What to expect at WhipSmart 2.0: Humans vs. Data

By   |   May 22nd, 2018   |   Reading time: 4 minutes NewsWhip Announcements

social media marketing, social media report

On June 14th, 2018, we’re hosting our second annual WhipSmart Summit at the Bowery Hotel in downtown NYC. If you’re in the communications or media business, we’d like to invite you to come join us.

WhipSmart is an annual data-fueled summit for our community of communicators, publishers, newshounds, journalists, PR experts and others, where we discuss and debate intelligent storytelling in our world today.

WhipSmart Social Media Summit


It is primarily a gathering of smart-doers: The people who gather data, decide strategy, pitch stories, create stories, explore new networks and new technologies, read the signals for course corrections, and who both create and navigate the diverse and controversial media environment of 2018.

The alchemy of this work involves a core contrast. On one hand: data, signals, and technology – on the other hand: the emotional stories that data shows the world craves. The analytics and the audience both point the same way: genuine and more “human” storytelling is winning audiences.

Here’s a look at the day’s content, and why we’ve carefully curated each session to hone in on a turning point in social publishing:


1. Reporting to underrepresented audiences


We will be going deep on tactics for how publishers and brands report to underrepresented audiences, whether the readers are niche individuals themselves, or they’re interested in an often-ignored topic.

We have speakers like Polly Rodriguez, the CEO, and co-founder of Unbound, and Andy Sullivan, ‎the vice president of digital business development and growth at Al Jazeera, sharing with us how they reach overlooked audiences.

Polly Rodriguez

They tell us how they break through preconceptions and mainstream narratives to help niches thrive and connect with one another.


2. The future of content


Since our 2017 gathering, we’ve seen the position of news and information distribution on social networks receive more scrutiny than ever before. We’ve seen the great “Armageddon” of the Facebook algorithm change, with its uneven outcome of winners, losers, and changed tactics.Top Publishers on Facebook, April 2018

Publishers, agencies, and brands have adapted by becoming incredibly nuanced in how they reach their audiences. Rather than reach, social publishers are going for loyalty.

The New York Times decided to do more pop-up newsletters after seeing some 80,000 subscribe to its "Game of Thrones" newsletter last year.

Posted by Digiday on Tuesday, May 22, 2018


With Renan Borelli of the New York Times, and others from CNN, Quartz, and more, we’ll talk personalized paywalls, bots, newsletters, and other current themes in publisher innovation.


3. The rise of socially conscious brands


In the world of communications, some brands have slid into human positioning with the ease of Olympic divers entering the water. Others are lumbering toward relatability like ten-foot aliens trying to blend in at a party. What are these groups doing differently?



We’ll be discussing this with Edelman’s Chief Content Strategist, Steve Rubel, Reebok’s Head of Global Newsroom, Dan Mazei, and more brands who have made a conscious effort to lean into the issues that their audience cares about and see the positive effects on social media.


4. Tribal content


Even genuine and human storytelling can have a dark side: audiences gravitating away from “dull old facts” and toward narratives that reward their tribal emotions.


fake news publisher


This is a particular passion of ours — and looming danger that has not been solved. We will have panels and presentations on tribal and partisan content, and on how publishers and brands alike are navigating this environment.


5. Representation in a hyper-political environment


Since 2016, social users have been pulled into an increasingly partisan landscape. We asked the Associated Press, Daily Wire, and others to join in a discussion about how news narratives have been reclaimed by the constituents, who are represented by partisan publishers.


social media analytics reporters facebook


We’re hosting this conversation to talk about the way that social media and news consumption has changed. We’re in an environment where the average person is more politicized than ever and no longer ignoring what goes on in their government and other current events.


6. Chat, cocktails, and surprises


The goal of WhipSmart is to gather the smartest people, insights, and ideas in social publishing and communications, so you can bring it back to your day to day work. And you can expect some other surprises and guests during the intermissions and presentations.

Our guests will top off an exciting day on the terrace of the Bowery Hotel — with cocktails and some inspired chat.


If you wish to join us on June 14th, some tickets are still available on Eventbrite. NewsWhip client? Reach out to your customer success manager for a customer discount.

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