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4 ways ‘Good Morning America’ nails social media storytelling efforts

4 ways ‘Good Morning America’ nails social media storytelling efforts

For many fans of “Good Morning America,” the stories don’t end when the broadcast is over.

Terry Hurlbutt, the show’s vice president and general manager of digital, has grown its target audience by 70 percent in less than a year through a digital expansion that delivers news and lifestyle stories across social media platforms.

Consider these four tips from the No. 1 morning show to make your own storytelling efforts come alive online—and then learn more from Hurlbutt at our Social Media Conference for PR, Marketing and Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World, on March 6-8.

1. Understand your audience.

“In the digital age, your audiences live everywhere,” Hurlbutt says. “[They’re] on different devices and on different platforms. The first step of adapting is understanding your audience.”

The majority of “Good Morning America’s” digital viewers and readers are female and use mobile devices to consumer news and information. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, along with emails, are the best way to reach them.

Though there is a crossover between fans of “Good Morning America’s” broadcast show and its social media profiles, the way a single viewer interacts with a story can look entirely different, depending on the channel.

Hurlbutt says:

The most literal example is the anchor desk. On broadcast, the anchor desk is a signal that someone you trust is going to bring you the news. On social [media] and on mobile, however, you are scrolling through content that feels very intimate and immediate—pictures of your family and your friends. The literal anchor desk in this context doesn’t fit that more intimate environment; instead, we need to think about how we bring the user immediately into the story as though they were experiencing pictures and video from their friends. The goal is to find ways to tell our stories in a context and format that makes sense for their viewing environment.

Your online audience makeup and preferences might look similar or could be completely different. What matters is understanding who they are and where they reside, so you can build an effective social media storytelling strategy.

Hurlbutt says:

… [D]evelop a thoughtful and purposeful strategy about how and where you want to connect with your audiences. Since you can’t be everywhere, you need to pick the platforms that are the best match between where your audience spends their days and how you want to tell your story.

A successful social media storytelling strategy not only takes into account your audience and their preferences, but it also considers the platform and general behaviors on it.

“Fit your story to your medium, so that you can best connect with your audiences,” Hurlbutt advises.

For example, Hurlbutt says if you’re “going all in” with Instagram Stories, think about how your images and videos look in a vertical format from the beginning—don’t just edit after to make your content fit. Also remember that many mobile-first consumers won’t have the volume on their devices on, so stories must translate visually or include text to get the messages across.

“Brands that are authentic truly understand and respect how their audiences are interacting with their content and keep their customer’s story needs first,” Hurlbutt says.

2. Keep pace by putting your audience first.

“One of our jobs at GMA Digital and as journalists is to help our audiences make sense of noise,” Hurlbutt says.

As the digital media landscape becomes increasingly more crowded with messages, helping audiences navigate the noise is a task that falls to many communicators, whether you’re a member of the news media or a brand journalist.

It’s important to stay current with news and digital media trends. Doing so can enable you to add additional facts or expert opinions to a journalist’s story—which benefits both the publication’s readers as well as your executive. Staying on top of hot trends can also help you better craft content that garners clicks, as well as pitch interesting and timely trend stories to journalists and internal partners.

It’s not a task that’s without challenges, however.

Hurlbutt says it’s a challenge to stay on top of what’s happening on a global scale while also relaying the key facts to viewers and readers. It also takes an effort to find the stories your online audience cares about the most.

“On digital platforms, we can usually tell more stories and cover a range of issues that matter to our digital audiences,” Hurlbutt says.

Though you might focus on different stories online vs. in print or through a live broadcast, the basic tenements of storytelling are paramount—and you would do well to don a reporter’s cap as you craft and publish your content.

No matter the stories you tell, placing your audience first will help you select the content which can net you the most traffic and engagement. Performing your due diligence as a storyteller and communicator can build trust with consumers and help you avoid the pitfalls of fake news.

Hurlbutt says:

At our core, our storytelling doesn’t change – we report on the facts of the story and we try and help audiences make sense of everything going on. That said, our mission is to do that in a way that responsibly keeps people current in the 24/7 pace of news.

… We need to be fast, but always right. We need to find ways to add nuance and context when we know there are character limits on different platforms. We need to find ways to break through the noise while we maintain our audiences’ trust. It requires us to be innovative, to iterate, and to experiment, while always keeping the facts and our audience at the center.

3. Use social media platforms’ features to highlight your stories.

When deciding which digital platforms to use and what types of content to publish think about how each piece ties with your organization’s core brand.

For “Good Morning America,” that identity is “information you can use and inspirational lifestyle stories.”

“Everything we do, from picking graphics packages to greenlighting new series to building our daily story run-down, centers around the core brand ethos,” Hurlbutt says. “What changes is how we execute on those stories.” She elaborates: “Adding more platforms to the mix just increases the stories we can tell.”

That doesn’t necessarily mean that every social media platform will be a great fit for your organization’s brand or stories, but keeping your brand identity front-and-center can help you ask how different platforms’ features and tools can add something special to engage audiences.

Those features could include hosting Q&A sessions on Facebook, tweeting polls on Twitter to solicit opinions and reactions, or using stickers on Instagram to further connect and entertain.

“[W]e can take advantage of digital technology to tell those stories differently or interact with our audiences directly,” Hurlbutt says. “In each case, we are finding ways to take elements unique to digital to add to our stories, which in turn promotes engagement.”

4. Be proactive and creative.

Just as PR pros must be driven to pitch journalists as soon as (or before) news breaks, communicators working with social media storytelling must be ahead of the game as well.

“We are really proactive across ABC News in pitching ideas on how we can partner on stories,” Hurlbutt says.

Those ideas include Instagram Stories that complement a broadcasted segment, Q&A with “Good Morning America” guests for the show’s website and social media feeds, and editing a broadcast package to optimize it for a specific social media platform.

No matter the effort, Hurlbutt says the takeaway to remember is: “Showing is better than telling.”

The more proactive and creative you are with using your organization’s existing content or creating new content to highlight existing stories, the better chance you stand to grab internal partners’ attention and forge working relationships that are mutually beneficial. As your success grows, you stand to gain a seat at the decision-making table and can have a hand in storytelling efforts that span departments.Don’t forget to show how your proactive efforts further boost the bottom line, either. Come to partner and executive meetings armed with data and analytics that can show your digital content is helping to reach important goals and objectives.

“By showing our organization that we can and will help expand a story and reach more audiences, we are finding new ways to get involved in all aspects of the storytelling process,” Hurlbutt says.

You can learn more from Hurlbutt at Ragan’s Social Media Conference for PR, Marketing and Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World, on March 6-8. She will present a fireside keynote address to close the event.

(Image via)


One Response to “4 ways ‘Good Morning America’ nails social media storytelling”

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Dayglo-haired pop star Alma has a new avatar

Dayglo-haired pop star Alma has a new avatar

The Dazed Beauty Community is our ever-expanding encyclopaedia of creatives and emerging talent from across the world who are redefining the way we think about beauty. From supermodels to digital artists to makeup prodigies transforming themselves in their bedrooms, these are the beauty influencers of tomorrow who embody everything Dazed Beauty is about. Discover them here.

Meet ‘Cyber Alma’, the avatar of 23-year-old Finnish pop singer Alma. Since getting her big break on the Finnish version of The Voice when she was 15, Alma has taken things in her own direction, championing her lime green-haired pop goth aesthetic while working with people like Charli XCX and MNEK. But feeling frustrated with the exposure that public life has brought, Alma created the avatar, a guard between herself and the world and debuted via her new video for “Summer”, which is the third release from her album, ‘Have You Seen Her?’

“Every winter lots of people get depressed because of the cold and the darkness – it’s called seasonal affective disorder or winter depression!” she says. “Lots of Finnish people have this. I wrote this song in LA – it was my first day there and I was jet-lagged but I remember I was still feeling alive and just happy – probably because of the sun!”

What is your earliest beauty related memory? 

I wasn’t thinking about beauty when I was a child so probably the first day when I went to school and I wanted to buy new clothes and I brushed my hair a million times! 

When did you first start making music?

I’ve been singing as long as I can remember but I started really writing music when I was 13.

How would you describe your music and what are your musical influences?

This new album ‘Have You Seen Her?’ is influenced by my teenage years – all my struggles and thoughts and pain through it. All the usual stuff we feel growing up! It’s a very honest album. My music is for everyone, it’s joyful and painful.

Tell us about the evolution of your hair? 

I’ve had all the colours of the rainbow but this yellow/green seems to have stuck, I love that it glows in the dark!

What is your favourite smell or fragrance?

Calvin Klein!

If you were a computer game character what would you be?

Sims used to be my life when I was a kid! So I would be a Sim.

Who is the character in the video for “Summer” and how did you conceptualise them?

We made it for my live show last summer but it had huge muscles and it was called “muscle baby ALMA”. From there I wanted to take the idea further and create a character that is really true to me. I can get her to do all the work while I chill.

Will we see more of her?

Yes totally!

What does beauty mean to you in 2019? 

Beauty can be so many things but for me, it’s feeling free and good about myself.

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How to Make Fine Hair Look So Much Fuller

How to Make Fine Hair Look So Much Fuller

Whenever you see a celebrity with super thick, full hair there’s a good chance it’s not entirely their own. This shouldn’t be surprising since extensions, wigs, and the right cut and color are all well-known strategies to make hair look so much fuller than it actually is. 

But, did you know that there’s an even quicker, cheaper method of faking thickness that requires nothing more than a few of the items in your makeup bag? Eyeshadow — yes, just like your favorite neutral palette — is the secret to making fine hair look thick in a matter of seconds.

RELATED: This Simple Trick Makes Any Ponytail Look So Much Better 

For any skeptics out there, InStyle beauty editor Dianna Mazzone’s easy eyeshadow hack will turn you into a believer. She recommends using a matte shadow with gray undertones because it will read more natural than one that’s shimmery or runs red, along with a dense brush like one you’d use for concealer. 

Once you’ve got the tools, all you have to do is pat the shadow into your part and watch the magic happen. This optical illusion works, but it’s not exactly practical for everyday life. Mazzone relies on this eyeshadow trick when she’s going to a wedding or getting her photo taken for work. 

Hit play on the video above to get the full tutorial and see Mazzone transform her hairline in under a minute. 

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INSANE Huge Liquid Lipstick Collection Destash!! (Long chatty…

INSANE Huge Liquid Lipstick Collection Destash!! (Long chatty…

25 notes &

INSANE Huge Liquid Lipstick Collection Destash!! (Long chatty video.)

As a blogger/vlogger and makeup fanatic of many years, it’s inevitable that I would have amassed a huge number of #liquidlipsticks as I try new looks and formulas all the time. But I didn’t realize it was this EPIC a hoard until I poured everything on the floor.

My #makeupcollection is badly in need of organizing, so brew some coffee and pull up a chair cos I’m going to talk you through all the brands in this long #destash video – what I love, what I dislike, what I’m keeping, what I’m passing on, and what I’m throwing out!

50:36 skip to how much I am getting rid of.

But where’s the fun in that?!


Filed under makeup stash makeup destash liquid lipstick collection

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Say Goodbye to Tangled Tresses!

Say Goodbye to Tangled Tresses!

January 29, 2019 In Family, Hair By Sarah James

My daughter’s hair has been a point of contention since Day 1. By the looks of it, you wouldn’t think it was such a tremendous pain in the ass, but don’t be fooled for a second. Although straight, it is thick and loves to tangle. You can’t so much as sideways glance at my daughter’s hair without a rat’s nest the size of tennis balls appearing. (I think it’s her spiritual gift, guys.)

In addition to the ridiculous tangling, her thick (yet fine) hair always looked greasy. I couldn’t figure it out for the life of me – her freshly-washed hair never looked clean! Was she not shampooing or rinsing thoroughly? We had tried many different clean beauty brands on her hair, but nothing seemed to work. It was baffling to me and I was getting super tired of trying to untangle that greasy-looking mess every morning before school.

She came home from a sleepover a few months ago and I noticed how smooth, silky, and clean her hair looked so I immediately texted her friend’s mother to inquire about what kind of voodoo magic she worked on her head. I figured it was some conventional brand filled with chemicals.

Her answer? Beautycounter Volume and Shape Shampoo and Conditioner. What? A clean line? PRAISE BE.

At first thought, I wondered if this particular line would work for her, considering Beautycounter has a Smooth and Control line as well. However, I think the Volume and Shape line works best for her because her fine hair tends towards greasy and limp. Although I never tried it, I think the Smooth and Control might have been too much for her fine hair, however, if you have a little one with really thick, coarse hair, I would definitely give it a shot. (By the way, this goes for adults too!)

It’s also important to point out that I have used the Beautycounter Kids’ Shampoo and Conditioner in the past and it was okay, but tangles still posed a problem. Well, I purchased the Volume and Shape line and we have never looked back. Her hair is smooth, shiny, and I can’t remember the last time I have needed to detangle her hair. That bears repeating and in all caps. I CAN’T REMEMBER THE LAST TIME I HAVE NEEDED TO DETANGLE HER HAIR.

Mamas. You know who you are. The time and sanity saved is priceless. If you are sick and tired of combing out tangles while your little one excessively whines (just mine?), screw the kids’ lines and step it up to the big leagues. The line is full of botanicals and features a breakthrough PureFoam Cleansing Technology which delivers a really rich lather without damaging sulfates. (Or any other nasties for that matter.) Also, just so you know, a wet brush is still key.

If you are like me and already love some of Beautycounter’s products (hello eyeshadow palettes, body lotion, Citrus and Mimosa body bar, makeup remover wipes, etc etc etc), the Band of Beauty program is a great way to get discount on future purchases. You get a 15% product credit, free shipping on $100 or more, exclusive members-only deals, and a free Charcoal Cleansing Bar as a gift for becoming a member. You can read all about here.

As always, I’m happy to answer any questions in the comments! Good luck and good detangling.

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