featured, Social Media Campaign Strategies

The Role of Social Media Correspondents

You have spent a lot of time and energy putting together a special launch of your company’s newest product.  You secured the venue, ordered catering, purchased a Step and Repeat and countless other decorations.  Everything seems ready to go … but… when all is said and done will you create a lasting buzz?

Sure there will be photographs for you to post the day  or maybe a week after.  But, when the flowers are all dried up and your audience has moved on to the next party – who will be keeping your product’s “buzz worthiness” alive?

Making a lasting impression through digital posts is the role of social media correspondents.  These are reporters who show up in real life but report via social media channels, usually their own. Many times the correspondents are also influencers. People who have much clout and thus, seem extremely credible and “influential” to their social media audience.

Why social media correspondents provide a benefit at an event?

Social Media correspondents are professional curators of real-time content.  They know that will look good “on timelines”.  These digital reports will  collect “content” (aka photographs, video, written interviews, etc.) and then drip them out on  social channels over the next days, weeks, months and even maybe a year.  They keep the discussion percolating.

Here are some examples of how social media correspondents are used.  At a premiere of a film,  they are posting about the pre-screening excitement, posting a few images from the screening and then (perhaps) uploading the Q and A with the directors and cast following the conclusion of the film.  Instead of uploading all of this content at once – there will be a slow roll – out to keep the relevancy of the event lasting longer.

To track the impact of the posts the correspondent(s) should use a hashtag.  Such as #YourFilmPremiere.  Read more about the importance of hashtags.  This is essential in knowing about the impact of the postings.  And… who is listening – thus amassing demographic data “gold”.

Where does the content go?

A social media correspondent knows that one social media platform isn’t enough.  Typically each correspondent has an individual preference, such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. But, an expert correspondent knows it isn’t about their comfort zone but where will the information be received the best? Most of the time the social media correspondents  will distribute the content across platforms to maximize the audience engagement and brand awareness.

About Monitoring Engagement?

Here is something that is REALLY important… Monitoring the impact of  content uploaded about your event is imperative. Data collection can be invaluable.  Using good analytic programs, such as  SPROUT SOCIAL,  KLEAR or KEYHOLE,   can help to determine the effectiveness of the social media objectives.   However… ROI is not promised by social media correspondents.  It is much more realistic to know that these professionals provide key brand awareness.

The Tough Talk – Money

What does all this cost? This seems to be a really tough question as the role of social media correspondents is fairly new and for many this is unchartered territory.

Best practices would say that a fair rate would be expected.  Each social media expert who contracts for a live event has their own rate.  There does not appear to be a standard fee chart.  However, keep in mind that although this is a fun event and may   be attended by celebrities, it is still work. Thus, contract and payment would be expected unless other arrangements are made. (This author would happily work a car-show for free in exchange for a Maserati!)

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Some of the 411 Voices Social Media Team at the Canadian Consulate’s etalk Oscar’s luncheon.

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