Social media is the most influential and persuasive platforms in this contemporary environment (Quesenberry 2015). My group produced social media campaign to raise the public awareness and change their attitude in separating waste properly. Piskorski (2014) suggests that the establishment of social media strategy should consider the benefits for both customers and the organisation. For this reason, my campaign mainly prioritises the benefits that the audiences interact and engage with the campaign in receiving useful information. There are three significant points that I have learned from this campaign including collaboration in a group, incorporation of the theories and content design.
Working collaboratively as a team is critically important to achieve the campaign’s goal. There are three key points how my group worked well together – having a common goal, listening to each other and being responsible. Tabaka (2006) claims that the high-performing team comes from respect, courage, engagement, and self-organisation. As I was assigned as a team leader, I hold a meeting at the initial stage to develop the story idea and to set the goal of the campaign.
An inclusion of every member’s ideas into the discussion is crucial to generate topic, creativity and to empower each member in participatory decision-making. Carnoy (2016) claims that setting up a goal is important to accumulate the campaign’s reputation. For this reason, my group enthusiastically put strenuous efforts to design the strategy and tactics to achieve the goal.
My group members listened to each other’s opinion and initiatives with full attentions to incorporate into the plan. The group decided to use infographic video as Herhuth (2017) claimed that currently animation becomes more popular for aesthetic storytelling and one of my members suggested to include animation characters citing Hardianto (2013), Phare Ponleu Selpak (2014), and UNESCO (2015) as examples that produced educational infographic videos.
Highly responsible members are the driving forces to achieve satisfactory outcomes. Different tasks were divided based on the strengths and weaknesses of each member. I was mainly responsible for developing the content, and another member focused on aesthetic and technology. Ongoing discussions both in class and outside were held regularly to ensure the efficient work especially clarifying some ambiguous points. University of Sydney (2017) supports that being supportive and responsible members lead to the group’s success. This could leverage the human resources and design different approaches engaging with audiences. However, time management appears to be a weakness. My members summited the assigned task late resulted in a late posting on social media.
I was the content developer during the campaign. Developing content creates a comprehensive foundation to develop the strategy for Facebook, Instagram, Weibo, and Blog. Content is much more important than the use of social media channels. Therefore, an extensive research was done to synthesise the key information related to recycling waste to gather a pool of content. As recommended by Schaffer (2013), content development to engage with audiences can be determined through “affinity, weight and time decay (p. 61)”, while affinity refers to the use of network to boost the content. Based on my experience, more audience interacted with my campaign content when I publicised on my personal profile with hashtags. This means my profile can uplift the greater affinity of my campaign and it is seen as an effective tactic to spread out the content. Quesenberry (2015) also points out the important of designing beneficial and entertaining content for audience, which can draw the audience’s attention.
From this idea, I designed the concept of infographic video by integrating various segments to make the audience feel amused and concurrently obtain useful information. Hemley (2013) suggests that understanding and knowing the type of content that audiences want is critically important to design an attainable strategy.
I analysed my target audience behaviour in interacting with social media content, and I realised that most of my target audiences want to engage and interact with issues concerning to their daily lives. So, I produced short videos showing an individual correctly throws waste into the right bin in addition to images and infographic videos, which differed from my previous social media campaign (sexual assault) for CMWP in which I designed the content based on the social stigma and stereotypes. This experiment enables me to design the content that matches the audience’s needs and to disperse the communications messages efficiently as supported by Holloman (2012) arguing that utilising existing network effectively connect with audiences. The main understanding from this content development is to classify the core information of the topic and critically understand the affordance and constraint of the social media tools, so the content delivery will massively reach the audience.
Effectiveness of Theories
The practice-based theory has considerably contributed to the success of the social media campaign. The use of spreadable media becomes more valuable and accessible for audiences since they can interact, distribute or design content broadly in this contemporary media (Jenkin et al. 2014). From this experience, my social media tools are beneficial to advocate the campaign messages specially to engage with the audience, which is relevant to the theory of stickiness as supported by Jenkin et al. (2014) explaining that “stickiness broadly refers to the need to create content that attracts audience attention and engagement (p.4)”. However, stickiness appears to work well when I utilised my network on social media only. It is challenging and demanding to get people, who are not my fans, to share their experience or content with my campaign. This appears to be the limitation of stickiness.
The use of existing recycle waste information, video, and news produced by different organizations can possibly enhance the granular content of the campaign. Miles (2013) claims that “a medium is regarded as highly granular if it is made up of small parts that are self-contained to the extent that they make sense by themselves (p.74)”. Citing Love9 as an example of using granularity, my group created different content and types of information consisting of mobile videos portraying positive attitudes of throwing recycle waste and images of friends committing to reuse plastic bottle. By doing this, I could increase the granularity on my Facebook page. However, granularity to a certain degree does not promote the campaign if most elements are not self-produced. This implies that granularity works well with the campaign that produces creative and various elements to enhance the content quality.
Carnoy, J 2016, 5 Tips for Running Your Best Social Media Campaign Ever, viewed on 29 May 2017, https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/272231
Hemley, D 2013, 26 Tips to create a strong social media content strategy, viewed 25 May 2017, http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/26-tips-to-create-a-strong-social-media-content-strategy/
Holloman, C 2012, The Social Media MBA, John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, Hoboken.
Jenkins, HFSGJ 2014, Spreadable Media, NYU Press, New York.
Phare Ponleu Selpak 2014, Reduce Recycle Reuse, Viewed on 10 March 2017 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=chuPIreQSCQ
Piskorski, MJ 2014, A Social Strategy, Princeton University Press, Princeton.
Quesenberry, KA 2015, Social Media Strategy, Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Lanham, MD.
Schaffer, N 2013, Maximize Your Social, John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, Somerset.
Tabaka, J. 2006, What are Collaborative Teams?, in Collaboration Explained: Facilitation Skills for Software Project Leaders, Addison-Wesley, NJ, pp.23-43.
UNESCO 2015, Plastic Waste Never Dies, Viewed on 10 March 2017, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CiF8pU0gAo
University of Sydney 2017, How can we make our group work well together?, viewed 12 April 2017, http://sydney.edu.au/stuserv/learning_centre/help/discussGrp/dg_goodGroup.shtml