AT&T’s It Can Wait Campaign

AT&T’s “It Can Wait” is an example of a well-structured public relations campaign (which won The Public Relations Society Best of Silver Anvil Award in 2014) and a nice attempt by the company to create awareness about the danger of texting and driving, particularly among teens. It definitely boosts the company’s corporate image and positions it as a responsible corporate citizen. No doubt. According to It Can Wait Overview, the results of the campaign so far also reflect that it has been successful in terms of impressions, app downloads, pledges, page views, reach, and media integration. However, it has failed to translate those results to reducing the number of people who actually decide to quit texting while driving. In other words, AT&T has not been able to convince people to take action, which in this case means not texting while driving. According to the results presented on the article AT&T’s anti-texting campaign: lots of impressions, zero sucess, conversions have been little or none.

According to Beyond the like: What comes next in social measurement, there are other factors that brands should consider measuring, other than likes and shares. These factors are more specifically related to driving people to take action outside social platforms. Even though AT&T’s efforts for this campaign go beyond social media, the results are still not there. The number of pledges, app downloads, and impressions is not enough. The other problem is that, in measuring these results, AT&T seems to be more worried about the brand’s perception and imagery rather than on what is really important. The survey they did on Twitter clearly shows this. In my opinion, they are presenting these results to show this campaign is a success story. What they have not done, in my opinion, is implementing ROI stories in which people engage, not only by liking, sharing or commenting, but taking action.

Let’s take, for example, the one they are doing right now with Demi Lovato. There is a contest right now on the website in which users upload a photo of them doing a pose, dance or any other thing that might motivate their friends to use #X to let them know they are about to drive and cannot respond. Next, they say how they use #X. Once they submit they have a chance to meet Demi Lovato backstage. Sounds like an incentive, but again, does it really stimulate them to stop? They can measure how many entries they receive, how many people visit the website, but can they rest assured that those contestants actually will not text and drive? No.



One of my recommendations would be to integrate a calendar to their Drive Mode app, which automatically updates when the customer uses it everyday. Then AT&T can offer incentives to people who use it for more than one month, 3 months and so forth. Here, they can make sure they don’t cheat because everything is updated automatically. Some of the rewards would be in the form of discount on the bill, accessories, or free upgrades after using for 12 months. Another idea is to link information from this app to social media accounts so customers can share this information with their friends. Once their friends see that others are actually taking action, they might be motivated. In order for this to work, this app should also be available for Iphone!

Finally, in order to capitalize on the fact that a large number of respondents said they can stop texting and driving if someone in the car asks them to do so, AT&T can run a contest in which users submit Vine videos showing how the driver turned off his or her phone when he or she was driving others to a party. On a final note, the Marketing department needs to be in touch with other departments, such as Research or Operations to optimize the app and define other types of technology that might help have better results.

Project Runway’s #InstaRunway Challenge


Each week, the contestants of Project Runway participate in one challenge, which is usually themed, like the Red Carpet Glam in which they had to design a dress for Heidy Klum to wear at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards. Now the show is giving viewers the opportunity to become ““fashion ambassadors” by posting a selfie inspired on a particular challenge on Instagram, using the hashtag #InstaRunway. Each week, Tim Gunn will select his favorite photo, which will be featured on-air during an episode of Project Runway. This means a chance for viewers to share what is their appreciation of fashion for a chance to be on television! We normally see the contestants and judges dictating fashion and what fashion is; this is a great way of engaging viewers by giving them the opportunity to do that too!

Hashtags are very effective for creating and categorizing conversations. In this case, I think the show is looking for active participation in something directly related to the theme of the show. This campaign is not asking viewers to cast their votes; it’s asking them to demonstrate their perception of fashion, particularly related to the challenge on the show. This example would need an ROI story to measure both qualitative and quantitative results. Examples of qualitative data would include, in my opinion, how up-to-date are viewers with fashion, and if they know about fashion trends. Also, by taking a look at these photos, the show can determine if the aesthetic profile is in line with the viewer profile in terms of age and weight, men or women.

In terms of quantitative, they can measure if the ratings of the show increase because those who participate must watch the show to find out the winning look, number of posts (which will let them know how motivated people are to participate). They can also find out which themes draw higher participation, which will help determine the theme selection for the show. Finally, because the photos are uploaded to the  contest website, they can determine if traffic to the website increased, as a result of the contest.

One of the issues I have detected is that people are posting non-related photos using the hashtag. Why? Because they know Tim Gunn is watching! These people, some who seem to work in the fashion industry, are maybe aspiring to be spotted by him so they can be contestants of the show, for instance or for any other purpose. I think this distracts the attention from the main idea of the contest. After a couple of weeks, they would have to evaluate the total amount of entries and what percentage is relevant to the contest to determine if maybe some people want to use it for other purposes.

Another issue (that may be related to the first one) is if the hashtag has been used before for other purposes not related to the show. Looking at the Instagram page, I found some posts that are 24-weeks old, clearly not representing the current strategy. If this is a hashtag people have been using for other purposes and long before this story, they can consider changing the hashtag. In my opinion, these are the issues that may arise, all of them having a direct effect on measuring results.

IMC: University of Florida’s Masters Degree in Science with a Major in Entrepreneurship


The University of Florida’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI), a program offered by the Warrington College of Business Administration, provides students with valuable tools to help them develop and sustain entrepreneurial skills in their professional lives. Through workshops, speakers, degrees, and special programs, students are encouraged to explore business opportunities in different areas, including start-up, social, and corporate. Some of the programs offered by CEI are the following:

  • Master of Science with a Major in Entrepreneurship (MSE): A one-year degree program that exposes students to both theoretical information and practical application of business and entrepreneurial practices. It is one of the first programs of its kind. After students complete this program, they are ready launch a venture on their own.

