You’ve seen it happen and you want it…

A story gets unleashed on social media and before you know it, it takes a life of its own.

Like an expert surfer, catching a massive swell, it picks up speed carried on the back of word of mouth and viral sharing… The message travels globally in a matter of moments bringing instant fame and fortune to the originators… (Ok, the fortune part is not necessarily guaranteed, but the fame is definitely there.)

In a world where marketers are having an increasingly difficult time getting their message across, and traditional marketing and advertising is landing on deaf ears – those who use social media effectively are able to break through with their communications, and reach their target audience worldwide in an instant.

How to trigger a wave of social media attention.

As I mentioned in my previous post “I get by with a little help from my friends…”, the Bloggers Hub (now expanded to become the Social Media Space) is a digital PR initiative and sponsorship activation I developed with HSM which has become a regular annual tradition for the company.

My goal was to create a new revenue-driving digital sponsorship opportunity, while at the same time using social media to drive mass global awareness for HSM and its sponsors.

Enter the “Bloggers Hub”, an annual gathering of the world’s top business bloggers at the World Innovation Forum and World Business Forum.

How a wave of social media attention gets triggered…

When you bring together and connect like-minded and socially active business influencers, who are passionate about the topics covered at the events, it sets off a domino effect of exposure and awareness for the event and its topics.

As each of the bloggers informs their audiences and followers, and they learn of something that interests them and which otherwise would have been limited to those physically attending the event, the message is spread worldwide via word of mouth, generating a “wave of attention.”

Because of the wave generated by the Bloggers Hub, instead of reaching “just” +/- 900 (World Innovation Forum) and 5,000 (World Business Forum) attendees live at the event venues, the Bloggers Hub effectively magnifies and carries the conversation about the event to millions of people worldwide.

The effect is so profound that the Hashtags for the events regularly become one of the top trending topic on Twitter, as well as sparking hundreds of Blog posts and press mentions in just a matter of days.

Key to Success: You Need to Both Spark AND Monitor the Conversation

Just as important to the success of the wave, while these conversations are taking place, there is a group of social media managers handling the HSM and WOBI social media accounts worldwide and actively “listening on Social Media.” This team is looking for opportunities to further engage the audience, encourage conversation and address any negative comments that may derail the wave. (See “The web is talking about you… Are you listening?“)

A Powerful One, Two Combo…

This combination of both 1) proactively sparking discussions on social media with the help of multiple influencers, and 2) actively listening and engaging audience members who join the conversation, is the fuel that feeds and “steers” the fire and massive scale of the Bloggers Hub.

In case you are wondering what it all looks like…

Here’s a slideshow including some images from past Bloggers Hubs:


3 Questions that Lead to Breakthroughs:

1. How are you leveraging social media in your PR and marketing efforts?

2. Are you finding and developing ways of connecting and engaging with influencers?

3. Are you actively listening to conversations on social media and answering back when your audience is talking to or about your brand?

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Photo credit: Flickr anhonorablegerman