Oct 1, 2014 113 reads by Navneet Kaushal

Google has placed a huge bet on the strength of social signals in determining search relevance. Social and search have become two sides of the same coin. This session discussed the connection between social media and search.


Chris Sherman, VP of Event Editorial, Third Door Media, Inc. (@CJSherman)


Tami Cannizzaro, Global Director of Marketing, Social Business, IBM (@tamicann)

Tami Cannizzaro remarked that tie between search and social was critical. Social advocacy gives enterprises authentic reach

Apple marble analogy

Speaker Tami Cannizzaro tried to take home the point by comparing a bag of apple with that of marbles. It would give you an insight into the impact of social media on the brands’ relevance today. An apple denotes the old way of thinking of the brand, unified and on-message. The bag of marbles, on the other hand, represents an assorted collection with 300% more surface area. It is not a unified message. Releasing individual advocates of the brand increases the surface area. Social media advocacy gives a brand authentic reach.

Arrival of Ello

Marketing is in a period of so much change. Very recently, Ello has arrived to draw attention of people on Facebook. Social is considered today the authentic face of a brand.

How IBM has taken advantage of social media?

IBM focuses on building real relationships. They use a couple of tools for promoting social media advocacy. The tools are Voices among employees and Influencer marketing.

IBM employees are encouraged to share voice and perspective within communities. To scale up the influence guest blogging, speaking, aligning, eBook and webcast are used. These are the opportunities given to influencers.

Social is discovery, search is validation

Tami termed content marketing as the engine which drives search rank and brand engagement. To build the content marketing engine you need to tap into cultural ethos and build relevant, consistent content. You need to be aware of what is happening around your brand and the new trends that could be tapped.

Thank, reward people

Use social media to reach out to your top customers, clients and influencers, and thank them/reward them.

Build relevant, consistent content

At IBM, all content falls into a spectrum. Approach to social media can be segregated into low, intermediate and high engagement.

Low engagement: social posts, content snippets, photos

Intermediate engagement: content previews, short videos, free chapter promotions

High engagement: fan-gating, social discussions, interviews with content author

Weekly newsroom approach

IBMers follow a weekly newsroom approach. They work to produce relevant content and real time creative assets that support paid, owned and earned strategies. The content would drive social selling and align with longer-term brand initiatives. It starts with a conversation to discuss news, events and trends. People brainstorm what is new in social that can be leveraged.

Editorial sync

Strategy and concept development is reviewed. Assets are revised and timelines adjusted. Journalists’ way of doing work is more suited for content publication for brands today compared to traditional marketers.

Third pillar of marketing

Tami regards relevant, shareable experiences as the third pillar of marketing. Examples include American Express, Nike and Secret.

Open Forum has helped American Express become a trusted expert. It is the top social blog for mid-market businesses.

Nike strategy is focused on building community. Celebrities, acting as advocates, mobilize community around shared interests like events at stores and races.

Deodorant brand Secret launched ‘Mean Stinks’ an anti-bullying campaign. The strategy is to evoke emotion where customers can connect.

IBM partnership with TED enabled them to provide customers moments of connection through the videos shared.

Summary of points discussed for review:

  • Social is often discovery
  • Robust content engine that mirrors the market
  • Build longer campaigns focused on community making

All Search Is Now Social: #SMX New York 2014, Day 1!, 5.0 out of 5 based on 3 ratings
Navneet Kaushal
Navneet Kaushal is the Editor-in-Chief of PageTraffic Buzz. A leading search strategist, Navneet helps clients maintain an edge in search engines and the online media. Navneet's expertise has established PageTraffic Buzz as one of the well know digital marketing blog.
Navneet Kaushal
Navneet Kaushal
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