TRACK 1: Social Media Strategies for PR and Marketing

Tuesday, Oct. 24

8:30–9:20 a.m.
Opening Keynote

The state of trust: Influence and storytelling in the age of skepticism

Learn how to promote and protect your brand, reputation and business in an era of continual digital disruption and declining trust. You’ll leave with lessons from the most visible communications and marketing agendas of the last 18 months. You’ll discover how analytics, audience engagement and new expectations affect areas such as media relations, content development and social media customer service. What will you do the next time you face a high-stakes reputational risk quandary? The answers start here.

During this keynote, you’ll learn:

  • Lessons from Disney’s being named the “most authentic brad” (Cohn & Wolfe)
  • Inversions in trust and influence and the systems through which they travel
  • How online issues spark brushfires that can escalate to raging wildfires
  • The evolving interrelation between news and social media reporting, be it fake or real
  • How to know who your true audience is—and what it needs from you in today’s polarized environment
  • How to use social media channels to engender understanding—and even trust—in the face of skepticism
9:30–10:20 a.m.

Get radical: Win fans on FB Live, Periscope, YouTube Live and Snapchat

Mark Zuckerberg says that within five years, Facebook will be mostly video. With the growing popularity of live-streaming video, augmented reality, 360 video and virtual reality, brand managers must learn how to use video in radically different ways to better connect with their target audiences. In this session, you’ll discover a practical methodology to plan, create and share engaging video content—as well as the tools you’ll need to storyboard, shoot, edit and produce videos quickly.

You’ll learn:

  • Hot trends: vertical video, augmented reality and 360 video
  • Storyboarding steps for better Snapchat and Instagram Stories
  • Proven methods for increasing engagement for your videos
  • Video marketing strategies to expand your reach
  • What’s next: Low-cost methods to test 360 video and AR
Director of social media and community engagement
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Social media specialist
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10:30–11:20 a.m.

CYA on social media: Protect your reputation in the age of Trump tweets

Every organization or individual with a reputation worth protecting has to be ready when their moment in the crisis spotlight occurs. This interactive session will arm you with the knowhow to build reputations and defend them from threats as varied as data breaches and product liability cases, natural disasters and even late-night tweets from the White House. The session will be capped off by a live crisis training session that will put your skills to the test under extreme circumstances.

You’ll learn:

  • How to train your team in social media use
  • Tactics to influence online communities when opposition groups are aggressively driving the online conversation about your issue
  • How to develop a comprehensive crisis communications program
  • Best practices for establishing authentic and credible social media channels to engage key stakeholders before, during and after a crisis
  • How social and digital channels can drive traditional media outcomes
Past Chief Communications Officer
Rubicon Project
(formerly with)
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11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Lunch break

(Provided on site)

12:30–1:20 p.m.

Build a more powerful social media strategy—using FUN!

Are your online posts failing to garner engagement? Would you like to build a fan base that wants to interact with you and your content? More brand managers should embrace a sense of play when it comes to online storytelling. Consider this your creative adrenaline shot. You’ll hear how to reignite excitement and social media results from Snapchat’s first superstar—the artist, online personality and self-dubbed “professional fun lover” known as Shonduras. He teaches reps for the world’s biggest brands to live at the intersection of fun content and social media—and he’ll inspire you to do the same.

During this keynote, you’ll learn:

  • What brands get wrong about storytelling and influencer marketing
  • How to improve your engagement and strategy on social media
  • Finding the fun with video: How to shoot and share more authentic content that grows your following on Facebook, Snapchat and YouTube
  • The power of “play”—what brands can learn from e-gaming
  • The most effective ways to reach millennials and Gen Z

Sponsored by: 

First Snapchat influencer
Creative strategy consultant
Viacom Velocity
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2–2:50 p.m.

The future of social media: How to thrive on the Big Five (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram)

Change is a constant in social media. New channels appear almost daily as others fall out of favor. (Periscope, anybody?) Yet the “Big Five” have maintained longevity. Join to hear the truth behind recent rumors about their demise (Twitter, we’re looking at you), what the research says about where to invest your time—and the core skills you must master to thrive on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Instagram today—and on the platforms of tomorrow.

You’ll learn:

  • The current status of Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and Twitter
  • What’s working today to drive results on each of the Big Five
  • Content strategies and skills that cross social media channels:
    • Core design skills—from graphics to images and video
    • Copywriting—fitting captivating stories into social media posts on any platform
  • Whether paid social media is trending up or down—and where to invest
  • New platforms to watch: Who can upset the future of the Big Five?
Director of corporate communications
PKL Services
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3–3:50 p.m.

Win the battle for attention: Boost engagement with social ads

With organic reach on the decline, organizations have turned to paid ads to get messages through. That’s why brands are spending more on paid social media in the battle for attention. Global social media spending has roughly doubled over the past two years, to $31 billion from $16 billion. The question is: How do you stand out and drive engagement in this increasingly crowded marketplace? This session breaks it down so you can boost reach and results without breaking the bank.

