Community manager: The new social media companion

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Community manager: The new social media companion

If you’ve been on the job hunt in the digital marketing field lately, you may have noticed a growing trend in the call for “community managers.” As broad as the title may seem, the role is exactly what it says: managing the online presence of an organization’s or company’s community.

Most people would think, “But isn’t that what a social media manager already does?” Well, yes—partly. While that is true, let’s think of the community manager as a more organic version of the social media manager.

The best brand ambassador is an individual, not a company.

In the simplest terms, social media managers post as their brand or organization, while community managers post as themselves.

A community manager is very much like a brand ambassador, engaging and interacting with the online community on the front lines. This can entail building positive relationships, directly interacting with customers and a doing a fair amount of “social listening”—documenting the sentiment of conversations around the brand/product, and ultimately, implementing a strategic conversational agenda.

Tweet from USGBC social media

Advocating for my brand as a person, in my city.

The community management role has grown in importance as social media dialogue and online communities—as resources—become the norm. What one employee or a very small team could once do full-time now requires more hands—most of all, more “ears.” If the social media lead is responsible for output strategy, then the community manager is largely responsible for monitoring and acknowledging the audience’s response, while relaying key insights to the social media marketing team at large.

A community manager is the most important brand ambassador for an organization. According to Everyone Social, 84% of people trust recommendations from friends, family and colleagues over other forms of marketing. It gets better: Employees have five times more reach than corporate accounts, and social followers of your employees are seven times more likely to convert. This data is essential in making the case for a community management role on your social strategy team.

Deploying active listening and person-to-person connections.

At any moment in time, you will find me on any number of my personal platforms, advocating for USGBC‘s mission and engaging with partners, members and enthusiasts. However, I am subtle in my actions, and this is the key. It is in the subtleties of giving praise or thanks, supporting a particular campaign or even crafting some of my own thought leadership that I am able to truly connect with people in my industry, in a very real way.

“For a community manager role, skills like being able to interact with people online and understand how customer trust works is crucial,” says Sprout Social.” They’re tasked with growing a community and nurturing it, rather than focused on pushing for sales growth. Being able to present themselves authentically online is a core component of success.”

Tweet from USGBC social media

Sharing some of our member content with a casual voice.

Naturally, a community manager gets a bit more freedom, as they get to be themselves, versus acquiring the voice of the brand, as a social media manager would.

Sprout adds, “In a social media manager job description, it’s common to see skill requirements like being able to set goals, understand analytics…They need to craft a post to push a product in one minute while responding to a service request in the next one.”

Smaller teams and communities may have one person feasibly doing both of these jobs; however, as a brand’s presence grows (which is the whole idea), the ability to effectively perform all the aspects of both positions can eventually become ineffective. No one can be two places at once, especially at the speed of Twitter, so I predict this role and its responsibilities will continue find priority on marketing agendas globally.

Learn more about social listening and engagement

Engaging with holiday hashtags on social media

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Engaging with holiday hashtags on social media

Global and national holidays provide a number of ideal opportunities for brands to engage on social media in a more personalized and creative way. Not every holiday will work for this within your overall social media strategy (Talk Like a Pirate Day, Take Your Plant to Work Day). However, when they do (Earth Day, Martin Luther King Day, Veteran’s Day), they can become impactful moments to lead or join online conversations that are relevant.

Here are five tips on how to tactfully participate in some of these moments, along with some tools picked up along the way.

1. Get organized.

First things first. We are big fans (and clients) of the social platform Sprout Social, and Sprout happens to have an excellent downloadable 2020 calendar complete with holidays of note.

Sprout pro tip: “Research the holiday! Don’t just fill your content calendar—make sure the holiday aligns with your brand, values, and most importantly, the values of your audience.”

USGBC social media - get organized

2. Be you.

This is not an opportunity to totally reinvent the wheel. Your brand should already have a personality and voice—let that shine through.

Sprout pro tip: “Brands need to step back and remember what makes them so highly engaging on social in the first place—connection. Be respectful and do not appropriate culture.”

USGBC social media - brand voice

3. Hashtag the holiday.

Research the official hashtags that are associated with the holiday, as well as any affiliated trending words. This will be essential in joining social conversations with larger, untapped audiences.