Global Entrepreneurship Study Program- Ireland (part of the MSE degree)


  • Veterans Entrepreneurship Program (VEP): A 3-phase program aimed at disabled veterans looking to start a new business or increase the profits of an existing business. The program is free of cost for participants and sponsors and private donors absorb the costs.
  • Entrepreneurship and Empowerment in South Africa: Open to both graduate and undergraduate students, this six-week long program provides participants with the opportunity to help disadvantaged entrepreneurs in South Africa. Students will work as consultants with two small businesses, while having the opportunity to immerse in a different culture and exchange ideas.

For the purpose of this discussion, I selected the Master of Science with a Major in Entrepreneurship (MSE) and give some recommendations in order for them to increase enrollment to the program using a well-structured integrated marketing communications (IMC) campaign.

Target audience:

  • Men and women who hold a bachelor’s degree (all undergraduate majors) from an accredited institution with a 3.0 GPA or higher in the last 60 credits of course work. This part of the target market includes professionals already working full-time, but looking for opportunities to “be their own boss,” as well as those who just recently graduated.
  • Students from all Florida universities who are about to finish their bachelor’s are a key part of the target market. We acknowledge that there are big opportunities within University of Florida current students.
  • Residents near the Gainesville area will be part of our primary target market.
  • Secondary target market will be comprised of other Florida areas, as well those living out-of-state.
  • Both of these groups have an interest in developing skills and understanding of how an idea or product can be used to create a successful business or to help an existing organization want to grow.
  • Members of the Academic Common Market, which may receive in-state tuition if their home state doesn’t offer an MSE program, which is why they are also part of our target.

SWOT analysis:


  • The MSE at the University of Florida was the recipient of the 2013 National Model Award for Graduate Entrepreneurship Program by the United States Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship; the program was also the recipient of the 2012 Excellence in Specialty Entrepreneurship Education Award, given by the Global Consortium of Entrepreneurship Centers.
  • The program includes experiential learning programs like GatorNest, in which students collaborate with area startups and the Mentoring Program, which provides students a relationship with more experienced or more knowledgeable person to guide them in specific areas. This gives the program a practical dimension, rather than only focusing on theory.
  • The program can be completed in just one year.
  • The MSE program is one of the nation’s premier graduate entrepreneurship experiences.
  • CEI sponsors local professional organizations in Gainesville, like GAIN.

 In terms of IMC strength…

  • Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube accounts, as well as a blog, email marketing account, and a website have been already created for the CEI program and part of the communication strategy includes promoting the MSE program.


  • According to the Entrepreneur Resource Center, “the Gainesville region has a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem that provides the tools necessary for the growth of all businesses in any stage of development.” The fact that MSE is on-campus at a university in Gainesville represents an opportunity because it means having presence where that system is located. This represents more networking opportunities, among others.
  • Local events, such as monthly luncheons by GAIN represent opportunities to promote the program, as well as partnerships with other colleges and universities to promote entrepreneurship. One example is San Fe College’s Center for Innovation and Economic Development.
  • CEI’s relationship with the Gainesville Chamber of Commerce may help promote the MSE degree in local events.
  • The Start-up Hour is another networking opportunity for people who might be interested in the MSE degree.
  • Two other schools in the area, University of North Florida and University of Central Florida don’t offer a full master’s degree in entrepreneurship. They offer Entrepreneurship MBA and certificates.

According to Integrated Marketing: What It Is and Why You Should Embrace It – Part 1, integrated marketing communications (IMC) is defined as: “an approach to brand communications where the different modes work together to create a seamless experience for the customer and are presented with a similar tone and style that reinforces the brand’s core message.” This is the part in which brands and companies establish relationships with their current and potential customers by sending messages and encouraging dialogue through media.

Through the implementation of a well-thought, well-balanced integrated marketing communications (IMC) strategy, UF’s Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation will be able to increase awareness and reach its enrollment objectives to the Master of Science with a Major in Entrepreneurship program. They already have some of the important components in place, including a website, blog, email campaign, Facebook, and Twitter accounts. The next step is to structure those channels and messages so that they are cohesive and consistent across all platforms. In my opinion, this consistency applies, not only to the tone, voice and content of messages, but also to the overall graphic design, including colors, fonts, and use of images, among others. The brand, product or service is right in the middle and all components around it should work together to create that pleasant experience.


How to use Facebook and email campaign analytics

*This post is for educational purposes

Company ABC is a company in the health industry located in the Central Florida Area. I just received the analytics of their Facebook page and email campaign for the period April 28, 2013- May 25, 2013. Here are my comments and insights about these analytics:


With Facebook Insights, I can see the overall performance of the company’s Facebook page. When I look at Facebook Insights, I first take a look at the overview tab, which gives me a snapshot of the most important areas of the page: likes, engagement, and reach. By taking a look at these three areas, I can determine if my fan size has grown, if my posts reached them and, most importantly, if my content is creating conversations, as well as social mentions.