You’ll learn:

  • Where to invest: The most effective paid platforms
  • Steps for developing a low-cost paid content strategy
  • Smart ways to optimize your targeting strategy
  • How TOMS has used social media ads to drive engagement
  • How engagement can lead to direct sales—a roadmap
Senior manager of social customer engagement
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4–4:50 p.m.

Explore new worlds! NASA soars with VR, video and experiential PR

SPWant to innovate in social media without minutiae holding you back? Join to hear how to explore the brave new worlds of virtual reality, augmented reality and experiential PR with passion and higher purpose. You’ll learn how it’s done at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and you’ll discover how celebrating your inner nerd can propel your program in exciting new directions. You’ll hear inspiring case studies—including fresh social media lessons from the Cassini spacecraft’s dramatic “Grand Finale” at Saturn—and leave with new ideas to help you ignite results on Facebook Live, Instagram, Reddit and even Giphy.

You’ll learn:

  • The power of curiosity and wonder in social media storytelling
  • How to juggle multiple social media accounts, while still engaging in authentic, exciting conversations with fans
  • How virtual experiences engage followers emotionally
  • How in-person events energize online audiences
  • Examples and lessons for breaking into 360 video, AR and VR
Digital and social media lead
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Wednesday, Oct. 25

8:30–9:20 a.m.

What’s next for social media: How to tell your brand story in the age of chatbots

Walt Disney created a new way to tell stories and bring them to life. Hear why storytelling today is more crucial than ever, especially as AI, voice recognition and chatbots redefine how we engage audiences. You’ll learn how to apply Disney’s lessons and new digital breakthroughs to breathe life into your own brand engagement, storytelling and social media efforts. You’ll leave inspired to break new ground on any platform without relying on social media “gurus.”

During this keynote you’ll learn:

  • The storyteller’s guidebook: Crucial differences between Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat as storytelling platforms
  • How to determine which platform is best for your business
  • Why short-form video is the preferred content for today’s online consumer
  • Tips and strategies for creating content that converts
  • How to engage and work with influential thinkers
  • Growth strategies for your story—with measurable ROI
  • What’s next: Chatbots and AI versus social storytelling
Former Head of Global Social Media
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9:30–10:20 a.m.

Own dark social and dark data: How to become a better data scientist

Most communicators don’t want to sift through data nor unearth it in dark social. There is, however, a group who will happily do it for you—hackers. Join this session to shine a light on dark data and upgrade your social media measurement to exploit data in the deep web. If you want to become a true “data scientist” and reclaim that power from outside forces and departments such as IT—don’t miss this empowering session. You’ll leave with practical steps to bring your social media measurement program up to speed.

You’ll learn:

  • What’s wrong with social media metrics today
  • Why the “dark social” phenomenon is costing you—and how to harness it
  • How to create a plan for dealing with dark data
  • How data scientists are a hybrid of business analysts and artistic storytellers
  • How social media metrics can more effectively shape your organization’s narrative
  • How to transform real-time data into action
Digital experience manager
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10:30–11:20 a.m.

Get the word out: Harnessing the power of social media channels to boost your brand journalism

Brand journalism transforms your content. You’re producing real stories instead of story pitches or lame news releases. You have become your own publisher, and it’s up to you to deliver that content to many audiences, through many channels – especially your social media platforms. In this session, Mark Ragan will show you how brand journalists use news feeds and social media platforms to connect great content with eager audiences. You’ll learn how to:

  • Use Twitter to deliver headlines and bring readers to your news hub
  • Employ Facebook to break news, start a conversation and to GO LIVE
  • Engage audiences with compelling photos and video on Instagram
  • Turn LinkedIn into another publishing platform
  • Why the email News Feed is still a brand journalist’s best friend
Ragan Communications, Inc.
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11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Let’s put people first. Stop chasing channels, and start telling stories

The news cycle has sped up, and fake news has put on jet packs. Add to that the relentless emergence of new social media sites and widgets—and it’s no wonder you’re looking for a constant to guide your content and career. That true north is people and powerful storytelling, but we’ve lost sight of it amid continual change and an obsessive quest for the next shiny object. This inspiring keynote based on the change management lessons of Dell’s recent blog and platform migrations will arm you with the tools and conviction you need to bring storytelling back to the people—and not with a focus solely on channels.

During this keynote, you’ll learn:

  • The future of content strategy beyond brand journalism
  • Change management guidelines for content creators
  • The “Storyteller’s Manifesto”—timeless principles to help you create compelling content based on your readers and not your org chart
  • CMS insight: What Dell uses and how to choose the best fit
  • Social media cross-pollination and blogs—tips for greater reach, readership and results
Chief blogger and editor-in-chief
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For event information, contact Customer Service 800.878.5331, or