How to Create Content your Fans Love

Golin is an integrated agency rooted in PR with Digital and Content at their core. Golin strives to create change through relevant, brave work worthy of awe and action—embracing new technologies that help their clients adapt and win in a constantly evolving world. We spoke with two Golin directors about their strategy, their content, and how Spredfast helps inform both. Mariam Shahab is a Digital Director at Golin with over 7 years of experience in creating data-driven digital strategies and activating real-time engagements for clients, and Brittany McKone is a Director of Analytics at Golin. She uses her deep expertise in research and analytics to uncover strategy-shaping insights for key digital and social media clients.

Mariam Shahab

Brittany McKone

Spredfast: Can you tell me a little bit about The Bridge at Golin—why it exists and how it works?

Mariam: At Golin, we drive relevance for our clients with The Bridge. In a constantly connected and ever-evolving world, it’s more important than ever to discover actionable moments that matter to your audience. As a global network of media and digital experts—including seasoned journalists, social specialists, analytics experts and rapid content creators—we collaborate and curate to bring moments to life at the speed of culture.

Depending on the client need, we use The Bridge for brand building activities such as customer and influencer marketing, branded content creation and distribution, community management, media outreach, customer service and brand protection applications such as real-time crisis management.

SF: When thinking about content creation for your clients, where do you start?

MS: We take an audience-first approach to our content strategies and content creation. It starts with an analysis and understanding of what resonates (and what doesn’t) with our clients’ target audiences. From there we create relevant and informed content based on channel priorities, historical content performance and timing to craft the right content, for the right time.

SF: How does your newsroom plan for real-time calendar moments? Can you give us a peek into your strategic editorial planning process?

MS: The secret is real-time relevance involves a lot of planning. We work one to two months ahead of significant cultural moments like Valentine’s Day or fun social media holidays that often trend, like World Emoji Day.

Brittany: And we use social listening and predictive analytics to understand the historical scope of the conversation. We analyze top performing content themes to help inform our real-time content creation and optimization.

SF: What particular opportunity do cultural moments offer brands—and in an increasingly noisy landscape, how can brands stand out?

MS: Brands stand out by creating truly relevant content that is authentic to their brand and target audiences. And, we’re using The Bridge to spot new platform capabilities and innovative digital technologies to help brands be “first-movers” in showcasing content in new, noticeable ways.

BM: This is another place where analytics play a critical role. Not every trending hashtag is an opportunity for a brand to jump into the conversation, but with diligent analysis brands can find the perfect moment to connect with the people that matter.

SF: How does The Bridge/Golin use Spredfast to help with content planning?

BM: We use Spredfast Intelligence as part of the analytics that powers our Bridge real-time planning sessions. With Spredfast Intelligence, we’re able to evaluate the social landscape and uncover insights about upcoming cultural moments, such as holidays, national days and events like the Oscars and the Super Bowl. We’re able to really understand the what, why, when of each conversation to drive relevance for each of our clients.

SF: How else does Spredfast help Golin?

BM: We’re using Spredfast Intelligence to inform a broad range of business decisions across B2B and B2C clients. For example, we’ve created customized reports for one of our consumer clients that span across ten global regions. They are packed full of social listening data that informs sales teams who are on the ground in each region.

MS: We also have digital strategists who are using Spredfast Intelligence all day to monitor brand, industry, and influencer conversations. They are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to join conversations and engage with influencers.

SF: What is your process for looking for insights to frame and validate your strategy?

BM: It’s a complicated answer because there is no “one size fits all” process. We truly customize our approach for identifying insights and informing strategy to each client and their unique business objectives. We’re regularly consulting with our clients to deeply understand their business so we can select the right tool and research plan to provide actionable results.

The following infographic highlights four ways to create content that will make your fans fall in love this Valentine’s Day:

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Dalyn lives in Chicago, Illinois (but is a diehard Broncos fan) with his better half and their 3 dogs. He is a long time agency vet—having spent time at shops in both Chicago and NYC. He focuses on building and growing agency partnerships for Spredfast.