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Social Leadership Masterclass: With Jelly Marketing’s Darian Kovacs

Darian Kovacs is the founding partner of the award-winning Jelly Digital Marketing & PR. With more than 15 years of experience, he has worked with businesses in all industries across North America, helping them generate leads and create engaging content. He is the co-founder of the Canadian Internet Marketing Conference and is the co-host of Amazon’s hit show Marketing Jam.

Which social platforms are you using and why?

Linkedin: LinkedIn is a great B2B environment. I use it because it pushes me to read and share more high quality and more educational content. LinkedIn is a great resource for connecting with peers and finding great material.

Youtube: Youtube is the second most popular search engine in the world! I find myself still posting most videos on Facebook and LinkedIn since they are more business-focused, but Youtube is a great tool for sharing content. It is also very good for SEO!

Snapchat: I love using Snapchat to see creative new filters and send snaps to my 13-year-old son.

Instagram: I love photography and seeing the creative content everyone is making. I use IGTV and Stories to put out creative content. It is good for short-form content but not very useful for long-form.

Facebook: I have been on Facebook for ages. These days I use it more as a Rolodex for contacts, both business and personal. It’s a great way to reach out to people who I may not have the number for.

Tik Tok: Curiosity got the best of me.

E-Newsletter: Newsletters are a great way to update your social circle about new projects and events and to just say hi. I find it is a great way to interact with the audience, especially when looking for  business to business connections.

Web Chat - Webchats aren’t a typical form of social media but they are a form of media that you socialize with! We’ve had great results using webchats for both ourselves and our clients.

Reddit: I love using Reddit. It’s a great place for industry insights and information. I find a lot of up-and-coming trends on Reddit.

Quora: I find it fascinating to see all the questions people are asking. It’s interesting seeing the different answers out there.

When did you start using social media? Do you remember your first update?

My first social media account was with Geocities — one of the very first digital platforms out there. I worked as a youth worker for a while, where I used Nexopia to promote events for teens in the community. After MySpace launched, I began posting a bit there. Later I began using Instagram after my photographer friends began posting pictures there. I consider myself an early adopter of social media platforms. I have a keen interest in seeing what people are up to creatively, which has led me to try out many different social platforms!

Do you think it’s important for business leaders or owners to be active on social media? Why?

I feel like this is a yes and no answer. I always wrestle with this because I feel like leaders do need to have somewhat of a presence online, but I also think it’s important that they learn how to rest and practice sabbath. Social media is great because it allows people to keep their fingers on the pulse and be aware of cultural issues and trends. However, people in CEO positions are often already fully engaged with business all day long - they need to be able to find balance and rest outside of work hours. It’s difficult to find that balance and it can be very easy to get sucked into the rabbit hole of social media. That being said, balance is key!

What’s your top tip for succeeding as a business leader on social media?

It is important to be generous with ideas, information, and education. Many people do not recognize the benefit that their knowledge and experience can have on another person. As a business leader, if you’re going to have a social media channel you should be responsive. The whole point of social media is to socialize! Use your platform for connecting and creating relationships. If you are using it as a soapbox to shout opinions or as a placeholder, maybe you should reconsider your motivations behind having social media.

Who’s a leader who you feel is using social media well? Who inspires you or do you catch yourself following/reading updates by? Why?

Ryan Moreno is a great example of a leader using his social media well. As the CEO for Joseph Richards Group restaurants, he’s a very busy guy. He’s always traveling and posting amazing restaurants. I find him inspiring because his social content allows me to see things I would otherwise never be able to. I find it fascinating to watch and also very innovative. He recently opened up 100 “Ghost Restaurants” in a single day with JRG.

What are your thoughts on CEO activism (leaders taking a public stance on social issues, etc) and do you think there will be more of it as social media continues to become increasingly popular?

I think it’s good that social media has enabled CEOs to become more transparent. I hope that people are able to share what they believe in and feel supported. B-Corp has done a fantastic job of showing people that consumers want to hear the message behind the brand. Customers are interested in the values of a company and their CEOs. When it comes to social media popularity, I think certain channels will always remain relevant for certain people. I made a little video I recommended watching. It demonstrates the different personalities of each social media channel and why not every channel applies to each business or person.

Do you have any guilty pleasure follows?

I love Will Smith’s Instagram account. Always hilarious. I also (not so) secretly love Seabus Memes. They make hilarious memes about living in Vancouver.

What is the next big thing for social media? What do you try to keep on your clients’ radar?

I think Google MyBusiness is the next big thing for companies and social media. I am an avid user of Google MyBusiness and its Local Guide feature. As a level 7 local guide (as really anyone can be), I’m able to leave useful reviews and information for businesses I visit. Many people don’t realize how important Google MyBusiness is but it’s often the first result when someone searches for your business. I think people are overlooking a great opportunity to freely promote their business. The platform also comes with a free app for your phone that every business owner should have installed.

If you could get a mention from anyone on social media, who would it be?

It would have to be Lauren Daigle. If she could write a song for me as the mention - even better. Her songs give me life and hope and focus.

Find Darian on Twitter at @dariankovacs or on LinkedIn.


Are you a business leader doing exceptional things on social media? Then you might be a perfect candidate for the 2020 CSuite Awards! Winners are recognized in national media and receive amazing Hootsuite prizes to help manage your social presence! To apply, visit!

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