Two major learnings from Day Two of NYC’s Social Media Week

Jack Blog

February 20th, 2014 By Jack Morton


Everyone is a content creator

This was the overarching theme of my 2 favorite sessions from today:  “Using Social Technology to Galvanize Neighborhoods” and “Co-creating with Influencers.”

On the grassroots level, successful community organizations empower residents by inviting their participation on the brand’s blog/social. People are already making content, the question is: how can your brand take advantage?

The same principle applies to bigger brands and their engagement with social media influencers- bloggers, celebrities, etc.  The key to success here is aligning your brand’s values and voice with the right ambassadors to create promotional content that is truly authentic. This might sound obvious, but all it takes is an poorly researched endorsement from a vegan celebrity to send your yogurt brand to UsWeekly’s blacklist.

Marketers don’t own your brand, consumers do

Try as hard as they may, brands can’t control what people say;  they can only empower them. The key to winning at earned media (i.e. the consumer-generated brand content) is by letting go of the “messaging reigns” and allowing your brand to adapt and take on the personality of the people willing to talk about it.

When the Diet Coke/Mentos experiment video first appeared on YouTube and went viral, Coke was struck with the dilemma: thwart this brand hack OR empower and encourage this earned media opportunity? Thankfully, Coke endorsed the video; and today, amateur scientists everywhere celebrate!


P.S. If your’e wondering about the gummy bears—they’re my way of celebrating all of our sweet voices in the sea of social media!