Social Local Media: Recapping Some SLM Webinar High Points

Thanks to the 600+ who registered for yesterday’s webinar on the launch of BIA/Kelsey’s Social Local Media advisory service. And even bigger props for the nearly 50 questions and comments that poured in. Our pledge to you: We will address them ALL in the coming months through our blog and other touch points.

To peak the interest of those who missed the festivities, and to summarize for those who attended, here’s a snapshot of the discussion. We asked a lot of big questions, and then framed the challenges and opportunities surrounding each with data, case examples and “so what?” analysis. Among the headliners:

* “Whether you’re a local business, an agency representing SMBs or a media company, what needs to be on your social radar screen beyond just Facebook and Twitter?” My colleague Andrew Shotland reminded listeners not to forget about Web 1.0 tactics — blogs, reviews/ratings, online forums — that are still effective engagement channels. He cited a stat from Hubspot reinforcing how blog activity can drive SEO.

* Our polling showed lots of interest in building content increased content engagement across social platforms. How do you do that? I identified a few key tactics. First, very simply, the more active you are, generally the more interactive your audience will be. Use social media as a customer-care channel by focusing on immediate, thoughtful, personal service. And finally, empower your audience with useful information and recommendations. Angie’s List uses “how to” content to effectively engage customers … ultimately driving them to their site to search for service providers that address these questions.

* Many marketers state that their No. 1 social media objective is figuring out a sensible way to measure ROI. So, how can it be done? Andrew emphasized that measuring social requires a deliberate plan that “creates pre- and post-analysis” of social media marketing. In other words, businesses can build a timeline that shows social media activities overlaid against key metrics (revenue, foot traffic, etc.) to determine their relationship. There are plenty of tools — free and premium — that can help with both analytics and sentiment analysis.

We also asked you to respond to a couple of live poll questions. We posited that the social local media ecosystem will grow into at least a $20 billion global segment by 2015. Nearly half of respondents agreed that our prediction is about right, while 25 percent think that the opportunity is even larger.

As for which social media topic you would like us to cover next, “developing social media plans and engagement strategies” (50 percent) and “determining tools and techniques for measuring ROI” (41 percent) led the pack, followed by “forecasting spending growth in social local. All three ideas will be leading themes of SLM coverage.

The webinar replay is available here. Thanks again for participating!

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