What You Need to Know to Head Global Social Media

Falynne Finagan, Global Head of Social Marketing at Xerox, joins the Social Pros Podcast to discuss how she directs a small social army to successfully launch products to international success.

In This Episode:

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Full Episode Details

Globally Socializing A Refreshed Product

Heading up a global household name like Xerox is both thrilling and complicated. Their products are in heavy use around the world which means a large but diverse audience with different needs and norms when it comes to social marketing.

Tackling the launch of an innovative product that transforms and redefines the all-too-familiar copy machine highlights the opportunities and challenges inherent in this market.

Falynne has found that collaboration is the name of the game when it comes to such a complex and paradigm-shifting product launch. Reaching out both horizontally and vertically across the organization ensures message cohesion that is uniquely tailored to fit the needs of each audience. Social can also directly inform new and existing product evolution by delivering live customer feedback straight to R&D.

Additionally, social can play a key role in B2B marketing of any scale by allowing the brand to engage with the end-user and ultimately drive vendor sales.

Falynne’s approach to global social media has given Xerox a refreshing edge in an otherwise stale market.

In This Episode

  • Why launching a new product on a global scale means coordinating horizontally and vertically on all levels of social
  • How the evolution of social leads to new opportunities for international corporations to cut out the intermediary and engage with customers directly
  • Why impacting R&D means taking social to the teams
  • How the audience drives the breadth and depth of corporate social accounts

 

Quotes From This Episode

“When we do a launch as big as ConnectKey, it’s really about coordinating on many different levels.” —@FalynneFinagan

“We have to get the bloggers together and say, ‘Okay, what are you going to write for your audience? And let’s make sure we don’t overlap, and that we’re tailoring the content to the subscribers’.” —@FalynneFinagan

“Facebook is absolutely a place where we can gain new eyeballs and new acquisitions but, for us, it has really evolved in terms of the things the platform can do now and how we can use it.” —@FalynneFinagan

“With the way the company and industry have evolved, you have to have pay as part of your mix, even if it’s a small bit.” —@FalynneFinagan

“The thing that keeps me in the position, interested in the role, is just it’s constantly changing.” —@FalynneFinagan

“It’s really fun to see, as the platforms evolve, the social media evolves, and what you can do as marketer with that.” —@FalynneFinagan

“For us, it’s all about the customer experience, and how we can engage along the way in that pre, during, and post-sale.” —@FalynneFinagan

“For many years, it was just about that top piece, that awareness, and we know social can do more.” —@FalynneFinagan

“Social is the epitome of big data.” —@FalynneFinagan

We’re always listening and learning and bringing that data back to the teams.” —@FalynneFinagan

We love what we can do with video. Anything that we can do to bring our customers in on the experiment, or experience, we want to try.” —@FalynneFinagan

“We really look to where the audience is, and if the audience needs to hear a special message. ” —@FalynneFinagan

“Anybody in a social role such as mine really has to wear two hats, and really strongly understand both sides of PR and marketing.” —@FalynneFinagan

“We’ve really taken a social first strategy at Xerox because we see social marketing as more than just managing the accounts.” —@FalynneFinagan

“Folks don’t always react well to a logo talking at them. They want to see the people behind the logo, the real Xerox people.” —@FalynneFinagan

Resources

 

See you next week!

Transcript

Jay: Welcome, everybody, to Social Pros, the podcast for real people doing real work in social media. This is episode 264. I am still Jay Baer from Convince and Convert, joined, as usual, by my special Texas friend. He is from Austin. He is the executive strategist of Salesforce Marketing Cloud. He is the one, the only, the Easter bunny, Mr. Adam Brown.
Adam: Jay, it’s great to be here for number 264. I feel honored and privileged to have been a part of several of those.
Jay: We should add that up sometime.
Adam: Wow. That’s a good thing. I need to pull out the old calculator and do that, but it’s always a joy. It’s always great to speak to you. I hope the Easter bunny was kind to you and yours, as we record this kind of the week after Easter.
Jay: Yeah. It was great. You know, I put this on Instagram. My kids are 18 and almost 16, so Easter’s a little different, right? It’s like, there’s no egg hunt. There’s no wonderment. It’s like, “Oh, great. Free candy. Let’s go to brunch and then sit around in our sweatpants and watch movies.” It’s not really the same kind of Easter that you might have when your tykes are younger, but it’s all the same. It’s still good.
Adam: You’re in that awkward phase between Easter eggs and mimosas for Easter Sunday.
Jay: That’s well-said. Well-said. That is exactly right. Next year when my daughter goes to college, I’m sure she will be mimosa-ing it on Easter. Although she did say, it’s kind of wistful, she said, “You know, this might be the last Easter we spend together for a long time.” I’m like, “Wow. That’s kind of sad.” Makes you put some perspective on that.

