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9 Magical Takeaways From #RaganDisney

What's better than attending a social media conference at the Happiest Place on Earth? Absolutely nothing! In the spirit of Walt Disney himself, I'm spreading "Pixie Dust" by sharing my top takeaways from this week of learning with you.

Recently, I attended #RaganDisney, hosted by Ragan and PR Daily, and it was three full days of sessions, expert panels, networking, and fun. I even had the chance to join hundreds of social media pros at an epic Epcot dance party, which included riding Disney's newest rollercoaster, Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind (3 times). Work hard, play hard, right?

September 2022's conference marked the 9th anniversary of #RaganDisney; even though it was my first time attending, I thought it would be awesome to share 9 of my favorite takeaways from this event in honor of their milestone.

  1. Paid social is a strategic mandatory. In Michael Lamp's session (Hunter), How to Engage Your Audience Using Paid Social, he discussed the importance of paid campaigns in social media today. We couldn't agree more! Even a small budget used strategically could help cut through the noise.

  2. When creating an editorial calendar, collaborate beyond the marketing team. In the Collaborative Strategies social media panel, Patrick Phot (Volkswagen Content Studio) emphasized how including PR, customer service, and other departments in your content brainstorming session can help you better serve your followers and potential customers. It makes sense, yet so many departments function as if they are in a vacuum. As marketers, we have the chance to initiate collaboration.

  3. Keep repeated copy fresh with the 3 H's Holidays, Hashtags, and Headlines. In Lissa Chidester's session (Director of Comms for Sand Springs Public Schools), Writing with Social Pizzazz, she highlighted how to "remix" repetitive copy quickly by switching up headlines, incorporating relevant holidays, and swapping out coordinating hashtags.

  4. Remember the "3-Second Rule." - In Tevah El Emmet's session (Nspired Media), Bring the Sauce: How to Stop the Scroll on TikTok, Reels, and Beyond, he discussed how you have only 3-seconds to grab the audience's attention, especially on video. Therefore skip the greetings and directly call out the audience, idea, or topic first.

  5. LinkedIn Creator Profile. In Regina Dowdell's Session (LinkedIn), Light Up LinkedIn with Thought Leadership, she recommended switching your profile to "Creator Mode." This feature can help you grow your reach and influence on LinkedIn. The Connect button on your profile will change to Follow. LinkedIn displays the number of followers you have in your profile introduction. When someone sends you a connection request after you turn on Creator mode, they will also follow you while they await your response. Even if you decline their invitation, they will still follow your posts until they manually unfollow you.

  6. Seek unsung heroes in content. In the Lightning Talk with Jamie Farnsworth Finn (University of Delaware), she expressed how using your own "heroes" in social media content could boost engagement. Interview the janitor or the front desk agent instead of interviewing the CEO. This could humanize your brand and give light to new stories.

  7. Add captions to your Reels! In Michael Lamp's session (Hunter), How to Engage Your Audience Using Paid Social, he mentioned how most people watch videos on social media with their sound off (over 70%), adding crucial to add captions to your videos, o, is crucial organic and paid, even if you think your audio is impressive.

  8. Think of the entire funnel for larger ticket products and services. In the Collaborative Strategies social media panel, Patrick Phot (Volkswagen Content Studio) discussed how substantial it is to remember this and to include the entire funnel when measuring success, especially for those more researched and costly items.

  9. Data takes opinions off the table. In the Closing Fireside Chat with Heather Brinckerhoff (Head of Social Media Marketing, QVC), she brought up the importance of having data to share the progress and success of your work. It's hard to argue numbers!

As expressed, I'm so glad I attended #RaganDisney! I left with over ten pages of notes, connected with so many other social media pros, and enjoyed time in the happiest place on Earth! Now it's time to apply everything I learned.


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