Sprout pro tip: “Ensure that your brand’s actions back up your Tweets. 70% of people believe it’s important for brands to take a public stand on social and political issues. A social campaign celebrating #EarthDay could be a great fit for a brand that’s made a concerted effort to be more sustainable—but it might not be the best fit for a brand that doesn’t take steps to limit their environmental impact.”

USGBC social media - hashtag the holiday

4. Get personal.

Holiday engagement leaves room to be a bit more casual. Consider taking this opportunity to engage 1:1 with your audience. This can include staff video testimonials or sharing a behind-the-scenes experience. There’s even the option of running a poll, which adds an interactive element for fans.

My pro tip: Similar to the suggestions above, don’t push options that aren’t realistic. Video is great, ideal even, but it is conditional and sometimes difficult to do well in the moment. You could have trouble with service/connection, audio clarity, nice lighting, etc. A well-branded graphic that pops is a perfect start. Consider Canva for ideas.

USGBC social media - get personal

5. Maximize stories.

Piggybacking off of the previous tip, Instagram and Facebook stories are excellent ways to celebrate holiday cheer. Personalization mode is basically built into the tool itself. It is lighthearted, multidimensional and entertaining.

Sprout pro tip: “50% of all marketers say posts that entertain are more effective in helping them reach their goals than discounts and sales content.”

USGBC social media - maximize stories

Now you are on your way! Keep these tips in your back pocket for moments when you are looking to connect with folks in a meaningful and dynamic way. Happy holidays (in advance)!

Learn the basics of creating a social campaign

Social media strategy for live events: Post-show reporting

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Social media strategy for live events: Post-show reporting

Reporting in social media can be a little tricky. For me, personally, it’s the biggest lift in the three stages of social media strategy for live events—planning, executing and reporting—but this is the only moment you have to showcase your work and the successes that resulted from your event strategy.

Choose your performance toolkit.

Unlike a media report or a marketing report, where you can often plug in a date range and see exactly what statistics you’ve accomplished, a social media report requires you to get a bit more creative. It’s important to determine ahead of time what software tools will report the information that you most need.

Every social media platform has the ability to give you basic performance statistics. Additionally, there are free options galore across the internet, not to mention all of the 30-day free trials you could get lost in.

While these are not deep-dive analyses, they can be useful if your organization cannot necessarily invest in a social tracking and analytics service. Keep in mind, however, that some of the free options have a time stamp on them; so, you may want to record the data in the weeks prior to your event, as well as immediately after your event. This will give you an opportunity to note average performance numbers for comparison purposes, as you’re trying to showcase the success of your event’s performance.

Once you determine what your tools will be, you can monitor them accordingly throughout your event campaign journey.

Hunt for successes.

The hunt for success stories on social sometimes requires you to think outside the box. It’s a good idea to set some end goals for metrics when you create your event plan. However, because you’re on a 24-hour global news cycle, many factors can negatively or positively affect your ultimate performance data.

Impactful trends to look for are called key performance indicators (KPIs). USGBC’s vendor, Sprout Social, suggests these data points:

  • New followers. Your follower count isn’t the be-all and end-all of your social presence, but it is a number you should strive to tick upward. You can drill down from network to network, or look at these numbers across all accounts.
  • Reach. Note the difference between reach and impressions. Expanding your reach should translate into expanding your audience.
  • Engagement. Shares, comments and likes are valuable currencies for social marketers. Increasing engagement proves that you’re posting content that people want to see.
  • Clicks. Like engagement, click-throughs highlight compelling content. These can be divided into link clicks or promotion-specific clicks.
  • Posts. How much content is your business pushing out? If you see a correlation between more posts and higher engagement, you’re more inclined to ramp up production.
  • Traffic. The more traffic coming to your site via social, the better. You can measure this easily in Google Analytics. This tactic is less applicable for event reporting, but still interesting to note.

Once you collect all the information, it’s your duty to find a narrative that tells the story of these KPIs, from the beginning of the journey to the end. This includes lessons learned. Though the lessons may not be classified as “successes,” they provide clutch tips for when the event rolls around the following year.

Greenbuild Europe social performance

Include graphs.

Graphs are great—as long as they’re illustrating greatness. If your graph takes a dive in engagement on the day of your event, it’s not necessarily something you would want to draw attention to.