These are the key questions I ask when evaluating Facebook Insights for any particular period. I have included some key insights and recommendations to each of the areas:

1. How was post engagement?


  • This basically means if people clicked on a post, liked it, shared it, or commented about it. This, in my opinion, is a key aspect of social media management. It’s important to reach people, but when we look at the engagement levels can determine whether or not people are reacting to that message; whether or not the message had an impact big enough to talk about it with others. This conversation is what turns into social mentions and represents a potential for a company to establish relationships with their customers.
  • During a 7-day period, company ABC shows a 51% decrease in the “People are Talking About This” area. This means that the increased amount in reach did not generate enough conversation, meaning maybe the content of the posts wasn’t attractive to the audience. Maybe this can be attributed to the fact that the week before they posted sponsored ads, which generated more engagement? Different types of posts cause different reactions. Out of the 8 posts on the report, only 2 of them were link shares. The other 6 were status updates. ABC can consider posting photos with questions so that people participate. For example, post a photo of a vegetable and ask people how they use that item to cook at home. Another example to increase awareness would be to have people vote on ABC’s Facebook page on a charity that they think deserves a particular donation. Or maybe have people submit ideas about an ABC event at a local hospital. This can also be promoted on the newsletter, in order to direct people to the Facebook page.
  • The most viral post was also the one with the least reach. I want to make clear that reaching more people does not necessarily imply more engagement and more conversation. This post was also about National Cancer Survivors Day, which is a topic that many people care about or can identify with. Increasing the number of posts about this topic might be a good way to increase engagement. ABC can do something similar with National Diabetes Month, in which each day they post something related to diabetes, including videos from ABC’s YouTube page from celebrities who have diabetes.

2. Did the amount of likes and reach increased?

  • While the amount of likes is no guarantee of excellent performance and more engagement, an increase in the number of likes represents a bigger audience, especially after the changes that Facebook made this year, which brought organic reach down to 1-2%. What this means is that only that percentage of your fans will see the messages posted on your page.An increase in the number of likes should not be overlooked because “likes” represent your audience. According to Facebook Likes: How Important Are They to Your Business?, “by clicking Like, users are saying they are happy to see a business’s page content in their News Feed, potentially leading to more engagement.”During the period we are evaluating, organic reach was at 12%.  In a period of 7 days, ABC had an increase in the number of likes by .69%. Also, reach increased by almost 40%. What this means is that their audience grew and that the posts reached more page fans. Is this good? It depends….


3. Who is my my message reaching (audience)?


  • Do demographics reflect my company’s target audience? It is important to know that while having more people in your page sounds fun, one of the most important criteria to consider is if you’re building an audience on social media that is in line with your company objectives and strategy. ABC is located in Central Florida. This is why we see that the highest amount of people liking their Facebook page living in Florida and speaking English, as well as Spanish. Because ABC is a company in the health industry and women seem to be more concerned with health, it makes sense to see that the majority of the audience in the Facebook page is women between ages 25-34. What does this mean? It means that messages should be of interest to this audience. For example, maybe a good idea would be to post about breast cancer screening tests or risk factors. The most important thing here is for ABC to keep in mind who they are speaking to. Likewise, there could also be a section on the newsletter devoted to breast cancer with a link to the Facebook page for more information. This also helps direct traffic to the Facebook page.

4. Paid or organic?

  • I also look at the strategy I need to use in order to increase reach. Because of the changes I discussed earlier, it is obvious that Facebook wants companies to invest in sponsored stories and other types of ads. After all, they need to make money…plus creating a Facebook page is free. Taking a look at the reach and frequency section in the analytics for ABC, we see that ABC had steady levels of viral reach during the period we are analyzing. What this represents is those who accessed a Page post through a story from their Facebook friends. This is the conversation ABC wants to create. This can be achieved through the use of creative, well-structured posts that include photos or videos. Since now organic reach is less, ABC should also contemplate investing in different types of ads, such as, page post ads (to increase engagement), page likes and event ads. This will help increase likes, as well as reach and engagement. Like I mentioned above, the content of the posts should be attractive enough for people to spread the word!

5. How do page visits look like?



  • It is essential to know how many people are visiting the page, as well as how many accounts are accessing the page. Facebook Insights provides information about this. Page views represent how many times the page was visited on a particular day. Unique visitors represent how many accounts accessed the page. The important thing with unique visits is that it only counts it once. This means that someone may access the page more than once per day and this may only reflect in the page views. Why is this important? Because more page views means more people are engaging more with content, or at least find it relevant enough to go back and visit. As you can see on the table above, there are days in which ABC did not have page views or unique visitors. This may be due to the fact that there were no posts or no ads running or the fans did not find the content important. In order to keep momentum with a company’s audience, it is recommended to post everyday.
  • The posts calendar for one week could be promoted on the newsletter or Twitter page. Also, ABC can also por on Facebook photos of different events and them direct traffic to their Pinterest page so people can see more photos. The idea is to keep the audience in the loop. Higher number of page means means that visitors are coming back to the page or they find the content attractive enough to make them want to move to other areas of the page. This is why it is also important to post on other areas, other than the timeline. For example, if we are posting about National Diabetes month, there should also be an album of photos related to that.
  • Facebook Insights also includes information about external referrers, who also bring traffic to the page, like Google. This is why it is very important that ABC has an effective SEO strategy so that people could find the company, as well as the company’s main social channel. For example, using a primary set of specific keywords about the area in which ABC specializes. Secondary keywords may be related to content topics of the newsletter and posts in other social networks. Finally, the tab with total views gives a good idea about how many views of the timeline, photos, photo albums, and profile photos. This information is very useful in order for companies like ABC to revise editorial calendar according to where traffic during page visits.. ABC’s timeline has the most amount of views (441), followed by its profile (71). This means that, if the highest amount of traffic is there, this is where ABC should post the most.
  • Having an idea about where your page traffic is provides for revising the posting and content strategy. Also, in order to increase page visits, ABC can run a cross promotion on their Twitter page in which users have to post a photo of a particular health topic (their favorite veggie) on ABC’s Facebook page. Another idea is to use the bi-weekly newsletter to drive traffic to the Facebook page, in which they can access an educational video about why people should drink water, for example. Or drive traffic from YouTube to Facebook by including on the videos a “visit our Facebook page” caption at the end so people can find weekly “how to stay healthy” key points.

