Taking to the stage with her trademark pep and personality, Mally Roncal entertained and educated the audience with her social-media truths.

This story first appeared in the February 28, 2014 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

The makeup artist and founder of Mally Beauty illustrated the parallels between makeup and digital efforts. Explaining that she handpicked QVC for her makeup launch so she could personally teach her customers, she asserted social media also has to be about connecting one-to-one.

“Social-media Truth One is an active user is a big fat deal and needs to be treated with respect because she means everything,” Roncal said, recalling the iconic Fabergé commercial where one consumer tells another, and she tells another and so on. Average social sites’ users have an average of 140 friends, she explained, translating into a “gazillion-billion” impressions. “You have to listen, you have to engage, you have to empower them.”

Don’t just share new products, trends or promotions on digital vehicles, she said. “We have to make it authentic and have a conversation,” she advised. “You can bet if you post a picture of your schnauzer you can get more likes than a 50 percent off sale. People want to know about you.”

She singled out posts eliciting huge response from her “Mallynistas,” such as her tribute to her mom’s fight with breast cancer, photos of family and coworkers and even a shot where she took a ribbing for her need of a pedicure.

Roncal took her own advice last New Year’s Eve when, without checking with her team, she embarked on the ambitious plan of a daily gratitude post. Her staff was shocked, “but it worked,” chuckled Roncal.

Roncal encouraged companies to break the rules with the option of having a plan when posts go awry. “Pay attention and learn what’s working and not working,” she said adding that her team checks posts constantly. “Don’t throw up a post and go out and have dinner and not look at it again,” she said.

Makeup and fashion trends change and so do the hot sites. She advised staying current and making sure sites are updated. “If I go to a brand page and they haven’t posted in six months, that makes me think they are done. Stay up to date and adapt.”

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