Are you socially connected?
Are you checked-in? Is your status updated? Did you accept that last request to be Linkedin? Did you see that hilarious video that’s going viral today? Can you believe how many people were tweeting about Jennifer Lopez’s outfit during the American Idol finale? How many people are following your Blog? If you can answer every one of those questions, you are well on your way to getting a job in Communications.
The changes that have happened in the past decade in the Communication’s field are astonishing. Journalists who used to use the Associated Press to catch all the breaking news, now rely just as heavily on the people in their hometowns to bring the news to them. How?—through Twitter, Facebook and YouTube mostly. Who would have thought journalists would be able to gather news through a social network? It’s happening more and more. A journalist often times uses his or her Facebook or Twitter account to reach out to viewers when they’re trying to confirm a story or perhaps land an interview.
This is an example of what I’m talking about, taken from my professional Facebook page at Fox43. The fact of the matter is, if journalists aren’t LinkedIn to social media, they aren’t in the game at all. So, anyone looking for a job in Communications, needs to know everything there is to know about social media. Prospective employers will be asking the questions, to determine how savvy the candidate is in this every growing medium. Don’t buy into it? Check out some of these staggering statistics!
- 65% of the world’s top companies have an active Twitter profile
- 90% of marketers use social media channels for business, with 93% of these rating social tools as “important”
- 43% of marketers have noticed an improvement in sales due to social campaigns
- 72% of marketers who have worked in social media for three or more years said that they saw a boost in turnover due to social channels (the longer you’re working in it the better you get)
- 91% of experienced social marketers see improved website traffic due to social media campaigns and 79% are generating more quality leads
- The average time spent by marketers on social media is 1-5hrs per week for those just getting started and 6+ hours per week for those with 3+ years of experience
- The most popular social networking tool for marketing is Facebook – being used by 92%, followed by Twitter (84%), LinkedIn (71%) and blogs (68%)
- LinkedIn is 4X better for B2B lead generation than Facebook and Twitter
- Only 10% of marketers are actively monitoring social media ROI
- Only 22% of businesses have a dedicated social media manager
- 23% of Fortune 500 companies have a public-facing corporate blog
- 58% of Fortune 500 companies have an active corporate Facebook account, 62% have an active corporate Twitter account
- 47% of customers are somewhat likely to purchase from a brand that they follow or like
- 80% of US social network users prefer to connect with brands through Facebook
- 40% of consumers prefer social logins over creating a new/guest account
Are you the type of person who can do just about anything when called upon to do so? Are you flexible and skilled enough in this field to offer up your diversified abilities when needed most? If you can say “yes” to this, and are sincere, you will stand out among your competitors. At any given moment, those who work in Communications, will need to change things up totally. For example, in broadcasting, when news breaks, a reporter and photographer must drop everything they are doing and head to the scene of the breaking news. Upon arriving, they must be quick on their feet and ready to go live from location within minutes. Also, more and more companies are hiring “one-man-bands.” It’s a great way to cut down costs and still get the same end result. Many photographers currently in the business are doing everything they can to hone their skills on story writing. We are seeing more photographers producing “nat packages.” This is a type of story in which the people tell the story. There is no reporter track. It’s just a person describing something they are doing and then the photographer puts video over some of their interview. A photographer at Fox 43 just produced a series of two stories using this “nat package” concept. It was about people who are diagnosed and living with Lyme Disease.
Can You Hook Them In??
No doubt, the hook of the story, is the most important element. A good writer knows this, and, knows how to implement it. Whether a person is writing for a company blog, a restaurant Facebook page, or for a local news station, they want to keep their customers or viewers around. They want their material to be sticky! If a viewer isn’t interested in the story within ten seconds, they are moving on. Having excellent story-telling and writing examples will be a huge determining factor on whether or not an employer will be hiring someone for a communication’s position. Not only finding a hook, but the characters to help tell the story are essential in making this equation work. People are overloaded with media these days. Speaking from a broadcaster’s perspective, I know people can find local, national and international news everywhere they look. I know if reporters want to keep their viewers around for more, they need to find a creative way to tell their story. It is very likely the viewer has already heard the story. So, presenting the story with an element of entertainment, in a visually compelling way, is one way to keep viewers around. Good story-telling and writing is key in doing this.
List of contributing statistics articles: