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How Wish Puts a Human Face to Online Shopping

Authors: 10XMarketing Carmen Collins
Posted Under: Social Pros Podcast
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Hosted By
10XMarketing

Anna Hrach

Convince & Convert
10XMarketing

Daniel Lemin

Convince & Convert
10XMarketing

Erika Lovegreen

ICUC Social
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Carmen Collins, Senior Social Media Lead at Wish, takes the mic on this episode of Social Pros to discuss how brands can ‘humanize’ their marketing strategies and create true authenticity.

Humanize your BrandHow Wish Puts a Human Face to Online Shopping

Connecting with customers is vital for the growth of any brand. But how can you connect with your customers on a human level?
Carmen Collins, the incredible Senior Social Media Lead at Wish, pushes brands to “put a human face” on their online shopping experience by shining a spotlight on the employees of the organization.
Customers want to do business with brands that they like and connect with. This means that if you want to increase engagement, boost conversions, and get people talking about your business, you need to embrace and showcase authenticity.
So, how can you do this? Well, I’d start by listening to what Carmen has to say on her fourth time here on Social Pros!

In This Episode:

  • 04:15 – How Wish makes the online shopping experience fun (and addictive!)
  • 06:58 – An insider look at the business objective of Wish’s social media strategy
  • 09:46 – What Wish’s team structure looks like now that the brand is transitioning from a privately owned company to a public company
  • 13:46 – How the social and influencer teams work separately
  • 16:20 – How the customer care team handles customer support questions
  • 18:08 – The power of leveraging Instagram Live
  • 21:45 – Why more brands need to show empathy and authenticity
  • 25:08 – How Wish has put a human face on their brand
  • 30:23 – Why social media pros and marketers should learn as much as possible about NFT communities
  • 32:20 – How to get started with Discord
  • 36:27 – A look at how Wish approaches their content strategy on TikTok vs Instagram reels
  • 41:14 – Tips for balancing efficiency with effectiveness

Quotes From This Episode:

“Put your own shoes on, lace them up, and walk beside someone to try to understand what they're going through.” Click To Tweet
“Learn social media by being an influencer and don’t work for ‘the man’ at all. Go make your own money.” @CShirkeyCollins
“If you are in social media or marketing, you better have NFT communities experience on your resume.” @CShirkeyCollins

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Episode Transcript

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Carmen

Collins:

One

employee got her son a pterodactyl costume in the middle of February. It wasn’t even Halloween. And this picture of her son with this awesome pterodactyl costume and the cat looking at the kid, like, yeah, I’m out. Like, I don’t know what y’all are doing up in here, but I’m, I’m not gonna have any part in this. And I’m like, that’s an Instagram post. That’s humanizing a wish product in a moment where it’s again, not authentic. It’s empathetic,

Jay

Baer:

You

know, Anna Hrach, this is now well over 500 episodes of this podcast. And while I don’t have a transcript of every single episode in front of me, I feel almost certain that that’s the first time that pterodactyl’s have been mentioned on social pros and no surprise that it was our friend Carmen Collins, back on the show for the fourth time. And what an episode, the work that she’s doing at wish is really amazing and, and shining the spotlight and rightfully so on the employees of the organization, even though it really is a retail eCommerce company.

Anna

Hrach:

Yeah.

Carmen does such an amazing job of walking us through her entire social strategy and how she’s changing things at wish and their approach. And if you even just go to wishes TikTok right now, you will see everything that she talks about, employees all over their talks. It’s, you know, we throw around the word genuine and authentic, but man, it does not get more genuine, authentic as this. You will literally see other employees, their social people. It’s great.

Jay

Baer:

And

that’s why she’s been on the show. Now four times that’s not an accident. She really is truly exceptional at her occupation. And we love having Carmen Collins here on the show and because she’s only been at wish now five months used to be at Cisco. She has a, a really interesting perspective about how to come in brand new job and company going from private to public and all the things that, that entails really fascinating episode here on social pros. In fact, speaking of Carmen Collins, she is one of the contributors to our social pros, 500 ebook that we created, which is all about the best social media lessons from our favorite guests here on the show, going all the way back to January of 2012, we asked a lot of these multiple time guests about what’s changed in social since they were on the show, or since they got started advice for social media professionals, it’s a really rich Milan of advice and content. I want you to download this ebook. You’re gonna love it. It’s called social pros sort of the best of, and if you go to Bitly slash social pros, 500 B I dot L Y slash social pros 5 0, 0, you can get it. We won’t even charge you for it. We just want you to have it. I am Jay bear from convince a convert. She’s Anna HIRA from convince a convert. Carmen Collins from wish is our guest this week on social pros. Thanks for being here.

Jay

Baer:

We

can’t keep her off the show every time we think she couldn’t possibly be on social pros. Again, here she is on social pros. Again, a friend of the program, a friend of yours now with an all new role. It is Carmen Collins here for the fourth time on social pros. Carmen is now the senior social media lead at wish formerly at Cisco for many years. Carmen, welcome back to social pros.

Carmen

Collins:

It

is so good to be back. I wanna know when I get my social pros jacket, I feel like I need a purple jacket. You like how on Saturday night? Like

Jay

Baer:

I

think it’s a

Carmen

Collins:

Hosted

a certain number of ti. Yeah. I need a

Jay

Baer:

Jacket

that they do. Well, here’s the deal just a quick tip for all the listeners out there. I’ve done 500 episodes and don’t have a robe. So you’re gonna be waiting a while. I think this is the actual, the actual truth of it. We don’t have budget. We don’t have budget for, for robes at this point.

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

we’ll just go buy our own at this point. Exactly. We’ll have our exactly. We’ll have our club meetings. We’ll sell some NFTs. We’ll have our own club. It’ll be great.

Jay

Baer:

Social

pros NFTs. Now we’re talking when you get Brian Fanzo back on the show and figure that out. Carmen, for those who are not familiar tell ’em about wish what it is, how it works, et cetera.

Carmen

Collins:

Wish

is one of the most downloadable or downloadable downloaded shopping apps. It is all about making shopping fun. If you haven’t tried wish go download it and see one of the differences is if you go on a normal shopping app and you say, you look for an apple pencil, you’ll get shown apple pencils. But if you go on wish, you’ll get shown pulses and pencils and things you didn’t know you needed for your, for your iPhone. So that’s how I like to explain the fun that wish puts into your shopping experience.

Jay

Baer:

It,

it really is fun. It’s the algorithm is great and it gets better over time at kinda understanding what you might like when I think about wish, you know, like when you’re like at a physical store and you’ve got the checkout aisle and they put all these things in the aisle that you don’t actually need, but maybe you do. And you didn’t even know those things existed sometimes that’s wish, right? It’s like an entire app of only the stuff that you find in the checkout aisle at some level. It’s amazing. And one of the things that wish is really, really good at is super deals like really, really, really great affordable deals on a lot of stuff. So if you haven’t checked it out, you should, and the stats are crazy, right? It’s like 90 million, a hundred million monthly active users. The last time I looked it, when your press releases, it’s like a couple million products sold every day, which blows my mind that it’s just hard to even conceptualize that kind of volume and Carmen, I think it’s true that that wish is in a lot of places, not just the us, is that correct?

Carmen

Collins:

It

is not just in the us. We have a lot of users in the us but we are focused on a lot of countries around the globe. And it’s also a myth that all of our merchants are in China. We have merchants around the globe as well, and we have a lot of merchants in the us, and we’re doing a lot of work this year, specifically about making the shopping experience even better and more fun and more trustworthy and, you know, just a really good experience. And we’re putting a lot of focus and shoppable video. We think discovery eCommerce is, is kind of the way to go. So doing a lot of cool stuff and I get to talk about it on our social channels. And so I might have one of the coolest jobs there. I don’t know. I

Jay

Baer:

Would,

you gotta be right up there towards the top. You’ve been there. I think we said five months or so we were talking about off air. What would you say is the role or the business objective of, of social at wish today may change over time, but, but sitting here today, what’s the, what’s the point of social? I wish.

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

I was brought on, so let me take you on a little bit of a historical journey with me. When so wish was a privately owned company until about a year and a half ago when it iPod and became a public company. And as you know, there’s a different business model when you’re a private company than when you become a public company and wish has gone through those growing pains of becoming a public company. So when you’ve got this startup mentality where everybody’s doing a little bit of everything and there’s not really a strategy, it’s just everybody do it, right? And then you become a public company. And while wish is nowhere near what a corporation, you know, I came from Cisco. So I’m adjusting to the difference between being in a big corporation and more of a startup feel. It’s not that big corporate feel, but it does need a little bit more process and a little more structure and so wishes getting used to that.

Carmen

Collins:

So

my job when I came in was to give them some structure and strategy around social media, a purpose for different channels for a while. It was, what do you wanna say? Well, just put it in social. And I came in and I said, why, why are you putting it here? Why is that on LinkedIn and not on Twitter? Or why are you trying to put that in TikTok and not on reel or, you know, whatever, whatever content I was being given. I kept asking the question, why or what are your goals, or what are you trying to do? Because social media has got pretty big tool belt. I’ve got a lot of tools. I have a hammer and a screwdriver and you know, what are you trying to do? And I ha I have different ways, you know, to, to do it. And they didn’t have that before. So my, my first order business was just, what’s our strategy. What’s our strategy on LinkedIn. What’s our strategy on TikTok. What’s our strategy on Instagram and identifying those and, you know, training the rest of the company on, okay, we have a strategy now, and that’s a good thing. And trying to figure out where everything fits. It’s kind of been a fun journey of putting the puzzle pieces together.

Anna

Hrach:

I

feel like putting the puzzle pieces together is the most apt statement for how that process goes. Cuz I think probably every listener has been in that position where, you know, they’ve gone into an organization and they’re now being given the wheel to drive everything. And it’s like, okay, we gotta do a lot of sifting and sorting first. And in addition to doing all of those deep dives and figuring out, you know, goals and objectives and strategy, you also inherited a team. And I was just curious if you could talk us through how what that team structure looks like what they kind of do today and how you kind of jumped in and made that transition because sometimes, you know, somebody coming in and changing direction can be a little bit scary to some team members. Sometimes it’s a welcome breath of fresh air. And then just curious what your approach was, especially as you know, we’re, we’re talking now about the great resignation and a lot of people are probably facing this situation.

Carmen

Collins:

Sure.

Well, again, since wish is changing from a privately owned company into a public company, teams are also a little more fluid and flexible. So I have a larger team. So we have the community team, which is what I sit under and that sits under the brand marketing team. So I have a few direct reports and my team is pretty much built around channel owners. I have three direct reports now. And so we’re broken down by each person owns different social channels and that’s their remit throughout the day. I have a peer who leads our influencer marketing programs and she and I are lock step pretty much day to day at it’s to the point where we almost even don’t even have to have one on one meetings anymore. We just talk so much throughout the day that it’s like, why are we having another meeting?

Carmen

Collins:

it’s like, we just know what we’re thinking at this point. Our teams flex and move together in a way where our, the people who report to her are often posting influencer content on some of the channels that my team owns, because it’s just easier. They know what content they’re getting in. They know what our calendar is, and it’s just easier to, to move that way. So it’s less of a, a structured team and more of a fluid again, it’s still a very startup environment. And when I came in, I think, I think the team was ready. I think they said we’ve needed some structure for a while. I think, I think everybody in the social media space and I actually, I don’t even think it’s just the social media space. The last two years have been hard. I think on everybody.

Carmen

Collins:

I

think we’re all just done. I think we would all like to take one collective vacation to somewhere I don’t even think we care where it is at this point. It could be you know, just some small town in middle America. I think we’d all be happy to go, but you know, I think everybody was just tired and, and not really having an understanding of how, how they can help. And that’s the one thing I love about wish is everybody wants to jump in and maybe that’s part of the startup environment that I had personally never experienced before everybody just wants to jump in and wants to have impact and, and how can I help? And even if it’s not what I do, like what can I do to help? And so to have that structure is, is something that I think they’re like, yeah, we’ve needed this for a while. I think they’re really excited about it. At least that’s, that’s what they tell me. Of course I’m new. They could be just telling me that, but that’s what they tell me.

Anna

Hrach:

I

think you would for sure know, by now if they were just telling you that. But I also real quick would love to sign up for wherever that vacation maybe anyway. Yeah. Let’s all go. Yeah. Let’s I’m on,

Jay

Baer:

We've

had folks from visit California and visit Orlando on the show. I’m sure they would underwrite this social media getaway you know, think about the gram. It’d be huge. It’s a good idea. Yeah,

Carmen

Collins:

Let's

do it.

Jay

Baer:

Carmen,

tell me if I’m wrong on this, but I think you had told me that the influencer team and the social team are separate at, at wish. Is that accurate?

Carmen

Collins:

Yes.

We sit under the same manager. Mm-Hmm But we are separate teams.

Jay

Baer:

How

does that, how do you work together day to day? Cause it seems to me like certainly what influencers are going to do is largely social. And then you are doing social work as well. How do you coordinate that? And, and how far in advance would you sort of know that an influencer might be doing something that, that includes wish? Just kinda what, what are the mechanics of that look like?

Carmen

Collins:

Yeah,

well, like I said, my peer on that side of the house, the influencer marketing side, she and I are talking many, many times a day and sort of the way, at least in my head and I, and I hope I do her justice because she’s got a big job. She’s got a big job. The way I see it is more operational versus content, if that makes us operational versus editorial. So she’s managing the relationships, finding the right influencers, managing the contracts, getting them onboarded. And I’m on the other side, it’s like two sides of a coin. I’m on the other side saying, okay, here’s the themes. We’d like the influencers to talk about. And I am a huge proponent of, I don’t wanna tell the influencers what to do at all. I wanna know what, what they love about wish. I wanna know what they love about the products they’re talking about.

Carmen

Collins:

I

wanna know what they can do to boost the brand and talk about the brand and I wanna let them do it and the way they wanna do it, if they wanna do a weird dance or make music with spoons or whatever it is they wanna do with it, I’m good. Like I want, I want it to be their voice, but I also want them to know what, what our themes are and, and what we’re talking about and, and how we’re talking about it. So there’s a blend. So I think more of my team is the editorial side of that and thinking, okay, for example, St. Patrick’s day is coming up and we wanna do a, you know, talk about the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. And there’s a, Lepar, I’m making all this up, honestly, we’re not gonna do a Lecan campaign, but, and then pass that information on to my, my peer in influencer marketing. So she can then pass it on to the influencers and say, Hey, you know, these are the kind of campaigns we’re thinking, does this align with your brand? And, and, and what you’re trying to talk about with your audience. So I feel like that’s how we a good way to split it. It’s not, it’s not always that even she and I brainstorm ideas together about both things. But that’s the easiest way I can think of to, to separate it.

Jay

Baer:

Same

kind of thing on the care side. I mean, you’ve got 2 million products sold a day. That’s a lot of customers, a few of them are gonna be unhappy just cuz of math. How, how does that work if somebody’s like, Hey, you know, my, my dog figurine was broken or whatever. Are they reaching out to you? Is there a separate care team? Do you coordinate with them? What does that look like?

Carmen

Collins:

There

is a separate care team and I will be honest having just onboarded at wish. There’s so much to learn. And that it, you know, I have talked to the customer care team and that is something that is on my to-do list that I am still trying to get to. I feel like there’s just my to-do list is so long and I don’t want people to think that what, what I wanna talk to them about is not important. There’s just so much of it. And it’s a global team and I wanna make sure my global people are taken care of too. And sometimes I feel like I might be letting them down in a way too, because our focus right now is the us. And there’s just not enough time in the day. So yes, that we have a separate customer support team. And they, we get a lot of customer support questions through our social channels and our customer customer support team uses similar, similar. They use the same tools that we do. But I just don’t have yet enough time with them under my belt to, to give them the kudos that I’m sure they deserve.

Anna

Hrach:

I

mean, you mean in five months you haven’t taken over the entire wish world and it’s, you know, conquered. No, it takes like a, I feel like it

Carmen

Collins:

Takes

like a I’m human solid,

Anna

Hrach:

Right?

I know it takes like a solid year. I feel like no matter what to get like a firm grasp on everything. Carmen, one thing I’m really curious about is in social pros, conversations past, you talked a lot about live video and its importance, and I’ve noticed with wish there’s quite a bit of live live video. A lot of Instagram lives. Curious if you could talk through some of the process and, and how you are able to you know, choose guests for Instagram live, who you put on a camera and just your, your approach to it.

Carmen

Collins:

Yeah.

I was really lucky when I came onto the team that I had a great team and social is interesting because I’ve worked with a lot of people in social who are either introverts or ambiverts, which is interesting to me because as a social person, I’m an extrovert and I don’t mind being in front of the camera. I don’t particularly wanna be at this point. I, you know, I, I would rather manage the team, then be in front of the camera. I wanna mentor them and, and help them. I will be if I, if I’m needed and it doesn’t bother me, but a lot of social media people would rather not be in front of the camera. Which is surprising to me cuz it’s social media, but I get it now having managed a lot of people who are, who would prefer to have someone else in front of the camera, but my team is very camera ready here at wish.

Carmen

Collins:

And

they do a great job in front of the camera. So if we need to pull off something quickly and that came in really handy in the pandemic, you know, I went back and watched a lot of the content that came before my time, just so I could get to know the team and get to know the content they were creating that came in really handy when you were at home and you didn’t have an office full of people to help you create content. I mean, duo lingo is doing a great job on TikTok right now because they’re in an office and they have access to their mascot. And it’s really easy for them to break that fourth wall because they have, you know, the ability and the, and the space to do it. Right now our offices are closed and we can’t.

Carmen

Collins:

And,

but when you have a talented staff on, on camera staff you can do that. So we could pull something off quickly. We have actually, after we record today, we have an Instagram live with one of our influencers. We have really good relationships with some of our influencers that are, you know, have worked with wish for a long time and are just super fans of wish. And this particular influencer was on one of the she was on, what was the name of the show? It was, it came on during the holidays where the Hogwarts houses, the Harry Potter Hogwarts houses were doing like a game show battling each other. It was

Anna

Hrach:

Like

tournament of houses, right? Tournament of houses, Harry Potter, tournament of houses. Yeah.

Carmen

Collins:

I,

I am, I am, I am not living up to my Harry Potter fandom today by not remembering the name of that show. But again, she’s such a great personality and she’s gonna be doing an Instagram live with us today. So we have those influencers that we can work with as well. And so yeah, we we’ve got, this is the second company I’ve worked at where I don’t have the problem of not enough content. Usually content creators are like, well, am I gonna create, oh my gosh, I’ve gotta have something for next week. And we don’t seem to have that problem at wish either. And I didn’t have it at Cisco. I it’s never, oh my gosh, I don’t have enough it’s we have so much of it. What’s the right story to tell. And I’ve been very lucky that way. That’s a good problem to have, I’ll take that problem.

Anna

Hrach:

So

in terms of some of the live videos that you do, when you do, you know, when you are doing topic selection, are you focusing super heavily on those products? Are you more, more focusing on, you know, different topics? Like what’s your preferred approach with wish now that you’ve been able to do lots and lots of actually live live streams?

Carmen

Collins:

Yeah.

Well, Jay and I have had some conversations about this because I know he’s big on this topic as well. I’ve been doing a lot of researching and writing recently about empathy and the key to empathy is a lot of people think when you, when you use the term empathy, people don’t know what this means. I think in general, and they use this old adage walking in other people’s shoes. And I don’t think that’s a very good explanation of what empathy is. I think it’s, I think a better way to describe it is put your own shoes on, lace them up and walk beside someone to try to understand what they’re going through. You can never pick yourself up and put your, it it’s impossible. You don’t know if their shoes are new or old. Do they have a hole in them? You know, you know, you’ll know this.

Carmen

Collins:

If

you’re a lady and you’ve got high heels on and you’re walking on cobblestone, it’s a whole different experience, right? So you’re never gonna fully understand somebody, but if you walk beside them, then your shoes start to feel like theirs. And I use that analogy a lot when I’m thinking about what content I’m I’m trying to deliver is who is my audience on that channel? What are they, what are they looking for? What are they responding to using those metrics to find out what’s getting the most views? What, what are they engaging with the most? And then trying to figure out how our content can serve that need the most. So on TikTok, it’s gonna look very different then on reels then on LinkedIn, for example. And when we’re trying to find pro products or what content we’re gonna talk about on Facebook, we’re gonna lean a little heavier on products because our audience on Facebook is looked.

Carmen

Collins:

That's

where our, what we call our promotion seekers. They’re the ones looking for the deals. They’re the ones looking for the weird, cool wish products. Like, like Jay said that you’re finding in the checkout line. , you’re, you’re picking up that you didn’t know you wanted. That’s what they’re looking for. Whereas on Instagram and maybe Pinterest, they’re looking for the, the, the more trend inspiration, the outfit you can put together for less, you know, what’s in the shopping cart of an influencer, or, you know, if you’re an outdoors person what’s in your shopping cart. So it it’s that idea of empathy. And that walking beside that, I try to use when I’m picking content. And that’s what I’m trying to mentor my team in doing. And it starts to become less. You, you start to think less of the term empathy when you do it. It sort of becomes natural. But when you’re starting out doing it, it’s empathy mapping and, and, and really thinking about it when we put the content together.

Jay

Baer:

One

of the things we’ve talked about here on the show when we’ve had retailers on social pro, so Sam’s club and and others sometimes it can be difficult to put that human face in social because people think of it as an aggregation of products and it is, but it’s first and foremost, an aggregation of people who then in turn, aggregate the products. You obviously have done an incredible job and have been recognized and rightfully so all around the world for your previous work, in, in sort of humanizing Cisco and using social to do so. Where do you see human humanization efforts with, with wish kinda what is, I know this has gotta be part of your master plan, cuz this is your thing. What, what’s your, what’s your strategy here for putting the, the, the people face on the collection of wacky products?

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

it really is this close collaboration with our influencers to start. And I think we’re gonna have to combine the social strategy a little bit more with the influencer content we get. I know that my peer in the influencer marketing space is looking more at niche content from niche influencers. And it’s about how they use the products. And again, letting them tell us how, how they use the products and what they, what they love, maybe what they love. Isn’t the, the product that makes wish necessarily the most money at the time. But it’s, it’s that blend, right? And I’m always going to be a huge proponent of using employees. To tell that story now it was easier in an employer branding role, which is my last role because that’s a natural fit. Although when I started at my last role, that wasn’t a natural fit and I built it and here I might have to do something similar.

Carmen

Collins:

It's

not gonna be all employees all the time. But for example, when you worked at wish, we get wish cash. So in the app you can earn wish cash by referring friends and so forth or, or doing different activities in the app. And so part of, one of the fun things about being wish employees, you earn wish cash. And we have a slack space where employees share what they spend their cash on. And I see these products and for example, one employee got her son, a tactal costume in the middle of February. It wasn’t even Halloween. And this picture of her son with this awesome TAACT costume and the cat looking at the kid like, yeah, I’m out. Like, I don’t know what y’all are doing up in here, but this I’m not gonna have any part in this. And I’m like, that’s an Instagram post.

Carmen

Collins:

That's

humanizing a wish product in a moment where it’s again, not authentic, it’s empathetic. Another employee was saying, I bought this, I bought this sweatshirt, it’s got a hundred Nick, Nicholas cage bases out. It was a very meme sweatshirt, right? And I’m like, again, that’s a Facebook post, right. And it’s not something we’re gonna do every day, but just seeing what employees spend their cash on from, you know, Nick cage, sweatshirts to air fryers and tools. And so I see this coming from employees and I am always, my brain is always spinning, like that’s content and that’s gonna humanize the brand.

Jay

Baer:

This

probably belabor the point, but it seems to me, Carmen, that you could use your wish cash to purchase a social pros, four time guest robe just one of with, or without Tara redact. It’s your choice. It just seems like something that could be done, but please go on it.

Carmen

Collins:

Wouldn't

have it. Wouldn’t have the right logo on it though. I could buy a fancy, like an ombre robe probably. Oh, now we’re talking, but it, it, it wouldn’t, it would have to be purple J because know,

Jay

Baer:

Happy

to save you the logo in high res ups for, and, and

Carmen

Collins:

I

would have to, I would have to iron it on after . That’s true.

Jay

Baer:

That's

true. Go ahead, Anna.

Carmen

Collins:

I,

I just

Anna

Hrach:

Love

that as a four time guest, that’s the new prize as a high re social pros logo to go make your own robe.

