The Hunger Games and Social Media

Lacey Welborn

Lacey Welborn

Lacey and her brother Zeb Welborn founded Welborn Media. She has designed and launched websites, several projects, marketing materials, a podcast, a book and more. Her passions include her family, her friends, creating things and helping businesses grow.
Lacey Welborn

The Hunger Games opens in theaters tonight at Midnight. We’re excited about the movie and have been keenly observing the social media outlets associated with the film.  The Hunger Games has sparked a creative marketing effort to promote the movie, gotten fans involved, created massive amounts of content and allowed social media efforts to promote a good cause.

Also, we’ve been enjoying discussing how the Hunger Games and Social Media could have affected Panem (the fictional nation in The Hunger Games).

Social media has become one of the most cost effective and quickly spreading forms of marketing. To market the movie online and through social media the marketing team created a standard website that focused on the release date and movie trailers. They also created a website that allows visitors to become a member of Panem at thecapitol.pn. Users share what district they’re in and their new Panem identification card on Facebook or Twitter.

The official movie Facebook page is extremely well done. With over 3.2 million fans this page can attribute much of it’s success to making their Facebook fans feel valuable. Making their fans first to hear news about the upcoming movie by sharing screenshots, the movie soundtrack, exclusive photos of the characters & actors and by interacting with fans not only on the main page but also on Facebook pages created for each district in Panem. They’re really using the Hunger Games and social media to bring fans into the movies.

Their Tumblr page is a perfect example of this. Tumblr is a great social media site that has many uses, because it is a great place for sharing and reposting items found on the web it has a lot of active users. One popular topic on tumblr blog pages is fashion. Social media marketers used this to their advantage by creating a faux online fashion magazine called Capitol Couture which examines the extravagant and absurd fashion trends displayed by citizens in the Capitol.

On Twitter they’ve chosen actual twitter users to become mayors of districts and district recruiters. Tonight, along with the movie they’re also launching a Facebook Game — The Hunger Games Adventures. With all this and more their social media efforts have encouraged fans to interact and to generate their own content to spread all over the world wide web.

While it’s neat to see all the things the markerters are doing it’s absolutely wonderful to see fans get involved, to become promoters of a product themselves. While this is particularly popular for books and movies with epic stories it’s important to keep in mind that this can still apply and happen with other businesses as well. For Example, Arizona Iced Tea on Tumblr share fan generated content featuring Arizona Iced Tea.

One of the most popular things I’ve seen floating around the web is this creative and well thought out map of Panem, which obviously took quite a chunk of time to put together. There are podcasts and entire websites that are dedicated to the fandom with names from CitizenOfPanem.com to TheMockingjay on LiveJournal. Countless fan art creations including this lovely illustration of Katniss Everdeen.
Katniss Everdeen -- Girl on Fire

 

Hunger is Not a Game Website Badge

Website Badge

Besides promotion for the movies, other marketers have been able to use the success of The Hunger Games’s social media marketing for different endeavors. One example of this is Hunger is Not a Game by Imagine Better (An endeavor by The Harry Potter Alliance). By using themes from the novels & movies, and social media they are partnering up with Oxfam to gain supporters to change our system of distributing food relief, and to spread awareness of starvation.

While examining all the ways that the Hunger Games and social media are used, the experience got me thinking about how social media could have affected Panem. While there does seem to be television and phones in Panem there never is a mention of social media. One can imagine how it might affect the games and the fictional world of Panem. Tributes would be required to tweet throughout the Hunger Games competition, the more followers they get the better sponsors they’d get. There would be Facebook pages, fansites, podcasts, and blogs focused on all the tributes.

However, when I really think about it, if social media were around I don’t think they would have ever made it to a 74th Hunger Games. Social media can be very powerful. Knowing the role social media had in The Arab Spring, I think in the world of Panem, social media would have a hand in ending the spectacle of the Hunger Games years before Primrose’s name is ever called in the reaping.

Social Media is the Preferred Marketing for Everyone!

