Live Notes from the Facebook Marketing Breakfast San Francisco

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We’re live at the Facebook Marketing Breakfast in San Francisco this morning, where many leading brands and online marketers have converged to discuss best practices and the future of marketing on Facebook. The event this morning is bringing together large brands who’ve been successful on Facebook, Facebook’s brand solutions team, and leaders from the industry, and is being hosted at the San Francisco offices of Razorfish. Here are our live notes from this morning’s discussions.

8:00 am – 9:00 am: As conference participants stroll in this morning, many are meeting and mingling with new people, both in and out of town, over coffee and breakfast. Brand representatives from Coca-Cola, Apple, Microsoft, Clorox, Visa, Bare Essentuals, and many others are here, as well as familiar faces like Zynga and RockYou.

9:00 am – 9:15 am: Justin Smith (Founder and Editor of Inside Facebook) and Garrick Schmitt (Group VP of Razorfish) kick off the conference with a few words. Schmitt sets the tone of the conference by reminding the audience that Facebook is a dramatically changing site, referencing Mark Zuckerberg’s recent comment in an interview that the future of Facebook may not even be in the form of a website. The only constant about Facebook is that it’s in a  state of change, so how does marketing work in the Facebook era?

9:15 am – 9:45 am: First up is Trista Handisides (Manager of Brand Market Solutions at Facebook) on How Brands Can Maximize ROI through Facebook. Handisides discusses how Facebook has made communication more efficient and effective and how this translates into opportunity for brands, and walks through how Papa John’s is successfully marketing on Facebook. Brands have at their disposal a variety of ways to engage in meaningful dialogues with their customers through engagement ads, public profile pages, etc. An impressive stat: 5,947 million minutes per month are spent on the Facebook homepage.

9:45 am – 10:00 am: Michael Brito (Social Media Strategist at Intel) shares the importance of starting a game-changing dialogue with consumers on Facebook. Using Intel’s mass animation campaign as a case study, the first collaborative effort to create an animated movie using story lines and 3D chracters, Brito focuses on the value of the “unmeasurable metric,” which “measures” how brands are initiating 1:1 conversations with their fans. Fortune 50 companies can adopt social marketing strategies that empower teams to go out and engage.

10:00 am – 10:15 am: Kevin Barenblat (CEO of Context Optional) talks about how Context Optional has helped brands such as Target, MTV, Clinique, the Travel Channel, and Palm on their social media strategies. The evolution of social marketing has transitioned from traditional brand marketing to direct marketing such that brands can now send direct messages to their customers. Social marketing is about viral sharing, advocacy, scale, and targeting. Barenblat ends with several best practices – the key words are: simple, appeal, social, addictive, conversational, advocacy, and consistency.

10:15 am – 10:30 am: Jeremiah Owyang (Senior Analyst at Forrester) begins by stating that power is shifting to communities over brands, resulting in communities becoming institutions. Owyang steps us through five eras of the social web: 1) The Era of Relationships, 2) The Era of Social Functionality, 3) The Era of Social Colonization, 4) The Era of Social Context, and 5) The Era of Social Commerce. The impact is that Web content will become increasingly personalized and customized as social data becomes more available. Imagine a world where communities define products … We’re about to get started on our panel discussion!

10:30 am – 11:30 am: Right now, we’re starting our final session, a panel discussion on: What’s Worked? On the panel are Katherine Bateman (VP Marketing of Buddy Media), Betsy Burkett (Senior Manager of Digital Media at Mattel), Alyson Hyder (VP of Digital Media at Razorfish), Karl Long (Social Media Strategist at Nokia), Jeremiah Owyang (Senior Analyst at Forrester), and Keith Rabois (VP of Business Development & Strategy at Slide). Moderating the panel is Justin Smith. A few highlights:

  • To have a strong presence on Facebook, brands need to have internal solidarity on their social marketing efforts.
  • In the end, it’s all about point of sale: digital marketing is having phenomenal impact on sales – aka using “social” to drive sales.
  • So far, Facebook ads haven’t been successful: brands that rely on ads need to join the conversation on Facebook in more ways.
  • Social media marketers need to participate in social networks to understand the culture.
  • The open Internet always wins: Facebook is a layer on top of the Internet.
  • A plethora of communities exist on Facebook: you just need to find them!

That concludes our agenda for the day, and now we’re inviting everyone to mingle some more over snacks and drinks. It’s a beautiful day in San Francisco, and we’re taking advantage of the good patio weather. Thanks to all our readers for tuning in, and photos and video of the event will follow soon.