Carmen

Collins:

That's

I’m,

Anna

Hrach:

I'm

still think. I, I think I might have forgotten my question now. I’m

Jay

Baer:

Social

media. People are DIY. That’s how they got into social media.

Carmen

Collins:

I'm

serious. Jay. We need to have like a purple robe NFT collection. That’s limited only to guests that earn JCO and you have to be a four or five time guest.

Jay

Baer:

I

like it. You know, we do have hats social pros, hats, but we started that in the first year of the show. So it’s been like nine years since we had hats. There, there are collectors items at this point, we should make an NFT of that. What do you guys do with NFTs at wish? It feels like it’s a natural opportunity.

Carmen

Collins:

We

are focusing right now on things like shoppable videos. I think we’re a little ways away from NFT world. However me personally, I have di been diving deep into the NFT in crypto spaces because I, I think that in two years from now, if you are in social media or marketing, you had better have NFT communities experience on your resume. I think that having spent the majority of my free time in the last several months, being in discord communities, they are what Facebook was 10 years ago and the community can make or break an NFT project. They can make or break a blue chip project. I mean, some of these NFTs, you know, sorry, Gary V but everybody knows that his V friends are not high art, right. They’re just doodles, but the community is what makes it worth the thousands and thousands of dollars it’s worth. And you have brands like Adidas and Gucci and Puma, Atari, Nintendo getting into the metaverse. And if you, if you’re in the social media space, you better know how these communities work because it’s coming for you.

Jay

Baer:

Yeah.

Could, yep.

Carmen

Collins:

Couldn't

couldn’t for you big time. Yep. So I’m learning it now. I’m also learning that you should not invest what you cannot afford to lose.

Jay

Baer:

Indeed.

Don’t use up all your wish cash on, on don’t

Carmen

Collins:

Use

your wish cash. No,

Jay

Baer:

Don't

do that. And is not doing that.

Anna

Hrach:

No.

And also, I mean, if you use up all of your, I mean, how are you gonna get your robe if you can’t

Carmen

Collins:

That's

true. I need, I need my wish cash for my purple Andrey. Yeah. Robe.

Anna

Hrach:

Carmen,

you just brought up discord, which is something that we really have not talked about with anybody else on the show. And, and, and, you know, is there’s so many, really, really good communities within other platforms. I think that get overlooked and I think discord is really being overlooked, but you mentioned its importance was just curious if you could give us a little bit of a, an overview on how you’re looking at discord, how you’re looking at the communities in there and how other social pros can start to jump into discord as well.

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

and to be a hundred percent transparent, I’m not looking at it from a wish perspective at this moment. Again, discord and, and Twitter are, and I’m, I’m still trying to figure that out. Why Twitter is the, the choice of the NFT community. Instagram is, is growing in that space, but discord is where, where it all happens, where it goes down in the NFT world. And so, you know, but I think, I think another similar experience that a lot of brands look at is probably something like Reddit. I think a lot of brands probably, or very consumery brands look at places like Twitch. That’s another sort of crypto world place where people hang out. I think these offer an interesting challenge in that, how are you gonna measure ’em companies that measure engagement and, and reach and so forth on social also should probably think really hard about how they’re going to integrate these into their measurement platforms, because again, it’s coming and it’s coming fast.

Carmen

Collins:

I

just, especially in discord itself, it’s kind of a mix of clubhouse. What clubhouse and where did that go by the way clubhouse it’s kind of the clubhouse Twitter spaces mix with kind of a slack feel. So you’ve got a chat functionality, you’ve got a voice functionality and you’ve got moderators. It’s kind of this idea of decentralized, you know, it’s, it’s an interesting mix, but it really is. If you can build the strong community, if you can make your community feel like they wanna be there, it’s not, I’m just here to say, you know, we’re all gonna make it, let’s go to the moon, you know, everybody hydrate and sit up straight and might watch your posture. And, you know, the, the stuff you see people say in these communities that that’s really funny that they’re just there to grind out comments to get, you know, NFTs.

Carmen

Collins:

But

if you, you can tell the communities that are really strong and, and really believe in what they’re doing. It really, it really does. It feels like Facebook when it was before the reach apocalypse, when it was a, when it was a real community. When the friends you had were really friends, when the people who followed you as a brand were really there to hear what you had to say as a brand. I’m sure at some point it will get branded like everything else. But if you look at the brands that are on discord, like Gucci, like Adidas, they’re not ad like they’re still very community driven. And yeah, I wish I, I wish I had a crystal ball because then I could write a book and be rich and you know, sit back and go to wherever this little town we’re all gonna go to as

Jay

Baer:

Someone

who, As written six books and recording this, I correlation we’re

Carmen

Collins:

Darn
Jay

Baer:

Road

to riches.

Carmen

Collins:

Well

then maybe we could just open, you know, open a consultancy to tell people how to do it. There you go.

Jay

Baer:

Discord,

discord, consultancy. I like it. You never know

Jay

Baer:

Karma.

