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What would you do: 4 social scenarios

October 27, 2015 - Posted by

Let's face it, social media is anything but typical. In fact, it's more than likely one of the only professions where anything can happen - and generally does more than a few times on a daily basis. We've put together a few scenarios in the infographic below, and would like to get your feedback. What would you do? Also, what are some of the situations you've experienced where you had to think fast to save the day?


Facebook update Thursday

October 8, 2015 - Posted by

Facebook Unveils 'Reactions,' Emoji Buttons That Go Beyond 'Like'

Following up on SMCKC communications team member Lauren Wells' blog post, Mark Zuckerberg announced today that Facebook is launching "a test of Reactions - a more expressive Like button."

The current concept includes a series of animated reactions to choose from when you tap and hold the Like button. They include the well-known thumbs up (Like), as well as Love, Haha, Yay, Wow, Sad, and Angry.

They will start testing Reactions in Ireland and Spain, before they bring the refined experience to everyone.

See the announcement here.

Facebook adding additional ways to interact beyond the “thumbs up”

September 30, 2015 - Posted by

What social and digital managers need to know

BELCHATOW POLAND - AUGUST 31 2014: Facebook logo printed on paper and stuck to the finger.

By Lauren Wells, @laurenwellsKC

You may have seen the headlines in mid-September about Facebook’s new “dislike” button after Mark Zuckerburg hosted an online Q&A session. His announcement caused quite the social media frenzy. Every headline said almost the exact same thing: “Facebook to add ‘Dislike’ button.”

The headlines themselves were so disruptive that after posting one of these stories on my own News Feed, a friend who works at Facebook commented on that post trying to clarify what it meant.

So here’s the truth. Don’t count on seeing any “dislike” button on your news feeds anytime soon.

Once you dig past the misleading headlines, you’ll find that Facebook is planning to release additional ways for users to show sentiment beyond a “Like.” Users have been requesting this for quite some time.

Raise your hand if you’ve felt awkward “liking” a post, not because it was necessarily good news, but because you wanted to acknowledge that you saw it and support it.

The iconic “thumbs up” just doesn’t work for every situation. It’s a very limited emotion and response.

To Zuckerberg’s point, a push button solution with additional sentiments around content is “surprisingly complicated.”

For now, it sounds like Facebook is testing options that allow you to show different feelings for situations when a “like” just doesn’t feel appropriate. For example, Facebook is seeking to provide a means to show support for a variety of situations, such as:

  • Afriend’s loved one passes away
  • Aa story about the Syrian refugee crisis
  • A story of mixed emotions from our local Great Plains SPCA about a deplorable puppy mill situation but included the rescue of 48 dogs

"It's important to give people more options than just 'like'" to help express empathy and sympathy, Zuckerberg said. “Not every moment is a good moment."

Facebook has long used its current interactions to intelligently guess what content is relevant to you and what you might be interested in. I’m guessing this won’t change that, but rather enhance it.

Don’t expect this to be like up/down voting you might see on Reddit or YouTube. Just because you don’t “like” something or you come across a sad post, it doesn’t necessarily mean you don’t want to see it. That’s where Facebook’s new interactions will be different.

It appears Facebook is trying to focus on more ways to express civil interactions - ways to express solidarity, support, sympathy etc. It is probablyunlikely there will be a focus on allowing users to “downgrade” certain content. Facebook won’t want to discourage users from sharing content as freely as they do now.

Zuckerberg says they are close to unveiling a new button or buttons. Facebook will begin testing soon and then roll out more widely.

So what does this mean for brands and those of us that manage the online presence? It may be a little too early to tell. However, just because we don’t know how it will affect the algorithm for Pages doesn’t mean we shouldn’t start preparing.

Here are some key things to keep in mind:

  • This may force you to enhance the quality of your content
  • These new interaction options should improve algorithms that deliver users and consumers content that is relevant to them
  • Customers will have more options to share feedback with your brand
  • You will likely have more at-a-glance feedback on the content subject you post about (opposed to having to sift through a Comments string)
  • In the meantime, focus on positive content you can put out - testimonials, magic moments, and success stories

We are interested to hear the perspective of fellow SMCKC members. How do you think this will affect brands? How do you think the algorithm might change? What impact do you think this might have on this political season? Please share your thoughts and comments via Twitter using #SMCKC.

About the author: Lauren Wells is the marketing and communications manager for Sporting Innovations and serves on the communications team for Social Media Club of Kansas City.

