Social Media in the Personalization Age | JSB Talks Digital Podcast

Social Media in the Personalization Age

JSB Talks Digital is a weekly digital marketing and social media podcast hosted by author, strategist, consultant, speaker and trainer Joanne Sweeney-Burke. Each Friday Joanne shares her digital marketing and social media insights from her work as CEO of Digital Training Institute. 

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In this show I look at how social media should be adapted in what I call The Personlization Age.  

Coming up:

  • In Social Media News I take a look at Messenger Day and why this new new feature from Facebook is a direct response to the demand for personalized content across social.
  • I interview Sean Nolan of Platform4U and we discuss personalized mobile content to build a tribe
  • In shout-outs: Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s St. Patrick’s Day Address that went viral
  • In JSB’s column – What’s expected off social media managers in the Personalization Age; and
  • Find out what digital tool saved my working week.


Social Media News | Messenger Day

I’ve brought back social media news as I return to my old format! I know some of you missed it!

Messenger Day has arrived and it will change the way we use Facebook forever. If you haven’t already been using Snapchat or Instagram Stories, then Messenger Day will feel very new to you.

The speed and agility of Facebook to iterate is remarkable and they are not shy about replicating the best of other social network’s features to remain top dog in the world of social media!

Personalization is a growing phenomenon on social media and I have been talking about the Personalization Age in my talks and indeed on this podcast now for some time.

What Messenger Day offers users is the opportunity to post private stories to one person, a group of people or to everyone you are connected with on Messenger.

Messenger Day on iPhone - Social Media in the Personalization Age

So how does it work?

You can share photos and videos with people on Messenger by adding them to your day, which appears at the top of your Messenger inbox.

You can share your post with everyone or just the people you choose. 

You can see who’s viewed your day. Like Snapcht and Instagram Stories, what you share disappears from your day after 24 hours.

Notably, your day only will appear in Messenger, and won’t be posted to Facebook.

If you don’t see the option to add to your day, try updating your app to the latest version. Keep in mind this feature isn’t available everywhere yet.

I have Messenger Day and I’m having fun with it so far!


Interview with Sean Nolan, Founder of Platform4U

I am delighted to be joined on today’s show by Sean Nolan, Founder of Platform4U.

The company develops mobile apps which deliver personalized content to your online community. 

Be sure to tune in if you want to hear Sean answer my questions:

Q1: Tell me a bit about Platform4U and what gap you saw in the market?

Q2: I am also working on my JSB Talks Digital mobile app with you – we’ve had this conversation many times about how my community of 35,000 people is segregated across multiple platforms and how I wanted to bring them to a place where they can not only consume all my content but where we can deepen the relationship. Do you think this approach will help marketers, content creators and brands overcome content shock?

Q3: Tell us how the platform works – why would somebody download and then tap into JSB Talks Digital regularly – because that’s what I want to achieve. So while you build me the infrastructure its success is down to me right?

Q4: Will an app replace a website – or if you have a fully mobile responsive website, why would you need an app. I am asking this question because I can hear my listeners asking it in my head! 

Q5: Finally Sean, what would you say to brands and marketers struggling to make a real impact on social – what can they do to personalize the experience for greater community engagement?


JSB’s Column | What is Personalization in the Digital Age?        

In today’s column, I’m going to give you my perspective on what the Personalization Age means for social media managers.

Personalization is everything in the social sphere; bulk emails and auto tweets cannot hit human emotions, and are a waste of your time and efforts.

So why is personalization so important? Well consider these stats – 22.7% Internet users blocked ads in 2013; and this number is expected to grow at 43% per year.

Prosumers are increasingly moving away from anything that doesn’t serves their needs. Advertisements of your products and services doesn’t hit the mark anymore. Consumers need two-way interaction; they want to be heard as well as hear how you can solve their pain points and they want to be involved!

We are all very well aware how Facebook works – their algorithm tracks who we are engaging with, the content that we stop to read and the videos that we tap on. All of our interactions are monitored so that Facebook serves us more of what we like and hides what we don’t.

So here’s my top tips for Social Media Managers on how to really deliver a personalized experience for your fans, followers and subscribers.