I wanted to ask you you, you mentioned earlier about having a disparate approach for reels versus TikTok. For example, I know it’s something that is on a lot of people’s minds. Obviously meta is putting all their eggs in the reals basket, almost laughably. So at some level and, and you also still see a lot of people putting content on TikTok and then just putting the exact same content on reels, even with the, to the degree that TikTok logo is in the, in the shot. Talk a little bit about how you think about those as different content approaches, even though the mechanics of, of both are kind of, sort of similar.

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

I can only speak to every, brand’s got a different audience, but I know from managing several brands now and also talking to people that have managed similar brands, my audience on TikTok is drastically different than my audience on reels. So while the functionality is the same, my audience is drastically different. My TikTok audience is generally way younger and they’re gonna react to things differently than my reals audience, who I think personally on Instagram, I think is still re resistant to this new newsfeed. That’s reals driven. I know I am. I’m used to the Instagram photography, visual feel like I for, I keep forgetting that my feed is all reals now. And I was in the doctor’s office the other day waiting to get seen. And I started to scroll through my feed and the noise went. I’m like, you know, and I’m, I’m like, oh, sorry, everybody.

Carmen

Collins:

I

forgot that there were, you know, reels now . So I think it’s a different experience. I think it’s a different expectation. I’m still fully 100% about hub and spoke content. I think you can create one piece of content and make it work in different platforms. I’m, I’m certainly not saying that every brand has to go create six different pieces of content, but how you present it on TikTok and how you present it on real should be two different things. And the platforms themselves have built this in, I mean, tos new terms and service or terms of service, which I’m sure no one read when they accepted it last week with the new terms of service basically said that they’re gonna deprioritize content that is, is not created in the app. I mean, essentially, that’s what they said. You know, if you upload content into it, it’s just not gonna appear as

Jay

Baer:

Often,

which I, which I think totally is fair. Right. I mean that doesn’t, I agree. Yeah. I mean, it’s that I don’t, I don’t see that as out of bounds or, or no,

Carmen

Collins:

The

brands need to stop doing it. And, and we have, we, you know, we always have this argument as social folks and, and, and brand folks, you need to stop producing videos outside the apps, or you need to produce videos outside the apps and then edit it in the apps because it has, and that’s the thing. And I, and I, and I tell my team, I’m like, again, create one piece of content, but just create the video piece, upload it, put the Instagram texts and stickers on it. And Instagram put the tick top texts and stickers on it because they’re two different things. Use greens, by the way. I don’t think it’s any secret that I think the dunking donuts social team is amazing. It helps that they market a donut, cuz I think if we marketed donuts, we could all sort of phone it in, at least they don’t phone it in. And I say, what I think makes you

Jay

Baer:

A

lot of weird, cool stuff you can market too.

Carmen

Collins:

true, but it’s not a donut, you know? And that’s what I love about them. They don’t phone it in, but they, they make something beautiful and branded and it looks like an ad and you’re like, oh, but they put it on a green screen in front of somebody reacting in front of it on an Instagram reels. And it looks like social first content and it’s brilliant. That’s what brands need to figure out. And that’s what, that’s the difference between you create a thing, one piece of content and you present it two different ways or three different ways or however many pieces, you know, how many channels you’re on. I think that’s what I mean when I make you have to present it differently to different audiences.

Jay

Baer:

Yeah.

And then of course brands say, well, that’s great Carmen, but it’s not very easy to make videos natively in the platform because the tools that the platform gives you to make videos natively are not very good. No, there’s better tools outside the platform. and everybody’s working with, you know, less labor than they’d want and everything else and, and look, yeah, I don’t think anybody would argue that they’re, they’re just trying to save time. Right. They’re just trying to, to, to be efficient and with the atomic halflife of content going down to like 10 seconds, right? They’re like we gotta make all this stuff and if we gotta make each one of ’em bespoke, who’s got time for that. And it’s like, well, I understand what you’re saying, but you gotta find time for that if you want this to actually succeed. Right. So you gotta, you gotta balance efficiency with effectiveness and it’s kind of hard to have both

Carmen

Collins:

Well,

like Duncan doesn’t have a huge team. The, the amazing stuff that they produce, they don’t have a huge team. You know, that you, well, you wouldn’t you’d think that some of this would be like a 30 or 40 person team doing it and that they’re doing the best of what they have. And they’re just being super CRE again, they’re showing empathy for the audience on the platform and they know what the audience likes and what they’re going for and, and what they react to. And look, it’s hard. I a hundred percent agree. And I, I don’t think the platforms punish, if you start it outside the platform and bring it in. I think what they’re trying to do is exactly that, you know, reels is trying to keep TikTok logos off of theirs.

Jay

Baer:

Yeah.

