Posts Tagged 'audience participation'

social media – global vs. local: can one size fit all?

This was my presentation yesterday at the Social Media World Forum in Singapore.

Despite research that ‘proves’ “local pages perform much better than global ones”, the reality is that the performance of any social media presence depends entirely on what you are trying to achieve.

There’s also the critical issue of whether you can afford to set up presences in each of your brand’s locations.

My advice is always to do what’s best for your audience, in the context of your brand and its objectives.

Doing so requires a solid understanding of what that audience uses social media for, what they hope to gain from a relationship with your brand, and how they’d like to get it.

That requires some careful strategic planning.

This presentation asks many of the important questions that will help you start that strategy, and offers some examples of different approaches to implementing it too.

I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments.

Advertisements

social media is always about people

eskimon coke

It’s widely known in marketing circles that Coca-Cola’s Facebook page was originally created by two ardent fans who had no official ties to the company.

I was always impressed that Coke brought these fans in to help them run the page, rather than simply taking control of the property and relieving the creators of their legacy.

However, on a chance visit to the brand’s Facebook page yesterday, I noticed that the brand has decided to tell the whole world that story too – and they’ve done a really good job of it too.

Take a look at this fantastic tab:

Apart from the fact that the tab is a great example of how to design a Facebook tab – a simple, appealing layout with a variety of content types – there are a number of things that make this an excellent case study in social marketing.

Firstly, the tab celebrates fans.

This is central to any successful branded community, but Coca-Cola have taken this to a whole new level.

Its real magic is in the message it sends – we celebrate fans who share their love of Coca-Cola.

It’s the perfect incentive for other fans to go out and create pages and communities of their own, furthering the brand’s impact and deepening its social resonance.

It’s even led to the creation of a separate ‘Dusty and Michael’ fanpage.

Secondly, it tells an enduring story.

This tab is not a ‘campaign’; the Creators tab appears to be an on-going project that evolves naturally.

That’s an excellent way to ensure the brand continues to have interesting content for its page that people will actually engage with.

Indeed, the tab already features 13 distinct bits of video content, as well as links to the brand’s YouTube channel:

The story element is tightly interwoven with the tab’s third strength: it’s human.

Good social media marketing is always about the people.

Sure, Dusty and Michael are now social media ‘celebrities’ in their own right, but they’re still people that the average fan can relate to.

The brand makes it very clear that these were just 2 ordinary guys with an extra-ordinary love for the brand:

More importantly, to the page’s other fans, Dusty and Michael are now ‘real’ people with whom they can develop some kind of relationship.

That means there are even more opportunities for people to engage in dialogue with the brand.

In other words, it’s now even more social.

And that’s what changes a page into a community.

What do you think? What else makes it such a strong example of social media marketing?

Share your thoughts in the comments.

facebook place polls

I spotted this interesting little section on Facebook today:

They’re both Places that I’ve previously checked into, so it’s likely I’d have an opinion on the question.

I’m interested to see what Facebook are going to do with this – will they start to publish rankings of the most popular places by city?

Or will they perhaps start to recommend places based on my network’s favourite places?

Whatever the plan, it looks like it has plenty of social potential.

how to make friends and influence people

A simple guide to social and engagement marketing, designed for people who don’t live and breathe it every day.

If you’ve got any principles you’d add to the list, please do share them in the comments!

preach to the converted

Marketers often over-think social media, but the basic stuff can sometimes be the most successful.

The approach is quite straightforward: find out what your audience likes, and then create (simple) content around that topic for people to share or engage with.

Here’s an example: I posted this very simple picture on eski last night, but look at the responses it received within just a few hours:

It’s similar to the approach used at rock concerts: the classic “Hello [City]! How you all feeling?” seems to work every time, even if it’s not very original.

So, if your audience loves something, just feed their love.

Preach to the converted.

refining vs revolution

David Armano shared a great presentation on his superb Logic + Emotion blog a few days back:

It offers plenty of food for thought – unsurprising considering that Armano “curated” it with fellow Edelman heavyweight Steve Rubel – but, ironically, the slide I found most inspiring probably wasn’t intended to be a cornerstone of the presentation:

[click to enlarge]

The source of the chart seems to be Edelman’s Trust Barometer, so I’m confident that a significant amount of quality research informed the findings.