What I need is a carbon copy of myself. What I need is the opportunity to be in more places at the same time, and if only today’s special guest could just take their technology one step further, and roll out a cloning machine, we would be there. She’s going to work on it. That’s her promise to us. It is Falynne Finagan, who is the Global Head of Social Marketing for Xerox. Welcome to Social Pros.

Falynne: Hi, guys. Thanks for having me.
Jay: Where are you on the cloning machine? I’m expecting by the time the show actually airs, it’ll be ready.
Falynne: Well, the guys out at Park are working on it.
Jay: I hope they are. You’ve got a hot new technology, right? ConnectKey, which is like this revolutionary new technology. I think one of the Tweets that your team put out there said it’s the biggest technological advance in like 115 years at Xerox, or something like that, which is saying something.
Adam: That’s saying something.
Jay: That’s a big, bold claim. Usually, we don’t get into product stuff right away, but I was so intrigued by that, I want you to tell us what ConnectKey is.
Falynne: Yes. This is, it’s our biggest product launch in the company’s 110-year history. 29 new products, and it’s really taking the office printer as you know it to the next level, to that workplace assistant, right? It’s not just about printing when you’re in the office. You need to send documents to your Dropbox and translate to different languages, things like that. If you look at our ConnectKey line, the user interface looks very much like a smartphone. It’s all about the apps, and really having that in-house workplace assistant right there along with you. It’s not just a printer. It does so much more.
Jay: It’s got to be incredibly challenging and exhilarating for you to run social for such a massive launch with 29 new products, massively different new technology as well. Tell us a little bit about what that’s been like over the last few months.
Falynne: It has been really exciting. It’s a coordinated effort. We’re a global company, as you said, and these products are available all over the world, which means working with our marketing colleagues all over the world. I sit in corporate marketing, but I lead social, and at Xerox we have over 50 social channels, so we’ve got folks at the corporate level doing social on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook. We’ve got blogs. Then we also have folks within our different lines of business, and also in our countries. So Xerox Mexico, for example. Xerox Germany. When we do a launch as big as ConnectKey, it’s really about coordinating on many different levels, from content strategy to paid strategy, working with advertising, working with the product guys. Translating all of our content into different languages, and coordinating on when we’re going to share this news, and working with the media, and just lots of different cooks in the kitchen, and efforts to get all of our ducks in a row.
Jay: Did you, for this big launch, did you ride on top of existing collaboration protocols, a center of excellence or similar, where you were already working with those teams? Or did you have to do some rewiring of how you work with people in lines of business or around the world, in order to make this launch coordinated?
Falynne: Yes. It’s an existing process, but one that definitely had to be tighter. My team is a very small corporate team, and we’re supported by our agency friends at Text100. We’re kind of that middle center, and then what we do is, is we have a center of excellence where we bring in our key social stakeholders within the different lines of business. For example, within our office product line, and when I say “office,” it’s those typical floor copiers that you would see around the workplace, we have folks that practice social there. We’ve got folks that do social for graphic communication. These different leaders, we all got together and then we created our social plan in conjunction with the other folks in marketing, and then that next layer of the ring is bringing in our country folks and giving them the tools they need to share the news in the local markets.
Jay: You mention the blog a moment ago. Was that part of your roles and responsibilities, the Xerox blog? Or is that a separate team that really focuses on content?
Falynne: It is underneath the social. It’s part of my team, and we have 11 blogs at the company focused on different areas. We have one that we consider our corporate blog. That’s Xerox Connect. You can check that out. Then we also have a few that are focused on different lines of business. We have one that’s geared towards small businesses. We have ones that are geared towards enterprise. One for channel partners, the folks that sell Xerox products. We also have a few in language. The blog piece is another part of the whole content coordination with a launch like ConnectKey. We have to get the bloggers together and say, “Okay, what are you going to write for your audience? And let’s make sure we don’t overlap, and that we’re tailoring the content to the subscribers and the folks that are going to check out those blogs.”
Jay: You mentioned in our pre-show notes that you feel like strategically for Xerox, that Facebook is more of the friends and family destination, that you’re preaching to the converted at some level, that it’s employees and current customers and things like that. I don’t necessarily disagree with that approach, but I think it’s different than how a lot of other companies, even B2B companies, think about Facebook. There’s still a lot of maybe hopefulness around Facebook as a customer acquisition vehicle, but it sounds like you feel like it’s more of a retention plan. I’d like you to talk about that a little bit.