Additionally, make sure you clearly explain what your audience is looking at. Always assume you’re presenting your work to someone who has never seen a social media glossary.

Greenbuild social reporting graphic

Show, don’t tell.

It’s always a good idea to show your work and share your top-performing content.

This is a nice opportunity to highlight influencer or partner engagement. It’s not just your performance metrics that matter; showcasing how others engaged with your event hashtag is equally important, though harder to report on without access to that entity’s KPIs. Embedding these examples in your report is a great way to share these wins.

Greenbuild social media reporting

If there were any contractual commitments made to sponsors or guests, those posts are also wise to share at this point.

For more on social media event strategy, take a look at part I of this series, “The planning stage,” and part II, “Working on-site.” We hope you find success in these tools for the journey!

Learn more about social media event strategy

Social media strategy for live events: Working on-site

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Social media strategy for live events: Working on-site

Earlier in June, we talked about the planning stage of social media strategy for events coverage. Now that we are fully prepped for our main event, it’s time to map out a strategy of execution.

We all know the theory of Murphy’s Law—”Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong”—and it certainly rings true for live events. All the time and effort put into the preparation stage will show their worth once you are truly working on the fly.

Consider yourself “live” in these recommendations for social promotion on the day of your event:

Get acquainted with the space.

We’ve arrived! First things first.

Get to know the space where the event is taking place. Almost every event I have produced has been in a space I’ve only just arrived in. For larger events, such as those in convention centers, it may make sense to arrive a day earlier. The ability to navigate the area is important, because timing is essential. Events require us to be in two places at once sometimes, so the ability to get from point A to point B with ease will prove very important!

Early arrival also gives me an opportunity to collect any “calm before the storm” photos, which are always nice to have for later promotion.

Greenbuild 2018 auditorium space

Capture the space before the hordes arrive.

Communicate with the team.

As basic as this sound, it is vital. We all need a little help every now and again, and if your team knows where you may have scheduling conflicts or the aforementioned double-booking snafu, they can assist.

This time allows you to communicate those needs. I always have a “shot list” and/or a “quote list” that I give to my entire team in advance. That way, they know where I have holes, and can assume responsibility for capturing and sending that content to me in real time.

Check multimedia needs.

Another great aspect of arriving early is the opportunity to test out wifi connections and possible auxiliary connections, if necessary.

We always have a live-feed plan in place, should everything be accommodating once we arrive. If we simply cannot receive the connection we want, we will scrap certain live-feed plans we may have originally wanted. A live video that freezes and only captures every fourth word isn’t fair to audiences.

This doesn’t mean you can’t have any video included in your promotion. In such cases, we still capture short recordings or behind-the-scenes moments, and use those primarily for Instagram and Twitter.

Use stories.

Speaking of Instagram, stories are an excellent opportunity to showcase live happenings. I connect my Instagram stories to my Facebook stories—and just like that, I could have 500–1,000 views on an image that I couldn’t necessarily have used as a whole new post, but that was still worthy of a share. It’s a live album, essentially.

Get the good shot.

It’s always worth getting the shot. When I first started in this gig, I was not confident about putting myself front and center to get the best possible photograph. However, part of the job of a social media manager is to be a good smart phone photographer, and so, it’s my job to do whatever I need to capture an image that is polished and credible, and—most importantly—that wants desperately to be shared!

Amal Clooney and Mahesh Ramanujam at Greenbuild 2018

Get right up front so you can capture the speakers: here, Amal Clooney and USGBC CEO Mahesh Ramanujam.

Thank the participants.

There are many hands that go into making an event a success. Social media is the perfect opportunity to lend some extra love to partners, sponsors, members, volunteers and any of the other individuals or companies that have helped make an impact. The same policy goes for any formal awards someone may be giving or receiving.

Example of a thank-you social post from Greenbuild Mexico

Post a shout-out to your event sponsors—in this case, for Greenbuild Mexico 2019.

Create content for both attendees and remote fans.

After my second Greenbuild final report, I began to notice that there was a high trend of people engaging with my content from a desktop device rather than a mobile device. This told me that there were tens of thousands of people not at the event who were nonetheless interested in what was happening at Greenbuild.

Since then, for all of my events, I consider the audience both on-site and off-site. Their interests are different, and it is important to acknowledge that as you create dynamic and interactive content.

