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Social Media’s Impact on PR

[fa icon="calendar'] 11-Oct-2015 11:30:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Social Media, Public Relations

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It was the first time I had ever participated in a digital-only congress and it was great fun. How it works you ask? Well, it’s online only – you sign up in order to watch the live broadcasts of the presentations on the designated date and time, and you participate in a live chat after each presentation.

I was invited as a speaker by one of the agencies I take care of at HubSpot (they organise the event) as they noticed that my background was social media and PR and I had written a dissertation and a book on the topic, so they thought it would be quite useful for the participants to learn more about this.

You can still watch the video here, but I thought I'd share the slides of my presentation with you as they very much summarise my findings from back then, adding up some more research and still making the point that PR pros are unfortunately slow to catch up with all that’s being happening in the realm of social media, 10+ years later.

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The State of Social Business: Progress and Upcoming Challenges

[fa icon="calendar'] 06-Sep-2015 11:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Social Media

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2002 – Friendster launches; 2003 – MySpace arrives; 2004 – here comes Facebook; 2005 – begins the YouTube era; 2006 – Twitter is here… The evolution of social media started 13 years ago.

Fast forward to 2015, social is no longer just a hype, however using social media in business is still a huge challenge for marketers.

But things seem to be changing.

This year’s Altimeter Group Social Business benchmark research uncovered something very interesting: For the first time, an important shift in priorities is happening – strategists are moving from scaling consumer engagement in social to making a larger enterprise-wide shift and integrating social across the entire business.

Isn’t this something that social media experts have been preaching to clients for years? Back in 2013 when I was doing my research on social media for sustainability, one of the main issues was that both social media and sustainability were treated as standalone disciplines within businesses, whereas they should be fully integrated throughout organisations.

So, why should you care?

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How to Reply to a Dissatisfied Customer on Social Media

[fa icon="calendar'] 23-Aug-2015 10:30:00 / by Scott Lipow posted in Social Media

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Thanks to Scott Lipow from Six7 Marketing for this guest piece! 

Not every product you sell – or service you provide – will deliver unblemished customer satisfaction.  The truth is that some customers will find a way to be negative and complain, even if your company is not at fault. In this day and age, social media magnifies the voice of the customer to a huge extent.

Dissatisfied customers used to directly call the company on their phone line for customer service.  

But times have changed. Now, a disgruntled customer can write a negative review on Yelp or Zagat, tweet about it, or even complain on your company’s Facebook page. Since social media is very public and widely used, this transparency awards the customer with more influence over the reputation of your business. 

The customer is no longer complaining privately to your company. They are complaining publicly to everyone who happens to view that review, tweet, or Facebook comment. Your business must go above and beyond to remedy the situation and make sure that your hard-earned reputation is preserved.

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9 Reasons to Start Creating Infographics Now

[fa icon="calendar'] 21-Jun-2015 07:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Social Media, Storytelling, Marketing

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I absolutely love, love, love infographics! They are such a great way to transmit a message and engage with people, don't you think? 

You could say that I am addicted to them because even though I don't have any design background, I've already created seven distinct infographics. (You can check them out on my SlideShare and Visual.ly profiles.) 

It's all about being inspired, having an idea and getting creative. And there are so many tools you can use today - go Canva, Piktochart or even PowerPoint. I've used them all. 

Infographics are a fantastic marketing tool. Leveraging this type of content can help you extend your reach, drive traffic, increase social sharing and engagement as well as help you stand out among all the noise out there. 

I've said it before: visual content is king. Infographics can not only boost your traditional comms efforts, but also take your digital content marketing to the next level by being able to create content that truly fascinates.

 Here are nine crucial reasons why you should start creating infographics now:

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The Keys to a Successful Social Business Strategy

[fa icon="calendar'] 14-Jun-2015 07:00:00 / by Iliyana Stareva posted in Social Media

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You know me, I’m a big fan of Brian Solis. He never stops producing amazing content that is educational and helpful, but also backed up by some serious research -> reliable. So, today we are going to talk about one of his recent pieces of work together with Charlene Li from Altimeter Group and part of their new ebook – the key success factors to developing a winning social business strategy.  

Why is a social business strategy important? Because even though social media is now everywhere and digital is disruption everything, only 17% of businesses are truly strategic in the execution of social strategies. What does that speak about the future success of the other 83% if they don’t change? I’ll leave the answer to you.

Here’s another interesting finding: 88% of companies report an ongoing digital transformation and invest in digital, however without much insight or purpose – only 25% have mapped the digital customer journey and have a clear understanding of the different digital touchpoints.

Brian Solis defines a social business strategy not as a “marketing strategy or a technology roadmap but rather a way or philosophy of how business could be done differently… in a much more human manner.”

A social business strategy requires a transformation of your existing business model. It needs to be aligned with your business processes and practices and embedded throughout your organisation in order to be resilient. Only so will you be able to achieve real ROI – such a favourite world in corporate speak.

So, what do you need to do to develop a successful social business strategy? You need to follow seven steps:

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