As director of social and content strategy at Web-based B2B juggernaut Salesforce.com, Jennifer Burnham knows the importance of proving social media's value by linking social engagement with business results.
"By proving this, you will be able to win executive support for a balanced, multifaceted social media strategy that includes delighting your communities, engaging in conversation and reaching new audiences to grow the business," Burnham says.
Burnham will share her social media insights during the “Measure the Effectiveness of Your Social Media Programs” session at PR News’ Digital PR Next Practices Summit, which takes place on Feb. 27 in San Francisco. She spoke with PR News about the importance of content and linking social engagement with business outcomes.
PR News: What's the one major trend you see in social media outreach that PR pros should study in 2013?
Jennifer Burnham: I see content marketing increasing in importance—brands creating content that delights social audiences. In 2013, more companies are going to move from interruption-based marketing to creating content that is valuable to the receiver, speaks to trends and is part of a larger conversation.
It's going to be harder to get attention using traditional forms of communications such as the text-based press release or banner ad. Social audiences expect to hear your story in short form in an easily shareable engaging format. Teams that embrace this change will find that their news and stories get greater reach. It will take more planning, creative execution and focus, but this approach will reap more rewards.
PR News: What's one social media KPI that that resonates when presenting results to Salesforce leadership?
Burnham: New customers. If what you are doing every day on social channels is reaching new audiences that convert to customers, and you can measure that conversion through leads collected from your content shared on social, you are truly connecting social to pipeline and demonstrating ROI.
Sure, social fans, likes, shares and visits are great signs of a healthy community—some call these community engagement and brand building—but it's important to do the hard work to prove how the social conversations tie back to the bottom line of the business.
PR News: What's one piece of advice you plan on giving attendees at the Summit in February?
Burnham: I’ll be sharing my recommendations and learning from creating a "Social = Pipeline" measurement strategy that can prove the value of social media efforts. My advice to attendees is to move from ad hoc, reactive, episodic posting on social channels to a defined publishing plan that drives business results.
To learn more from communications experts like Jennifer Burnham, register to attend PR News’ Feb. 27 Digital PR Next Practices Summit in San Francisco.
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