Falynne: Yeah. Well, actually, it’s both. For us, we know that a lot of our audience on Facebook is what we call friends and family. People who have worked for Xerox, or, “Hey, my dad worked at Xerox.” Or, “I’m a retiree.” Some kind of personal connection to the company. We see that a lot, but I completely agree with you that it’s absolutely a place where we can gain new eyeballs and new acquisitions for sure. Facebook, for us, has really evolved, in just the things the platform can do now, and how we can use it.
Jay: Are you doing much on the paid social side, or is that not part of the game plan for Xerox social?
Falynne: It is part of the game plan. I think with the way the company and industry have evolved, you kind of have to have pay as part of your mix, even if it’s a small bit. We know with the algorithms on Facebook, if we want folks to see our content, we have to pay to play. That is part of our team’s remit, and we do do that. You know, selectively. Not for everything, but with a big product launch such as our ConnectKey line for sure. We’ve got pay behind it.
Jay: Is that an in-house responsibility, or is that an agency responsibility, or both?
Falynne: It’s a little bit of both. My team initiates the IOs. We work directly with our rep at Facebook. He’s terrific. We do the same thing with LinkedIn, Twitter, and then we have our agency friends help us manage the spend, and turn the posts on and off, and things like that.
Jay: You’ve been doing this for a while on the social side. What excites you right now? What are you fired up about in terms of where social is today?
Falynne: You know, I have been doing this for a while, and I was thinking about that before the call. It’s been about five years for me. Prior to that, Xerox didn’t have a dedicated social media team.
Jay: Oh, really? Interesting.
Falynne: Yeah. We had a PR team, and I was on the PR team. I’m a PR person by trade background. When social started picking up, the different folks on the PR team would kind of take a stab at Twitter or put some things up on Facebook, but we didn’t really have a dedicated presence, and at the time our CMO said, “Okay. You know, if social’s here to stay, we actually have to have a special group to manage this.” That’s when I moved over. I think the thing that keeps me in the position, interested in the role, is just it’s constantly changing, and you think about first social was all about text, right? Then it was, “Oh, it’s got to have an image. You’ve got to have an image, or nobody’s going to look at your stuff.” Now it’s become, “Wait, it’s got to be video. You have to have video.” I think just the way that it has evolved is really interested. Now it’s live. Everything’s Facebook Live, and Periscope, and some live things on YouTube now. It’s just really fun to see, as the platforms evolve, the social media evolves, and what you can do as marketer with that.
Jay: Yeah. You nailed that progression, too. It’s text, to photo, to video, to live video, is absolutely the sequence that we’ve all sort of witnessed here. What’s next? Like, what’s going to … “It’s got to be VR”? That’s going to be the next commandment in social? That seems like a big ask.
Falynne: I think that it’s going to be something with more of live chat video style, so if you think about when you Facetime somebody on your phone. I think that there’s going to be more of that face to face type interaction with video next. I picture the Twitter of years from now, where instead of a bunch of chat bubbles, it’s a bunch of live video feeds. That could get dangerous, but I could see it going that way.
Jay: Huge implications for customer service, no question about that.
Falynne: Absolutely.
Jay: One thing you’ve talked about in the past is your desire, and you really accomplished a lot of this, tying the social media work that you’re doing on behalf of the organization and its brands back to conversions. I’d love for you to talk about that, because a lot of big brands are so bedeviled by attribution in social. A lot of your work is not e-commerce. People aren’t going to Xerox.com and saying, “Here’s a bunch of money. Bring me an office computer, printer, giant box.” Some people perhaps are, but typically I suspect they’re purchasing your products through an intermediary, so how are you tracking the impact of social on leads and sales, et cetera?
Falynne: I think for us, it’s all about the customer experience, and how we can engage along the way in that pre, during, and post-sale. It’s everything from what you think of social traditionally as, the awareness piece, right? Just getting some posts out there, having folks know what Xerox is all about today. But then we’re looking at our content strategy for that next level. “Okay, what’s what middle of the funnel type content that we can put out there?” Then also, you know, for that buyer journey to the offer, right? “What’s that final piece? How can we nurture that sales stream?” For many years, it was just about that top piece, that awareness, and we know social can do more.

I just think social is the epitome of big data. There’s so much out there. There’s so much to scratch at. What we’ve really focused on is taking it to the next level, so awareness still has to be there, but we’re moving beyond the likes, the impressions, the engagements, to, “How can we actually directly impact sales?” As you said, and the business. We’re really focused on driving folks down that funnel and driving folks over to Xerox.com where they can do things like fill out forms to request more information. While we may not be selling the ConnectKey device in one Tweet, we’re working to have our content progress in that way right down the funnel to hopefully get to that sale.

