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In her BlogWell Bay Area presentation, The Coca-Cola Company's Manager of Digital Communications and Social Media, Ashley Callahan, shares how the brand's "Coca-Cola Journey" campaign grew its social media channels by 100%.

She offers tips on how to create compelling, meaningful content and how to effectively track results through examples of the successful Journey campaign.

Below is live coverage of this session:

— Ashley says the Coca-Cola Journey was launched to become a hub of great content. The website was redesigned to be an editorial magazine format.

— There is a large planning process that includes public affairs and marketing folks. They meet with global marketing folks and take pitches from freelancers as well.

— Ashley says compelling content can be a blog, photo, or a video. The water cooler test is applied to all stories.

• Does it answer the “Why should I care” test?
• Does it surprise you?
• Is it compelling with universal appeal?
• Is it being measured systematically?

— As a marketer they ask:

• Does the topic generate interest?
• Is it new?
• Is it something we've seen before?

— Ashley shares the most interesting content to Coca-Cola audiences according to metrics:

• Food
• Company History
• Jobs

—Integrating great content across channels has led to it being seen 500 times, 2,400 page views, and an infographic on The Daily Beast.

— Ashley says the most popular content of all time is The Coca-Cola Journey resulting in 8,000 shares from people syndicating their content by sharing it on their own sites/social media profiles.

— Success metrics include website visitors, sharing, and media coverage of Coca-Cola Journey stories.

— What’s next? Building an infrastructure to support Journey editors and owners globally with localized content. They will be hosting content that would have been in a microsite in the past on the brand site (Journey).

Q & A:

Q: Did you bring in people with a journalism background to get Journey started?

A: Ashley: Yes, people with journalism degrees and backgrounds are leading the effort. I also have a journalism background.

Q: How is media supported within the company?

A: Ashley: Our largest business strategy is lead by the CEO who wants to double the audience by 2020. We’re not monetizing it, it is set up like a publisher. This allows for more freedom to talk about different topics.

Q: Is all of your content created by Coca-Cola or do you also have content created by users/communities. How do you manage global content and translation?

A: Ashley: We write both brand and non-Coke articles. We work with freelancers. We've republished content from media outlets we respect and enjoyed. We have also worked with General Mills to source content from their food website and with partners such as Ronald McDonald House.

Q: Do you have communities where customers generate content (user generated content)?

A: Ashley: Yes, it is a new feature on the website launched in the past month.

Q: Have you gotten any push back on this being more lifestyle-oriented versus product-centric?

A: Ashley: This is where metrics come in. People love to hear about products. We look at what has worked in the past to see what worked and what hasn't. People can’t argue with numbers.

Q: What tools do you use?

A: Ashley: Gigya, proprietary CMS. Every article is weighted on views, shares, and bounce rate = expressions of interest score. SEO is a big part of the formula. We look at keywords that aren't as competitive that we can use and own. This [Journey] has grown our social media channels 100% .

Q: What’s next for Coca-Cola social media?

A: Ashley: Our goal is to grow the new social media platforms such as Instagram. We customize content to each platforms. For example, jobs are posted to LinkedIn. Lists in short digestable formats such as “2 things you should know” work really well in content and so do images.

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