The Week in Social from Union Metrics #164

We spend the week reading the best things we can get our eyeballs on and on Fridays we share them here with you. Leave your thoughts in the comments, or come find us on Twitter at @UnionMetrics.

On the serious stuff: Law and crisis communication.

At it’s crux, social media is really just the latest tool humans have for communication; the nature of human communication itself hasn’t actually changed. This works both for and against brands in the midst of a social crisis, as Andy Gilman elaborates in How Social Media Changes Crisis Communications, an interview with Geoff Livingston:

“The Internet is just a vehicle. It really starts with who you are as an organization. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a company, a nonprofit or an NGO. What are your values and your messages? You can decide ‘I don’t want this community to be my customer base,’ that’s your choice. But then you suffer the consequences for it, and it is so much easier to spread that information.”

The speed and ease of communication in the social age simply means you might be facing those consequences a lot sooner and from more people than might have heard about it in a bygone era.

And if you haven’t had time to really take in the new social guidelines from the FTC, check out Adhering to the FTC’s Updated Social Media Guidelines: 5 Tips for Brands from Kristen Sussman. Truly savvy brands will run an audit to make sure even existing content meets the new guidelines. The general rule is always “when in doubt, disclose”.  

And on content marketing and storytelling, because we just can’t get enough.

Social media marketers love to declare that things are dead, occasionally, and this week it’s poor brand storytelling. Bernadette Jiwa responded with a great piece asking Is Brand Storytelling Dead?.

“. . . a brand story is more than cleverly crafted copy. A story isn’t something you choose to tell or not to tell. It’s what people believe when they encounter you or your brand, the impressions they form and the assumptions they make at every interaction with you, both in personal and business settings. Customers are making sense of your story even when they aren’t consciously paying attention.”

Emphasis added.

Want to get inside your customers heads? Then you’ll want to read Six psychology principles that can help your content marketing, from Anna Francis for Econsultancy.

Think you’ve got everything covered in your content marketing? Couldn’t hurt to be sure you haven’t missed something obvious that could be helping, and is an easier fix to make: 5 Obvious Content Marketing Strategies Most Companies Overlook from Neil Patel. (Hint: Just throwing a stock image into a post doesn’t make it “visual content marketing”.)

Finally Katie Gaab reminds us to take time for ourselves and trust in our ideas in Speak Up: Identify Influential Ideas to Make Your Mark. Maybe make time to do a little of that this weekend.