Going Viral

February 16, 2016

Dove adOne of my favorite marketing campaigns is Dove Beauty Sketches (screenshot at left), produced in 2013. Just one month following the release of Dove Beauty Sketches, the video received more than 114 million total views, which, according to Dove, makes it the most viral video at that time. Dove also claims that its Beauty Sketch ad beat the 2011 Evian Roller Babies, which previously set the record for most viewed videos online.

What does it take to create viral content? This was the topic of our most recent Twitter chat, Creating Viral Success. Digital Marketing Consultant Lori Greene cohosted this engaging chat. Lori teaches digital content strategies at New York University and is a guest speaker, panelist and lecturer on digital topics. Lori gave us a glimpse into what it takes to create viral content. Simply stated, Lori says, “viral = disruption, novelty, awesomeness, doing something different that people will pay attention to.” Lori continues, “for viral, you need to be part of the zeitgeist, the conversation that’s trending on Twitter and beyond.”

According to Lori, the top key principles necessary to create viral content include:

  • Find white space and do anything differently than everyone else 
  • Execute ideas flawlessly
  • Headlines are crucial

Lori is no stranger to creating viral content. She developed an idea that resulted in Martha Stewart singing a rap about Arm & Hammer baking soda. The ad reached 7 million viewers. When asked how to master content marketing, Lori offers these seven tips:

  1. Know your audience 
  2. Have a content strategy
  3. Align goals
  4. Think like a journalist
  5. Tap into culture
  6. Select the right platform
  7. Distribute 

A well thought-out distribution strategy, says Lori, is “crucial to content marketing success.” Not every brand has celebrity status. “For those brands, we need to work much harder for viral content.”

Do you remember the popular You Tube video sensation “Gangnam Style” by South Korean musician Psy? According to a case study, it was well-structured and meticulously executed by the South Korean label company behind the song: YG Entertainment. The content marketing strategy behind the hit song included taking a year to build a social media following. “The bigger your social media presence, the greater chance of viral success.”

The final takeaway for how to create viral success: “Tell the very best story in the most unique way possible on a platform that makes it shine the brightest.”

Posted by: 
Rodeena Stephens

Becoming Your Own Brand

February 3, 2016

On Feb. 2, 2016, NYWICI hosted "Marketing Yourself at Every Age" — on standing out, staying relevant and navigating bias.

Panelists included (left to right): Jamie McLaughlin, founder and president of Capstone Hill Search (@CapstoneHill); Celia Currin, executive career coach (@celiacurrin); Alyssa Gelbard, founder and president of Resume Strategists, Inc. (ResumeStratgsts); moderator Robyn Hatcher, author and communication skills expert and founder of SpeakEtc (@SpeakETC) and Soniya Monga, global agency partner lead at LinkedIn (@soniyamonga).

Here are key takeaways of a very lively discussion:

What goes into a personal brand?

I don't like the term 'personal brand' — I think it's cheesy. It's really about reputation. How do you want your clients, colleagues and others to see you? How do you figure out a way to be yourself? You need to have a point of view and something to say. (Soniya)

One of the key things in building a brand is to be consistent. Building familiarity and repetition across channels — from your message to your headshot — will help people remember you. (Alyssa) 

You want to have one thing that makes you the go-to person, even if it’s knowing the best golf courses. The passion you let out can show up on the personal side. (Celia)

People mistake standing out for being controversial; you don’t need to do that. (Jamie)


How important is passion in marketing yourself?

When you can match your passion with your skills, it’s magic. I would also hire someone more passionate and excited about the job than someone with a great resume but no passion. You can be successful without being passionate, but at some point that's going to catch up with you. (Alyssa)

All interviews are about three questions: Can you do the job? Will you love the job? Can I stand working with you? The third question may be the most important: People want to work with others they enjoy being around. (Celia)

Find something in the job you are passionate about — whether it’s the outcomes or the flexibility, which leads to a better work life balance for example. (Jamie)


What are things you want to pay attention to or avoid doing?

