Social media relationship quality of three Swiss brands
IntroductionThe goal of this report is to better understand digital marketing activities and to be able toanalyse social media campaigns and investments. This report is built upon the social mediaactivities of three swiss luxury watch brands: Omega, Rolex, Patek Phillippe. The reportwill first provide an overview of the methodology, secondly show the analyses of each brandand conclude with an comparison of all three brands.Methodology1) Choice of social media platformsTo investigate the social media relationship of Rolex, Omega and Patek Philippe, we havedecided to focus on the five following social media platforms; facebook, twitter, youtube, blogsand forums. These social media platforms are chosen due to the fact that they in correlationincorporate both social networking service where friends meet through facebook, a socialnetwork based on microblogging through twitter, a video-sharing website through youtube.Moreover, the blogs and forums represent platforms where the company and stakeholderscan hold conversations and discuss. These contribute with valuable information since thepeople who interact on these platforms are often highly enthusiastic about the brand andtherefore, people are drawn together through their interest in the brand. We believe thatthese social network platforms cover the target market for the three brands by involvingrelationships between company and fans as well as between fans.2) Evalauation/ Grading SystemAll Brands are evaluated according to six different categories: 1) Social Presence – Is the brand present in all platforms that are relevant for their business? 2) Dialog and customer engagement – How many users the brand has contacted through social media? 3) Sentiment/advocacy management- Does the brand have a visible strategy for stimulating positive comments? 4) Support- Does the company offer help through social media?
5) Innovation- Does the company ask for collaboration? 6) Communication Leadership- ? Does the brand offer free and valuable content and entertainment (e.g. game)? Does the brand actively participates to conversations? 7) Linking Values- Has the brand become a social connector?Each brand was graded in each category according to their overall social media performancebetween 1-10, where 10 is the best and 1 the worst. All three brands, were first analysed andgraded seperatly for each platform and secondly the average grade was calculated so that acomparison based on this grade is possible.AnalysisOmegaSocial presence: 9 pointsOmega is heavily present on Facebook, Twitter, forums, blogs and on YouTube. The branduses these sites to promote its watches, by showing and posting video clips about its celebrityendorsements, sponsored events and images about the new products. Moreover, the brandhas a strong iPad app and mobile presence.Dialog and customer engagement: 5 pointsOmega is using two types of communication strategies, Push and Pull the strategy. ForFacebook, the Push strategy is being implemented and for YouTube a mix of both strategies isbeing implemented. The brand uses the Push strategy for twitter.Sentiment/advocacy management: 5 pointsThe customers have either positive or negative comments about the brand. However, themajority of comments are positive. On Facebook the brand manages negative comments andfeedbacks from the community or fans, by providing beautiful images and video clips. ForYouTube, the public controls the user content. Approximately 90% are enthusiastic about thebrand.
Support: 1 pointOmega does not directly provide customer support through its social media sites (Facebook,Twitter, YouTube or LinkedIn) except on their home website www.omegawatches.com, wherecustomers are able to demand customer service.Innovation: 1 pointOmega does not ask for collaboration. The collaboration happens between the people who areOmega watch owners or and who give advice about to others about the watches.Communication leadership: 4 pointsThe brand does manage proprietary communities in social media, such as Facebook, which isan official site, controlled and managed by Omega. The brand offers free and valuable content,such as video clips, short stories about watches. However, the brand does not activelyparticipate in conversations. Conversations take place on the sites, which are not directlyowned and controlled by Omega, such as YouTube. Hence, Omega should change theirstrategy to also implement two-way communications between the brand and its communityfor Facebook, Twitter and perhaps disable user comments on Youtube to make it appeal moreserious, since it is a luxury brand.Linking value: 6 pointsThere are few users that use brand-related social media spaces. For example, the brandOmega has 113,266 likes on Facebook, however; only approximately 2,050 people talk aboutthe brand on Facebook. This dilemma could be improved with the introduction of a two-waycommunication between Omega and the community on the Facebook site to create morediscussions that directly relates to the brand. The Omega brand has approximately 2,440followers on Twitter and 137 Tweets.