Adam: Falynne, I think that’s something that every large and small brand is trying to wrestle with. It’s that attribution. It’s being able to show not just correlation, but causation. As you said, whether it’s with sales, whether it’s with brand lift and product recognition, you have, as Xerox, one of the world’s most familiar and respected brands, so you’re in a good space with that. Do you see any of the kind of product R and D teams, or folks who are actually in the product manufacturing and development, beginning to use social listening to help them kind of ascertain, A, how they can make their products better, or B, ideas for new products, like you just articulated?
Falynne: Absolutely. You know, they’re all seeing the power of social media, which is really exciting for my team. I’ve talked a lot about getting social in front of the conversation, and we actually were just meeting with our folks that created our direct to object printer, which is a really cool printer that prints on objects, just as the name says. It can print on footballs. It can print on mugs, and we did just a really quick video on that, shot it out, and the product guys were like, “That’s amazing.” They saw the reaction, they want to do more, they want to know what the comments are, and for us, it’s really exciting to be able to bring that back to them and say, “Hey, you know, here’s what people are saying.” Or, “Oh, this is a comment about a product that is working or not working, or here’s what we can improve.” We’re always listening and learning and bringing that data back to the teams.
Adam: One of the great things about being in the technology space, like Xerox, is the fact that … And I just know this from personal experience with your brand, you guys rock the demo. It’s always incredible. It’s always jaw-dropping, whether it’s a four-color printer that can print 75 pages in a minute, or as you said, 3D printing, or object printing. Because of that, and kind of to what you and Jay were talking about just a few minutes earlier, how are you feeling about like live streaming, or doing those types of demonstrations and that type of information sharing in a visual format, kind of in realtime? Is that something that you’re seeing your brand teams, your marketing, your social teams beginning to experiment with?
Falynne: Absolutely. We’ve done quite a few Facebook Lives and Periscopes. I think especially with products like ours, people want to see it in motion. For us to say, “Hey, it prints so many pages a minute,” “Eh, great.” We know people want to see it. We want to see it in action, and that was why just the video I mentioned that we did with the direct to object football was great, because we showed the guy going up there, and he’s typing into this computer, and the next thing, he puts the football into the machine. You see it run up and down, and pop out, and it’s got print on it, which is really neat, so absolutely. We love what we can do with video. Anything that we can do to bring our customers in on the experiment, or experience, we want to try.
Adam: Just like Jay did, I loved your analogy and your evolution of from textual, to image, to video, as we’ve seen social content kind of progress. I know one of the things, Falynne, you shared with us in the pre-show was that you have over 50 social media accounts. I’d love to hear you kind of talk a little bit about that, and rationalize it if you will, because I think anybody who’s at a larger company or coming on board a larger company with multiple social accounts has to wrestle with, “Okay, are we going to go deep or wide? Are we going to organize the social media accounts by geography, by business division, by platform?” With as many places in the world where Xerox does business, with so many different, very distinct business divisions, how do you reconcile that, and how do you say, “Okay, we’re going to be 60 by next year, or we’re going to be 40 by next year”?
Falynne: Yeah. That’s a good question. There’s quite a bit that goes into how many accounts we’re going to have. We actually had quite a few more. This is less than we used to have. I think at the beginning of social, everybody wanted to be on Twitter, and Facebook, and as a company, you’re just like, “Okay, sure. Let’s try it.” Then when you start to realize, “Okay. Who are we trying to reach, and where are the audiences?” That’s where we really said, “Okay. These accounts need to stay open. These need to close.” We really look to where the audience is, and if the audience needs to hear a special message. If, for example, we have a Twitter handle @XeroxOffice, focuses a lot on S and B. We know there are S and B folks out there that want to hear about S and B all the time. They may not want to follow the corporate feed where we talk about all things Xerox. That’s where we look at the audience and say, “Okay. Is the audience there? Are they hungry for the information?” Then, “Do we have the internal teams to support that?”

Quite a few of our accounts are outside of the US, and that really is key with languages, right? We can’t have the folks in Germany expected to follow the corporate feed that’s all in English. That’s when we know that we need in-language within those countries. It’s really about the audience, the language, and just what those folks need. Do those folks need to hear about graphic communications in French? Well then maybe we need a channel just to that. That’s the way we approach it.