Don’t

Carmen

Collins:

Know,

off, off of their content. And TikTok is trying to keep, you know, content from other platforms off of theirs. And I don’t know what the heck Snapchat is doing. I don’t think they’re punishing any, they just want you to put content up. So they can keep growing. So I, I totally get

Jay

Baer:

Your

audience. Your audience will tell you what works right. That you don’t have to guess. Yeah. They will tell you just, you know, find the thing that they like and do more of those things. Sometimes that,

Carmen

Collins:

And

then use it as a, as a testing ground to find out what works and then fi put your paid budget behind what works. Use it as a testing ground.

Jay

Baer:

Speaking

of what works, we’re gonna ask you the two questions. We ask everybody here in the show, including you three previous times,

Carmen

Collins:

I

was gonna say, I, I don’t know what my other answers were. What if they’re the same?

Jay

Baer:

We

can look it, we can look up and we can look it up in the database, but I don’t have a Rob, so I’m not gonna do it. First question, what one tip would you give somebody who’s looking to become a social pro?

Carmen

Collins:

I

would say, and I, I think this is gonna be a different answer. No, an answer now ha having done this since the beginning of social media time, I’m not sure that I would anymore tell somebody to be a social media pro and I will tell you why. I, I see, I see a limitation and how people think about social media. I feel like the next round of CMOs are gonna have to be from social media. I, I feel like it’s such a important skill that I, that I think they they’re gonna have to be, but I, I, I don’t know where the switch is gonna occur because I feel like social media as a profession is so minimalized by the C-suite that I don’t know. I don’t know how the change is gonna occur. I don’t know if it’s just gonna be a, like an explosion moment or nobody else is gonna wanna do it or I dunno, what’s gonna happen.

Carmen

Collins:

But

I did I, I made an Instagram reels this week where I was talking about how people call us social media, rock stars and social media unicorns. And it, it gets to me because to me it minimizes the skill and the strategy that goes into what we do. It makes it magic and not strategy. It makes it magic and not a skill. And I think it’s just undervalued. And so I don’t know my advice for people I think would be maybe have a more well rounded marketing background, have social media, be a piece of it and really know it. Or if you just really wanna, you know, be the gen Z mindset, just go be an influencer. learn social media by being an influencer. And don’t work for the man at all. Go, go make your own money doing it that way.

Jay

Baer:

There

have social pros. You’ve got a social pro saying maybe you shouldn’t try to be a social pro,

Carmen

Collins:

Not

a social specific pro

Jay

Baer:

Yeah.

A pro maybe not just a social pro. I totally get it. All right. Carm, last question for you. If you could do a video call with any living person, who would it be?

Carmen

Collins:

See,

I knew you were gonna ask me this question because I’ve answered it a hundred times. And I know that my previous answers I’m mad about because what is it with our heroes always coming back and turning out to be assets. What is happening? Like every time I’m like, I, you

Jay

Baer:

Gibson

at some point in the past, check the database.

Carmen

Collins:

The

last, I think the last two times I said Joss Whedon, who has turned out to be

Jay

Baer:

Less
Carmen

Collins:

Than

ideal less, less than ideal. I, you know, I’m, I’m getting so upset at the people who, who we make out to be heroes. So I’m hesitant to ask this question again because I’m not, I’m not sure. I’m not sure anymore that we, we make the right people, our heroes

Jay

Baer:

Will

not age. Well, I understand I’m.

Carmen

Collins:

Yeah,

I’m just, I’m just concerned at who we make our heroes. I, I think again, the last two years have changed me in such dramatic ways that I wonder who we make into our heroes. I would like, I’m gonna take a different answer. I would like to, I would like to get on a video call with my grandma again.

Jay

Baer:

Nice.
Carmen

Collins:

She

was a cool woman. She was 90 years old on the top of a chicken coop. And everybody’s telling her to get off the chicken coop and she’s like, yeah, keep whatever. So she was one of the strongest, strongest women I knew. And so that’s my,

Jay

Baer:

And,

and you know, there’s some amazing chicken coop accounts on TikTok. Wanna just bring this, bring this all full circle here on

Carmen

Collins:

Jay

Baer:

You're

gonna learn how to make a chicken coop. You go to TikTok and you can find that out. You can also find out more about wish download the wish app. You’re gonna love it. It will suck you in peeps partially because of the work of our friend. Yeah. You

Carmen

Collins:

Think

TikTok sucks you in download the wish app.

Jay

Baer:

Absolutely.

Get that wish. Get yourself a robe. I’ll send you a social pros logo in EPS. Carmen. Thanks so much for being here again. Fantastic. To catch up with you. Congrats on the new position. Love the work that you’re doing already.

Carmen

Collins:

I

love being here and I love talking to y’all and Anna, it was a pleasure. This was the first time I’ve been on social pros with you. Yeah. And so I, it was nice. I was telling Jay earlier, usually it was him and Adam and me. So I was in the minority, but now we have the girl power in the minority, I mean, in the majority. So go girl power. It was a pleasure to be on again,

Jay

Baer:

More

girl power on the way here on the podcast at the teen teens. Yes. For future episodes, a tease. Thanks, Carmen. We appreciate you.

Carmen

Collins:

Thank

you.

Jay

Baer:

Take

care.

CC

EP 513 – Edited (Completed 05/13/22)

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