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Interview with Matthew Kobach
Lessons from NYSE’S Social Strategy

Matthew Kobach works on creative projects (like using a line of athleisure to promote a finance company). Plus, he’s convinced 134.5k Twitter followers that he’s worth listening to. He shared his experience growing the New York Stock Exchange’s (NYSE’s) social following.

In order to grow the NYSE’s social following with stock enthusiasts, Matt interviewed celebrities who visited the floor of the famous stock exchange. Here are two lessons from Matt’s experience:

Lesson one: convince your superiors your strategy impacts the bottom line

Matt believed the NYSE social accounts would benefit from targeting any stock enthusiast. But that didn’t make sense to a few people at Matt’s company. They wanted their social content to target their potential customers, CEOs.

Matt had to prove his strategy would impact NYSE’s main goal: to convince CEOs to choose their stock exchange.

He pointed out that their clients are focused on informing people that their company is going public (so that a lot of people buy shares). So a large social following could be used to announce the IPOs, which would be a value prop when pitching to CEOs.

Once people saw the connection to the business objective, they got all in. Well once Matt had the green light, he had to figure out how to convince these celebrities to actually have an interview with him.

Lesson two: don’t ask for favors, use empathy to find mutually beneficial solutions

Instead of asking people—like Shaq—for a quick favor, Matt thought about what they wanted from their day at the NYSE. He figured that any celebrity visiting was promoting something. So when he approached Shaq’s PR rep, he asked if he had two minutes for an interview and if he had anything he’d like to promote. Sure some people said ‘no,’ but Shaq (and many others) said ‘yes.’

Matt said, “Think about what benefits them. And when you think about it that way, it all lines up. When you find that it doesn’t line up, then you’re asking for a favor.”

It wasn’t useful to ask the celebrities a favor, but he doesn’t recommend asking customers for favors either.

Give the people what they want, people.