MAIN CONFERENCE

Tuesday, July 24

9–10 a.m.
Opening keynote

Discover the simple secret to creating infinitely engaging content — and why click bait works

Attention in today’s online world is harder and harder to garner than ever before. Our clients, customers, prospects, employees and leads tell us they have no time. No time to read our emails, download our e-books, listen to our podcasts, dive-in to our blog posts, or watch our videos.

However, these very same customers can binge watch two seasons of “Stranger Things” on Netflix in one weekend! Where’s the disconnect?

It turns out, the most successful communicators in the world don’t worry about how long their content is. Instead, they apply two infinitely powerful psychological phenomena to catch, keep and capture their audience’s attention. Beware, though: These same two mental states are responsible for the rise of click bait.

In this exhilarating opening keynote presentation, former television producer and bestselling author Andrew Davis will show you how to keep your audience curious. You’ll be challenged to think like a reality TV editor as he reveals the five things that brilliant organizations do to transform their communications from boring to brilliant. More importantly, you’ll learn the simple secret to creating infinitely engaging content.  What’s the secret? You’ll have to wait and see.

Bestselling author
Brandscaping & Town Inc.
Read bio
10:10–11 a.m.

Conquer social media video: How to go viral

If your video runs on social media and nobody sees it, did it really play? It’s a new take on an old philosophical question, but it’s the reality we live in with social media today. You can create something amazing using the coolest new tech, but if you just post it on your social media feeds without a solid strategy to get results, it will disappear. To avoid that fate, digital/social video expert Justin Allen will show you what’s worth your time and money (and what’s not), along with the only equation you need to determine how much to spend promoting your video (until Facebook changes its algorithm again).

You’ll learn:

  • Gadgets galore—all the cool new camera tech that makes social video so engaging
  • How, when and where to do live video
  • Video best practices by platform
  • Tips for crafting a solid social distribution plan
  • How much engagement really costs
Digital and video content director
Ragan Consulting Group
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11:10 a.m.–Noon

Want to algorithm-proof your social media strategy? Put your audience first 

As Facebook prioritizes “meaningful engagement” and punishes organic content, understanding your audience and how your content can meet its needs is more important than ever. No matter the size of your team or your budget, you can create content that will drive your audience to engage and share.

You’ll learn how to:

  • Develop an audience-first social media strategy that will drive growth and engagement
  • Create content that will succeed organically (and make your paid promotions more efficient)
  • Understand what your audience wants and how to deliver it
  • Analyze social media metrics that will help you improve the quality and relevance of your content
Director of social media and audience development
TED
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Noon–1 p.m.

Lunch

(provided on-site)

1:10–2 p.m.
panel

How social listening can be your digital currency across platforms

Communicators know how important monitoring the media landscape and scanning for trends or potential crises can be—and many social media pros keep track of their brand mentions and interactions online. However, social listening can give you much more than a list of praises sung by your fans or concerns brought by your critics. In this panel, communications experts across industries will explain how you can use social listening best practices to better understand who your followers are, target consumers and entice them to act, use feedback to inform your products and campaigns, and avoid digital pitfalls that can tarnish your organization’s reputation.

Senior global social media manager
SAS
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Senior social media marketing manager
Amazon Web Services
Read bio
Storyteller
Microsoft
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Director of marketing
Jacksonville Jaguars
Read bio
3–3:30 p.m.

Networking break

3:30–4:20 p.m.

The human side of social media: Tailor efforts to platforms and people

Why do people use social media—and what does that mean to you as a brand manager? Understanding what drives individuals to use Facebook, Twitter or Instagram can help you hone your online content efforts and provide a memorable (and positive) experience that inspires consumers to keep coming back. Bentley McBentleson, digital marketing manager for KFC, will show you how to better target your social marketing messages and focus on putting the customer first.

You’ll learn: 

  • Why people turn to particular social media platforms—and how communicators can activate based on those behaviors
  • Ways to engage consumers and make a splash on Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter
  • Why you should have a mobile-first social media strategy—and how you can implement it
  • Tips to make your social media posts more interactive and provide the best digital user experience possible
Digital marketing manager
KFC
Read bio
4:20–5:30 p.m.

(Session details coming soon)

5:30–7:30 p.m.

Conference cocktail party, hosted by AWS

Enjoy an amazing 360-degree view of Seattle from the 21st floor of Amazon’s Oscar Building while you meet with speakers and your peers during the conference networking cocktail party.

