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The entire world is social. Facebook, of course, dominates, but some big regional exceptions remain, from Orkut in Brazil to Vkontakte across Russian speaking regions and RenRen and the Sino Microblog in China, where Facebook and Twitter are blocked by the “Great Firewall.”
But, at only 29% global internet penetration, we are far from saturation. Mobile web access will be the greatest accelerator to change that, and the continuous shift to more visual and video content means even illiterate populations in remote regions of the world will not be left behind. The digital divide is being leveled one handset at a time.It’s also interesting to note that each region seems to have their unique flavor for social media activities. Some are more active in photo sharing, some watch more video, and so on. As global as the web is going, social media remains a local endeavor.1.9 Billion – Number of people who use email globally59% - Rate of decline of email use among US 12-17 year olds 8% decline in email among general US populationEmail usage actually grew among US population 55+14% - Percentage of online time spent on social networks10% - Facebook’s percentage of total page views across the Internet70% - Percentage of Facebook users outside the U.S.20 Million - Number of Facebook apps installed every day21.4 Million - # of new websites in 20102 Billion - # of videos watched per day on You Tube- (that translates to Every minute 35 hours of videos are being uploaded to YouTube)35% - Growth in online giving in 2010 (Haiti disaster shaped a new path for online donations)
There is not a corner of the web that is not shareable or interactive. Welcome to the era of the Social Web.
The persistent, pervasive social web means we must quickly, dramatically shift the way we do our jobs as communicators to emphasize more personal, direct communications reflecting the way people expect to interact. No one wants to be “bros” with a company or organization. It’s the people of the organization who will make the difference.
UNICEF accounts for more than 2X the social media volume than its next closest “competitor” in the areas of UNICEF’s concern, such as extreme global poverty and childhood heath.
UNICEF now has the opportunity to shift to a more strategic approach to its content and a more personal way of engaging, not as UNICEF, but as the people of UNICEF.
There’s a huge amount of sympathy and support for UNICEF and its programs, but we need to make it easier for people – especially influencers – to talk about our work, point to our successes and show their readers/viewers simple steps they can do to help. Make it tangible, and strip out the policy jargon. No one can touch, feel or see a “global health.”
It starts with listening to what people are talking about and the language they use. A great mix of paid and free tools exist to help.Radian 6SysomosCrimson HexagonOmnitureGoogle AnalyticsGoogle Ad PlannerDiggDeliciousRedditTweetDeckTweetMemeTrendisticSocialMentionGoogle AlertsAlexaTechnoratiFacebook InstantOpenbook
Absolut Brooklyn’s Stooplife campaign is a great example of a brand connecting with a conversation by honoring a community.
Even in Facebook, UNICEF communicates as an organization. Where are the faces and voices of the people of UNICEF? How are we empowering the people of UNICEF to tell their (and our) story)? How are we leveraging our people’s passions and knowledge? How are we tapping their networks?
FedEx’s IAmFedEx program is a perfect example of how to do it right.
The vast majority of you are already digital animals, highly active in social notworks. Yet for some reason, these personal skills and proclivities are left behind when we put on our professional hats and craft communications for UNICEF. If we don’t encourage, train and provide the tools for our people to use social media constructively for the benefit of UNICEF and its beneficiaries – or worse, if we discourage it – we will foster a social media blackmarket.
We must harness the power of the individual. Help them listen & join the conversation, add value, be constructive.
Starts with basics:cross-functional coordinating councilSocial media policies to encourage consistent and constructive behaviors (and to limit liability)Training and more trainingEvery org is different, so program and approach must be tailored to fit.There is a role for social media in every single operating unit, division, region and office of UNICEF
The ONE Campaign is a leading example of how to listen, respond and drive action through social media.
Empowering our people to engage has risks. Will we lose control of our brand and message? If we empower our people, they can help mitigate risk and address issues as they arise and before they boil over. Here’s another example from the FedEx world. The crisis that never happened because of personal intervention.
