Ohio University Strategic Social Media

Crowdsourced Learning Lab #ouj4530

Author: garrettsmithsite

Here Is What Snapchat Recommends Your Brand Does On Snapchat

By Paul Armstrong April 20, 2016

Advertising Week Europe hit the heart of London this week and despite an…interesting…queuing system to get into the talks, a full theatre came to listen to Snapchat’s VP of Content, Nick Bell, spill the beans on the “mysterious” platform.

Snapchat has really come a long way from the early sexting headlines that dogged it and from the attendance at the talk advertisers are eager to “get’ this platform.  Few however – approximately 1% of this audience – had actually advertised on Snapchat (indicated by way of an impromptu clap of hands).  This result isn’t surprising as many brands are still hesitant to jump into Snapchat due to many misconceptions like high entry cost.  As Bell himself puts it; “To be frank we didn’t have a huge ad-tech platform (on the first campaigns they ran).   If you wanted to run a campaign you had to reach a mass audience and therefore you were getting huge reach and therefore it was more expensive.  Some of those numbers and still bandied around as being the entry level price point.”  With tools like On-Demand Geofilters (a custom image that can be overlaid on a photo you take) that is simply not the case anymore (although some products Snapchat do have expensive entry points).

But what else should brands know about the Snapchat before they can tell their stories to the great, awaiting masses?  Here are some insights that will help your brand navigate taking the plunge with Snapchat:

1) The Snapchat demographic is (and increasingly isn’t) who you think it is

Bell rattled through several statistics, many of which have been seen and heard before, but one was new to me.  First, the old ones: +8 Billions video views a day, +100 million active daily users, 2:3 users create content daily and it reaches approximately 41% of 18-34yo in the US (compared to TVs 6%).  The statistic that interested me was when Bell talked about users who are coming on board now; “We are seeing the demo stretch…50% of daily new users are 25+.”  That’s huge news for brands partly because it is early for this to happen (Snapchat has only been around five years)  and partly because it means Snapchat is not “just for kids” anymore (although be under no illusions there are still a lot of them) but it does mean it’s time to target (which Snapchat can now do well per Bell – although nothing like what Facebook offers).

Read full article via Forbes at http://www.forbes.com/sites/paularmstrongtech/2016/04/20/here-is-what-snapchat-recommends-your-brand-does-on-snapchat/#2dcbe72e49d0


The Man, The Myth, The Legend: An Interview with Rob Mixer

By Garrett Smith

Rob Mixer is the current Digital and Social Media Manager of the Columbus Blue Jackets, where he creates, produces and oversees all official Blue Jackets social media content. Since joining the Blue Jackets social media team in 2012
, Mixer has been essential in the growth of the team’s social media presence, increasing their total followers from 50,000 to over 250,000.

I recently had the honor of meeting Rob when he came to speak to our Social Media class at Ohio University. Considering Rob is also a fellow Bobcat and social media enthusiast, I thought it would be most appropriate to get his insights and opinions on the industry.

Garrett Smith: Would you explain some tools that you use to plan, implement, or evaluate social media campaigns?

Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 2.44.13 PMRob Mixer: The tools we use depend on the expectations of the specific partner involved. For example, if the goal is data capturing and UGC content, we will use a tool called Offerpop, which specializes in socially-driven contests, promotions and engagement campaigns. Offerpop collects social data from users who participate in contests and provides us with most everything we’d need to know. We also use a vendor called Phizzle, which powers our text-messaging and in-arena social media content capturing.

GS: What companies/organizations do think are “doing it right” when it comes to social media?  Why?

RM: The definition of “doing it right” is wide-ranging and varies based on your audience, your goals, and your growth. One brand that stands out among its peers is Taco Bell; Taco Bell was really the first brand to accept that a) most of its customers are some variation/combination of drunk, are late night eaters, or don’t want to spend a lot of money to eat. The company embraced its place in the fast food industry and revolutionized its brand using Snapchat. Snapchat is where Taco Bell’s target demographic lives, converses and interacts — so Taco Bell kicked the door open and commanded the room.

GS: What are a couple do’s and dont’s in the social media industry?

