With so many social media platforms available to publishers, creating a strategy takes planning and insights informed by what works. There is no one-size-fits-all approach.
Sree Sreenivasan is a leading social media consultant, and he will present three sessions at MagNet 2018 that will help publishing teams better understand and better utilize social platforms.
“The way I see it is social media is tantalizingly easy to get started on but frustratingly hard to master,” says Sreenivasan in the latest episode of AudioMag, Magazine Canada’s podcast. “When I say social I don’t just mean Facebook or Twitter; I also am talking about mobile platforms, audio, video, YouTube. All this stuff that everyone has to be familiar with whether you are a magazine publisher or a business person running a small restaurant.”
Sreenivasan has had a front row seat to many of the developments in the field, having served as Chief Digital Officer of New York City and more recently at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In 2015, Fast Company named him one of the 100 most creative people in business.
Mobile photography and Instagram tips are the focus of an early morning session that kicks off MagNet 2018, followed by his signature state-of-social-media session, which Sreenivasan is currently on tour with, taking it to twenty-five cities in seven countries.
Throughout his tour, one of the main topics of concern among publishers are the changes to the news feeds that Facebook introduced which favours friend-to-friend interactions over showcasing publisher content.
“Every publisher I talk to has to be talked down off the ledge because what they are looking at is the numbers. I believe there is positive news in this,” says Sreenivasan. “The glimmer of hope that I see in this is that yes, they are deemphasizing brands, and emphasizing people, and therefore your traffic will drop. But in the emphasizing of people, your path to salvation lies there. Because if your content is readable, shareable, embeddable, joyful, or useful, people will share it. And if they want to share it, they will. That’s where we have to think about our content: How do we make it so good that people want to share it?”
Beyond Facebook of course are other influential platforms, including one that Sreenivasan has a particular eye on.
“One platform that is vastly underused is LinkedIn,” he says. “LinkedIn has so many opportunities because it is aimed at people at work and I’ve now made it a resolution that I am going to do more on LinkedIn because I see the pick-up it gets when you post an article. And so what is your LinkedIn strategy?”
Also one often overlooked but extremely effective tool for publishers is good old email.
“Email works. Newsletters work,” he says. “The New York Times has 20 or 25 newsletters. NPR has about 13. Why do they do that? Because they know it works. Content that you create is valuable. Don’t let it die on the vine by not sharing it in every reasonable venue.”
MagNet is the largest gathering for magazine media professionals in North America, with keynotes, panels, awards and unparalleled networking. The two-day event kicks off April 25 in Toronto. Register for MagNet 2018.
AudioMag is produced by Tina Pittaway, an award-winning independent writer and broadcaster. Tina has been a contributor to CBC Radio and Television for more than 20 years. Her radio documentaries have been recognized with honours from the Canadian Association of Journalists, the Canadian Science Writers’ Association, the New York Festivals, Amnesty International and the Gabriel Awards. Visit Tina online to learn more about her work.
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Magazines Canada acknowledges the support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage, as well as the Canada Council, for this project.