However, instinctively, it feels like the number of times we need to repeat something depends on what we’re actually saying (or doing); some ‘messages’ will be easier to grasp than others, and some will be more easily forgotten, even if they are initially easily understood.

The whole conversation hinges on something we discussed a few months back: effective communication is about what the receiver understands, not what the sender says.

I shared the remainder of this post as a comment on David’s blog, but I’d like to extend the conversation here; it has such far-reaching implications that I believe it would benefit from as many minds as possible. That includes yours, so please do share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Social channels offer more effective ways for us to establish a shared understanding with our audiences, so they have the potential to revolutionise how we approach brand communications, not just refine the existing model.

For example, if people are struggling to grasp something, we have two options: either repeat the same message over and over again until it sticks, or keep refining the ‘message’ until people understand it.

The first option is the most practical approach in a purely broadcast communication model, because the costs involved in constantly measuring and refining a mass-media message are prohibitive. Within that model, brands often struggle to gauge whether people have understood their communications. Furthermore, by the time they find out, they’ve usually used up the entire budget and it’s infeasible to refine anything.

However, social channels offer brands a practical and cost-efficient way to share multiple messages, and determine whether people understand them – all in real-time. They allow us to communicate in a context that is more akin to face-to-face conversation: we can constantly refine and tweak our ‘message’ until we’re sure it has sunk in. More excitingly, such conversations can help us to identify whether our communications are even addressing our audience’s most important issues. When it comes to communication, what we hear is often more valuable than what we say.

In this second model, our communications challenge shifts from trying to identify an optimum number of repetitions of just one message, to identifying better ways of sharing what matters to people.

That may sound like stating the obvious, but I get the sense that many marketers still see social channels from a broadcast perspective – we are trying to adapt them to our existing model, rather than adapting the model to the take advantage of these new opportunities.

What do you think? Do social channels really allow brands to engage in dynamic conversation? Will repetition still play a key role in this new approach to brand communications? Share your thoughts here.

word up

Nicole, a colleague at BBH Singapore, shared this fantastic piece of activity yesterday:

[image © Gunther Gamper, used with thanks]

It’s an initiative for the Fondation pour l’alphabétisation – an NGO that aims to promote higher levels of literacy amongst the French-speaking population in Canada.

The fundamental premise is very simple: by ‘buying’ words – either from vending machines like the one in the picture above, or from the “words depot” website – people can make donations to the Foundation that will fund literacy programs for the 800,000 Québécois who are hindered by low levels of literacy.

[screen grab of the motsdepot website]

I particularly admire the facility to buy the words in your Facebook status update for 10¢ each, which the site then posts to your Facebook page with a link back to the initiative:

Developed by Montréal-based agency Bleublancrouge, it’s a beautifully simple, yet incredibly powerful way to make giving to charity more personal and resonant.

As the Foundation’s overview says,

“Imaginez tout le plaisir qu’il peut y avoir à posséder un mot qui nous plaît ou auquel nous nous identifions. Car tout est pos­sible lorsque nous achetons un mot. Avec un peu d’imagination, ce n’est plus « royaume » que nous achetons, mais un royaume. Ce n’est pas « amour » que nous offrons, mais de l’amour. Alors, redonnons aux gens leur attachement aux mots, redonnons-leur le plaisir de jouer avec ceux-ci.”

Loosely translated, this means:

“Imagine the great joy of owning a word you like, or with which you identify. Everything is possible when you buy a word. With a bit of imagination, you’re not just buying “kingdom”, but a kingdom. It’s not just “love” you’re buying, but love you’re giving. So let’s help people rebuild a relationship with words; let’s help them enjoy the pleasure of playing with them again.”

By taking the benefit beyond simply relieving people’s conscience, this activity makes donating fun.

CSR at its best.





Twitter

Other Distractions

Advertisements