
If not, our content is dead on arrival, if it ever arrives in the first place.
Can you get better? How? Please comment with thoughts and examples.0 commentsPosted in: Marketing | Mobile | Social Media
January 27, 2011 | by Jon Newman
Thanks again from both me and Sonali Shetty for our warm welcome at PRSA Richmond.
We had a great time presenting our thoughts on the social media and digital landscape.
For those who missed it, here's our Hodges Digital Strategies slide presentation...
The highlights of our POV include:
- PR is "winning" the social media battle (pandering to the audience, I know) because PR is used to be the leaders in content creation.
- The days of just creating a Facebook page and seeing people flock to it is over. You need custom landing pages and ways to engage with your audience. You also need to cross promote using a combination of traditional advertising, PR, online, email, direct and Facebook marketing/advertising. This is what drives community growth and engagement.
- You need to be everywhere since everyone is somewhere. We call this mulitchanneling. You need to provide consistently branded messaging across the platform spectrum ranging from media relations across to mobile apps.
- Mobile is growing so think about mobile-optimized websites and apps. Also don't try to be all things to all people as you create your apps. Thing of the "must haves" and add-on only a few bells and whistles at least at the beginning.
- Video creation and conferencing will explode with the anticipated arrival of iPad 2 and companies like Cisco creating home versions of video conference hardware.
- This year will be "tipping point" years for platforms like Twitter and FourSquare especially for business and brand applications, while "deals" and coupon platforms will be the ones to watch.
- There are a number of "flavors of the month," like that bear watching.
- New growing trends include Visual Search and E and F-Commerce that will become more available online and on mobile devices.
- Think about the difference of B2B and B2C and how you should prioritize your social media presence depending on which you represent.
A lot of stuff to cover, I know so thanks again for all you came, asked questions and participated.
Feel free you use and share the slides, which are available here and on slideshare.net.4 commentsPosted in: Marketing | Public Relations | Social Media
January 18, 2011 | by Jon Newman
They tell me that more than 100 folks have signed up so seats are going fast (more than veiled attempt here to jam the room.) Here's a link to sign up.
Even though Hodges Digital Strategies is still in its first year, our learning over the course of the last year or so has been exponential. I peeked back at a similar presentation I gave last year and it looked prehistoric in comparison. That being said, we are not experts and don't have all the answers so some of this will be nothing more than our opinion based on what we've learned so far.
First and foremost, our presentation is still in the formative stages so if you're coming (and even if you're not) and there's something you'd like us to touch on please comment below and we will try to cover it.
Some of the topics we are going to discuss include:
- Public relations and its leadership role in social media
- The maturing of social media platforms and what they means for brands
- How to promote and grow your social media presence
- The current status of Twitter, Foursquare and others
- The "next" platforms and trends
- Mobile, mobile and did we mention mobile
- And a takeaway for B2C and B2B and social/digital
Lots of stuff to cover in a short period of time. If we're missing anything please let us know. If you have a comment please do so.
We will post the presentation next week after we give it.3 commentsPosted in: Marketing | Public Relations | Social Marketing | Social Media
December 10, 2010 | by Jon Newman
First, apologies for not writing as much lately. Frankly, I've been busy both personal and professional and I just haven't had a great deal of value to say.
It is humbling to have conversations with many folks and have them tell me they are regular readers of this blog. We're approaching the blog's second birthday and when it began I didn't know where it would take us all. I'm also spending a great deal of time thinking about where things are going. The topic is coming up in client meetings and will also be the topic of a talk that my Hodges Digital partner-in-crime Sonali Shetty and I will be giving next month at the PRSA Richmond luncheon.
Some here are some reflections and musings in no particular order.
- Two years ago, we were pulling our clients into the world of social media, now if you don't bring it up in a meeting or presentation they will. People aren't thinking in the terms of social media any more, they are thinking in terms of communications.
- I am more convinced than ever that the marriage of social and mobile is the future. Brands need to make an impact on social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube and that presence needs to be carried through onto smartphones and tablets. New stat that I saw yesterday, the number of tablet sales are expected to quadruple in 2011.
- The ability to "share" using social and mobile is critical and a tipping point for success. It is why people love Groupon, where they can share and save socially. (Interesting Andrew Mason interview with Matt Lauer today, btw).
- Geolocation is a 50/50 proposition with a split between the folks that believe and the folks that respect their privacy. The jury is still out in my mind on the long-term business benefits. Facebook Places will be the ultimate bell weather of success. Best new geolocation tool I've seen is where Untappd, people can connect over the beers they drink.
- Content and engagement is still king and they run hand in hand. Branding through custom landing pages and tabs are now engagement points. Clients that incorporate those elements see their Facebook engagement numbers increase dramatically. If not all they have is a wall between them and their fans. Literally.
- Twitter is losing on my personal "attention scale" as I find myself forcing it rather than enjoying it. I'm not adding to my personal community as much as I used to, but I do communicate with my existing friends and folks that share similar likes and dislikes.
- I'm willing to revisit LinkedIn given some recent conversations, but the recent changes to Facebook Profiles is a warning shot across the bow as it marries LinkedIn's profile information and Facebook's search and marketing capabilities.
Generally, we as a group are finding that our decision to marry our public relations experience, social media and mobile/digital is paying off. Clients now expect to have all those conversations at the same time and in a perfect world with the same people. They also value a strategic partner that can work across this spectrum. We are also seeing clients and prospects who are less inclined to "silo" specific aspects of communications and work with fewer partners who can bring all these services to the table at one time. They just have less time to manage multiple partners and value smart thinking, speed and the ability to deliver.
If you told me two years ago that two years into a blog about my journey as a traditional PR guy into the world of social media that I'd actually be a partner in a digital agency I would have told you that you were "smoking crack."
The communications world has come a long way in two years and for us at THP and now HDS it has and continues to be a wild ride. This blog will continue to chronicle that ride. I thank all the readers, clients and friends who help me make it happen.
I promise to try to be more "regular" in the new year. If you have suggestions on topics and direction please send it along.
For now, the ride continues.2 commentsPosted in: Hodges Digital Strategies | Marketing | Social Marketing | Social Media | The Hodges Partnership