Patek PhilippeSocial Presence: 8 pointsPP has a official facebook page, various debates about PP are carried out on twitter but PP hasno official page, and various video’s are posted on youtube. In terms of blogs and forums,Patek Philippe has no official pages but is greatly present on these platforms due to thebrand’s many fans and enthusiasts.Relevant blogs:Finest Watches, Patek Philippe http://finestwatches.com/blog/categories/23-Patek-PhilippeJake’s Patek Philippe World http://patekwatch.blogspot.com/Patek Philippe http://patek.watchprosite.com/?show=nblog.all&fi=11Relevant forums:Watch talk forums, Patek Philippe forum http://www.watchtalkforums.info/forums/patek-philippe-forum/Brand forums – for collectors by collectors, Patekhttp://www.watchnetwork.com/forums/patekPatek Philippe Forum http://forums.timezone.com/index.php?t=threadt&frm_id=26Dialogue/ customer engagement management: 2 pointsOn Facebook: Only one user was contacted in one month (November 2011) via facebook; areply to a question regarding authorised dealers in Malaysia. PP seems to lack a strategy tostimulate participation and engagement. The only engagement they have is to “like” posts ontheir facebook company site. Stakeholders are relatively active on the online social platforms18 people made posts on the facebook wall in a month.On Twitter: Several dealers announce new arrivals and collections, product features, pictures,and prices of PP. PP themselves are not engaged.On YouTube: 2.920 videos on Youtube represent PP. Users are active and PP does not engagein the debate.
On blogs/forums: The brand does not interact with the participantsSentiment/advocacy management: 2 pointsPP encourage positive WOM by “liking” the positive posts on facebook – that is PP’s only wayof encouraging positive WOM.1 out of 31 people posting on facebook can be evaluated as slightly negative; 97%positive/enthusiastic and 3% negative. The negative debate is about a watch that broke toquickly and the consumer had to buy a new and very expensive mainspring for it. PP does notdeal with/manage this type of negative conversation – they simply ignore it.On blogs and Forums, no negative conservations have been identified.Support: 2 pointsOn facebook, one question was answered by the company. The question is concerning PPdealers in Malaysia. This accounts for 3%. The company doesn’t participate on any othersocial media platforms.Innovation: 1 pointThe company does not ask for collaboration on any platforms. No stakeholders giverecommendations for co-creating with PP.Communication Leadership: 2 pointsThe brand doesn’t take the leadership role in the social networks – the networks/platformsare run by the fans and enthusiasts of the brand.The brand participates in the conversations only on facebook (and only scarcely). Thecredibility and authority of the brand is valued poorly because PP only “like” facebook poststhat are positive and ignores negative posts.Linking value: 2 pointsMany conversations and comments are added on social media platforms about PP. The branditself cannot take the honor for the connecting power of the brand – it is rather the fans and
enthusiasts that are the essential players. Therefore, we wouldn’t say that the brand hasbecome a social connector because it hardly participates in the discussions.The social media platforms are used to communicate about PP. On facebook, 410 out of18,507 followers communicate about the brand; 2%.RolexSocial presence: 5 pointsIt is understandable that a brand as prestigious as Rolex might be reluctant to enter socialmedia platforms. It would nevertheless be important for the brand to keep pace with its timeand acknowledge the potential advantages offered by social media, even for a luxuary brand.Rolex is barely present on any social channel, if not invisible. The brand is unofficialyrepresented on social channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, Youtube and Forums,however only one blog out of those channels are officialy managed by Rolex itself. We believethat these channels are important for their target group and potential fans of Rolex andtherefore we believe that Rolex should reinforce its activity at least on a couple of the socialmedia channels mentioned.Dialog: 6 pointsRolex has no official or unofficial Twitter profile. Nevertheless it is mentioned in a number oftweets. There are three different kinds of Tweets. Firstly commercial tweets like productofferings. Secondly request for information and thirdly personal stories. Furthermore Rolexdo not have any official Facebook page, forum or Youtube page. However there are anumberof unofficial pages on those platforms. For example the largest Facebook page, havemore than 275.000 fans and 2730 posts. Overall we have analyzed the typologies ofcomments as consisting of: 1; Uploading picture of preffered Rolex or its own Rolex anddiscussion around this, 2; Private and official Rolex sellers providing information ofwhat/where to buy, 3; Luxuary related lifestyle discussion and show off.Furthermore the largest forum is called http://www.rolexforums.comand has 193.893threads, almost 3 million posts and 65.677 members. The typology of discussion is; 1, Q&A
