by Gina Rossi

Carissa Rossi knows the power social media has in this day and age. Starting off as a Social Media Manager at Karmaloop.com, an online multi-platform web retailer, Carissa began her career with a first look at the campaign processes through the social Internet. She has managed annual social media marketing budgets, created content daily on several social platforms, and designed and launched contests on various social networking cites. Then today as a Digital Social Producer at Viacom, a worldwide entertainment brand that connects with audiences through large media networks that reach about 700 million global subscribers, she works even more with big digital campaigns. Carissa helps in the planning and execution of several well-known movie campaigns and gets an inside look of its promotional effect.

1c212fcExamples of a most recent successful social media campaign along with some fascinating insights from Carissa are described below.

Q: What do you think will be the biggest social media trend for businesses in 2015?

CR: Depending on the audience, I think developing new ways to incorporate evolving social platforms into marketing campaigns; will be the biggest social media trend for businesses in 2015. For example, utilizing Snapchat as an extra layer of engagement within turn-key marketing campaigns can help blow out numbers with a simple screen shot. Growing up on the forefront of social media it amazes me how users cross-promote on their own (even when they technically can’t). With Snapchat stories- users are now screen shotting brands posts on Snapchat and sharing them via Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook- Even though Snapchat doesn’t offer that functionality.

Another example of this trend is more and more MAJOR media outlets are now embedding social networks into their daily articles. It is now not uncommon to see Vine, Instagram, and Tweets to be embedded into blog posts. This helps tie together marketing campaigns that live only on social and help give a home base for all the content created. A specific campaign that I executed is a prime example of this (see answer to question #2 below).

Q: Would you explain recent successful social media campaign conducted by your organization?

CR: For the SpongeBob Movie- #MTVSpongeBob – I was tasked with executing a pitch on how we can promote the SpongeBob movie on-air and digitally to the MTV fans. The great thing about SpongeBob is celebs love SpongeBob and one of our talent connections offered to get a SpongeBob tattoo and that took care of the on-air piece.tweet

To create a digital only portion of this campaign- I saw this as a visual opportunity our fans would love. I executed an Instagram takeover showcasing the talent’s Journey of getting the SpongeBob tattoo to play off on-air. The campaign was so popular it trended on Twitter. The keys to success of the campaign was the content itself was very native to Instagram and shot mostly from an iPhone and was cross promoted via MTV News, the talent’s social networks, and on other social platforms that can easily link back to Twitter, making the fan experience/user ability almost seamless.

Q: How has social media changed traditional Marketing?

CR: I remember when I first started as a social media manager in 2011 – Social Media channels like Facebook and Twitter where always an afterthought when it came to executing various marketing campaigns, now in 2015 it is the first thought. During my time at Karmaloop.com – within 2 years Facebook drove MORE traffic to our site than e-mail. Social Media is essentially outperforming traditional marketing channels like e-mail, Ad placement, and affiliate networks. It is absolutely mind-blowing how powerful social media has become within only a few years.

Q: What are the best ways to measure online presence and do you have any recommendations in the best type of free analytic tools?

CR: Honestly, I have learned that the dashboards within Facebook and Twitter (if you’re account is verified) have been the most helpful in terms of understanding social data and what works and doesn’t. Also tagging your links with Google Analytics is another great way to measure traffic, bounce rate, etc if you don’t have access to more advanced tools like Omniture. In the past there was a great reporting tool called Topsy- but is no longer around.

Q: What is one piece of advice you would give to a budding social media specialist?

CR: One piece of advice I would give to a budding social media specialist is never compare social media to past campaigns or ideas, “This is how we did it before.”

Social media trends and best practices are ALWAYS changing- The second you figure out your strategy, expect the platforms to change and always prepare for change. For example, currently Facebook player videos are all the rage- I wouldn’t doubt if Facebook switches up the algorithm or how videos appear in the news feed just to keep us social media wiz’s on our toes. EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED.

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Carissa has offered some awesome behind-the-scene information and knowledge on her experiences working in the new digital age of Internet. She recognizes the importance of cross promoting in social media campaigns along with incorporating evolving social platforms together. Not only that, but with new technology only continuing to grow more and more, it is important to “EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED” when planning for success in a Advertising, PR, or Marketing campaign.