Social Media Breakfast Madison

DAM! If we only had more than an hour! The title alone:  Digital Content Creation, Management and Implementation was as complex as the issue itself. Simply put, we have all this great stuff and all these great tools to broadcast it, but how do we utilize it effectively, efficiently and with the greatest amount of impact?

DAM, of course you knew I meant Digital Asset Management,was tackled from three diverse perspectives, a photographer, Bob Wydra of DidItDirect, Nick Ring, an innovative social media entrepreneur from Engaging Social, and Jake Athey of Widen Enterprises a 60 year-old company with origins in the print world that has reinvented itself with cutting-edge technology to provide the concept of “Repurposeaceous,” meaning if you can find the digital file you want efficiently, you can use it in a lot of places, and isn’t that the heart of what we all want to do?

Bob’s world is images, and he spoke to what it takes to create, place and manage images that excite, engage  and work to lead your clients to a sale. “Use images common to your core demographic, images that compel emotion. You have 1/60th of a second to tell your story.”

Using images that are technically correct, meaning good (and higher) contrast, color and exposure is worth the time it takes outside of the camera with simple photo editing software to get it right. Bob advised to bring the highlights up 10% for the best result, and pointed out that “smiles are the new premium commodity.”

With the emphasis on images in the Facebook timeline format, Bob said “find the story within the story with good cropping.” He also advised, “Don’t just load and go.” When you build an album, Bob likes what he calls “the 4 post rule.” The first image determines your layout and becomes your main image, and the three following load at a 1 to 1 ratio. Size it right before you upload for best results. The profile should not be smaller than 180 pixels x 180p, and the timeline is 851 px x 315 px.

Also, take the time to tell a story with the order of the images in your album.  You have the power (thanks Zuck!) to click on an image and drag and drop it to place your image in an order that makes sense to the viewer. Consider even a spot for some sponsor info, or a call to action to go to your website. “Approach album building as a sales scenario.”

The other opportunity that is often bypassed with images is giving them descriptive file names to take advantage of the search engine optimization. If you were a hungry bot, what would you like to chew on? This: www.yoursite.com/images/photo-356789.jpg or this: www.yoursite.com/images/row-boat-by-lake.jpg.

Your other gift from Mark Zuckerberg is @ and tagging. “Using the tag and @ feature will connect you to your outer sphere of influence” as your posts then feed into the stream of those you are tagging, and presto, be ready to shake hands with their fan base.

“Don’t be a dead poster” meaning, posting a photo with no other information. “I never trust a naked picture, would you?” Bob’s final tidbit was to “do what they do in television, go to commercial break.” What does that mean? It means make them stay tuned, don’t post all your images at once, eek them out in stages and batches, and keep them wanting more. For more info contact Bob at diditdirect@yahoo.com.

 Nick Ring from Engaging Social provided a peek behind the magic curtain of Facebook’s mysterious “Edge Rank.” Seriously complicated stuff, and I encourage you to cut to the chase and contact Nick directly (nick@engagingsocial.com) as I can tell you right now this format will not do his knowledge justice (but don’t stop reading!).

Facebook wants to make money (tanking share value, what tanking share value?).  The new “Promote a post” feature can bust the budget very quickly but Nick is here to assure everyone, you can do it organically if you understand EdgeRank.

Did you know that less than 16% of your fans on your Facebook page will even see the content you send out? The average person has 130 fans and with an average of 2.5 posts a day, that quickly adds up to 325 posts. “That doesn’t even count their likes, shares and comments.”  To remedy this post-fest, Facebook has taken it upon themselves to allow only the most important things to really be seen.

What are the most important things? Well kids, get out your notebooks and drink more coffee for this formula: Affinity x Weight x Time Decay = EdgeRank.

Affinity is the relationship someone has with your page or the content you send out. The more comments, likes, shares and page visits, the higher the affinity ranking. Weight is the content you send out and how people interact with it. Ranked from highest to lowest: Questions, photos, videos, links and text. Comment, Share and Like is the value high to low for how people interact with your post.

Time Decay (I wish the parking ramp used this concept!) is how long has your content been out there. The average post has a shelf life of about three hours. So when you are thinking about when to post, you don’t want to send out your best stuff at 2 a.m. nor do you want to stack posts too close together. “You’re never truly giving that post the best possible chance to get seen by the most people.

Nick’s nugget: “the minimum time delay I would send a post is an hour apart.”

What are other ways to get engagement? Keep it short. Admit it; you are a scanner, aren’t you? Yes, we all are, so just fess up and keep it moving for everyone’s sake. “Short updates (80 characters or less) tend to receive the most engagement.  27% more engagement in fact.”

Nick’s nugget: “be a Tweeter even in Facebook.”

If nothing else, be consistent. “Post five times a week.” Nick also shared the most active times on Facebook are 11am, 3pm and 8pm.  “It’s also important to note that the first fifteen minutes of each hour get the most engagement.” And once you’ve got them engaged, “tell your customers what you would like them to do, meaning “like this, share  this, fill in the blank, take this poll, etc.”

DAM! What’s left?

With some files here in one format, and more files over there in another format, how do we find the right file for the right platform? Jake spoke to Widen’s ability to help their customers gain control over the typical explosion of digital assets via their Digital Asset Management platform. “We can convert your logo file into any optimal size and format, rather than you storing and tracking of fifteen different versions.”

Next, they can tackle Metadata. No, that is not the new superhero coming out this summer, it is the keywords that give your assets meaning.  The next feature of their service is assigning roles and permissions, the “who and the how.” DAM can also provide tracking and auditing to give you control. “Imagine being able to see at a glance how a file has been used, and if any new versions have been uploaded.”

Last but not least is getting meaning, and for that analytics steps into the picture. “By knowing what your files are doing, you can be smarter and more efficient, leaving more time for the creative work, and less for the administrative.”  For more information on Widen’s capabilities, contact Jake at: jathey@widen.com.

So unclog the log jam dam in your digital file folder, apply some of these tips, contact these smart folks, and let the files flow!

Thank you Sponsors!

Location Sponsor: UW Health

Ongoing – Engaging Social

Supporting – Suttle Straus, Melissa Carlson Creative

Written by Annie Rubens, Rubens Consulting: Creative consultant for dynamic writing and professional photography annie.rubens@gmail.com

Photos by Bob Wydra of Did It Direct, carbon responsible marketing diditdirect@yahoo.com

Next up:

September 19, 2012
Topic: Mobile’s Brave New World for Search and Social Marketers
Location: CUNA Mutual Auditorium
5810 Mineral Point Road
Madison, WI 53705
Must check in at front desk.
Speaker: Brian Klais, Pure Oxygen