Personalization is great, until it hits the “creep” factor. There’s a right way to do it that avoids unnecessary intrusion into people’s personal lives.
We must gear our communications for the small screen. In a world of Six Word Memoirs, Twitter and SMS, 141 characters is suddenly too many.
Why use black type on white paper when we can tell our stories in color & motion?
IBM’s CEO Sam Palmisano introduced IBM’s Smarter Planet campaign with a speech and a blog. But this terrific program doesn’t stop there.
CEOs and Fortune 100 companies are incorporating video and animation in their communications about serious, complex issues. It’s not about dumbing it down, it’s about providing a way in. A conversation starter.
From the GirlEffect to TakeBackTheTech, non-profits are effectively leveraging animated webisode content for their purposes.
Link shorteners help convey more information in less space. And if UNICEF had it’s own shortener, it would have the benefit of the data and analytics that derive from their usage.
UNICEF is starting to think about and utilize mobility, but it needs to get there faster.
Consider QR codes, like 2-dimensional barcodes that carry much more information. They have worked well from commerce (Polo Ralph Lauren, among others, for example) to non-profit (Oxfam last year playing with the Internet of Things).
QR Codes can work hard and deliver value for UNICEF.
In 2007, the Obama campaign had more social media integration than UNICEF has in 2011.
Merely having the buttons on the website and the properties in the big social networks does not make you social.
It’s what you do with the connectivity to drive conversation, share content and spur action that matters.
UNICEF did it right with P&G in Brazil.
UNICEF has some of the most & most beautiful content around.
Now we need to reconfigure it and harness it for more and deeper engagement.
We all know the trends…. As web usage and web video views go up, traditional media is dying, advertising is drying up, people are fast forwarding through the commercials. But here are some related statistics.... Old media’s not necessarily dying, it’s shifting & adapting to the new world order. Look at the image: print accelerating its death by driving to web. Or is it merely doing what it can to maintain relevance?
We need to expand our thinking about the influencers who move conversation across the social web. Journalists still matter a great deal, but the set now has expanded to include Bloggers and YouTube personalities, among others.
Geico effectively tapped into a YouTube phenomenon in 2009 with its NumaNuma video that showed it honors the talent and audience with its subtle, lightly branded approach.
Old Spice brought these approaches to a whole new level by targeting a broad array of leading influencers with targeted, personalized communications and creativity.
Meet Sami Slimani, a leading German YouTube guru who already supports UNICEF with ad revenues from his YouTube videos based on the popular interest of his followers. He wants to do more to help UNICEF. He’s ready now. Are you?
Video’s changing the way we communicate – more intuitive, less text, organized the way people think. Crowdsourcing is another approach that’s dramatically changing how we approach corporate communications. Crowdsourcing is when we draw from distributed knowledge to make decisions for a company. Starbucks did it with store improvements. Dell did it for customer service. Pepsi and some other brands are using it for philanthropy and CSR. Fundamental decisions about where the brand invests, being thrown open to democratic decisionmaking. Amazing. And amazingly popular.
Toyota’s using crowdsourcing to put its ideas and technology to work for the world.
Search is another distorting factor. For many users, search is the new start, as it’s easier to type intuitive language into a search bar than it is to type a URL into an address bar.But this has big implications for us as marketers. If search is the new start, then search optimization had better be baked into everything we do. It’s not sufficient to leave it to chance that our messages will be found, when the Google, Bing & Yahoo! algorithms kick in.
Real-time social search is causing social networks and bookmarks (from Facebook to Twitter to Delicious to Digg to Reddit to StumbleUpon) to challenge Google’s algorithm as the leading driver of traffic to web destinations.
Paid approaches have an important place in the mix. Consider this example of Facebook social advocacy ads. Drive awareness and traffic in context.
Measurement is critical, but there are many more data streams to weigh. The number of fans, friends and followers is not the end-all. Engagement is what matters.
Measurement is not a moment, it’s about benchmarks and change over time.