In The Headlights: March 4, 2020 Issue

In The Headlights

Miss our session on social media ROI at Social Media Marketing World this week? Watch the replay here >

Last week, Chris talked about how one of my favorite planning techniques is scenario-based. He’s right – I love scenarios because they force you to think outside of the boundaries. The next step is to figure out the actions you’re going to take.

When I worked in-house on a product line we were constantly wanting to make changes to the software, adjust things, and fix issues. In order to get the approval we, the product owners, had to draft up a business case for why make the change was a priority. I learned very quickly that the risk assessment part of the document had the most impact. Essentially, not just what action are you going to take, but what happens if you choose this action?

Do nothing.

Those two words would carry the most weight when trying to determine if what we were proposing should get approved.

“If we do nothing, this is the likely outcome”

This could be anything from, “if we do nothing, the problem will persist and we will lose customers”, or, “if we do nothing, customers who use IE9 will have no issues but any potential customers who are using a newer web browser will not have an optimized experience”.

By outlining the “do nothing” scenario and associated risks, we were likely to get something approved, even if it was a minor change. You can liken it to “we’ve always done it this way” or “status quo” – basically, we’re complacent and are not invested in doing more to keep our customers happy.

When you’re planning out your scenarios, the “do nothing” version is just as important as the other action plans that you’re putting together. You may not have the funds or the resources to do something so understanding the risk of doing nothing will help you make your case.

What are you going to do?


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This week’s Bright Idea is our session from Social Media Marketing World 2020 on social media ROI where we answer key questions about social media ROI:

  • What is ROI?
  • When is it appropriate to use, and when isn’t it?
  • How do you compute it?
  • What goes wrong most?

Watch the session video now >

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This week’s Rear View Mirror looks at Facebook brand engagement rates. How’s it looking out there, as the first quarter begins to wind down?

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Here’s the headline: the overall median engagement rate for brands’ unpaid content on Facebook is 0.022%. Put another way, that’s 2.2 out of 10,000 people engaging with a brand’s content on Facebook. That’s an appallingly low number, but it has increased ever so slightly since 2019, when the rate was 0.0215%. In other words, for brands, nothing has changed for unpaid content – it’s still largely an exercise in futility. The smaller the audience, the better the performance, so avoid any campaigns to buy followers/fans – keep your organic audience small.

The bottom line for brands: Facebook is an ad channel only.

Methodology: Trust Insights used Facebook’s Crowdtangle software to extract 1,717,991 posts from 3,033 brand accounts on Facebook. The brand list was provided by Facebook and augmented by Trust Insights. The date of the study period is January 1, 2020 – March 3, 2020. The date of extraction is March 4, 2020. Posts were de-duped by post URL. Engagement rate is defined as (reactions + comments + shares) / size of page follower count at posting. Trust Insights is the sole sponsor of the study and neither gave nor received compensation for data used, beyond applicable service fees to software vendors.

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Shiny Objects is a roundup of the best content you and others have written and shared in the last week.

Social Media Marketing

Media and Content

Tools, Machine Learning, and AI

Analytics, Stats, and Data Science

SEO, Google, and Paid Media

Business and Leadership

Got a “Silly” Question?

One of the things we’ve found with friends and colleagues is that you have questions you don’t feel comfortable asking in front of your peers for fear of appearing less knowledgeable. We all have those questions – they start with phrases like, “I really should know this but…” or “I’m so embarrassed to ask this, but…”

So we’ve put up a page where you can ask those questions anonymously, and we’ll answer them here or on our blog, podcast, YouTube channel, newsletter, etc. without ever naming names.

If you’ve got a question that you want to ask privately/anonymously, go ahead and ask it here!

Join the Club

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Upcoming Events

Where can you find us in person?

  • MarTech West, April 2020, San Jose, CA
  • ContentTech Summit, April 2020, San Diega, CA
  • HELLO Conference, April 2020, New Jersey
  • MadConNYC, May 2020, New York City
  • Women in Analytics, June 2020, Columbus, OH
  • MAICON 2020, July 2020, Cleveland, OH

Going to a conference we should know about? Reach out!

Want some private training at your company? Ask us!

In Your Ears

Trust Insights Podcast

Would you rather listen to our content? Follow the Trust Insights show, In-Ear Insights in the podcast listening software of your choice:

Stay In Touch

Where do you spend your time online? Chances are, we’re there too, and would enjoy sharing with you. Here’s where we are – see you there?

Required FTC Disclosures

Events with links have purchased sponsorships in this newsletter and as a result, Trust Insights receives financial compensation for promoting them.

Trust Insights maintains business partnerships with companies including, but not limited to, IBM, Talkwalker, Zignal Labs, Agorapulse, and others. While links shared from partners are not explicit endorsements, nor do they directly financially benefit Trust Insights, a commercial relationship exists for which we may receive indirect financial benefit.


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