Email Campaign




With email campaigns, what I look for when I receive analytics is the delivery rate, open rate, click rate, and conversion rate. The delivery rate can warn me if there is any email address I need to double check. The open rate is important because it gives marketers an idea about whether or not the audience cares about a message enough to open it.  According to the 2012 Silverpop Email Marketing Metrics Benchmark Study, open rates in the United States averaged 19.9%. In the health industry, the average is 30%. Based on this, the open rate of ABC’ email message of 25.4% is close to that average. Still, there is an opportunity to revise the subject line, test other options in the future in order to make that message more appealing and increase that open rate.

Clicks help marketers determine if the content of the campaign motivates readers enough that they want to click on a link to learn more or to achieve conversion. The mean click-thru-rate for the healthcare industry is 4.4%. ABC’s click rate for this campaign is 10.9%, fairly high. One way to increase this rate is to personalize the emails, rather than addressing them to a general audience. Also, each email campaign should be about one particular topic. Since it’s bi-weekly, maybe the newsletter can focus on one theme and have different articles and links about one particular topic. One or two of them can direct people to the Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or YouTube pages.

Finally, since I was not able to see the content of the email message, I cannot tell if there is a specific call to action. Conversion rate is 0%, which is not positive. Content must be evaluated to see if the message invited readers to perform some kind of action, including subscribe, download or buy anything. If so, then the message must be clear and attractive in future campaigns. “Learn more” and “sign up” here are some call to actions that ABC can use in the future. People can sign up for an event or for a class, for example. Facebook may help boost email campaign results. There is a Constant Contact app that can be included on the company page so people can join the email list.

Reputation management: Hospitality Industry

Note: This is a “sample post” for class (educational) purposes only.

My role as Social Media Manager at the Hyatt Regency Orlando includes monitoring comments posted by our guests on travel review websites, such as Trip Advisor. These comments give us a good idea about the experiences of our guests at the hotel. They also provide us with feedback related to what is important to them. These comments can also reflect how our brand is perceived in the eyes of the consumer; how they describe Hyatt’s corporate image. Because I also handle public relations, tracking and responding to these comments is essential for our organization because we want to build and maintain relationships with our customers. In order to do this, it is very important to listen to them while they voice their opinion about our property; it is equally important to respond to them in order to show them that we care. We don’t have a standardized format that we use for every response. We tailor our response so that it is directly related to the message we receive from them. This means that what we do not answer just for the sake of it. We personalize our feedback because we value each guest’s experience.

We take positive reviews as free promotion, word of mouth marketing. We also value them as an opportunity to engage with our customers beyond their stay. We also treasure the fact that they take time to write these reviews because they want others to know how good was their stay. Finally, we showcase these reviews on our hotel website and social media accounts. After all, we want actual and potential customers to know how others see us! Below is an example of a positive review, followed by our “hypothetical” response:

Sample post (#1) from customer:



Sample answer from our hotel:

Thank you so much for your feedback. We’re glad you came back to stay with us, this time for pleasure! I’m happy to hear we could fulfill your request of a higher floor and I hope next time we can accommodate your family in a room with pool view.

It was also good to learn that your kids enjoyed our zero-entry Grotto Pool with water slide and interactive water feature. We’ve seen families spend a whole day enjoying this pool, as well as our Olympic-size Terrace Pool. I will pass your comments about the pool maintenance to our Operations Manager. We value your opinion and strive to offer our guests a complete and pleasant experience. You also enjoyed your massage at The Spa and wished it were longer. This means you really enjoyed that experience in the harmonious atmosphere at The Spa.

We believe no stay at a hotel is complete without delightful dinning experiences. This is why our new dinning features offer choices that please everyone. This is the case of the 24-hour B-Line Dinner, in which the desserts and display window featuring our homemade cakes and pastries take the leading role! I’m happy you found that dessert scrumptious. Since you visited us during a very busy, the wait at Fiorenzo Italian Steakhouse was longer than it should have and we apologize for that. However, we’re delighted that your dinning experience was positive and that you feel happy with the service at the table by Ralph. If your next visit is on Easter, Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas, don’t forget to try our award-winning brunch.

Our shuttle service frees you from the hassle of having to find a parking space at the theme parks, plus we take good care of your car, like you say! Since this was your second stay and we also want to see you come back here or to any other Hyatt hotels, we invite you to join our loyalty program for free, Hyatt Gold Passport, in which you can enjoy exclusive benefits and free nights with no blackout dates at any Hyatt worldwide. Hope to see you back here at the Hyatt Regency Orlando!

Two weeks after the previous post I was offered a work opportunity as Social Media Manager at the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina. Even though this implied relocation, I was motivated by the opportunity and decided to go for it. Remember, this post is hypothetical and for educational purposes only!

While we love to read positive feedbacks and see our ratings go up, we also consistently track and respond to negative reviews. We are aware that these travel review websites represent an open forum for people to vent about the experiences they had at hotels, positive or negative. In both cases, we respond rapidly to each review. As soon as I started working here, the hotel received this feedback from a customer:

Sample post (#2) from customer:


Sample answer from our hotel:

Thank you for reviewing the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina hotel and for taking the time to highlight some areas for improvement. We apologize for the inconveniences and maintenance issues you had during your stay with us for your 10-year high school reunion. What you describe its contrary to Hilton standards. Since 1919, the Hilton family of hotels serves thousands of customers a week, and we strive to create the best possible hotel stay for our customers, including ensuring the guest rooms and the common areas are in optimal conditions and that the pool is cleaned everyday. Our guest rooms are designed with comfort and convenience in mind. I will personally follow up on everything that you pointed out with the management team and make sure we address all issues. We hope you give us another opportunity to serve you better in the future.