Lacey Welborn

Lacey Welborn

Lacey and her brother Zeb Welborn founded Welborn Media. She has designed and launched websites, several projects, marketing materials, a podcast, a book and more. Her passions include her family, her friends, creating things and helping businesses grow.
Lacey Welborn

Direct mail, radio commercials, television commercials, billboards, flashing web advertisements, pop-up ads, and horribly timed telemarketing phone calls are all forms of marketing most people find extremely annoying. They are intrusions in our lives — always interrupting. They’re not like social media marketing. The biggest difference between this kind of marketing and social media marketing is that people get to pick and choose which social media messages they receive.

On Facebook you choose which pages you like, on Twitter you pick who you follow, when it comes to blogs you pick which ones you read. Social media allows you to subscribe to messages for the products and services you actually want to hear about.

Marketing your business to only those that want to receive your message at times during their day when they’re able to take in your message is more effective and less expensive than other forms of marketing. There are two forms of marketing, inbound and outbound. Inbound marketing is any form of marketing that helps you get found by potential customers. Outbound marketing is marketing that interrupts consumers and forces the message on them. When you think about it like this, outbound marketing sounds rather rude.

Social media has quickly become the most effective means for inbound marketing. But, simply switching your messages from outbound marketing outlets to your social media outlets isn’t enough. Outbound messages are trying to be heard over the massive amounts of other messages that a person is bombarded with each and every day. Outbound messages are the equivalent of screaming at someone. Inbound marketing in the form of social media is for people who are already seeking out information from you. They may appreciate something with more detail. And, since social media platforms are a place for conversation, it’s a perfect place to be conversational and to encourage interaction.

Social media marketing is ideal for both businesses and consumers. Don’t just try to be heard. Invest in social media marketing, get your message to those customers who are not only interested in your message, but are also at a point in time when they can fully absorb your message and interact with your brand.

At Welborn Social Media we truly believe that every business can benefit from social media marketing. If you’re interested in social media services for your business please contact Zeb Welborn at (909) 973-9089 or email Zeb@WelbornSocialMedia.com

Five Tips for a Killer Presentation

Lacey Welborn

Lacey Welborn

Lacey and her brother Zeb Welborn founded Welborn Media. She has designed and launched websites, several projects, marketing materials, a podcast, a book and more. Her passions include her family, her friends, creating things and helping businesses grow.
Lacey Welborn

Whenever we meet a potential client we prepare a presentation for them. We share facts and ideas about what Welborn Social Media can do for their business.

Our presentations have been very successful.  Get our five tips for a killer presentation

Upon the completion of our presentation, our potential clients have a basic understanding of social media, how it can benefit their business, and, often times, business owners begin to see the massive potential social media has to offer.

Slide 1 of Our Presentation

Here are some reasons why our presentations are successful:

  • We alter our slide show to suit the business we’re presenting too. This is beneficial for two reasons:  we provide a personalized approach which gives us credibility that we can take their information and use it to communicate using social media, and it gives us on opportunity to delve into the business to better understand the needs of our customers.
  • We use lots of slides. Clicking through more slides during a presentation helps develop a strong, consistent flow of information to our potential customers. Instead of having one slide with a topic and three bullet points it’s much better for the tempo of the presentation to have four slides with very large, easy-to-read font.
  • Conversation is a must.  At the beginning of each presentation we explicitly encourage clients to ask questions.  Throughout the presentation we ask a lot of questions and make sure they are understanding the material we presented to them.  The presentation is less of a presentation and more like a guided conversation . . . our slides help guide the discussion.
  • Our slide show is very cohesive. It has a set color scheme, a few font choices and consistently placed items throughout.
  • While being cohesive we also have worked to make the slides more interesting. We have a lot of charts in our presentation to visually display some of the astounding facts around social media. We realized there were too many bar graphs and they became repetitive. By thinking of more creative ways to visually display information we’ve been able to make our slide show much more interesting.