RM: One of my major “do’s” is to forge an identity and stick to it. It will shape the success of your brand in the digital space. One of my “don’ts” is to avoid campaigns and activations that make your brand appear disingenuous. Know your place, know your voice.

GS: In your opinion what is the most effective way of achieving the best brand engagement and why?

RM: Humanization of a brand that may seem the opposite (for example, a product or service) is a significant factor in engagement. Look at DiGiornio Pizza on Twitter; would you ever expect a frozen pizza brand to have an engaging, funny and absolutely weird social media voice and presence? That’s the niche they’ve carved for themselves and now, an argument could be made that their Twitter account is at the forefront of their brand (and has probably sold them more pizzas than ever before).

GS: What is one piece of advice you would give to an aspiring social media professional?

RM: Commit yourself to being a learner. Your biggest mistake would be entering the working world with this notion that you have it figured out, or you know more than your superiors (even if you actually do). There is too much information to ignore — most of it quite helpful — that can make you better at your job and give you a road map to being successful in the industry.

It was a rewarding and eye opening experience getting to interview an industry professional like Mixer. One of my biggest takeaways from this interview was realizing that to be a truly successful social media professional you have to always be conscious of your audience and be ready and willing to make the appropriate changes to attract brand engagement. Mixer sums it up best when he said, “Know your place, know your voice.”

Periscope Flight Takes off as a Social Win for Turkish Airlines

By Garrett Smith

 In June of 2015, Turkish Airlines announced an innovative and groundbreaking new feature. For the first time ever Turkish Airlines live streamed a flight from Istanbul to New York via Periscope. Viewers who tuned in were treated to all of the behind the scenes action of what the crew of an airline goes through leading up to a flight. Audiences got to see everything from pre-flight checks to crew cabins and everything in between.

The idea behind the campaign was pretty genius, putting all of the focus on a unique experience that viewers could interact with. Building on that interaction between brand and consumer, the live stream featured promoted tweets every time a stream went live. Through out the flight several of the crew members responded to user generated questions further adding to the very tangible experience for all viewers involved. Another detail worth mentioning is that this stream marked the very first Screen Shot 2016-02-15 at 4.53.02 PMtime a planes cockpit had ever been broadcast live to the world.

So what gave Turkish Airlines this bright idea? The answer is simple; gain some recognition in the social media world in order to stand out amongst its competitors. In a world where social media plays such a big role in consumer perception of brands, Turkish Airlines decided to capitalize on this fact. They did exactly what they set out to do.

It’s hard to argue that the streamed flight was anything but a social media win for Turkish Airways, and that’s not just my opinion, numbers support it. By the end of it all, Turkish Airlines had gained 5,000 new followers and close to 300,000 likes. Not only is that a drastic jump in followers and interaction, its also a form of free advertising that encourages more interaction than traditional forms of advertisement.

The other thing Turkish Airlines did with this social media campaign is take a chance on a new platform, that platform being Periscope. By using a new social media platform, like Periscope, Turkish Airlines introduced thousands of new individuals to technology that they may have been previously unaware of. This further solidifies Turkish Airlines’ social win as they have opened up the door for a potential relationship with Periscope. Future endeavors for the two companies could be a regular streaming of flights, which leads to the next point.

One of the only things I think Turkish Airways could improve upon is not letting this be their only venture into the world of ambitious social media campaigns. What I would do is make live streaming on Periscope a regular thing, with extra emphasis on what the consumers want to see. Perhaps the airline could feature a different city every month and encourage engagement from that cities population.

With all things considered, Turkish Airlines has set the bar high with regards to how a company’s social media campaign should look. 2016 should prove to be a year in which companies push the limits of what social media campaigns are truly capable of.