These are tips that I could never have provided when I first started at USGBC. Five years and at least 100 events later, these are unique tools of the trade that I couldn’t live without!

Stay tuned for our final blog in this series: the post-production and reporting process.

Read about planning for live events coverage

Social media strategy for live events: The planning stage

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Social media strategy for live events: The planning stage

Obviously, managing social media is a fairly live operation, all the time.

Most of what I do on a day-to-day basis occurs in real time, although scheduling content—as any digital marketing professional knows—is just necessary sometimes. Even online, it’s impossible to have a hand on all your channels at once.

This certainly rings true when it comes to covering a live event on social media. Without proper planning, a large-capacity event can feel like a stressful undertaking, but preparation will alleviate some of the burden when it comes to show time.

In this two-part series, I’m sharing a few tips I’ve picked up along the way for successful social media promotion of live events. This week, we’ll focus on planning.

Choose a hashtag.

Commit to an appropriate official hashtag in advance of your event. If another organization is hosting, make sure you research the specified hashtag. This is often included in any press kit materials you may have received. Official web pages or Twitter accounts are also good sources.

Decide on the hashtag before any content is even created. Be logical and consistent when using it.

Our #Greenbuild19 hashtag for this year’s event.

Research handles and webpages.

I have a spreadsheet of important social handles for every event USGBC hosts or co-hosts. This can be time-consuming, depending upon the size of the event, but it is very important. I suggest tackling it early, and in moderate chunks of time, to avoid going a little stir-crazy.

In these spreadsheet tabs, you’ll want to log the handles of:

  • Special guests, panelists or speakers, and the organizations or companies that they are representing
  • Event sponsors or contributing individuals who deserve thanks and praise
  • All co-hosts or partners, including the physical venue space
  • Staff who will be on-site
  • Award recipients
  • Exhibitors

This will be so handy when it comes to creating content, both in advance of and during the event. However, be sure that the handles you have collected are accurate. This means you will have to do some digging. It’s sometimes easiest to begin the search on the official webpage of a given organization or individual.

Prepare your messaging.

Any content that you can create in advance, do! Put this content in a calendar format, so that you can really begin to shape out how your days will look. Some examples of messaging you can begin to assemble and schedule, once the itinerary is made, include:

  • Notes in gratitude (sponsors, partners, media, etc.)
  • Attendee welcome
  • Individual guests welcome
  • Keynote announcements
  • Workshop and session reminders
  • Raffle or giveaway promotion
  • Quotes (only if you acquire speeches in advance; otherwise, wait)
  • Known stakeholder or membership promotions

Many of these messages can be scheduled into your calendar, but reserve the associated photo for a live shot. These moments will be included in your “shot list,” which we will talk more about in the follow-up blog on responsibilities once on-site and live.

Don’t forget, all of your content is subject to change. If times are adjusted or speakers are moved around at the last moment, it is your responsibility to make sure that content gets changed or deleted before it is deployed.

I create a spreadsheet calendar of all our day’s messaging.

Prepare external resources.

A pre-distributed toolkit that includes language and visual assets to help promote your event is clutch! You can make these for staff, speakers, attendees, sponsors and partners. The neater the package you hand over, the greater the likelihood they will share the pieces on their channels.

You’re giving them solid content to share, while helping spread the word to new audiences. Everyone wins!

We share media tips with all our Greenbuild partners.

Prepare internal resources.

Get every possible creative template ready to go for show time. There will be many marketing and PR assets coming together at the last minute, and you want to be as ready as possible for those final hand-offs. This includes speeches, slides, presentations, talking points, and so on.

Personally, our team has found Canva to be an incredible resource for live moments.

A sound bite from a speech by our CEO is ready to go upon delivery.

We can brand our work to fit the theme of whatever we are promoting (Greenbuild, IMPACT, Green Schools Conference and Expo, etc.), and I am able to plug in content and publish while I am on the go. Often, I am trying to capture photo or video images simultaneously, so the ability to create a quote graphic on the fly is very valuable.

Your internal resources will also include all the advance content that you created, in an organized, calendar format that works for you visually.

Stay tuned for the second article in this series, on live social coverage of events.

Read tips on creating a social media campaign

Inspiration from the Content Marketing Conference: Connecting with your customer

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Inspiration from the Content Marketing Conference: Connecting with your customer

Do you ever feel you’re in need of a professional reboot?