Ignition: Update

September 30, 2015 - Posted by

SMCKC Membership,

Many of you have followed along with the discussion of Ignition, an SMCKC event geared towards helping KC-area nonprofits develop complete social media campaigns using the great talent in our SMCKC community. This event should have happened last month, but was cancelled at the last minute.

I'd like to apologize to the membership and the chosen non-profits for canceling at the last minute. It was my opinion that we had insufficiently updated our chosen non-profits to the timeline for Ignition. Additionally, we had done a very poor job of recruiting creative and graphic design talent to make the social campaigns a reality. The combination of these factors would have resulted in a sub-standard product being delivered to our chosen non-profits.

After several meetings on how to improve the event and make sure that this doesn't happen again, we are now confidant we can move forward with a rescheduled date of Saturday November 14th, 2015. All of the originally chosen non-profits will be invited to join us and let KC's best in social help them develop campaigns to help their unique challenges.

We want to make Ignition the best event it can be. If you'd like to volunteer your skill in social media, click here to volunteer! (Note: We need a dramatically higher amount of creative and graphic design support... please pass this along to anyone who you think would be a good fit).

Any questions? Shoot me an email at

Kris Nielsen

President, SMCKC

AMPS is Coming

September 30, 2015 - Posted by


Last year we had the privilege of giving away dozens of awards to amazing members of our social media community. From in-house teams to agencies and even non-profits, we had the opportunity to recognize the great work in social media that is going on here in Kansas City.

We learned a lot from year one that I'm sure will make year two even better. Here are some updates on the 2016 AMPS:

Date: The Second Annual AMPS Awards will be held on February 18th, 2016 at 28 Event Space so mark your calendars!

Categories: We learned a lot from year one and have added some new categories (how'd we miss Twitter?!) along with removing some that didn't have many submissions. Reminder: Campaigns running between October 1st, 2014 and September 30th, 2015 are eligible. A full list of categories:

Category Who is Eligible
Rookie of the Year Individual
Multi-Channel Integrated Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Integration with an Offline Campaign Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Volunteer of the Year Individual
Hat Tip Award Individual or Team
Facebook (Sole or Primary) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Twitter (Sole or Primary) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Email (Sole or Primary) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Visual - IG/YouTube (Sole or Primary) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Blog (Sole or Primary) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Trailblazer Award Individual
Event or Real Time Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Most Bang for the Buck (ROI) Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government
Biggest Big Deal Agency, Brand, Nonprofit/Government

Look for more information and a submission process to come! Year two is going to be amazing!

Kris Nielsen

President, SMCKC

Hack and win prizes at Techweek KC Hackathon

September 3, 2015 - Posted by


Love to code stuff and want to win a bit of dough? There’s a new Hackathon in town this month, with a $2500 grand prize.

SMCKC member and email marketing sponsor emfluence is geeking out even harder than usual: They’re sponsoring the Techweek KC Hackathon Sept 19-20!


Techweek is a weeklong series of events, focused on shining a spotlight on technology and entrepreneurship. This year, they’re hosting events in several US cities and, of course, KC was one of them.

Alongside IBM and Cerner, emfluence will put their Marketing Platform API in the ring for teams to use during the 24-hour hackathon. The teams’ goals are to make the best app, as determined by a team of judges. They’ll determine the grand prize winner and a winner for each API.


Our pals at emfluence are going to sweet that pot even further by awarding a $1000 prize to the best use of their own API, judged by Dave, Jess and the emfluence crew.

The Hackathon is free to enter! Check out the details and prizes here.

emfluence also has some passes for the full week of events – Check out the full schedule here. Email for more info!

SMCKC Election Results

July 21, 2015 - Posted by

It is my privilege to announce that another round of SMCKC elections have been successfully completed. I am pleased to welcome the following individuals to their new roles on the SMCKC board.

Vice-President: Formerly the communications chair, Kate Favrow will help us keep our amazing trajectory as a club (as well as stepping in as President should I meet an untimely demise).

Secretary / Treasurer: Bridget Koan will help us keep finances in line and lend order to our regular meetings and proceedings.

Membership Chair: Maliha Khan wins the Membership Chair spot and will direct the future of programming and membership development for SMCKC.

Events Co-Chairs:

Mike Levine was the top vote for membership chair. Mike brings a rich experience in event planning from his work with the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

Joining Mike at Events will be Leah Godfrey, our exiting membership chair. Leah has brought an array of ideas to the development of the membership position and will continue to make sure our events are organized to maximize member enjoyment and education.

Communications Co-Chairs:

Marc Vasquez joins the SMCKC board as Communications Co-Chair. As the current social lead at UMB, Marc brings his extensive expertise to the table. Marc has served in leadership roles on other area marketing club boards as well.

