Monday, November 3rd, 2014 | 5 min read
When developing a solid content marketing strategy, there are many factors to keep in mind, depending on the client. Thinking beyond what has been established – analytics, scrappy content, available 24/7 – the most important factor for bulletproof content strategy is collaboration. There is no better way for a team to stay on strategy while breaking new creative ground than with representation from multiple teams. In addition to great ideas, collaboration promotes camaraderie
Groupon generates approximately 1,500 – 2,000 messages a day across all of our social channels. Approximately 35-40% of those are from North America. Given this volume of content, compared to the size of our team, collaboration is the only way we can achieve our goals. So we began hosting multi-team bi-weekly analytics and brainstorming meetings.
The basis for these meetings is a modification of Brian Eno’s concept of “scenius,” which refers to “the collective intelligence and intuition of a whole cultural scene.” When you apply this line of thinking to running a brand, you’ll see the value. It has helped solve both creative and workload issues for Groupon, and it can do the same for you.
In order to have a healthy collaborative environment, there are a few simple conditions that must be met.
Social media is still a shiny, new object at agencies and brands, with many active employees on social in their personal lives. These are the best people to take from internal teams, because they have experience with the platforms.
At Groupon, we expanded our brainstorming group from just the immediate content creators to include management and sales. The people that really want to participate, and do a good job, will go out of their way to join. Do what you can to find these people in your organization; they’re helpful to keeping your perspective current in a rapidly changing social landscape.
The best collaborative teams trust and respect each other, as well as each other’s job boundaries. This includes keeping the playing field level no matter the job title. Great ideas can come from anyone.
We’ve had senior management brainstorming alongside our social customer service people and have come up with some great ideas. All parts of the marketing funnel have something to teach and learn from each other. Working together like this also gives people from various levels something to talk about, which strengthens the team’s bond.
Everyone needs to be comfortable sharing his or her ideas. Some of the best ideas are ones people sometimes feel unsure about sharing, because they’re either weird or untested. This is another instance where having mutual appreciation helps.
If you can’t set up time for multi-team brainstorms, setting up email groups will suffice. This will keep your team on the same page and able to share relevant news. This is something that is very common at Groupon and allows for a more passive form of brainstorming.
Including a few individuals from other teams affected by social adds an interesting dynamic to the process. Now, instead of only focusing on engagement with a homogenous team, we’re making collective decisions with multiple departments.
For Groupon, this diversification has involved team, age and gender. There is compelling evidence that a group’s collective intelligence is not based on an aggregated IQ, but on conditions like having a balanced gender mix, and having people take turns speaking. So, in addition to how the team behaves, we pay attention to this.
This collaborative approach to content strategy has been very successful for Groupon. Since its implementation in Q2, 2014, we’ve generated numerous campaign and content ideas, launched new social channels, and increased CTR, impressions and engagement tenfold.
About the Author: Mike Niemczyk, Sr. Social Media Content Strategist at Groupon, is a digital native with a focus on emerging technology, trends, and the psychology behind what makes people share. Prior to working at Groupon, Mike created social media strategy for Cheez-It, Delta, Coors Light, Lunchables, Cars.com and ALPO.
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