It’s not so much the feeling of hitting a wall—I can certainly identify writer’s block when it comes along—it’s more of a confidence issue. Basically, I was feeling stale. 

That’s when I stumbled upon the Content Marketing Conference in Boston. I only had two weeks to get approved, booked and registered, but something about their superhero enthusiasm for writing got to me. Plus, they promised good laughs throughout. 

The experience turned out to be everything I needed. The speakers were engaging and dynamic, and that humor they promised went a long way in making me feel more inspired about my work.

In addition to the learning opportunities, conferences are a great place to get affirmation. There’s a feeling of validation in being among your tribe—in my case, my content marketing squad.

Here are eight takeaways from presenters who inspired me:

Ann Handley

“Don’t tell me what you do, tell me why it matters to me.”

Ann Hanley emphasized that content gives us the opportunity to offer our audience a full experience, a packaged story.“ It goes beyond just being “different;” the package must be extraordinary. “It should sound like a movement; it’s something you want to be part of; it’s your squad,” she said. Exceptional content builds an experience that offers much deeper value and translates into real life, seamlessly.

“Smart marketers don’t just join conversations, they lead them.”

There is stiff content competition on the web. We must ask, “What story can I tell with a depth and breadth that doesn’t already exist?” Fine-tune the brand’s tone of voice, first. From there, we can build actual relationships with our target audiences. Be someone they want to know. Today’s content marketer has to be “bigger, braver and bolder” with their creative choices.In a nutshell: “Does your content tell a different story with a specific point of view?”

“Pathological empathy.”

This is the “source of the squad.” Empathy builds trust. It takes walking the talk for a customer to believe you when you tell them, “we hear you; we see you.” The relationship between brand and consumer is real and impactful. We can creatively narrate a story that resonates and builds an emotional connection on its own. 

Brian Halligan

“Content marketing is hard work—you’ve got to actually rub some brain cells together and make friction.”

This comment echoed Ann Handley when she noted that content marketing is far more about “brains than budget.” There’s a crossover between psychology and marketing for a reason. The content marketer has to study and listen before executing any creative elements. It’s a lot of responsibility, but great content is useless if not planned and executed thoughtfully.

“If text is to Google is to 2007, video is to social is to 2017.”

That was self-admitted risky statement to make to an audience full of writers!

It was hard to hear, but important. We have to remain open to the changes in our industry—they are, after all, constant. Our role has to evolve with the digital landscape, and sometimes that means getting comfortable with new trends and new media.

“Engage them where they live.”

As a social media manager, I had to include this quote. It was followed up with the statement, “Invest more in social.” The opportunities to connect and build community are limitless. These people become that aforementioned “squad.” They can become loyal brand ambassadors. 

Larry Kim

“Sometimes success is random, but you need quantity to find the quality.” 

Let the data speak! Experimentation is necessary. Not every idea is going to work, but a fraction of those do work. If there is no process in place to track our content, we cannot measure performance. This is the longest haul of the process for many, but it’s essential.

Josh Bernoff

“Write without the bullshit.” That’s the summary—but for more, check out Josh’s infographic:

See more content marketing tips

Spark 2016 Content Marketing Conference

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Spark 2016 Content Marketing Conference

Last week, members of USGBC’s public relations team attended a content marketing conference in Washington, D.C. The second annual Spark 2016 by TrackMaven did not disappoint. Incredible keynotes included Brandon Stanton, of the popular Humans of New York; Shane Snow, from Contently; Stephanie Hay, from Capital One, and of course, TrackMaven CEO Allen Gannett.

I first learned about TrackMaven when I attended Spark last year. As an all-in-one marketing analytics platform, their mission is simple: to “make marketers more effective through data that is understandable and actionable.” TrackMaven has given our organization tools to first understand our data and turn those numbers into a visual narrative that conveys the USGBC brands’ social media progress and patterns.

The Spark conference reiterates the mission of TrackMaven by ultimately creating a celebration of content and data in digital, highlighting the many intersections in marketing where art and science meet.

Our team is diverse; so, in addition to my own insight, I wanted each of them to weigh in on the experiences that were most impactful to them during the one-day conference.