You have to be aware of who you’re marketing to. (Jamie)

Don’t just limit yourself to behind the screen. Get out there face-to-face, go to alumni events, meet with people. When you’re thinking about your online brand, be careful that the brand you’re putting out there doesn’t make you sound like you have more experience than you actually have. (Alyssa) 

A mentor once said to me, “Say yes to everything.” Go to every networking event, set up coffee with people. There’s a difference with people who do their research, know the background of the person they’re meeting with and follow up with a personal note. People often forget about this, so it stands out more if you take the time to follow up. It's easier to build your brand that way. (Soniya)

Do your research. Google yourself periodically and see what comes up. Keep things private and don’t share anything you wouldn’t tell your grandmother over dinner. (Jamie)


How do you craft your message?

Short and brief messages grab the reader’s attention. Have one thing that you are the go-to person for. This opens up opportunity to reach more people. It can be a professional specialty or personal specialty. Let some of your personality out! And use the summary space in LinkedIn to talk about your brand. (Celia)

Be yourself and have a specific point of view to craft your brand around. People are drawn to stories. Craft a story of who you want to be perceived as and have a sense of where you want to go. (Soniya)

In your written communications, proofread everything. Don’t be sloppy. (Alyssa)


Does appearance play a role in your personal brand?

When you think about appearance, there are so many aspects to it — your hair, clothes and accessories. Think about your environment, who you’re meeting with and be consistent with your brand. (Alyssa)

You need to come across as a trusted advisor with expertise. If you're not sure about the dress code, ask. (Jamie)

Get a couple of interview outfits that you feel and look great in. (Celia)

— With reporting by Kathleen Brady, Jessica Kleiman and Angela Morris.
Photos: Jan Goldstoff 


You may also be interested in reading transcripts of past NYWICI Twitter Chats on the same topic: Positioning & Personal Branding with cohost Selena Soo (@SelenaSoo) and Personal Branding with cohost Joanne Jombrakos (@joannetombrakos). 


"You Are the Brand that Never Leaves You"

February 2, 2016

BrandWhen we think of the term "brand", we may think of L’oréal, Burberry or Nike. Brands are not limited to products, however. YOU are a brand. Whether looking for a job, or building a business, the success of your brand comes from how well you package yourself.

During a recent Twitter chat, we had the opportunity to connect with Joanne Tombrakos, a consultant who specializes in personal branding and content marketing. She is also the creator of YOUR DIGITAL YOU, a course to build your personal brand online.

Joanne shared several tangible action steps to build and enhance your personal brand.

Everyone needs a personal brand

  • A personal brand is the sum of your total work experience, what you bring to the table and what makes you unique.
  • Your personal brand is how you show up online.
  • It is what people say about you when you leave the room — physically and digitally
  • You don't need a personal brand. You already have one. The question is how strong, vibrant and healthy it is. 

Identify Your Brand

  • Everything you say and do online contributes to your personal brand. 
  • Your personal brand is more than your “bio summary”.
  • Be clear on your story — your story is the essence of your message
  • You need to ask yourself the following questions: (1) Who are you? (2) What do you do? (3) Why do you do it?

Know Your Voice

  • Tell your story in 140 characters or less and then take it offline.
  • Getting your story straight helps you find your voice.
  • The more you put yourself out there — online and offline — the easier it is to find your voice.
  • Share content that you think is useful, relevant and entertaining, and that reflects your perspective.
  • Create your own content — blog, slideshare, podcast — especially if you want to be recognized as an expert in your field.

Use Social Media To Build Your Personal Brand

  • Engage. Follow people and companies you'd like to connect with on Twitter and LinkedIn.
  • Choose networks that make sense for your goals.
  • If you already have a personal blog, consider repurposing the content on LinkedIn's platform or Medium

Joanne offers this final takeaway: “You are the brand that never leaves you — so give it the attention it deserves.”

Posted by: 
Rodeena Stephens