  1. Review your analytics – the data in your Google Analytics account is extremely valuable and should not be ignored. It tracks every user’s journey through your website and even where they’ve come from before visiting your site. We have remarkable opportunity to therefore give our customers more of what they want be assessing how they are interacting with our website. The same can be said for the analytics on our social media accounts – what content gets the greatest engagement and what format of content do our fans love most? Get down and dirty with your data and use it to influence your next social media steps.
  2. Ask your fans to choose your next campaign. Are you planning a new campaign? Are you wondering whether it will hit the mark?  Why not ask your fans for their feedback. Give them a choice of three campaigns and get them to tell you which excites them most. Twitter and Facebook offer a poll feature also which can useful to generate feedback.
  3. Be human. Show the human side of your business. After all behind every social media account is a person! Too often brands and organisations talk in a monotone corporate voice and forget about personality.  Be sure to sign off personalized messages with your first name.
  4. BTS – bring us behind the scenes of your brand, organization or company! Literally use social media to open the door and welcome your fans in. Who doesn’t want to see what makes you tick? Add value to your fans experience by giving them greater insights. Social and live video are a perfect fit in this situation.
  5. Stories on Snapchat, Instagram and on Facebook provide a highly personalized experience. The ephemeral nature of the content removes inhibitions and allows us to be more personable in our approach. Start experimenting with Stories if you haven’t already and your fans will love you for it. Can you create a daily or a weekly feature on Stories that becomes a consistent part of your content plan and that your fans look forward to? Remember consistency of content is a tactic that will take your social media efforts and your engagement rates to the next level.

Personalization of social media content has therefore become a ubiquitous expectation and brands can no longer ignore this trend if they want to stay in competition.

So will you personalize your social media strategy? 


Shoutouts | How Taoiseach Enda Kenny used personalization in his St. Patrick’s Day speech to go viral 

In this part of the show I give shout-outs to brands, organisations and individuals whose work is remarkable online and worth talking about.

In today’s show I’m sharing three reasons why Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s St. Patrick’s Day speech went viral.  

30 millions view and counting. The video has been shared more than 400,000 times including by the Taoiseach himself who shared it on his Facebook page three hours after it was posted.

It’s an annual tradition that the Irish Prime Minister visits the White House to hand over a bowl of shamrock on behalf of the Irish people. This symbolic photo opp, is well… more than just a photo opp.

And last week Mr. Kenny made sure that his speech was more than the same old same old. 

In fact I’ve listened to his speech now seven times and what jumps out for me is how he was able to personalize it in such a way that it evoked emotion and positive sentiment worldwide.

So here’s the three tenets of personalization that made Enda Kenny’s 2017 St. Patrick’s Day address to President Donald Trump go viral.  


He personalized St. Patrick

We all know St. Patrick banished snakes from Ireland, but did you know he was an immigrant?

Immigration is such a massive political issue right now across the world and the recent election of Donald Trump and his programme for Government has put a laser sharp focus on the matter. 

A devisive issues for every country, Mr. Kenny told the story of St. Patrick – knowing that the world’s eyes would be watching. 

In his speech Mr Kenny said St Patrick was an immigrant and was, in many ways, the patron saint of immigrants along with being the patron saint of Ireland.

In fact the traditional media’s commentary fueled the viral nature of the speech as they also shared it on their social media networks. 

The New York Times headline read: “Irish Premier Uses St Patrick’s Day Ritual to Lecture Trump on Immigration.”


2)    He personalized immigration  – “Ireland came to America because – deprived of liberty, opportunity, safety and even food itself – we believed,”  

Taoiseach Enda Kenny then went on to personalize the issue of immigration and spoke about Ireland’s history – our people leaving Irish shores bound for new opportunities in new countries. 

A direct quote from his speech:

“Ireland came to America because – deprived of liberty, opportunity, safety and even food itself – we believed,” 

This sought to reinforce the fact that immigration is an issue for everyone but he used the Irish as the example. 


3)    He personalized every country’s experience

Mr. Kenny’s words around how immigrants can give back personalizes this issue for every country.

“We lived the words of JFK long before he uttered them – we asked not what America could do for us but what we could do for America. And we still do.

“We want to give and not to take,” he told a room full of invited guests.

Watch Mr. Kenny’s speech here:

Do you have a case study you want to share with me?  Tweet me to @tweetsbyJSB or tag me on our Facebook Page.


Social Media Tool of the Week: Survey Funnel

The social media tool that saved my working week is Survey Funnel.

Survey Funnel - Social Media in the Personalization AgeEvery good marketer personalizes the story, the campaign and the message! But it can be labour intensive to do this manually. 

I’m currently building out my sales funnels for my online business and one super tool that is helping me segment my leads is Survey Funnel.

I am creating a master ebook called How to Manage a PR Crisis on Social Media – but I have three different versions aimed at three different Marketing Mangers – policing, politics and public policy.

By using Survey Funnel I can ask my website visitor which sector he/she works in and voila they will get the relevant eBook.

Their data is then sent automatically to ActiveCampaign, my CRM system! 

You can use this tool to test your product, find out your customers biggest challenges and also why they didn’t buy from you!

If you want to personalize content to segment leads then I suggest have a look at Survey Funnel and take their free trial. Log on to


I love feedback

I’d love to know what you think about this episode. So please get in touch by commenting below or tweet me @tweetsbyJSB or send me a snap to jsbsnaps.

Review JSB Talks Digital on iTunes


Listen: JSB Talks Digital | Episode #41

I would like to thank Eoghan Murphy aka The Galway Gamer for producing my podcast series and to Flirt FM on the campus of NUI, Galway where I am based for the use of their studio.

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