Key takeaways from Socialbaker’s Engage 2015

I recently had the great pleasure of attending Socialbakers’ Engage 2015 in Prague last month. With over a thousand people in attendance from all over the world and speakers from multinational companies, it was an amazing experience to see how quickly the social media field has grown over the past five years.

One thing that stuck with me was the vast range in age groups of speakers and attendees. It’s very easy to associate social media with college interns and fresh graduates but in reality, companies need experienced marketers who truly understand how it works in order to successfully and seamlessly integrate it within their current strategies and get the most effective results. So while twenty-somethings made up a good chunk of attendees and speakers, you also had plenty from older generations who head social media for various companies. This, to me, was a sign that social media has started to mature and is no longer just a new fad.

Another interesting thing about the event was its focus on content. Socialbakers are known for their data and analytic capabilities, and while some attempts have been made on their part to score the quality of content, I’ve always believed that having one magic number determine whether your content is good or bad to be a very simplistic approach. Content is very subjective and what can be considered as ‘good content’ varies by industry, context, culture, volumes and many other criteria. It seems that they have also recognized this and highlighted the need to be smart about data collection and analysis, looking instead at the right social metrics that tie back to your business objective rather than all of them. Many of the talks related to content focused on how they measured their brands’ success and how these metrics influence decisions on localizing content, optimization and market expansions, to name a few. Out of all the examples given, Lamborghini was the most impressive to me, having developed formulas that measure loyalty towards their brand on social media.

Engage 2015 made it very clear that social media is now a pillar in every marketing strategy as the industry continues to grow and more sophisticated approaches towards content, targeting and measurement emerge. If you missed the event, here are a few of my favorite talks:

Jim Edwards of Business Insider on Social Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rP1Vu-HyCfs

Jan Rezab, founder and CEO of Socialbakers, on The Data-Driven Marketer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WIcEJWu7imo

The legendary John Sculley: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqcr5YpZco8

We also covered some of the workshops that took place, so do check out our tweets (@OMDMENA) if you’re interested in knowing more on what was discussed at Engage 2015.

Key Takeaways

  1. Data-driven marketing extends to social too. We have more metrics available now, meaning many different ways of looking at success in relation to your business objectives.
  2. Data can be used to improve your content’s quality. However, be smart about using data. Look at the right data points that are relevant.
  3. The meaning of content quality has changed; in the past, it was associated with production quality but now it’s all about the quality of storytelling. If you have a great story, people will watch it even if you took a small hit on quality in order to produce it.
  4. Think like a publisher, but remember that you don’t have the same media rights as one.

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