Event Marketing Communications- Cosmoprof North America


 *This post is for educational purposes only.

Cosmoprof North America is the only B2B beauty event that has representation from all sectors of the beauty industry. This includes products related to haircare, eye-care, anti-aging, nail care, and makeup, among others. This year the event was held at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas from July 13 to July 15. More than 900 exhibitors participated on the event. There were also meetings, networking opportunities, as well as keynote speakers. Cosmoprof North America implemented an integrated marketing communications plan (IMC), which combined different channels, including the event website and mobile app, as well as social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. During the months prior to the show, the objective of the plan was to promote the event, beginning in January in order to encourage people to register. During the event, the strategy was to keep participants informed about every detail related to the trade show. After the event, the different channels were used to promote next year’s show and to thank everyone who attended.

Social Media

Before the show
Before the show, the different social channels were used to create awareness about the event. There is a Facebook page, Cosmoprof North America, that was created in 2008 and which is used throughout the year to keep its 5,117 followers informed about industry news, as well as about the show. The Facebook page also features articles as links to Cosmoprof’s blog, CPNA Newsflash. The first announcement about the show on Facebook was in January, when the cover page of the photo was changed to the image at the beginning of this post. After that, there was not a lot of buzz about the event regarding the details. Registration was open and announced on Facebook on May 1st. During that month, they posted reminders to register and also included several posts about one of the main speakers, Mark Cuban. During the month of June, there was more buzz, more details about the event, which did not focus on the exhibitors, but on the keynote presenters, informative sessions, and the names of the bloggers at the event. Two weeks prior to the event, the only thing have about the show is post by a beauty blogger:


The Twitter page (@Cosmoprof) was created on 2010. There was no official announcement of the show and no mention, until February, when there was a post about the excitement with the show.


After May 1st, the strategy and content for Twitter was pretty much the same as Facebook. The only difference is that on Twitter, two weeks prior to the event, some exhibitors were promoting their booths and these posts were retweeted by Cosmoprof. So, even though there was a lack of content from Cosmoprof North America, they retweeted these messages on their page, like this one from John Russo:


I would have created an event inside the Facebook page or a separate page for the event so that information posted is only about the event and avoid the mixup with other content. The Instagram account (@cosmoprofna) was not used for anything related to promoting the event until it began on July 12, one day before it started, when they uploaded a couple of photos to generate excitement, including one illustrating where to pick up the tickets for the Marc Cuban keynote, one with the Interactive area container, and one inviting guests to register to win a car. This was a great opportunity to post more photos of the event set-up.


All social channels provided the website address of the event, as well as the event date and place. In my opinion, it’s strange to see that each of these accounts “about” section is related to the show, but there was not a lot of pre-show buzz.

During the show

Facebook: This was the least used channel during the show. In general, the purpose of the Facebook page was to provide content related to the show not related to exhibitors. Facebook was specifically the most used channel for posts about the bloggers that were at the event. This includes video event recaps from beauty bloggers. I think it’s a great way to provide endorsement to the event from respected industry representatives. This is a great strategy. However, knowing that the audience in Facebook is twice than Twitter, I would have posted more content here about other areas of the event. The post with the highest engagement had 5 likes.

Twitter: This was the most used social channel during the event. The main purpose of posting on Twitter was to promote the exhibitors, which I think it’s a great strategy. Those exhibitors pay a lot of money to participate and the fact that Cosmoprof North America mentions them is worth money! Twitter messages featured a call to action at the beginning (check out this, stop by this booth, you must head over to this booth), followed by a brief description of the product available at a particular booth. There was no consistency in terms of the use of hashtags. For example, sometimes they used hashtag prior to the booth number and other times they did not. The most used hashtags were the following: #cosmoproflv, #cpna2014, #DBSpotlight, #cosmetics, #makeup, but there was no clear trend or strategy related to when to use these. It would have great to always use #cosmoproflv and #cpna2014, as well as use hashtags for the product category available at that booth (#hair, #nails, #eyecare). This was the case for The Balm cosmetics:


In some instances, they used these hashtags, as well as the exhibitor’s Twitter handle, if available. Because there were so many exhibitors, it was very hard to include at least one photo for each post, but it was done in some cases. Here is an example of a post on Twitter with a photo of Young Nails:

Screen Shot 2014-07-16 at 4.14.47 PM

Even though the YouTube videos of daily recaps from beauty bloggers were also included on this Twitter page, the majority of the posts were meant to promote exhibitors. The Twitter posts didn’t generate a lot of engagement from the audience regarding likes and retweets. I guess it’s hard to keep up with more than 60 posts per day! Because of the nature of Twitter, it is understandable that it was the most frequently used channel.

Instagram: Out of all 3 channels discussed here, Instagram was the one with the highest engagement. During the 3 days of the show, the highest amount of photos were uploaded on July 13 and 14. The average number of likes was 27, which is high compared to Facebook and Twitter. However, I think some of the photos lacked quality, light, and other technical details which would have made the images more appealing. Just like Facebook, the strategy for Instagram was to promote other areas of the 3-day event, including photos of the VIP reception, specific floor areas like Discover Beauty and Experience Interactive Area, blogger meetings and keynote speaker addresses.

keynote interactive

After the show

The day after the event, as of 5pm, there have been no posts on the Facebook and Twitter pages. On Instagram, there are two photos, one of them very dark, at the Foundation Room at Mandalay Bay, but it is not clear what happened there.

