Recap: NEWIEE Social Media Success in the Energy & Environmental Sectors

image courtesy of blogs.technet.com

The panel discussion hosted by NEWIEE at Digitas last night was great - each of the four speakers gave good practical advice on successfully spreading the message of sustainability through social media. Social media is becoming increasingly important as word-of-mouth is becoming digitized, but the many ever-changing nature of internet communication can be overwhelming, so it was great to hear the panelists share some tricks of the trade.

The audience was made up of people from many different sectors  - non profit, government, media, small business, etc., and they had some interesting questions for the panelists. I actually wish the question & answer segment of the event was longer because the panelists gave interesting answers and sparked some good discussions. Here are a few of the key points of the event:

Building an Audience:
-Use all different types of media to build an audience (radio, anyone?)
-Use images/graphics to draw attention to your message
-Think about who is invested in your project, and cater to their interests when possible
-Find out who the "influencers" in your field are and follow their example
-Use eye-catching/shocking statistics
-Become an expert in your subject
-Don't just push out information, engage your audience in genuine communication (see below)

Maintaining & Engaging an Audience:
-Give people a reason to come back to your facebook page (deals/discounts)
-Engage your audience by encouraging feedback (quizzes/polls)
-Keep track of what types of posts get the most hits/retweets/likes
-Keep track of what types of tweets bring the most traffic (questions, facts, jokes)
-Listen to what people want, make it a two-way conversation
-Ask others to share their stories and feedback