Amanda Sawit, Content Specialist

Know where, when and how to reach your audience. Answering the question, “What do they want to hear from us?” can vary depending on your audience demographics, location, platform usage and consumption rates. Much of the challenge in audience targeting lies in the fact that many people are multi-channel, and have different habits and usage times for each. On top of that, each channel has a different a user experience. The most successful content is optimized for the particular platform through which it is distributed—right down to the message. 

Tap into a larger, humanistic perspective. Digital overload isn’t necessarily a digital problem, and doesn’t strictly require a digital solution (although you do want to optimize content for various digital platforms). Generating interest hinges on how people relate to your content—the more your message resonates on a personal level, the better. Consider broadening your target audience to anyone who has the challenge or problem that your organization exists to solve. Define the challenge in a bigger context and use their native language (i.e., the words they use to talk about the problem) to drive your content strategy.

Ali Peterson, Communications Manager

Let your brand be the background of the story. In an age where content is everywhere, stop trying to become the story that interrupts what your audience is doing and turns their attention away from the ongoing happenings of their lives. Instead, become part of that flow and let your brand support an engagement strategy that meets people where they are. For instance, if you are marketing a restaurant or food item, connect with your consumers around all of the reasons they interact with food—family, friends, nourishment, escape, travel and more. Become a part of existing conversations or stories around these themes, and let your brand play second fiddle.

Become a student of humanity. Above all, seek to understand before you strive to be understood. To reach people, you need to dig deep into their motivations and journeys. Read up on psychology, sociology, anthropology and more—look for trends in behaviors and interactions, and work toward a deeper and more meaningful understanding of your target audience as humans with multiple interests and drivers.

Manage your priorities, not your time. On hectic days when it seems like there aren’t enough hours to go around, organize your workload by priorities and balance your time based on what is most important. This approach will give you the freedom to put “urgent” matters that are not a priority to the side in favor of advancing or completing work that will drive your team or your business forward.

Marisa Long, PR and Communications Director

Leverage your key audiences. USGBC is committed to engaging our audiences and telling their stories. Including your stakeholders at the beginning of a campaign or as part of a pitch, collateral, article, report, etc., will make them more committed to sharing what you are hoping to communicate and amplify your message to a much wider-reaching audience while building additional credibility for your brand. There is power in working together.

Experiment with headline testing. Your online content should engage your audiences. You can choose one platform to leverage social media advertising to test different headlines and messages to see what resonates, and then amplify the headlines that perform better on the rest of your channels. This practice is an inexpensive but powerful way to make sure you are giving your readers the content they want.

Know your worth. With media, you should only be pitching content that you really believe is worthy of coverage and pitching it to the right reporters. If you are doing this, it is a misconception to think that the reporter is always doing you/your organization the favor by covering it. If you have a powerful story to tell and can provide thoughtful, specific and detailed information and examples, you are helping the reporter and providing their readers with something of interest to them.

Julia Pergolini, Social Media Specialist

Make the “conversation” a priority. Engagement is all about the two-way dialogue. Even on the days where I’m inundated with content for promotion, it’s pivotal to always be connecting the appropriate people with messaging that provokes conversation. A retweet is great, but think multiple steps into the future: How do I want people to interact with this content? What kind of conversations would I like to see it drive? On what page do I ultimately want to see the audience end up browsing? A conversation around “audience goals” should be had at the conception of an idea. Every post should have its own identity, its own journey, in this way.

Know when to pay to play. Know when it’s worth the paid promotion of content. Often, competitors are only beating you in the game because they’ve paid to boost posts. Additionally, do the research to attract a well-targeted audience. It’s not worth the cost if you aren’t doing your due diligence in captivating the attention of new audiences and relevant competitor audiences.

Take risks. In a constantly changing digital medium, most moves are chance. Don’t be afraid to experiment—there are no failures, just learning experiences. The data will report our successes and shortcomings, and we will adjust our goals and our planning boards accordingly.

For just a taste of what went down at Spark, presentation slide decks are now available.

Integrated networks advance USGBC mission on social media

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Integrated networks advance USGBC mission on social media

Over the last couple of years, in an effort to strengthen our community and increase our impact, USGBC has been working to build an integrated network out of our local chapters. This exciting network evolution pilots a new model for local market engagement—one that allows USGBC National to provide better support so that our regional communities can focus on the mission-driven work that matters.