In terms of image, colors, graphic, branding, and most content, I would say there was consistency across all channels. My only recommendation, which I already mentioned, was to open a page on each channel for the event itself, as well as to use hashtags consistently across all channels.

Other channels

Website: The event website remained intact throughout the event. It is the only channel with the most detailed information about the event and it is also the one in which I guess people could register. I really like the part with the list of exhibitors that includes a floor map. Also, it includes information about the conferences, networking opportunities, forums, summits, as well as travel information (hotels, cars, restaurants). I always say websites should be the headquarters of companies and events like this one. In this case, this website is very complete and serves that purpose. The website contained all information necessary to stimulate people to register. This is the information that the social media channels lacked, particularly prior to the event. I guess the objective here was for the website to be used consistently prior to the event and the social media channels during and after the event. I also like that the website has links to social media channels, as well as a showcase of the blog on the right hand corner, which is essential in order to have an effective integrated marketing communications plan. The website is missing a mobile version, which is essential, considering people spend so much time on using their smartphones. The only thing updated after the event is the banner on the upper center, which promotes 2015’s show.




Mobile app (Android and Iphone): In my opinion, this was the highlight that stood out to me! It was a huge surprise. As a matter of fact, I was able to register in order to have access to the information on the app. The most notable thing is the feed, in which people at the trade show could post status and photos and others could like or comment. This was the channel that generated the most response. This was not Cosmoprof North America reporting from the event; this were the show attendants speaking from the booths and from the activities and self-promoting. This was the channel in which I could find more than one person giving thanks after the event and using words of gratitude and appreciation. This channel provided for the show attendants to narrate the event from their point of view and perspective.

The app is also an extension of the event website. This means that all information on the website is available here so that people could have it with them during the event, avoiding having to access the website. The strategy with the app was to make the experience more pleasant and easy to follow. People could create a profile and include their company information and photo. They could also post updates and use the GPS to select where they were at that moment.


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What I even liked the most was that Cosmoprof North America sent an email once a day with the subject “Today at Cosmoprof North America.” The email included different sections, such as “What Attendees are saying,” which highlights some of the posts by attendees each day. Email is another channel that Cosmoprof used for event marketing communications. The ones I received were consistent with other channels in terms of branding. I’m sure they had an email campaign prior to the event. Finally, in order to invite people to visit other channels, there is a link on the website to Cosmoprof’s blog, CPNA Newsflash. That blog, which I mentioned in showcased on the event website, was also used to promote who was going to be speaking at the event. So the website directed people to the blog to read about Melissa and then back to the website for details about that particular event.





Regarding branding, I think Cosmoprof did a good job with consistency across all platforms. Also, they chose the most optimal social media channels to promote the event. In this area, there are opportunities for improvement in terms of content, generating awareness prior to the show and building excitement. Also, I recommend using the YouTube channel to post videos with daily recaps, as well as considering having a mobile version. Finally, I did not find any information about the sponsors.

From Rolodex to LinkedIn

I’m 40-years old. I have no problem admitting it. Many years ago, I graduated from college and had to look for a job as soon as I came back from New Orleans to Puerto Rico. This meant writing a resume and sending it by email to different head hunters, as well as looking for job opportunities posted in local newspapers. At that time, resumes were sent by email and there were no job search websites like Monster or Career Builder; there was no social network in which individuals could gather to both look for a job and build a professional network. There was no social channel for companies to create their profile, post jobs or screen candidates based on other criteria, such as their reputation and relationships. There was not a place in which self-employed people, like myself, could find potential clients and share industry information with other professionals. Fast forward to the year 2003, when Reid Hoffman and some of his colleagues from Social Net and Paypal launched LinkedIn, thus providing a place in which professionals can meet. In LinkedIn is 10-Years Old Today: Here’s the Story of How it Changed the Way we Work, Ken Yeung says, “Simply finding an appealing job and submitting a resume isn’t enough — now companies are looking for personalized approaches and recommendations from networks.” LinkedIn has transformed this process by offering both companies and individuals valuable tools for a more valuable process.


With the slogan “Your network is bigger than you think,” LinkedIn was launched in 2003. Users could join by creating and completing a professional profile. The idea was for them to start building their networks so they could have professional presence online in order look for job opportunities or find collaboration from other connections. Hiring managers would post job opportunities and look for candidates. Even though the initial goal was 1 million users during the first few months, LinkedIn was off to a slow start during the first two years. However, by 2005, it had 1.7 million professionals. Below is a screenshot of what LinkedIn looked like on 2003:


During 2005, the company began to add revenue-generating features like LinkedIn Jobs, which distanced drastically from job search websites like Monster, because this service provided companies with much more valuable information about candidates, including how many people have publicly endorsed a particular candidate. Also, companies posting jobs could find references from the candidate’s co-workers. The idea with LinkedIn jobs was to cut the clutter and provide companies with a closer opportunity to reach highly-qualified candidates. For the years to follow, the company continued the trend of adding more features, became public in 2011 and, by 2014, it has more than 300 million users around the globe and is available in more that 20 languages. Currently, the slogan is “Relationships Matter.”


