Category Archives: SXSW

SXSW day 2: Branding for Big Business

On my second day at SXSW I stopped by a social media for big business seminar title “Branding for Big Business”. I thought this talk to be especially worthwhile as my position as a Digital Content Strategist is with a large B2B group. The theme for that day was how a company should interact with its community.

Larger businesses must be both immersed in and customer engaged when involved in new media. To be involved in online engagment is to tailor multiple platforms for client needs. For many B2B (Business to Business) groups, Twitter and LinkedIn are useful methods. Both are suitable in showcasing products, updating public relations events and relaying corporate news.  Another method is the use of Facebook and its analytics system. Although the oldest social media platform, Facebook is also the most actively used across the globe. It is also the most used by the 45-54 year old demographic.

All three represent a comprehensive New Media approach to engaging customers and clients.

The discussion then turned to the use of analytics in order to properly engage an audience. Utilizing methods such as Hootsuite and Google Analytics provide an effective way to analyze customer interest and metrics. Among the most important data to review includes location data, view times and bounce rates in addition to clicks. Recently the merger of TI with Derprosa and the expansion of our Hungarian line has been greatly received in both Europe and North America. This is due in part to geographic authority. When an international company provides news of a region’s success, naturally that areas staff and customers will recirculate the article. As TI gears up for the larger conferences in May and the Fall months, there will be ample opportunity to reach out to all of our regional members.


SXSW Day 1- How to combine new media with big business

I recently had the chance to go to SXSW 2014! It was an amazing feeling, being at the very cutting edge of new technology and research for both products and marketing strategy. Part of this series is dedicated to what I’ve learned over the wild and crazy experience I had in Austin.

The first bit of guidance given by the panelists at the convention was to understand your audience. The one I primarily work with is much older and more in tune with established business practices. The use of social media to drive traffic is a new phenomenon, albeit a cost effective one that expands a company’s reach. Establishing the value of this new medium to the older generation is broken down by the following factors.

The worth of social media and the rate of investment is measured by how many followers a company has. For instance, when initiating this program the number of followers has increased from 500 to 716. This is a roughly 30% climb in viewers. In order to have this number raised even further a company must look to its own culture.

Taghleef Industries is a richly diverse company founded in Dubai. It’s subsidiary organizations include operations in North America, Europe, Egypt, The Arabian Gulf, Australia and China.  The ability to perform as a global company includes the ability to reach across cultures and languages. By combining regions that produce our material and having sales offices in the major financial markets, TI has a formidable presence in the market. There is also another reason behind the success of Taghleef Industries. The primary topic that often comes up is how to be a more sustainable organization. The introduction of bio-resin based products, lighter films and more diverse markets has enhanced our marketability as an organization. Utilizing new technology such as social media and online metrics also assists in potential reduction in paper products. Before I get ahead of myself, diversity and sustainable practices must be embraced by all aspects of an organization. The culture of a company’s founders are to be embraced by all.

In a second conference about utilizing Twitter, the two speakers focused on getting businesses to utilize their best assets, their followers. In digital marketing using followers is a tremendous force multiplier. When a tweet or message is resent via a list of company contacts (clicking the retweet button), those individuals will have that message on their message board. An excellent example is of a sales officer giving a talk at a conference of 400 business people at a convention center. Before walking up to the podium, the salesperson tweets a link to the specific event that is his company is sponsoring. This message is then circulated to over 600,000 individuals online. The number is increased even more when photos and video of this event are posted. When this message is circulated by each of these users, the ROI (rate of investment) increases. The lesson learned is to always think of where company employees are, rather where they are not. Special events, philanthropy, new products, and public relations are all suitable topics with this new communications medium.

Tom Spano and Michale Duggan at #your hashtag is your event
Tom Spano and Michale Duggan at #your hashtag is your event

SXSW Day 2: Peer to Peer Marketing

On Saturday I also had the good fortune of sitting down for a session in the Austin Intercontinental Hotel on the effectiveness of Peer to Peer Marketing. I found that the topic of greater interest in the discussion was how the participant of a video does not in fact own or partially own the content. I could see the facts of how this process works by taking a few facts into consideration.

The direct use of video referrals for customers actually drastically increases sales. It was estimated by Anheuser-Busch that over 40% of their market increase was attributed by Facebook referrals. For a consumer, The first time that a brand is interacted with is through a trusted source, i.e. a friend, family member, or significant other. The second interaction takes a more direct approach by providing the participant with monetary incentive or other benefits. After viewing their content as clean and moderate, the legal team of a company provides the participant with an on-line release form that forwards ownership of the footage to the public.

This arrangement seems beneficial in the long run, however should the contributor receive a percentage should their film successful as opposed to lump sum or other incentive?

Intellectual Property issues in Social Media: Digital Content

On Saturday at the panel for Intellectual Property Issues in Social Media I learned several interesting facts about IP law and how it pertains to our technology savvy society. As many people know Intellectual Property (IP) Law is categorized by how a product is used: whether by commercial use or for educational purposes. Also, individuals must be careful as to how to to incorporate copyrighted material as it could effect potential markets related to the work or its value. The most interesting topic of discussion was about the user’s rights in regards to social media.

In the case of Twitter, account holders actually do not have the right to establish copyright for individual messages. This is due to the fact that tweets are to short to be considered as legitimate legal documents. However, it is arguable that compilations of tweets can be as they are an extended document format. The usage of corporate logos is also questionable.

In 2010 when the Deepwater Horizon incident caused millions of gallons of Oil to be spilt across the Gulf Of Mexico, activist groups purposefully took BP’s image. They then doctored it to appear in satirical web postings about the companies practices. In a legal light, BP had the right to protect its image under the Trademark Dilution Act. They did not take this action due to overwhelming public opinion forcing them to settle thousands of medical and property damage suits. The other topic discussed at the panel was the legality of stalking.

In the digital age the act of hacking a person’s online identity in order to post defamatory remarks is a violation of one’s privacy. Electronic Impersonation is known as ” knowingly and without consent, credibly impersonating another individual’s actual person…. by electronic means for the purposes of harming, intimidating, threatening or defrauding another person”. However only the states of California, New York and Texas have the action registered as a misdemeanor.

The lessons that I have taken from these examples are that on-line media is the most difficult of legal areas as far as individuals are concerned. A phrase is not protected but a collection of them are. An image can be protected in spite of overwhelming public opinion, at the discretion of the defendant. The right to defend one’s person online is barely considered as a legal right when fraud is concerned. In short, the medium of Internet based media is not limited to state or even national borders. The legal criteria in defending a person’s rights or those of a company are woefully obsolete.

SXSW Day One

This place is amazing ! I literally spent five minutes at the convention center connecting with some amazingly talented people in multiple fields. The group of University of Washington graduate students are in a similar field:creating websites, working with audio/visual content, web advertising, etc… One can define the atmosphere as hopeful, direct, and full of possibilities. I’m glad I came here.