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Ralph Creative

5 tips to engaging and entertaining audiences on social

Emma Worth, Creative Social Strategist at Ralph, shares her top 5 tips for engaging and entertaining audiences on social media…

1. Become a Fan

To truly create an emotional connection with your audience on social, you need to share their passions wholeheartedly. That means living and breathing the brand and becoming as obsessive as they are. Ok, we can’t all take that as far as our tattooed Social Manager for Matt Groening’s Disenchantment, but we can take time to understand our audience and their lives. Because, if you can fully grasp your audience and master what they want from the content they consume, you’ve solved the first piece of the puzzle. This, in-turn, means they’ll engage and share more as a result. If they like quizzes, give the people quizzes!

2. Speak Your Audience’s Language

A bulletproof tone of voice is perhaps the most important thing for shaping your brand on social. We believe there are two considerations that you need to mould your brand TOV.

i) The language of social : Social has a language of its own, so embrace it in a way that fits your brand and your audience. Sometimes, we celebrate the language of social and memes so mercilessly that it goes beyond parody.

ii) The language of your audience : We have to continually be flexible with TOV dependent on the communities we’re trying to connect with. Going from the fabulous to the cynical.

But sometimes we might not inherently ‘get’ our audience. So for that, there’s comparative linguistics. Taking one data set of language and comparing it with your target audience’s use of language online, by filtering through AI – in order to find out the unique way they communicate, so you can speak that way too.

3. Create Content That Fits

The golden rule? Don’t feel pressured to be present everywhere, all of the time. Consider individual platforms and the way audience’s use them, and if it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Ensure content fits seamlessly within the brand experience or play with functionality to subvert the experience. Consider also, the world we live in today: a ‘now’ world. Practically everything is on-demand and accessible. Social and our audience is ‘always-on’, so our content should be too. We shape and prime our messaging to be in-the-moment and for the now, reacting in real-time and only dropping content when an instant action can be taken.

4. Engage One 2 One

It’s easy to be seduced by big numbers. But don’t forget the little guy. Treat your community as individuals to build stronger relationships. Yes, we’re talking about our good friend, community management. This type of instant connection between brand and consumer is often overlooked, but it nurtures each and every one of the tips we’ve outlined so far.

Become their biggest fan, communicate with them in the way they communicate with you, share their enthusiasm, sorrow or excitement, and be present in the places they are present to show you’ve taken the time to consider their investment in your brand.

But don’t consider this as a boring daily checklist strategy. These relationships can be super playful, they can show empathy, be darn right sassy, or prove you share common ground; but most importantly, they can generate even more organic engagements from other individuals – because your audience wants to be a part of your conversation.

5. Capitalise on your community

Brands grow through incremental reach, so whilst it’s great to foster your community, it’s essential to aim above and beyond, using your passionate audience to make and break trends, creating reach outside of owned channels. This can be as simple as a Tweet that reflects the mood of your audience or using social to mobilise your audience to take part in real world events to spread your message far and wide.


Square Enix uses emotive viral video to promote Life Is Strange: Before The Storm

Video games publisher Square Enix has eschewed traditional video games marketing strategy for a disruptive new approach, creating an emotive promo video for its latest game Life Is Strange: Before The Storm.

The three-minute video, entitled An Open Letter, was created by London-based brand experience agency Ralph, which was charged with delivering a creative that reflected the game’s themes of friendship, loyalty and devotion.

The result is an unexpected piece of games marketing far removed from the traditional approach of in-game footage and cut scenes – with the video featuring real people, with real stories of friendship and devotion.

The creative team at Ralph spent many weeks reaching out to pairs of best friends, asking for stories and insights into how their friendship had lasted through even the toughest of times. They were then invited to participate in interviews in New York where they were encouraged to open up about each other on camera.

However, there was a twist. Before coming to the interview, each friend was secretly urged to write a letter to their best friend. Once cameras started rolling, the recipients were asked to read their letters aloud for the first time.

“We took a risk with this strategy and we wouldn’t have achieved the emotion within the video had we not chosen some extraordinary people willing to open their hearts on camera,” admitted Ralph’s Creative Director Gregor Stevenson. “The raw intensity of their reactions as they read their best friends’ innermost thoughts is what we wanted to capture from the start. And that’s what we got. Our goal was to portray each friendship in an engaging and empathetic way, whilst reflecting the authenticity and uniqueness of the characters in the game.”

Square Enix’s Vice President for Brand Marketing Jon Brooke added: “I wanted to capture the emotion and spirit of Life is Strange in a way that you don’t usually see in video game advertising. As a game, it braves to be different, harnessing emotions rarely seen in video games and I wanted the advertising to match this. I am really pleased with how it turned out. It’s designed to remind us that life is all about our relationships and a strong friendship can change everything. I hope everyone can relate to that”.

Life Is Strange: Before The Storm is the next game in Square Enix’s award-winning, multi-million copy selling, episodic franchise. The eagerly-anticipated game was released on August 31 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Windows PC.