Target Audience/User Profile

LinkedIn targets professionals looking for jobs and opportunities for networking, as well as recruiters who want to post job opportunities and professionals working at companies looking to grow their business. According to Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project, as of January 2014, LinkedIn average users have the following profile:

  • Men and women (men being more like to use LinkedIn)
  • Between ages 30-64
  • 22% of Internet users use LinkedIn
  • Graduated from college or Grad School
  • Household income: $75k+
  • Currently employed
  • 52% spend 0-2 hours per week on LinkedIn

How does it work

For individuals seeking for a job, they complete a sign-up process, which is free, and then begin to create a profile. The profile includes information commonly found on a resume, such as email address, education, experience, skills, projects, associations, courses, volunteer experience, organizations, languages, skills and endorsements, and interests. Once the profile is ready, users begin to look for connections, meaning people they know or would like to meet. The main idea about these connections is how can each one can help people grow their professional network by introducing others. Finally, they can make recommendations for employment, as well as help reach potential customers. Users can search for connections by email contact, name, classmate search or by linking contacts from Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail or other accounts. After finding connections and contacts, members can begin discovering LinkedIn, including finding job opportunities, getting introduced to potential employers, joining various special interest groups, and posting relevant articles they may want to share with others. This is also a great way of sharing information with connections that they, in turn, will share with their connections. It’s another great way to put one’s name out there! Members of each user’s network  are “connections” and there are 3 levels: 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. The difference between each is related to how these people became your connection, as well as how they are related to your other connections. LinkedIn offers a guided, step-by-step process to create the basic profile. Here is a screenshot of this part: steps

Here is a preview of my profile: profile

Members can include attachments and links to projects on that profile. When listing volunteer associations, a person can include a link to that company so people can find out more information.

It is worth to devote part of this discussion to the Jobs section. LinkedIn provides candidates with a complete database of available jobs. Users can find a list of jobs, filtering the search by location, industry, position, and company name. After performing a search and getting results, a candidate can see the details of each post, including job description and desired skills, as well as other similar jobs. Candidates also have the option of applying for the job on either the company’s website or through LinkedIn by sending the resume and cover letter. Premium services allow them to send InMail messages to the job poster. Other features of each job post may include information about the company, recent updates, and other jobs at that company. Finally, there is the option to share the job opportunity on LinkedIn and Twitter, as well as an option to save it for viewing later.

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Companies join LinkedIn by creating a company page. This helps build brand awareness, reach their target audience and share information regarding job opportunities. A company page includes a brief description, type of industry, company size and website, and specialties. Once they create the company page, they can also share status updates about relevant information about their company, articles, industry news or information relevant to those seeking for a job. For example, The Coca-Cola Company‘s LinkedIn page contains information about different Coca-Cola programs, as well as some articles directed to recently graduated student with tips for building a career. All status updates and articles are links to the Coca-Cola website, which is very effective in driving traffic to the website. Also, in terms of brand image and content, there is consistency, which is a very important part of integrated marketing communications.


There is a careers tab on the company page, which lists the job opportunities and directs candidates to the company website to further explore these opportunities.

Types of accounts

There are 2 types of accounts: Basic (free) and Premium (paid). According to The most popular ways people use LinkedIn, 85% of users have the basic account and 15% pay for premium services. The difference between paid and free accounts is how much information users can see, share, how to contact others, amount of search results, and find out more information about your profile views, among others. Premium accounts are divided into different categories related to different groups: business, job seeker, sales professional, and recruiter. All users create a profile with the basic account and then decide if they want to upgrade.

I. Basic account: This account is far from basic since it includes access to the most popular features. People can create a profile, build a network with unlimited connections, join LinkedIn Groups, create a company page, give recommendations, receive InMails, and request a limited amount of introductions.

II. Premium accounts (each one has 3 different types)

Business account: The difference between the three business accounts is related to visibility, reach, and search. For example, with the Business Executive, there is full name visibility of 3rd-degree connections, which is not possible with basic or other business accounts. This increases the chance of contacting more people. With Business Plus, users can send 10 InMail messages, compared to none on the basic account. These are available from $23.99 per month up to $74.99 per month.

Job Seeker: Job seekers willing to pay a monthly fee can get more benefits from a premium membership, like featured applicant, which moves job applications to the top of recruiter lists or see detailed salary information for each job. Premium services run from $19.99 per month to $59.99.

Recruiter: The 3 recruiter accounts differ in the way recruiters find and contact talent and how they recruit. For example, with Recruiter Light, members have access to the recruiter Iphone app and mobile website that those with the basic membership do not have. Plans run from $47.99 to $719.95 per month.

Sales Professional: These premium accounts help professionals find and engage with the right prospects, including connecting with them and building sales leads to close deals. Other benefits include Insights, which gives access to people seeing your profile in the last 90 days and full access to 1st, 2nd and 3rd degree networks.



Creating a profile is just the beginning. Here are some of LinkedIn features:

  • People you may know: Provides a chance to connect with people who LinkedIn has established that the user may know based on the information on their profile and my connections. It’s a simple way for people to grow their networks. This feature was just optimized this year, making it simple and user-friendly by also including pending invites on the top of the page, rather than on the inbox, where people cannot see them. Also, it combines pending invitations with suggested contacts on the same page.
  • You recently visited: Provides list of the last company pages or other profiles visited recently, just in case one needs to go back to them.
  • Who’s viewed you profile: Here, people may take a look at who’s looking at them. The basic membership does not let users see 100% of this information here. In order to see a list of everyone who has viewed a profile, it is necessary to upgrade to a premium account. However, other available information related to this feature that people can see includes where those people viewing your profile are from (their location) and in what industry they work. Also, how people rank on profile views, compared to their connections, as well as tips for increasing the number of views. According to LinkedIn Shows You Who Visits Your Profile, “LinkedIn will provide suggestions based on how members from the same industry generated more page views. A suggestion could be as simple as adding a certain skill to your profile or joining a particular group.”


