Marketing to Dads with Peter Shankman

An author, entrepreneur, speaker and worldwide connector, Peter Shankman, perhaps best known for founding Help A Reporter Out, (HARO), is recognized worldwide for radically new ways of thinking about Customer Service, Social Media, PR, marketing and advertising. Sway Group is excited to be working with him on branded opportunities!

Based on Peter’s work with clients including American Express, Sprint, Snapple Beverage Group, NASA, Walt Disney World, Abercrombie and Kent, The Ad Council, Discovery Networks, New Frontier Media, Napster, Juno, Harrah’s Hotels and others, we asked for his feedback on content marketing today.

1. As a dad and marketer, what are brands doing right in trying to reach you as the male demographic?
• Treating me as a human being, one who has the ability to actually care for his daughter, not an idiot or a moron who can’t figure out which end of the child gets wiped vs. which one gets fed. Brands are doing themselves zero favors by mocking dads as incompetent.

2. What are three tips to creating great content?
• Write what your audience wants.
• Find out what your audience wants by asking them what they want.
• Never forget that having an audience is a privilege, not a right. It’s just like wearing spandex.

Peter Shankman is interested in growing his brand through influencer opportunities for products he believes in, as well as speaking platforms in 2015. Peter Shankman’s full bio can be found here. Please contact us for more information on how to work with Peter.

Sway and Energems Win PR News’ Digital PR Award for Best Social Networking Campaign

We’re ecstatic to share that last Friday, Sway Group and client Energems Chocolate EnergyTM received the PR News’ Digital PR Award for best Social Networking campaign.

Energems, an alternative to traditional energy drinks and shots, recognized that the industry primarily targeted young males in their marketing efforts and saw an opportunity to reach out to women (e.g., busy moms getting little sleep) looking for a low-calorie, great tasting energy boost.

Working with our extended network of Massive Sway bloggers, Sway Group recruited 80 unique content publishers across the country to build brand awareness and generate positive buzz for Energems. The response was, appropriately, massive. As a direct result of the Sway Group bloggers’ efforts, Energems received more than 100,000 free sample sign-ups, more than 7.3 million impressions with 2.3 million people reached, and an increase of 44,210 Facebook fans at the completion of the first phase. The messages of convenience, great taste, low-calorie and energy boosting properties were conveyed in all sponsored content.

It was a great honor to be recognized for our hard work with an amazing and forward-thinking client, among so many notable nominees. Truly, we consider all of our campaigns winners and strive for award-worthy results with each execution.

A full recap of the luncheon and award winners can be found here.

Online Native Ads Are Held To Higher Standards Than Those On TV

Sway CEO Danielle Wiley has long discussed the disclosure requirements of online native advertising in comparison to television mandates and her recent OpEd on the topic can be found on TechCrunch.

She states,

“As the owner of an influencer management agency, I see how hard our team works with our bloggers to ensure that each online post is FTC-compliant. Our Community team educates influencers on current requirements and then our Quality Assurance team reviews all sponsored content to guarantee FTC online guidelines are met (and only releases payment to influencers once that is confirmed.)

This level of transparency is important to us as an industry. The reality is that quality content publishers have nothing to hide. The influencers we work with aren’t interested in generating a sponsored post about a brand they don’t already like and support, and they work hard to create content that is readable and entertaining, whether that content is sponsored or not.

The FTC guidelines for online content were created for the “reasonable consumer,” defined as someone who may not read an entire piece or scroll to the end of an online article. This begs the question; are the more relaxed guidelines for television disclosure also created for that reasonable consumer? I’d give that an emphatic, ‘No.’”

For the entire column, you can visit TechCrunch here.

Sway Group Named to San Francisco Business Times’ List of 100 Top Women Owned Companies in the Bay Area

On Friday afternoon, Sway Group was honored to receive recognition among women-owned businesses in the San Francisco Bay Area by the San Francisco Business Times. We made the list at #83, among an inspiring group of female-companies.

Sway Group’s influencer network began with mom blogger relationships three years ago, but has rapidly expanded to include additional verticals, including millennial, food, fashion and male influencers, across multiple social media platforms, including customized content, video, media campaigns, and dynamic events.

Upon reflection of the last three years, CEO Danielle Wiley commented, “Sway Group launched as a scrappy start-up and while maintaining our nimble mindset, we’re growing every day in anticipation of future content publishing needs. With the largest influencer network in the world, Sway Group is well-positioned to work with brands interested in adding content marketing to their strategic portfolio.”

You can view the full list in the San Francisco Business Times here and our recent coverage in the Mill Valley Patch here.

How to Make Sure Your Company is Noticed by the Right People

In advance of Danielle Wiley’s talk at the Digital Marketing Strategies Summit this October, she was interviewed on the topic of how to target your audience. A few highlights from her interview are featured below.

  • “Engage the target customer when developing your message strategy: It seems obvious, but Wiley says firms often build brand strategies without engaging the customers they hope will use the brand. When developing a digital campaign for a product targeting teen girls, she makes sure to test the message and social channel strategy with her own teen daughter.”
  • “Know each social media channel as well as its top users do: When you go into social media digital marketing, know how that channel resonates with the customers you want to reach. Wiley uses Vine as an example. One Vine user, Nash Grier, hasn’t even been heard of by most adults. But with 9.4 million mostly teen followers, he is the popular user of the 6-second video sharing service and knows exactly how to use the service, Wiley says. He’s likely to deliver a better result for a brand targeting teens on Vine than far more well-known spokespeople might, Wiley believes.”

The full article can be read here. Danielle’s upcoming presentation is titled Digital Marketing to Moms vs. Digital Marketing to Women: Do Brands Need Disparate Strategies? Check back at the end of October for excerpts following the conference.