WEEK 2: A Conversation with Guest Speakers Babette Pepaj & Matt Meeks by Ravi Bhojwani 

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By UCLA X469.21 Student Ravi Bhojwani

Which social media platform is best for engagement?

We posed this very question to our Week 2 guest speakers — Matt Meeks, chief digital officer of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, and Babette Pepaj, Founder/CEO of BakeSpace.com and the TECHmunch Food Blogger Conference.

Surprisingly, they answered that the best platform isn’t simply the one with the largest number of users; it’s the one that most closely aligns with what you are actually trying to achieve.

Matt Meeks

Matt Meeks

Matt and his team currently manage more than 40 social media profiles for the Archdiocese. Over the past few years they have increased followers and engagement dramatically.

He shared the following insights:

  • Facebook has unique targeting capabilities. You can be super niche-specific for a relatively modest budget. For example, the Archdiocese was able to recruit 130 specialized volunteers with just a $300 investment in Facebook advertising. It also works well for generating website traffic.
  • Twitter is very effective for communicating news and other timely information.
  • Instagram is for visual storytelling and building brand awareness.
  • Snapchat works well for events and targeting a youthful audience.

Babette also discussed the relative benefits of different platforms, but from her very different experience creating her own niche social media platform for swapping recipes and publishing cook books.

Her insights included:

  • Pinterest is great for food pictures and driving lots of traffic to BakeSpace.
  • Facebook is good for engagement, syndicating content and posting live video.
  • Instagram is ideal for food pictures and engagement, but does little to drive website traffic.
  • Twitter is inconsistent, but promoted Tweets can be very effective.

Overall, Matt and Babette stressed that the key to success is to truly understand your objectives for social media, and then select the platform that best matches those objectives.

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