  • Who’s viewed my updates: This is effective for evaluating whether or not content is relevant to my connections. It is a great way to find out if my content strategy is working or not. This also represents an opportunity to revise the content calendar and timings of posts.
  • Recommendations and Endorsements: In 11 Incredibly Useful LinkedIn Features You Might Not be Using, Andrea Brinkman says, “Endorsements do however add to your presence on LinkedIn and can be thought of as a pantry full of your best keywords.” People can make recommendations and endorse other people’s skills. This helps each profile easier to be found in advanced searches. The best thing about these is that they are not time consuming. There is no need to sit and write a paragraph to recommend or endorse someone. For example, I can endorse a former colleague for their expertise on Trade Marketing by just visiting their profile. This is helpful information for recruiters looking for candidates with specific skills. The fact that with this feature other people recommend you makes it trustable.
  • Groups: There are more than one million LinkedIn Groups.  Social Media Today’s article, 7 Things That Can Get You Out of LinkedIn Groups When You Get Into’Em, discuss how Groups reflect a person’s business interests. People join them for different reasons, including getting advise from other professionals or viceversa, elevating reputation as experts by contributing and searching for opinions of others about particular topics. It is also a great opportunity to point people to a person’s blog or website. “Though it’s bad protocol to come on strong with sales pitches and promotions, it’s fair game and savvy to start in on an update or reply and point readers to your website, blog, videos and the like. Don’t be shy about offering links.” (Social Media Today). Here is an example of the type of discussions and how people can contribute from the SEO SEM Social Media group. It is important to highlight the difference between these conversations and those in Facebook, which is more oriented to social, not strictly business like LinkedIn.


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According to The most popular ways people use LinkedIn, the top two features are who has viewed your profile and people you may know, followed by groups and direct messaging. I think the first two provide users more specific information, like knowing exactly who might be interested in you. Using these two features strategically, may result in more connections and, as a result, more opportunities. If only a few people are viewing your profile, this may be a sign of changing something in the profile.

Integration with other channels/mobile friendly

In terms of integration with other channels, LinkedIn provides users with the opportunity to specifically include their Twitter and WeChat accounts in their profile. There is also additional space to include up to three other websites, which may be a company or personal website, blog, Facebook page, RSS feed or portfolio, as part of the contact information. Other than that, there is the option to share other people’s updates and job postings only on LinkedIn and Twitter. My appreciation is that LinkedIn pretty much intends to keep information inside LinkedIn. The reason for this, I suspect, is that LinkedIn is meant to be a social network for professionals to interact, on a business level, not on a personal level. The two things people are able to share on social networks, like Twitter, are meant to be used for professional purposes. The option to share on Twitter is not showcased. Here is an example of an article posted by one of my contacts today. The Twitter icon is very small:

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LinkedIn has a mobile friendly website, as well as an app I use on my Iphone. Both are as as efficient and complete as the desktop version. In terms of layout, colors, content, and menus, all three are consistent. Here is the mobile version and the app version:


Mobile version


Iphone app

LinkedIn also has a Facebook page and a couple of pages on Twitter. The Facebook page is updated with articles about human resources, economics, and innovation, among others. LinkedIn Jobs on Twitter is where they post some of the job opportunities, which then direct candidates to the LinkedIn page.

Advertising on LinkedIn

The lat part of this discussion will focus on advertising on LinkedIn. According to LinkedIn Paid Ads: A Beginner’s Guide, the are many misconceptions that businesses have of LinkedIn regarding using ads. Some of them include that fact that LinkedIn has a smaller audience than Facebook and Google. However, as Benjamin Spiegel discusses, there are many opportunities with LinkedIn ads, for instance, “achieve a very precise reach” because of targeting options. Also, the profiles contain more updated professional information about people, compared to Facebook, in which there is more detail about people’s social life. Because, as mentioned throughout this discussion, LinkedIn is a professional network, it makes more sense to post jobs here through ads than on Facebook or Google. Criteria available for reaching the right audience, includes job title, name of company for which prospect works, particular skills, role and seniority. Ads can also be created to sponsor updates. This can help companies to put their name out there with the intent of reaching decision makers, which may be part of their connections in the future and impact their businesses. There is a difference between targeting groups of people who might be interested in your product on Facebook and targeting people by job title. LinkedIn advertising works better for B2B promotions. This is why publishing an ad for LinkedIn should be considered by companies like mine, Buzzworthy Creations, to promote my products and services with the intent of finding prospects. The chance of reaching the right people may also increase return on investment. LinkedIn also provides campaign results, including reach and number of clicks.



Integrated Marketing Communications

Companies should include LinkedIn as part of their integrated marketing communications plan. This channel puts the social aspect on the side (which is what other social networks are about) and focuses strictly on business. By creating a company page, a business has more exposure and builds awareness, thus positively impacting SEO and their chance of being found. This exposure helps a company find potential clients, as well as high-profile candidates to work for them. It also means finding other people working in the same industry to exchange information or do business. LinkedIn is also an additional vehicle to position a company as an industry expert. By either keeping the basic profile, upgrading to premium or using advertising, LinkedIn represents an additional opportunity to grow a business.


Link to Prezi (full presentation)


Brinkman, A. (2014. April 21). 11 Incredibly Useful LinkedIn Features You Might Not be Using. Retrieved on July 1, 2014 from

Moyers, S. (2013. October 17). Take Your Brand to a New level with Linkedin Ads. Retrieved on July 1, 2014 from

Piombino, K. (2013. July 30) The most popular ways people use LinkedIn. Retrieved from

Social Media Today. (2013. October 7). 7 Things That Can Get You Out of LinkedIn Groups When You Get Into’Em. Retrieved on July 1, 2014 from

Spiegel, B. (2014. January 14). LinkedIn Paid Ads: A Beginner’s Guide. Retrieved on July 1, 2014 from

Yeung, K. (2013. May 5). LinkedIn is 10-Years Old Today: Here’s the Story of How it Changed the Way we Work. Retrieved on July 1, 2014 from