Boy, oh boy did we have a ton of fun on our Experimenting with Digital Engagement Tools webinar! If you missed last week's webinar the recording is now available. Talking about engagement, we had so many questions during the webinar, we thought we’d take the time to answer a few that we didn’t have time to get to during the session.
Please define digital engagement.
Building relationships with your constituents, using digital tools. Examples could include:
- Interacting with your fans/followers on social media sites. (measured through likes, comments, shares, hashtag usage, tags, check-ins)
- Interacting with your fans through a virtual game, e.g., an app-driven scavenger hunt like Scavify or an online game like Kahoot at a live event
- Adding a digital dimension to your broadcast by inviting online user input, e.g., the host on a live TV show asks viewers to “email us your questions or post them to Facebook,” then references the questions from Facebook (or email) during the show.
- Using dynamic content on your web page - for example an interactive google map related to an event or project
What length videos do you see the greater engagement with - longer vs shorter?
It depends. WGBH just came out with a Brand’s Guide To Social Video. In it, one bullet point says that “making a genuine connection with the audience builds trust and goes farther than any ‘tactic’ for video format.” We find this to be true as well.
Our most “viral” video to date was Facing Addiction: Hannah which was part of our weeklong radio and digital series about opioid addiction in Virginia. The video is very straightforward with no music bed and jump cuts. For TV, this video probably wouldn’t fly. However, for social it gets right to the point, uses captions for people who are watching without sound and touches on a trending topic.
The video also sparked conversations around addiction and many thoughtful comments supporting Hannah in her recovery. It then resurfaced a year later when Hannah shared the video as a “Facebook Memory” to show how far she’s come. For us, this is a big win and is why we spend so much time and effort on digital engagement.
Do you post different things on Facebook and Twitter or reuse them?
Your social posts should cater to the platform. We use Twitter during the week mainly for news, and on the weekends, we post more pop culture, food, and evergreen content. If it is great local content, we’ll post the same story on both Facebook and Twitter, but will switch up the wording and resize the photo.
For example, here’s some content we recently posted on Twitter and Facebook:
How are you measuring the Snapchat analytics and its overall success?
For Snapchat, you can see how many people viewed your story, but you can’t see how many followers you have. There are also no third party services that collect data on your Snapchat users (that I know of). This is because Snapchat is a messaging platform not a social platform. We used it as a low barrier way for Millennials to send us a video on a platform they use on a regular bases - i.e. “Snap us a video!”.
You can however, collect data on how many people viewed and used your Snapchat geofilter.
If you want to collect data on your users, I’d recommend using Instagram stories.
Like the Hamilton poster, have you done other giveaways that were not in person, but through social engagement?
Yes. We do giveaways often for local theater performances and music events, as well as tickets to our own events, if they’re likely to sell out, although we do it with the intent to collect emails rather than get more Facebook likes. We use Shortstack to create giveaways and then share them on Facebook and Twitter.
What is the reason for always captioning videos?
Facebook reports that captioning a video will increase video view time by an average of 12%.
Facebook videos play automatically, but without sound on. You want to make the person who is scrolling through their Facebook feed stop and watch the video. Sometimes this means they will never actually turn the sound on and we need to understand and cater to this user behavior. Here’s a great example of captioned videos.
Has anybody tried "Challenge Grants" through the tools?
We have done challenge grant posts on Facebook and Twitter during our FM pledge drive. Other than making the donor who sponsored the challenge grant happy, we have seen very little social lift and engagement. We want to use social as a tool and not as an appeasement measure, so we’re currently thinking through how, if, and why we would do challenge grants on social in the future.
Is "reach" the same as engagement? Question I get asked a lot since there is an expectation that social media and digital media have some sort of payback for our station. That being said, is reaching enough?
Check out this article from WGBH: http://wgbhsocial.org/best-practices/follower-counts-are-less-important-than-they-used-to-be/ - “reach” doesnt give a great sense of how well you’re connecting w/ your constituents. Engagement feels like a better metric to target because people are investing more of their own social capital when they “like,” “comment,” and “share” your content. Which happens when your content works!
What would you suggest to be the first step moving away from the goal of receiving the highest reach to receiving the highest engagement?
Identify your audience and figure out how to provide them with the greatest value. Use content that drives conversation and sharing.
How much does Kahoot cost?
Are you mostly using Facebook and Snapchat during live events? Or are you equally using Twitter and Instagram as well?
Depends on the event - and the audience - and your goals. Remember - each platform is good for different objectives and audiences.
What are good digital engagement tools for an older demographic that may not be using multiples of apps to get their social info on the fly? Older demo =45+/YOA. Do you have a top 3 or other number on what this age group is using the most?
Who you calling “older?” :)
First thing, check your social demographics- you may be surprised to see who is following you.
WCVE’s Facebook page is popular among 45+ as is Email (make sure to check your own data to see what YOUR audience is like. Note that your performance among different demographic groups can change over time). For us, Email is also great tool for engaging with this demographic.
Our Facebook audience - biggest share is 35-44, but a decent chunk are 45-54 and 55-64+
Our Twitter audience is slightly younger but also includes a decent share of 45-54 and 55+
For younger audiences, how important is it to push messaging for donations for stations? We hear about getting these younger groups on board as donors, but are social media tools actually effective in getting these younger people as donors?
This article from Network for Good addresses the challenge of engaging younger audiences: http://www.networkforgood.com/nonprofitblog/5-ways-engage-millennials-small-nonprofit/
Think of engaging with younger demographics as a long-term investment in the relationships, rather than quick conversions.
Other than the involvement have you been able to see $$ come back from the ads?
Our Hamilton event helped us create a Hamilton interest group and a lookalike audience (Using Facebook Business Manager), which enabled us to create an ad campaign for a Hamilton-themed raffle. Which raised almost $50K.
Thanks for sticking around as we walked through our process for engaging local audiences both online and in person. Remember, before starting any project, make sure you have a clear understanding of your goals and target audience - every market is different. Use the social platforms and style that fit your goals and target audience.
Here’s a resource for how to measure your Key Performance Metrics (KPIs) Creative Social Media Campaign Planning: A Fail-Proof Process and Your Essentials.
When is TechCon?
April 4 - 6, 2018! More info: http://www.pbstechconference.org/home -- See you there!