I have enjoyed this transition, because it has given me the opportunity to meet and work alongside many new individuals from across the country—all committed to advancing the green building movement at large. Together, we have developed great strategies to step up their social media game to better amplify their work, mission and message.

Over the last few months, these communities have truly pounded the pavement on social media. If you’re not following your local community, you should be! It’s your best resource for all the up-to-the-minute information on USGBC activity in your region. Here are some great highlights from east to west.


I enjoy being able to teach others about social media strategy and execution. During that process, I am reminded of how important it is to listen to a brand’s specific and unique needs in order to support its strengths. That’s good marketing. Here’s to a growing green building social community!

Learn more about creating social media content

Campaigns we love: #ILookLikeAnEngineer

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Campaigns we love: #ILookLikeAnEngineer

In the wake of International Women’s Day on March 8, we noticed a resurgence of the #ILookLikeAnEngineer campaign across Twitter. In fact, two USGBC Platinum member companies, Lendlease and Autodesk, took the opportunity to feature their women engineers across the company.

We build the buildings that transform the New York skyline #Lendlease #ILookLikeAnEngineer

— Lendlease (@LendLeaseGroup) March 17, 2016

Inspired by Int’l Women’s Day, let’s celebrate women in engineering this month with @Autodesk #Ilooklikeanengineer

— Impact Design Hub (@ImpactDesignHub) March 18, 2016

You may recall that in fall 2015, this campaign was somewhat accidentally created by Isis Wenger to raise awareness and break the gender stereotypes of the tech industry.

Early last year, Wenger appeared in an advertisement for her San Francisco-based employer, OneLogin. The backlash she experienced in public commentary for her physical appearance was alarming. “But she doesn’t ‘look like’ an engineer,” was the overwhelming consensus.

In an article for Medium, she chronicled her experience and challenged the public to fight the stigma associated with women in tech:

“This is what an engineer looks like…” She writes. “Do you feel passionately about helping spread awareness and increase tech diversity? Do you not fit the ‘cookie-cutter mold’ of what people believe engineers ‘should’ look like? If you answered yes to any of these questions, I invite you to help spread the word and help us redefine ‘what an engineer should look like’.”#iLookLikeAnEngineer

Since her August 2015 post, thousands of individuals, corporations and organizations, both nonprofit and for-profit, have participated in #ILookLikeAnEngineer. A group of female engineers were even able to crowdfund $50,000 to erect billboards in the Bay Area, like these:

Learn more about the movement and keep spreading the passionate work of those standing up against the social stigma of women in technology.

USGBC Studio: What’s on your desk?

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USGBC Studio: What’s on your desk?

What’s on your desk directly influences your work habits and creativity. What does your workspace look like? Are you neat or are you messy?

For someone who pretty much lives on social media, thinking 10 steps into the future, it can take some work to create environments where I can get grounded and focused on the present. Like most Leos, I take serious pride in my den—workspace included!

Meaningful prints: I am always on the lookout for striking prints. Sometimes they come right out of a magazine I picked up on my way home. They make amazingly easy, colorful, inspirational additions to my work and home spaces.

Sayings to live by: I am a writer by trade. I’ve taken a lot of funky routes since I graduated with that degree in hand, but I am constantly finding ways to express myself creatively through writing. Content creation is still the crux of what I do—even when I’m cramming it into 140 characters or less!

DC pride: I’ve got lots of bits of past-lives pride at my desk. “Home” is Washington, D.C., at the moment—a place packed with cultural diversity where I have found many parts of myself. It’s no Philadelphia (hometown glory), but this city will always have a special place in my heart. This little sticker is also a big reminder to buy and vend locally. It comes from Compass Coffee in the Shaw neighborhood of D.C. The local roasters serve up a life-changing cup of iced coffee!

Pin art: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful,” said William Morris. This handcrafted flower fills some of my “just decor” quota.

Clever and quotable magnets: I have been collecting magnets for a long time. Many of them remind me to make mindfulness a natural part of my day. It’s especially necessary for the workplace—focusing my thoughts on how I communicate, approach my work and positively contribute to this purposeful, mission-driven team.

Are there things you keep on your desk to help make your workflow successful? Tell us about them!

Check out our other #WOYD posts!