Adam: To that point, talk a little bit about the governance of that. A, you’ve got somebody in Germany that wants to create a brand new, either a Twitter account or a new Snapchat account, or you’ve got the rationalization that you need to sunset somebody’s account. Something that’s very near and dear to their heart. They had this ownership, but as you said, maybe the audience for that particular account is fairly narrow, and maybe the interest and the engagement is waning a little bit. What kind of governance do you have, and kind of what protocols do you kind of expect all of your communicators and marketers around the world to maintain?
Falynne: Sure. The first question we ask when someone says, “Hey, I want to open a new account.” We say, “Who are you trying to reach?” And then we look at our existing accounts and say, “Do our existing accounts already reach that audience?” If they don’t, then the next step is, “Okay. We may need an account.” Then we say, “What’s your plan?” We require a content plan. We require, you know, an outline of who’s going to support the account. Make sure they understand about how to measure the account, reporting on their results, things like that. If that all passed the mustard and we open a new account, we do require a certain amount of posting every month. We do look at engagement rates, and things like that, so that an account doesn’t go dormant. A lot of times folks do get excited and then the first couple of months are going great, and then suddenly nobody can run it anymore, and we may have to close it down.

That really doesn’t happen very often anymore. We actually don’t get so many folks internally wanting to open social anymore. One, because they’re more aware and they know we’ve got quite a few channels for them to choose from where we can share their information, but also they know it’s now work. I think at the start of social, it just seemed like a lot of fun, and everybody wanted to do it, and then we actually sit down and explain, “Well, you know, you’ve got to have a content calendar, and you’ve got to have a community manager,” and things like that. That’s when they say, “Oh, well wait a minute. We might not want to go that route.” We don’t have too much of that internally anymore, but even for the accounts we do have open, we regularly keep track of the metrics and make sure that they’re successful.

Adam: That’s great, and I think that’s so important, to be kind of truthful, because you’re right. It’s inevitable. There’s always a honeymoon period when you start a new social account or a new social project, especially for accounts that may be a seasonal event or an annual trade show or something like that, where you know 360 days of the year, even with the greatest content, folks are not going to be as interested in it. Falynne, I’ve got one more kind of question before I give it back over my very esteemed colleague with some important messages. I really want to take advantage of, because Xerox is such a global brand, and you’re doing business in all different parts of the world. I was curious what you’re learning from your colleagues doing social activities in other parts of the world. Are they seeing the same trends in social that you’re seeing here in the United States? Are they seeing different ones? Do you find in some cases that they may be slightly behind the US in some areas, but maybe slightly ahead of the US in others?
Falynne: Yeah. That’s a good question, and it makes me think back to last year, when we had our services business. At the end of 2016, we actually separated our services business, which was focused on business process outsourcing, and when that services business was part of Xerox, we did a lot of work on LinkedIn. We all know that’s the business platform. It was great for our service’s social media, and we were heavily doubled down on LinkedIn, while our other folks in the countries were heavily doubled down on Facebook. Facebook was it for them. LinkedIn really wasn’t, so we definitely see different trends. We also see things that work differently in the countries that may not work in the US. They’re always experimenting. We actually have our community calls every few months where we have different folks within the countries and lines of business present so that we’re all learning from each other. But yeah, I mean you definitely see different uses, and just things that may not fly in one country, is a big hit in the other.

A lot of it is also the same. You know, we do content packs for the countries, and we say, “Here’s some suggested content. If it works for you, great. If it doesn’t, that’s okay.” And they take their learnings back to us, too.

Jay: How do you give them those content packs? I’m always fascinated to think about how content moves from the mothership out to an LLB or a country.
Falynne: It moves in many ways. Sometimes it’s email. Sometimes it’s Google Docs. Sometimes it’s Smartsheets. It kind of depends on what the program is. We also use Spredfast as our SMS tool, so sometimes we sort things in Spredfast for them to grab there too.
Jay: Got it. Thanks. I want to talk about the future of ads. We talked about ads a minute ago. Falynne said it perfectly. Like, you almost have to do some paid these days. Our friends at Salesforce Marketing Cloud, who among other things employ Adam Brown, certainly understand how important advertising is to modern social media marketers, so they put together a free ebook that you can get at Bit.ly/salesforcesds. That’s Bit.ly/salesforceads. It’s called The Future of Ads, and it’s all about global ad spend, targeted click-through rates, targeted conversion rates for ads on Facebook, Google, Twitter, and beyond, how you can increase your return on ad spend using CRM data, custom audiences, et cetera. Also, some great case studies on lookalikes, re-engagement campaigns, et cetera. Really great stuff. Go check it out. It’s The Future of Ads, from our friends at Salesforce Marketing Cloud. Bit.ly/salesforceads.

