by Rachael Pottner
Established in 1995, The Celebrity Cafe is the longest-running entertainment magazine found exclusively online. Their online persona is dedicated to all things entertainment news, including TV recaps, exclusive interviews, and columns. With over 16,000 followers on Twitter, over 61,000 followers on Facebook, and being exclusively online, The Celebrity Cafe relies entirely on its social media presence and ability to gain online followers.
To connect with The Celebrity Cafe, follow their LinkedIn page.
Angela Corry is the managing editor for The Celebrity Cafe, and she also manages the internship program for the site. Angela did not know she wanted to be in the journalism field from the start. After failing out of school, she started working at a University bookstore, where she rose to manage a 3.5 million dollar textbook department at age 24. After deciding she no longer wanted that life, she quit and went back to school to become a history teacher. After hating the education courses, she ended up majoring in US Social History, and discovered her love for journalism when she wrote a senior thesis about yellow journalism in New York. After marrying a journalist she met in college, and becoming a stay at home mother of two girls, Angela decided to start blogging, where she learned code for many online blogs. She started managing a local TV personality and radio personality for awhile, but also left that job, seeing as she was managing her mother-in-law. After that job, Angela began doing television recaps for The Celebrity Cafe, and continued to build her way to become managing editor. From mommy blogger to managing editor for an online-only magazine, Angela has learned a thing or two about social media presence. Also, as my previous internship supervisor, Angela was always very knowledgeable about social media, and I knew she would be the perfect person to interview for this assignment.
I reached out to Angela via email with my social media interview questions, and she responded swiftly.
Q: Why do you think social media is important to building consumer engagement?
A: It’s the fastest way to reach out to a large number of people without much effort. It’s really that simple.
Q: What people/organizations do you follow to stay up-to-date on social media trends and why?
A: I follow the major news networks, the entertainment magazines I consider competition, a variety of celebrities, news personalities, writers I enjoy, people/groups with odd news and funny posts – a wide variety since you never know where your news will come from.
Q: What companies/organizations do think are “doing it right” when it comes to social media? Why?
A: I think the major players are HuffPo, BuzzFeed, Mashable and Gawker at the moment, but they are popular, not necessarily doing it right. They have what people want, need and desire and the money to push what they put out.
But because they are given a lot of consideration, I wouldn’t count them in that elite group.
I think the New York Times and the Boston Globe do an excellent job at keeping not only their local readers interested, but offer a variety of stories and topics that interest everyone, everywhere. It’s a hard balancing act, but both organizations do it well.
I am not that active on Instagram or Tumblr, but can say that the Kardashians and Taylor Swift do a great job with interaction, which is the other part of the balance. Talking with and to your followers makes a big impact.
Overall, popularity ebbs and flows, what’s good now may not be good tomorrow.
Q: Have you experienced any “social media fails” happen on the part of The Celebrity Café? If so, what happened and what were the repercussions?
A: Every day. Although the biggest issue we’ve had is not doing enough with social media on a consistent basis. Our Facebook page went stagnant for a while and is only now getting back in order. We lost readers. That hurt us all around. It was a matter of not keeping up with the algorithms and “requirements” Facebook has. We’ve taken a lot of time this year researching how-to’s to get our platforms in better shape.
Q: What is one piece of advice you would give to a budding social media specialist?
A: One piece, that’s hard… Know your followers. Whether it’s what you post, how you interact, where you post, knowing who you’re attracting, where and for what, is the base for a strong personal brand.
Besides her inspirational personal story that led her to become the editor she is today, Angela offers up some important advice about social media. She recognizes the importance of branding on a corporate level as well as on the personal level. She realizes that research and knowing your followers is ultimately the key to gaining and maintaining these followers. She also acknowledges that her own online magazine isn’t perfect and creates social media flaws every day, and is constantly working to gain more and more online followers by fixing these flaws. Lastly, she recognizes that social media is ever-changing, and the leaders in the game today might not always maintain their popularity. In her own words, “what’s good now may not be good tomorrow.”