Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Social Media Weekend 2013 (at least part of it)


presented by Columbia School of Journalism,
hosted by @Sree Sreenivasan and @ColumbiaJourn department of Continuing Education

Social Media Weekend was a terrific event, and I would encourage everyone not only to attend but to sign up early!  All 500 spots were filled a week before the event, so I was only able to attend on Sunday.  Hopefully, I'm now on the mailing list for next year, so I will be registering bright and early in 2014.  

True to its theme, the reach of the conference on social media was astounding!  According to my garbled notes, there were almost 4,000 people participating in the conference - only about 500 of whom were registered.  Others were commenting and participating via social media.  As a result, the total reach of the conference - simply during the weekend itself - was about 6.4 million, worldwide!  Pretty good for a conference taking place on one floor of the Columbia Journalism School, tucked into a corner of the Columbia campus way up on Morningside Heights!

If anyone is interested in reaching that audience, @Sree made it quite clear that the conference is looking for sponsors for next year's event.

In the meantime, here are my notes from Sunday's sessions:

Sunday, February 17

Session: Brushing up on Twitter and LinkedIn, presented by:

@EmilyMiethner Emily Miethner      and @Patricia Kitchen   Patricia Kitchen


Skills section of LinkedIn

  • Think about which skills to list on the basis of what you want to do moving forward, rather than what you might have done in the past
  • Keep in mind your personal brand – what skills properly reflect that brand?
  • You don’t have to come up with the list of skills yourself – LinkedIn provides a list of skills to choose from
  • The skills should be a mix of general and specific skills

Endorsements – useful, but the final assessment of its utility and how they should be used are still being determined


Embed tweets into blog posts - details / more
- also embed code and link

Multiple tweets – don’t simply tweet the same item multiple times: make it different, e.g., add to or embellish, or mark REPOST

Consistent personas across the different social networks, but that doesn’t mean that the personas have to be identifcal - Twitter more casual

Session: @Sree: advanced workshop


  • Collect content all the time, including taking photos
  • Share when appropriate

Almost everyone will miss almost everything you do on social media

Social media is like a goat

  • a goat eats old content
  • on social media, you can recycle old content

Experimentation is good

People react positively to do-gooder impulses

Twitter based on influencers, Facebook about likes

Etiquette: Don't beg for shares and likes; it's okay to ask to connect

Beware of hashtag hijacking, especially if you are trying to be controversial – hashtags may not end up being used for their original, intended purpose, e.g., 
#MuslimRage ended up taking on a different meaning than originally intended by Newsweek!

Revisit your social media profiles at least monthly

  • separate items in your profile summary with *
  • add links- make your feed blue - have lots of links - link, hashtags, @, etc.
  • be thoughtful with your posts and tweets - he spends 3-6 minutes composing each tweet
  • if you have multiple tweets, emphasize different aspects of same source
  • try to make the tweets interesting, e.g., David Beard [@DABeard] - Washington Post does a regular feature of 5 myths every week

Be an early tester, but a late adopter.  Some new social media networks and tools:

  • Tout - 15-second videos
  • Soundcloud
  • rebelMouse
  • sonar
  • Jollyfy
  • Nutshellmail , Twilert
  • bliss control

Most important tools and apps - Storify, Flipboard

He is willing to pay (as an indication of importance) for Hootsuite, Spotify, tripit, runpee, 

·       Dorian Benkoil [@dbenk], moderator
·       Eason Jordan [@EasonJordan], Now This News
·       Zach Seward [@ZSeward], Quartz
·       Jonathan Perelman [@JPerelman], Buzzfeed


·       Mobile social video creates a news opportunity
·       Will result in disruption of legacy media
·       Revenue: social advertising, sponsorships, syndication
o   For example, ADT is going to sponsor series on the greatest manhunts
o   Syndication is big revenue opportunity – content sites can insert preroll ads, which don't otherwise run on the parent site
·       Key to avoiding social media mistakes: don't be an idiot


·       Quartz is geared to tablets and mobile
·       Built as a web app instead of a native app – based on the need to drive social media
o   The Daily from NewsCorp. was a native app, therefore it was more difficult to share
o   Quartz is also not subscription based
·       Ad strategy
o   No display ads
o   Instead using native ads/sponsored content
o   Will later be doing events
·       Approach: the quality of followers is more important than numbers or "distribution tricks"


·       Building a media company for the social age
·       Buzzfeed’s success is based on sharing
·       Revenue
o   Based on revenue from sponsorship
o   Display ads problematic: 40% of mobile display ad clicks are accidents due to fat fingers
·       Has 30-40 million uniques, 40% mobile and social
·       Approach to content
o   Content has to be shareable before it can be viral.
o   According to Jonah Peretti, there are 13 rules to make something go viral
o   The web has progressed from portal to search to social
o   In this environment, editors and advertisers both compete for viewer attention
o   Also, different networks spread differently, so characteristics such as speed to takeoff and longevity will vary
o   With sharing of content, they want to reach beyond intended target so that the target will be included in the sharing population

Keynote Session: Steve Rubel [@SteveRubel]. Marketer point of view

Media cloverleaf - traditional, owned, hybrid, social

Stakeholders don't distinguish whew one medium begins and another ends

Lots of media being created. Stakeholders are going to miss things

There is a Continental Divide between the news we actually read and the news we say we read

Biggest opportunities yet to come as media business models adapt to a new reality

Even the AP is partnering with Samsung and Twitter to create sponsored tweets

Content is no longer optional. As various disciplines converge, it's imperative.

At the same time, there is no scarcity of content.

Economic realities create new opportunities

As scarcity erodes, even Oprah has issues. Her interview with Lance Armstrong did not have the same size of audience she had had in broadcast – it is harder than ever to gather a mass audience

A few media companies can offset the erosion of analog dollars with digital subscriptions. Most cannot and will seek new revenue streams as ad rates are pressured by robotic buying exchanges
Will also have to solve the problem of ads on mobile because banner ads don't work on mobile

New ways to partner with the press under the banner of paid content distribution: syndication, integration, co-creation

- paid content syndication resembles advertorials. It's the in-stream distribution of branded content
-- quartz - every fourth story is sponsored

- paid content integration closely resembles product placement. The brand is woven into the storyline. Example - Buzzfeed

- paid content co-creation resembles a stadium sponsorship
-- likely to prevail
-- funds a new vertical that didn't exist before
-- mobile will celebrate adoption
-- more like a media buy


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