Keep Slides Interesting

Our presentation is a constant work in progress. We are always trying to improve both the design of the slides and the manner in which we share them.

We love giving our presentation to business owners. By the end they can see the potential for social media in their business. They can imagine the success it can bring. They can visualize the ways it can allow them to share their passion for what they do.  Use our five tips for a killer presentation.

Should My Business Use Social Media?

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

When I first talk to business owners about Social Media, most realize Social Media is benefiting other businesses, but do not understand how it can help theirs.

Each business is unique and it is important for each company to determine whether or not to use Social Media based on the goals it has established for its business.

If you’re looking for the quick answer to the question, feel free to scroll down to the bottom, but I would like to share with you some examples of how and why businesses started using Social Media.

Example #1 – Grandma C’s Cookies

My sister met Grandma C at an event put on by the Arizona Small Business Association in Tempe, Arizona. She was very interested in the possibility of using Social Media to promote her cookie making business.  Grandma C was retired and wanted her business to earn some extra income.  She loved baking and built her business in her kitchen.

The Goal:  Grandma C had no desire to expand her staff. She wanted to be making cookies and sharing her baked goods with the local community.

The Answer:  Lacey suggested that using Facebook would be a great way to develop a relationship with the local community. She encouraged Grandma to try and get each of her new customers to join her Facebook page.  Then, when she had free time, to post photos and share her thoughts, ideas or inspirations regarding her baking.

Example #2 – System 1:  Acoustic Ceiling Removal

Richard McKinnon III, the President of System 1 Acoustic Ceiling Removal fell on rough times when the economy started to nose dive in 2007.  Richard was a fixer and when he started getting less business, his solution was to invest more in advertising to generate new business, cutting into his bottom line.  The money he spent in advertising for his products was not coming back to him the way it did pre-recession. Richard does not have time to devote to increasing his Social Media presence because he is constantly out on the road giving bids to home-owners across Southern California.

The Goal:  Richard has enormous responsibilities to his family and the people he employs; he needs to keep his business afloat and continue to provide for his family.  He knows his business is the best in the area and wants to maintain his business until the economy turns around.

The Answer:  We worked with Richard to create a Social Media campaign that incorporates a blog and Facebook.  The Facebook page is designed to reach out to potential customers who are homeowners and existing customers.  The blog is designed to allow users to find System 1 using search engines like Google or Yahoo.

Example #3 – WireSpeed Systems

WireSpeed Systems buys and sells new, used and re-furbished computer networking equipment to companies and individuals all over the world.

The Goal:  The market for computer networking equipment is highly competitive and WireSpeed Systems was looking for a leg up on its competition.

The Answer:  We worked with them to enhance their Social Media presence on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.  Any person or business who is in a similar industry or who is interested in the products offered by WireSpeed Systems can find them easily on any of those platforms.  As a result, WireSpeed Systems has generated more leads and a better opportunity to convert those leads to sales.  They are also connecting with their customers in a more engaging and interactive way.

Example #4 – The Tutoring Solution

The Tutoring Solution Logo


I started tutoring students in 2009 and had generated a small clientele.  Tutoring is not the most lucrative business, but I really wanted to help students succeed in school, so it was a perfect fit for me.  At the beginning of the school year in September, 2010, I decided to start a website and try to build my tutoring business using Social Media.

The Goal:  To expand my business to help as many students possible succeed in the classroom in Southern California.

The Answer:  Before I started using Social Media, I had roughly four students that I tutored regularly and all were referred to me by word of mouth.  Today, a little over one year after my Social Media experiment started, The Tutoring Solution has worked with 63 students on a consistent basis.  During that time, I have had to hire 17 tutors and my client base is continuing to grow.

If you want your business to expand, you have to use Social Media. If you want your business to survive, you should use Social Media.  And if you want your business to die, you should stay away from Social Media.

