TRA Social Media Marketing Presentation – Dubai – June 4th


Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of running an eBiz Connect social media marketing workshop in Dubai.

The event was organized and hosted by the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) at their premises in Al Waheeda street.

Attendance was high and I was thoroughly impressed with the Dubai Government’s ongoing initiatives to encourage business to adopt new age brand communication strategies.

I was especially excited to be involved in this event as it compliments our ongoing CSR initiatives and provides us with another avenue to help shape digital marketing and advertising in the Middle East. It’s also a privilege to have the opportunity to support the growth and development of new age brand communication in the region.

Here are the slides. Please feel free to download and share…

To re-cap…

Social Media Marketing is not just about posting on social networks.  It requires a premeditated content marketing strategy that speaks to your audience segments and inspires them to take action.

The content you create, or curate must be infused with your brand story and carry your tone of voice.

Social media marketing is not just about broadcasting your message, it’s about joining and adding value to the conversations in your niche.

Below is a quick recap of the salient points…

Setting Your Social Media Goals & Objectives

Social Media Marketing is just that, marketing and therefore needs to fulfill your business goals and objectives.

You need to decide what these are and attach KPIs to them so that you can effectively measure your campaign performance and report back to management and key stakeholders in your business.

Be as detailed as possible with what you’re measuring and ensure that your goals and objectives are “SMART”. Make sure your KPIs are being tracked using your preferred analytics software.

Researching, Auditing & Listening

Before starting your campaign, reasearch, audit and listen to the conversation around your brand and niche.  This process is crucial to a successful social media campaign.

Audit your web properties, content and research your competitors, target audience and niche.

Invest in research and social media listening tools and take advantage of some of the free ones available out there.

Defining Your Brand Story

This is essential to a successful social media campaign.

Know your story, what is your “one thing” and start with why you do what you do.  Infuse the why (your brand story) into your campaigns and let it be your guiding light for any content you produce or share.

Developing Your Buyer Personas

Know your audience so that you can tailor campaigns that actually speak to them.

Create buyer persona cards for each of your audience segments.  The presentation provides examples of b2b and b2c persona cards.

Invest in audience research but also know that you have data available at your disposal to start forming profies across your audience segments.

This data can be found via your analytics; both search and social.

Supplement your data with real life interviews with a segment of your audience.

Devising Your Social Media Strategy

Know your business’ “purchase funnel” and keep it in mind when creating content.  The main goal is to drive your audience to action.

Areas to think about when devising your strategy include:

Understanding of the “Diffusion of Innovation Curve” and identification of influencers in your niche.  These are the people who will get your message out to the masses.

Understand that there are different types of media channels at your disposal; paid, owned and earned.

Know your audience’ media devise usage and that there are different types of content that work for specific devices.

Finally, build you content matrix keeping in mind the purchase funnel and the 4 quadrants of the types of content that work at each stage of the funnel.

Creating Your Editorial Calendar

You’re now ready to create your editorial calendar.  Be as organized as possible and plan as far ahead as possible.

If you have the budget, invest in proper editorial calendar tools or create your own using Google docs.

Getting Started With Social Media

Make sure you have a blog to act as your “Basecamp”  This can be hosted on or off-site.  On-site is prefereable.

Secure your social properties and conner them to your blog.

Fill out your business details and be as consistent as possible.

Measuring Your Social Media Marketing ROI

Ensure you analytics is set-up to capture conversions, both the macro as well as the micro.

Use the data to tweak and improve campaigns.

That’s about it.   Good luck!

Now over to you…

Questions? Thoughts? Insights?  Share below…

Whitepaper: How to Convert Readers Into Paying Customers

We (Sandstorm) recently published a whitepaper entitled “Content Marketing – How to Convert Readers Into Paying Customers”

It looks at the essentials in converting website visitors into leads and sales.

The jist of it:

open_door_welcoming_salesman_800_clr_5847Content Marketing isn’t like writing sales copy or landing pages.

So how can you use it to convert users into loyal subscribers and, from there, into paying customers?

Focus on the following:

  • Craft a Magnetic Headline
  • Lead Them in With an Interesting Story
  • Touch Their Pain Points
  • Offer Solutions
  • Conclude With a Strong Call to Action

Download the free whitepaper here (need to sign up to the email list first).

Qatar’s Digital Landscape – Statistics and Trends [INFOGRAPHIC]

Are you targeting the Qatari market? This infographic from GoGulf will help shed light on this lucartive market.

It summarizes the digital landscape in Qatar including top online tasks performed by Qatatri Internet Users, Qatar E-commerce, M-commerce industry and more…


  • 85% of households in Qatar are connected via broadband (gone up by 5% from 2010) .
  • On average, households own 3 mobiles, 2 computers and 1 smartphone.

I’m starting to love these guys!

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Internet Usage Stats In Middle East [INFOGRAPHIC]

Internet Usage Stats Middle East 2013

Interesting online/search/social/mobile usage stats in the MENA brought to you by GoGulf.


  • Internet users = 90 Mil. Estimated to grow to 413 Mil. by 2015.
  • Average internet penetration = 40.2% – Bahrain highest at 77%
  • 100 Million Google searches per day
  • 87% of users access internet at home
  • 34% access internet at work
  • 100 Million Google searches per day
  • 100 Million daily Youtube videos played
  • 4/10 people purchase goods online
  • B2C ecommerce sales $9 Bil 2013 – will reach 15 bilt 2015
  • 88% of popluation use social media daily and 36,000 users flock to Facebook each day
  • Smartphone penetration in Saudi and UAE highest 63% and 61% respectively.

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