about maintanance/repair of Rolex watches, 2; Watch reviews and opinions, 3; Personalopinion surrounding Rolex watches.They do have an official blog http://www.blog.rolexawards.com, however it is not about theirwatches or anything directly related to the brand itself and consist around different projectsworldwide.Advocacy 6 pointsIn all of the platforms there are in general a positive discussion around the topic. However theunofficial Forum of Rolex is somewhat more content specific and where the “real” Rolex nerdsshare their opinions in a stronger and more explorative way. In some platforms like Facebookand Twitter there are some discussions that could be seen as negative feedback on Rolex aspeople sometimes argue that the watch in the picture is a replica. However Rolex does notreply to the peoples opinion in any sense since the platforms are not official Rolex pages.Support 1 pointThere is no support from Rolex on any of the social media platforms. As already mentionedthere is no official Rolex profile on either Twitter, Facebook, Forums or Youtube. Thereforethere is no information regarding moderator or contact information. Some retailers of Rolexdo however post information on where to find their store etc, but Rolex itself does not managethat.Innovation 1 pointThe same reasons as mentioned above apply in the support section. Because Rolex is notusing social media actively there are no collaborations. However, they might monitor theplatforms in order to see what people are discussing in order to improve their innovation,however they do not interact with them.Communication leadership 1 pointRolex is not providing any free entertainment or content on any of the platforms andtherefore they are not using the proprietary of a brand community.
Linking Value 3 pointsYes moderately. Through their Website you can share the website link on Twitter andFacebook.ComparisonAs the analysis clearly shows, Omega puts most effort into social media compared to Rolexand Patek Philippe. All brands are present in social media but Omega is the only brand, whichtries to communicate with their customers via various platforms. Rolex in contrary does nothave a company account on any platform, while Patek Philippe after all has its own Facebookprofile. Facebook is the most popular platform for all three brands, even though fans orenthusiasts created nearly every existing profile.Neither Rolex and Patek Philippe nor Omega provide any support on social media platformsor try collaborating with its customers to improve their products or services.Deriving from the platform analysis we can say that Rolex and Patek Philippe pursue a poorsocial media strategy. This could either be because they think that their customer base is notpresent on those platform or they underestimate the benefits of social media. Omega incontrary uses social media to create brand awareness. They are present everywhere and areposting content frequently, even though they are not communicating with their customers.The more active strategy of Omega could either be because their target group is younger orbecause they simple have seen that the channels are important for their target group andpotential fans of Omega.Seeing in the light of their target group, we believe that Omega is pursuing the right strategy.As Omega is perceived as the youngest and less expensive brand out of those three, it shouldkeep its strategy. Surely the interaction bewteen brand and customers must be improved, interms of innovation and support, to generate a higher value out of social media. That meansthat the posts should be more customer related and if customers are active Omega shouldparticipate and maybe reward activness.Rolex instead should reinforce its activity at least on one social media channel mentioned. Byhaving Roger Federer, Lidsey Vonn or Martin Kaymer as their brand ambassadors, which
represents the “young Rolex”, it would fit to the overall strategy to extent their social mediaactivities. As Rolex represents exclusivity, their social media actitvies can be createdaccording to their image. Nevertheless it should get in touch with its customers, because onepart of their target group is definetly present in the social media channels mentioned.Patek Philippe should keep their stratgey, as they are the most expensive brand. Theirpresence on Facebook is enough, to keep the balance between exlusivity and trendiness.Instead of just linking customers comments, Patek Philippe should rather answer orparticipate more, so that they can generate more value out of discussions.So far we have only discussed Rolex, Omega and Patek Philippe and their social presence. It ishowever interesting to compare those brands with lower end brands social presence in orderto see how the target group really distinguishes the brands presence on social mediaplatforms. Underneath you see a perceptual map where we have put the price relation andsocial media relation together to get a better overview of how they have positioned the brandon social media platforms.