In a chart designed by HubSpot, based off of information from EMarketer, the amount of companies that used blogs has more than doubled from 2007 from 16% to 39% in 2011.  Every Social Media site has seen a massive increase in the amount of companies that are using these tools to generate more business.  If you are not one of these companies, you are getting left behind.

United States Companies Using Blogs | Source: EMarketer, August 2010 by HubSpot

The real question you should be asking yourself is not whether or not you should be using Social Media, but whether or not you should pay someone else to do it.

It doesn’t make sense for Grandma C’s Cookies to pay someone else to do Social Media since she wouldn’t be making enough revenue to pay for someone to do Social Media for her.  Nor did it make sense for me to hire someone to do Social Media for my tutoring business, since I had no money to spend on advertising of any kind.

But, because I took the time and initiative to start a Social Media campaign on my own, my business thrived, just like Grandma C’s will if she does it right.

For any company that spends money in advertising it makes sense to devote money towards expanding your Social Media presence.  Unlike Newspaper, TV, or Pay-Per-Click Advertising, you can reap long-term benefits from using Social Media.  All the “Follows”, “Likes”, and “Connections” your company receives are likely to stay and can be reached out to at any time.  All blog articles that are written will be available for users to find, months, years, and decades down the line.

Should My Business Use Social Media?

The Answer:  Social Media is essential for any business, regardless of the industry and the goals of the company.  Deciding on whether or not to pay for someone to run Social Media for you is the only question your company should be asking.  

We can develop and implement a personalized Social Media strategy for any company.  If you think Social Media is something you’d be interested in finding out more about, please contact me, Zeb Welborn at (909) 973 – 9089 or WelbornSocialMedia@gmail.com to discuss ways Social Media can benefit your business.

 

The Story of Welborn Social Media

Zeb Welborn

The owner of Welborn Social Media and the founder of The Tutoring Solution.My goal is to help business owners share the passion they have for their business with as many potential customers as possible.By helping passionate people achieve their dreams I am helping to create a society of passionate leaders that will help inspire others to make their dreams a reality.

My sister and I were unemployed and living at our parents home.  My life had completely changed, I had gone through a difficult divorce and left my full-time teaching job.  Lacey had been working an exhausting job as a video editor at a local news station when they cancelled her show.

Zeb and Lacey Welborn Barbecuing Our Turkey on Thanksgiving Day

In February 2009, I began tutoring my first student and found I really enjoyed the sense of accomplishment that came along with developing students in a one on one setting and experienced a lot of success.  Referrals came freely and my schedule became very full.  I decided to expand.

Lacey went back to school, taking graphic design classes and had been learning website design on her own.

I asked if she would help me with my business.  She created The Tutoring Solution logo and built a website. When the website went up, almost immediately, people began to find us online.

This was cool!

For months we added content to our website; using blogs, pictures and videos.  But, I also wanted to direct people to my website and needed to find an inexpensive way to do that.  Facebook and Twitter provided me with a free way to promote my business.

That’s when The Tutoring Solution took off.

My sister and I attributed our success to our efforts in Social Media. We did more research and began to attend classes, read articles, communicated with successful companies and kept up to date on best practices for Social Media.

Jennifer Davis from Scrapbook Expo was the first business owner we talked to about developing a Social Media campaign for their brand.  Jennifer was already active on Facebook and had generated a massive following.  I asked her if she would be willing to let me run a Twitter campaign for her company.  Welborn Social Media was born.

Many other companies began hearing about us through a variety of different avenues. Currently we do Social Media and graphic design work for the Creative Scrapbook Source, DLT Growers, Los Serranos Country Club, Scrapbook Expo, System 1, The Tutoring Solution and WireSpeed Systems.

Our story has only just begun.

Our mission is to build connections for our clients with potential customers and develop stronger relationships with current customers and to help their business grow.

If you’re looking to expand your business, schedule an appointment with us today.  We will work with you to create a personalized plan designed to help your business grow.

Schedule your free appointment today by contacting Zeb Welborn at (909) 973 – 9089 or WelbornSocialMedia@gmail.com