Also, I want to talk about ratings and reviews. My team, myself and Daniel Lemon, our senior strategist, put together a new ebook called How to Win Digital and Real-World Traffic With Local Reviews. We did it in partnership with our friends at Yext, the leaders in mobile and local marketing, so it’s all about how you can get more reviews from your customers, whether those reviews should go on your website or on a place like Google Reviews, on Facebook, on TripAdvisor, on Yelp, or whatever the ratings and reviews platforms are in your industry, and how to win the reviews battle which becomes increasingly more important all the time. Get it at offers.yext.com/reviews. That’s offers.yext, Y-E-X-T, .com/reviews.

Adam, back to you.

Adam: Jay, thank you so much, and Falynne Finagan, head of global social marketing for Xerox, thank you so much for being on the show. Falynne, you mentioned something earlier that’s near and dear to my heart, but something that’s familiar to me. That is, you kind of came from a PR side of things. You came from doing public relations at Xerox, and then kind of matriculated into and actually helped create the entire social media organization there. I come from a kind of a PR background, and I’m going to put you on the spot here a little bit. You okay with that?
Falynne: Yes. I can take it.
Adam: Okay. Here is the question. It’s a challenging question, and we’re gonna kind of point and counterpoint it here a little bit. But Falynne, public relations expert and now head of global social marketing for Xerox, I want you to make the case for why social media is more important to public relations than to advertising and marketing. Or you may, if you disagree with that, make it from the marketing side. It’s a trick question, but I think it’s an important one, and I think it will spur some debate and conversation here.
Falynne: I think I can argue both sides, and actually internally the social team at Xerox was reporting into PR, and then we’ve switched to digital marketing. It’s kind of been a little bit of back and forth internally, so I think a couple of things. On the PR front, the pros certainly are this is an external communications channel, social media is, right? When you’re putting out statements, those are public statements, and you can’t just say anything you want, and if Xerox has news, we need to get it out on social. You need to get it out so folks can hear about it, and also listening. A lot of what we do on the listening side is reputation management, right? We want to hear everything folks have to say about Xerox, the good, the bad, the ugly. That really all rolls out more on the PR side.

Now, if you go the marketing side, social is a powerful channel for marketing, right? There are customers there, or prospective customers that may want to buy, and you want your content out on social so that they can get that. That’s a lot of where our content lives, on social. The audience is there. You can use social to have folks download ebooks, visit your website, fill out forms. Also, on the customer support end as well. I really think that it’s both. I think that anybody in a social role such as mine really has to wear two hats, and really strongly understand both sides. I learned the marketing side when I crossed over. I don’t have a background in marketing, but I think that if somebody’s leading and they have the marketing background, they’ve got to get up on their PR knowledge as well.

Adam: I love your answer there, and I love how you kind of approached it from the different sides. I think it’s, again, something that a lot of brands and a lot of social media pros, people listening to this podcast, are kind of wrestling with. I would ask you, if you were speaking to some younger of our colleagues in the social space or in the advertising or PR/marketing sides, would you give them any suggestions on kind of how they should be kind of working on their career path, and their career trajectory, so that they can aspire to be kind of like you, head of global social marketing at a Xerox? That’s an incredible position, and obviously your background and your education, your training, and your skills got you to that point. I’m curious what you can pull from your experience that you might want to share with others.
Falynne: Yeah. I think a background of communications, integrated marketing, is really great. One scale that we really love on our team, and a few folks on my team have it, I do not, is graphic design. I recently hired somebody who is more of a graphic designer and then she got into social, and everything is about content creation these days, and when budgets are slim, if you’re not able to outsource to an agency or you don’t have that in-house design team, having somebody that not only knows how to do the channels but can also create the content is like a double win. I would say to anyone coming up, “Learn graphic design, and get that integrated coms background.”
Adam: I completely agree with the graphic design, because you’re exactly right. Just as you said, it’s gone from textual, to image, to video. Would you have them prioritize graphic design skills, like how to be able to create graphs, and charts, and logos, and assets in Photoshop or Illustrator, or would you say, “You know, you might want to learn Premiere and Final Cut and actually learn how to operate a camera and shoot really great video, and then edit it”? Where would you put your recommendations on that spectrum?
Falynne: I think it’s all of it. You know, it’s something where you can kind of … I think maybe others would argue differently, but I think that marketing side is teachable. I mean, most companies don’t have the time to sit down with somebody with a Mac and say, “Here’s how to use Photoshop,” and do that kind of tutorial. Some of those things you have to bring to the table, but some of those marketing-type skills that I picked up along the way when I moved over from PR, I think they can be picked up as well, but some of those really technical skills I think you’ve got to come to the table with, so I would say, you know, focus on that stuff, and if you had to do one, and all of it. I mean, we do everything on our team, because we are a small team, so we do everything from create a lot of our images and content, to gifs and video, and you kind of do it all, so anything within that space is really great.
Adam: I think that’s one of the great things about what we do, is one of the biggest challenges we have, that we all have to wear a lot of different hats. But the good news is, we all get to wear a lot of different hats. For people who like to scratch a lot of different itches, it’s no longer just a creative space either. We’ve got to learn, even if you’re a very creative, storytelling, copywriter kind of based, journalistic type of person, you’ve also really got to start to learn the analytics and the media behind it, and so many different things. It’s a great time.