Liza Perry was the most-voted runner up in each of the other above categories and has accepted the position of Communications Co-Chair. As social lead for Cerner, she also brings a wealth of information to the board.

Please join me in welcoming these new and returning board members!

I would also like to thank the other candidates who ran for positions. This is by far the highest caliber bunch of candidates we have ever slated for elections and I know each of you will continue to make a difference for the SMCKC in the future.

Here’s to another great year of #SMCKC!

Kris Nielsen

President, Social Media Club of Kansas City

The SMCKC Election Process Has Begun!

June 19, 2015 - Posted by

On Thursday we had quite the turnout for our SMCKC "Meet the Candidates" Happy Hour at Waldo Pizza! The Happy Hour marks the start of the SMCKC Election Process! Campaigning has begun and will run through voting, which will open on 7.10 and run through the end of the day on 7.17.

A note on voting: All SMCKC members as of 6.5.15 will receive a personalized URL (PURL) for voting on 7.10. This link is unique to the recipient and can only be used once. We will resend it once further during the voting window, but it cannot be forwarded, etc. This ensures that only club members (those on the email list) will be able to vote on the election. Please email me with any questions on this at

Now, let's meet your candidates!


Our current Communications Chair, Kate Favrow is running unopposed! Questions on her plans for the position? Tweet her @KUfavs .

Treasurer / Secretary

Liza Perry @EPerry07

Bridget Koan @Bridgetlhk

Membership Chair

Maliha Khan is both excited to run for this position and running unopposed! Questions for her? Ideas? She can be reached @Malihasays

Events Co-Chair (2 Positions Available)

Eric Shoemaker @ejshoe

Jentry Newth @jentrynewth

Leah Godfrey @LeahKGodfrey

Michael Levine @KCWineGuy

Communications Co-Chair (2 Positions Available)

Marc Vasquez @Vasquez007

Note: Marc brings a ton to the table for communications, and is the only person running for the position. We still feel that there should be a second Co-Chair for this as our outward communications are critical to the group. As decided by the board: the second Communications Co-Chair position will be offered to the runner up with the overall most votes in the Events / Treasurer races. 

Good luck to our candidates! I have never been more excited about the future of #SMCKC!

Kris Nielsen @KrisNielsenKC

President, @SMCKC

June Breakfast Recap – Storify

June 15, 2015 - Posted by

In his spare time between serving as the voice of the Kansas City Marathon, preparing to go behind the scenes at the 2015 Big Slick KC, and training to represent Ronald McDonald House Charities in the 2015 Chicago Marathon, Jake Jacobson, senior manager of public relations for Children's Mercy Hospital, stopped by the SMCKC June breakfast to share his tips on developing your proudest fans into your loudest advocates.

Check out the great takeaways from this month's breakfast, and join us in July!

New ‘Buy It’ Pinterest feature to allow in-app purchasing

June 12, 2015 - Posted by

Pinners, shoppers, curators, and DIY-ers will begin to use their virtual pinboards in a new way: Pinterest has announced the new “Buy It” button on their platform.

In the next few weeks, Pinterest users will have the option to buy their items of interest in addition to pinning them. The meeting of retail therapy and social sharing for people who occasionally puruse sites like or to decompress to only e-mail or share items on Facebook. Buying a specific pin, rather than searching through a whole site, can give users the ability to buy more items as they curate more items of specific, and not general, interest.

Buying, presumably, clothes, home decor, equipment, and more pins directly from the Pinterest app has the potential to shift in-store shopping to in-app purchases. According to a 2013 Vision Critical study, 50 percent of Pinterest users actually buy items they pin in-store, it is in this point where a buy-able pin could shift this trend to in-app purchases. This gives initial sellers like Macy’s, Neiman Marcus, and Nordstrom a head-start advantage as in-app sales continue to grow.


A ‘Buy It’ button has potential to drive ecommerce for Pinterest as well. Though the site currently does not plan to receive revenue, the possibility of charging brands to sell their products on the platform is present. Social-sharing, a feature that Pinterest is based off of, offers a unique selling point to drive sales that sites like doesn’t currently offer.

Other social platforms, such as image-sharing Instagram, have the potential to sell items in its app with the ‘Buy What You Like’ option. While some companies have attempted to monetize Instagram with hyperlinks to their site in their bio, users buying what they “Like” could drive sales as photos reach thousands of in-app “Likes”.

How to use a ‘Buy It’ pin

The idea: Blue means you can buy it from the app

1.) Use the price filter to select a price range
2.) Customize by selecting available colors of the item
3.) Buy it with ApplePay or by credit card.