Cassinelli, A. (2015, December 31). The Best Social Media Campaigns of 2015. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.business2community.com/social-media/15-best-social-media-campaigns-2015-01415014#Akt1acASgYzRUfoX.97

V. (2015, July 14). Experience Turkish Airlines Live On Periscope. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://wersm.com/experience-turkish-airlines-live-on-periscope/

Hepburn, A. (2015, July 12). Turkish Airlines: World’s First Periscope Flight. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.digitalbuzzblog.com/turkish-airlines-worlds-first-periscope-flight/

T. (2015, July 21). Turkish Airlines claims aviation first broadcasting from cockpit live on Periscope. Retrieved February 15, 2016, from http://www.travolution.co.uk/articles/2015/07/21/13304/turkish-airlines-claims-aviation-first-broadcasting-from-cockpit-live-on-periscope.html

Turkish Airlines on Periscope. (n.d.). Retrieved February 15, 2016, from https://www.periscope.tv/TurkishAirlines

#MyNYPD Left New York Police Feeling Blue

By Garrett Smith

The past year was, to say the least, a rough one for police departments across America. So when the New York Police Department started the #MyNYPD campaign in hopes of painting a better image of police officers, they did so with the best intentions. The campaign started off just fine, but at some point along the way it took a very abrupt and unfortunate turn down the wrong path.

The idea behind the campaign was simple enough; all you had to do was post a picture of you and your friendly neighborhood NYPD officer. They attempted to solicit participation with the prospect of being featured on the NYPD’s Facebook page.

What was intended to be a campaign showcasing all the good the NYPD does for its community, quickly turned into a firestorm of backlash and unexpected content. As if possessed by some force of biblical proportion, pictures, videos and tweets of the New York Police Department using “excessive force” came rushing onto social media. I use quotation marks when addressing the “excessive force” in these photos and videos, as the context of the situation is often left out, nonetheless this campaign soon spelled disaster for the boys in blue.

That’s when things took an even sharper, more devastating turn. At first it was the NYPD who were catching all the bad PR from disgruntled New Yorkers, but soon other cities began taking part. Denver, Los Angeles and Oakland are just a few of the cities whose police departments got some free advertising from their displeased residents.

With all of this information in mind it is worth noting that according to Dina Alobeid of Brandwatch, only 15 percent of all tweets under the MyNYPD hashtag contained negative content. While 15 sounds like a rather small percentage of the total population who used the #MyNYPD tag, it was more than enough to bring the award of #SocialFail to the campaign. So why do I and so many others consider the NYPD’s campaign to be a social fail even though a small fraction of the population used the hashtag in a negative connotation? It’s because the negative content got all the attention. Rather than news outlets featuring the photos of police officers taking part in food drives or helping an old woman back onto her feet, which do exist, they covered the photos of citizens being slammed onto the hoods of police cars or being pepper sprayed and billy clubbed.Screen Shot 2016-02-08 at 5.35.38 PM

Personally I see that the NYPD was trying to generate some positive conversation about police amidst a plethora of bad, I just think a mix of timing and execution ultimately spelled disaster for their reputation. Rather than encourage the community to post content of their personal interactions with police at a time when departments are under an obscene amount of scrutiny and criticism, why not design a campaign that focuses on all the good New York’s police have done over the years without the help of user generated content? By reducing the chance for unwanted content, the NYPD could have had a far better social reaction than the one they ended up with.


Burt, B. (2015, April 16). Valuable Lessons From 5 Shockingly Bad Social Media Fails. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://socialmediaweek.org/blog/2015/04/valuable-lessons-5-shockingly-bad-social-media-fails/

Fields, L. (2014, April 24). #MyNYPD Campaign Spawns Hashtags Across the Country. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2014/04/mynypd-twitter-campaign-spawns-hashtags-across-the-country/

Phillip, A. (2014, April 22). Well the #MyNYPD hashtag sure backfired quickly. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2014/04/22/well-the-mynypd-hashtag-sure-backfired-quickly/

Social Media Listening Reports – Brandwatch. (n.d.). Retrieved February 08, 2016, from https://www.brandwatch.com/reports/

Vultaggio, M. (2014, April 23). Not My NYPD: What Happened With The Failed Twitter Campaign That Unsuspectingly Encouraged Police Brutality Photos. Retrieved February 8, 2016, from http://www.ibtimes.com/not-my-nypd-what-happened-failed-twitter-campaign-unsuspectingly-encouraged-police-1575577