Falynne, I’ve got one more question for you before I hand it back over to Jay. One of the things you mentioned when you were speaking with Jay was the importance of friends and family, and that you’ve identified a lot of your constituents, a lot of your participants in social media are those. They’re your employees. They’re former employees. They’re people who just have a great association with your brand. I’m curious, Falynne, how do you empower your both current employees as well as those former employees to be kind of your social media ambassadors, and is this something that you curate, or is it more kind of laissez-faire where you’re really allowing them to do what they want to do?

Falynne: Yeah. We’ve really taken a social first strategy at Xerox, which is music to my ears as the head of social marketing, because we see social marketing as more than just managing the accounts, right? It’s inside and out. Just this year, we actually deployed a new social tool, GaggleAMP, internally. A little plug for them. We timed it for our ConnectKey launch, just to help folks within the company who do want to share, but they’re not really sure how. You know, they’re afraid. They don’t want to say something about the company they’re not supposed to, so we curate content for them to share out with their friends and family on their personal networks. We also do work with LinkedIn Elevate. We’ve been doing that for a few years, so we’ve got a few different tools in the works, but we’re always … We have an internal web board, and sometimes there’s articles, and it will say, you know, “Share with us on social.” Or, “Let’s get sharing on social.” Our CEO, Jeff Jacobson, is very big on helping us promote social and getting the word out, because we know that brand, that accounts can’t do it alone. You know, folks don’t always react well to a logo talking at them. They want to see the people behind the logo, the real Xerox people, and I think we’re doing a great job internally of helping our employees do that.
Jay: It’s exciting to have them be able to participate for the first time in conjunction with a big launch, right? That’s a great way to kind of get that initial enthusiasm, as opposed to, “Well, here’s just … It’s a Wednesday.” That’s not quite as much of a reason to get them fired up.
Falynne: Absolutely. We just also redid our social media guidelines and put them out on Xerox.com, available for the world to see. We’ve got nothing to hide. Every company has guidelines, and that’s just another … Just another I think point of our transparency, and just encouraging our folks to get out there and get involved.
Jay: That’s fantastic.
Falynne: They’re all really excited about it. It’s a new Xerox. You know, I just said I had the company separation at the end of the year, and they’re excited to be part of history, especially with the ConnectKey launch.
Jay: We’ll make sure to link that up in the show notes. Go to SocialPros.com for not only this amazing episode but all 245 prior episodes. We’ll make sure to link up those social media policies, so when you come to the site, you can grab those as well, and of course the free ebooks and such that we mentioned during the sponsorship section.

Falynne, I want to ask you the few questions that we’ve asked every single one of our guests, and now you as well. The first one is, what one tip would you give somebody who was looking to become a social pro? Maybe it’s learn graphic design, but what one tip would you give them?