Wednesday, July 25

9–9:50 a.m.

Go beyond the traditional media model to drive deeper connections

We deploy paid media campaigns to get our messages out, whether through national media campaigns, dark social posts, influencer marketing or other outlets. That effort contributes to one of the biggest challenges marketers are facing today—breaking through the massive amount of advertising clutter, getting your message seen and driving the audience to take a desired action. For every mass-reach campaign you run, what if you also deployed a more niche approach to authentically insert your organization into the micro-community conversation and drive deeper human connection and brand love?

In this session, you’ll hear a unique POV on:

  • Why moments of connection matter now more than ever
  • How to identify the right micro-communities to target through social listening
  • Uncovering ways to create unforgettable moments of engagement
  • How to measure and create a sustainable model for deployment
Director of global social media
Starbucks
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10–10:50 a.m.

Use social customer care to win brand loyalists, even during a crisis

The customer service provided in social channels is indicative of an organization’s overall concern with taking care of its customers. Social customer care lets customers know that brand managers are listening and that they care. These conversations can be incredibly useful in identifying threats, providing great content, and creating brand advocates. However, it requires putting together the right team, providing them the right resources, and striking the right tone.

During this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to identify customer expectations and use your resources strategically
  • Why you should give more than you take and find ways to surprise and delight your customers
  • Ways to prepare for a crisis and activate, including integrating social care into crisis planning and management
Social business advisor
Southwest Airlines
Read bio
11:50 a.m.–12:50 p.m.

Lunch

(provides on site)

12:50–1:40 p.m.

Stand out from the noisy crowd: Best practices from brands on Twitter

It’s 2018. It’s no longer enough to be on social media to be heard, because news cycles change at the flick of a tweet. Instagram Stories and Snapchat remove and add new features every other month. New platforms like Musical.ly and HQ Trivia pop up and can change an industry in the course of a few weeks. What does it take to make your organization stand out today? Greg Galant, founder and CEO of Muck Rack and The Shorty Awards, and Laura Pacas, communications manager for Twitter, will show you how to make your social media strategy a driver off press, brand engagement and more.

You’ll learn:

  • Best practices from Shorty Award winners
  • Why your company should be use Twitter to enhance your brand’s voice and personality
  • How to use social media to generate positive earned media and make your brand stand out
  • Using data on how journalists use social media to optimize your campaigns on different platforms
Communications manager
Twitter
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CEO & co-founder
Muck Rack and Shorty Awards
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1:50–2:40 p.m.

How data and authenticity can create winning social media content

If you’re just selling your products and services on social media, you’re missing out. Creating the proper social content lifecycle—which includes understanding the audience you’re targeting, writing value-laden messages and measuring your impact—can make your social media presence one that customers actually care about. Kevin Goddard, senior social media marketing manager for Amazon Web Services, will show you how to create digital content that drives revenue and boosts your organization’s bottom line—and how proper measurement techniques and understanding the numbers can help inform your social media decisions and set you up for success.

You’ll learn: 

  • Digital content best practices for Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn
  • Why there’s no such thing as B2B social media—and what you should focus on instead
  • How to create a social media content strategy within your organization that sets the bar high and offers value to your audience
  • Tips for using metrics and social listening data to hone your social media and content efforts—and understand what the numbers mean
Senior social media marketing manager
Amazon Web Services
Read bio
2:40–3 p.m.

Networking break

3–3:50 p.m.

Make the most of the influencer revolution to increase your audience reach and impact

Influencers rule the online world, especially as the digital media landscape becomes more crowded and noisy with content and marketing messages. However, not all influencers are created equal—and not all will represent your organization in a way that fits with your brand voice and meets your goals. Turning to these social media powerhouses can be even more intimidating with B2B content and campaigns, especially when executive buy-in and requests stand as hurdles to ultimately increasing ROI and your online presence. Holly Nielsen, senior social media strategist, data science for IBM, will show you how to find and work with influencers in ways that excite audiences and help both sides come out ahead.

You’ll learn:

  • How to find influencers, no matter your organization’s focus
  • Best practices for maximizing influencer campaigns and content with paid social media efforts
  • Traits of powerful influencers—and how to play to their strengths
  • How to set reasonable expectations and create mutually beneficial campaigns
  • Tips for gaining executive buy-in, especially when you’re relinquishing digital content control
Senior social media strategist
IBM Analytics Data Science
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4–5 p.m.
Closing keynote

For event information, contact Customer Service 800.878.5331, or cservice@ragan.com