Falynne: I would say to research more about the business behind social media. Often we get folks applying for jobs saying, “I know social media.” And it’s really they know using it at a personal level. They don’t quite understand how to transfer that to the business level. I think it’s really about researching and understanding what goes into the job. It’s not just you play around on Facebook, so you will know how to do it. It’s just a lot more than that.
Jay: Boy. If I could just like take that little piece there and use it as my ringtone, that would be fantastic. The last question for you, Falynne Finagan, who is the head of global social marketing at Xerox, and thanks so much for being on the show, if you could do a Skype call with any living person, who would it be and why?
Falynne: That’s a great question. I’m not sure. Any living person. I’m going to have to take a rain check, Jay. I don’t know. I can think of non-living …
Jay: No. You can’t take a rain check. You’ve got to … You can go … I know your husband is named Jason, and your son is named Jason, so you could go with one of the many Jasons in your life.
Falynne: That’s true. I would definitely … I would pick my husband. I would pick my husband, and he would be holding my son, because he’s a one-year-old baby, so he couldn’t probably do the chat on his own.
Jay: I don’t know. The one-year-olds these days are pretty adept.
Adam: Have you seen a one-year-old with an iPad? It’s pretty crazy.
Jay: Yeah.
Adam: There’s probably a good video of a one-year-old doing Skype.
Falynne: It’s such a great question, though, Jay, because I think that people automatically think of folks from history, you know, rather than like, “Who would I talk to today that’s actually around?” It’s a great question.
Jay: We always promise that we’re going to do an infographic of who gets mentioned the most. We’ve had several Elon Musks. We’ve had several Oprahs. We had several President Obamas, typically, when he was president. Not so much since then. We had some Bill Gates. We had several Mark Zuckerbergs.
Adam: Richard Branson.
Jay: Steve Jobs is no longer … Yes. Richard Branson. Steve Jobs no longer in the running, obviously. We should do that. I’m going to put … We’ve got a new intern starting at Convince and Convert, and that’s going to be one of his projects, is to go through 256 episodes and see how everybody answered and turn it into an infographic.
Falynne: That would be terrific.
Adam: Yeah. The good news, he’ll only have to listen to the last 45 seconds of each of those episodes.
Jay: Of each show. Well, actually it’s in the show notes, so it wouldn’t be even that hard, but in your case, we’re going to say your husband, Jason Finagan.
Falynne: That’s right.
Jay: That’s your official … Your official answer for the infographic.
Falynne: Yes.
Jay: That will be the only Jason Finagan on the infographic, of that I can promise.
Falynne: That’s right. That’s right.
Jay: Isolated him in the future content marketing play that will unfurl here at Social Pros. Do you get to go to all of these crazy, far-flung locations where you guys have offices? Do you ever like get to go to, go visit your Xerox Mexico friends and all that, or they just keep you stashed away in New York?
Falynne: Yes. I’ve actually been to quite a few of our offices. I have been over to Germany. I’ve been to France. I went to our Moscow office several years back, which was a really interesting trip. It’s just so great to go meet with the folks around the globe, especially at Xerox in some of the developing markets. They’re just so proud to be part of the brand. You know, it’s a famous brand, and they’re so proud of their work. They’re so proud to show it off, and it’s just really refreshing when you’re able to meet with those folks. We’re all over the place. I know there are folks on my team in New York. There are folks in London. We’ve got somebody in Connecticut. Always whenever we get a chance to do those face-to-face meetings, it’s really great.
Jay: That’s gotta be a lot of fun. I’m sure they’re like, “Oh, no. Falynne’s here from corporate. Look busy.”
Falynne: Yeah. Well you know, actually they seem … I don’t know. They seem excited just to show what it’s like in their office, and even their cities, especially if it’s a place where I’ve never been and a country I’ve never been. Usually a part of the deal is meeting the folks at Xerox, but also they really want you to understand their culture, so they’ll take you out to eat, and around the city, and it’s really, really fun. That’s one of the fun things about Xerox. We’re such a big company, and we’re in so many different locations that there are folks that work at the company for 30 years, and it’s because we are so big that they’ve been able to jump from job to job, just like I did. I started in PR, and then I moved into social, and who knows what’s next?
Jay: Yeah. If you want to stay, there’s definitely a role for you. There’s lots of things to do.
Falynne: Yeah. Yes.
Jay: Awesome. Thank you so much for being part of Social Pros. It was fantastic to have you on the show. Congratulations on all the terrific work that you and your team are doing. I know there’s a lot of people involved, not just you, but you’re doing a great job leading them. Really appreciate your time and your expertise.
Falynne: Thanks for having me, guys.
Jay: Our pleasure. Ladies and gentlemen, this has been another episode of hopefully your favorite podcast, Social Pros. Would love your thinking on the show. Two ways to do that. You can either leave us a review on iTunes, which would be swell, or just send me an email. My real email address is Jay@JayBehr.com. That’s not some sort of fake, weird autoresponder. That’s my actual email. Just send me a note. Let me know who you are, what you do. Do you like the show? What don’t you like about the show? Adam and I love your feedback, and next week … We went from big company this week, Adam. Next week we’re going the exact opposite, which is super fun. Next week, John Pugh, who is the proprietor of the House of Swank clothing company is going to be on the podcast. They have four people in the company total, and they are unbelievable at social media. They are one of the best makers of t-shirts that you will ever see. We’re going to talk to John next week about how they do it.
Adam: Small but swanky.
Jay: Small but swanky, indeed. That’s coming up next week on the big Social Pros show. As I mentioned, go to SocialPros.com for downloads and episode notes and all kinds of free goodies and extra stuff from every single episode of the last, what, six years of content. Thanks as always. I’m Jay Behr from Convince and Convert. He’s Adam Brown from Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and this has been Social Pros.

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