Social Media Survival Guide for the B2C RETAIL & FASHION Industry


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Retail & Fashion is a very visual sector. People buy your products based on visual elements like design and packaging and they want an enjoyable shopping experience. Shopping has been social for some time, and is only getting more so, especially with the plethora of e-commerce sites out there. A community manager in this sector should leverage social media platforms that are most focused on design. Thus, the best social media platforms for you would be a Blog, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram. But what is the secret to using these platforms successfully?

This eBook gives you all of the information you need to implement a winning social media strategy.

Key Takeaways include:

- How to get started on your recommended social media channels
- Key statistics and specific case studies
- Best Practices for each network
- Industry insights about Google+

Published in: Social Media, Business, Technology

Social Media Survival Guide for the B2C RETAIL & FASHION Industry

  1. 1. Social Media Survival Guide for THE RETAIL/FASHION INDUSTRY Where, How and Why? MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 1
  2. 2. CONTENTS KEY TAKEAWAYS 4 FOREWORD 5 INDUSTRY INTRODUCTION 6 BLOG 8 Facts How to get started FACEBOOK 10 Facts How to get started Campaign ideas Best Practices YOUTUBE 18 Facts How to get started Case Study: Shoes of Prey Best Practices PINTEREST 21 Facts How to get started Case Study: Walmart INSTAGRAM 25 Facts How to get started Best Practices TWITTER 27 Building brand awareness Twitter competition
  3. 3. Lead generation Customer services Best practices THE POWER OF GOOGLE+ 32 MORE DIGIMIND EBOOKS 35 CONTRIBUTORS 36 ABOUT 37 Digimind Digimind services CONTACT DIGIMIND 38 REFERENCES 39
  4. 4. KEY TAKEAWAYS Thank you for downloading Digimind’s Social Media Survival Guide for THE RETAIL/FASHION INDUSTRY. This eBook gives you all of the information you need to implement a winning social media strategy. We guide you through: How to get started on your recommended social media channels Key statistics and specific case studies Best Practices for each network Industry insights about Google+ MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 4
  5. 5. FOREWORD Thank you for downloading this eBook. Digimind is constantly working to bring you useful and insightful content to make your job easier and help you navigate the complex world of social media. With the launch of our next generation social media monitoring tool, Digimind Social, in October 2013, we are now better equipped than ever to assist you through these turbulent waters. Beyond our technology, our teams in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa are constantly gleaning the latest social media and digital marketing trends and insights and delivering them in easily digestible formats. We are very happy to share our insights with you and we hope you find this eBook interesting and insightful. If you like what you see here, you’ll find many more similar resources and best practices on our website. Enjoy, Paul Vivant Founder & CEO MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 5
  6. 6. INDUSTRY INTRODUCTION Deciding which social media platforms to use is easier for B2C than B2B companies, given the huge consumer audience on all of the social networks. But what is challenging for B2C companies is figuring out how to influence such a big audience and monitor what all of these people are saying. Are they asking for advice? complaining? or generally happy with your product? Social listening is a key role for your Community Manager who can leverage smart social media monitoring tools to listen, analyze and engage with your customer base to make better business decisions. These insights are not limited to your Community Manager. Your Sales, R&D departments and beyond can also use these tools to find quality leads or see what people like and dislike about your product. Let’s have closer look at your industry. Retail & Fashion is a very visual sector. People buy your products based on visual elements like design and packaging and they want an enjoyable shopping experience. Shopping has been social for some time, and is only getting more so, especially with the plethora of e-commerce sites out there. A community manager in this sector should leverage social media platforms that are most focused on design. Thus, the best social media platforms for you would be a Blog, Facebook, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram. But what is the secret to using these platforms successfully? MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 6
  7. 7. “This is a very visual sector. People buy your products based on visual elements like design and packaging and they want an enjoyable shopping experience.”
  8. 8. comprised of the media, fans, critics and potential customers so be sure to target these individual groups differently. BLOG Content creation and having a strong blog should be central to your marketing strategy, as you can provide information about your products and services and explain how and why they will benefit your target audience. A blog is a social media platform that you own so you can edit it on a daily basis in order to provide a continual stream of fresh content that will feed other social media networks and enhance your online presence. According to Social Media Examiner’s 2013 Social Media Marketing Industry Report 1, marketers generally underutilize blogging; less than one in five put it at the top of their list. Furthermore, marketers who are using blogging are missing out on generating valuable leads because they are not mobile-optimizing their blog, despite the fact that the Pew Internet Project’s social networking research 2 has shown that 40% of cell phone owners use a social media site on their phone, and 28% do so every day. But in order to access these potential leads, you must first create your blog. How to start a blog? Digital Marketing Expert Heidi Cohen’s ‘How To Plan Your Blog’ 3provides some great insight. Before you begin, you must ask the following questions: Who is your audience? It is important to gather as much information as possible about your consumers, as you are essentially commoditizing fundamental services. What sort of content format will generate leads? Given your sector, you should focus on creating good photo and video content, but it is important not to forget that text is the main contributor towards SEO performance so you will need to think carefully about posts which will have an impact. What is the optimum content frequency? You should create an editorial calendar so you can schedule your posts and know who will write what in advance. This will ensure your blog is regularly updated with varied content. The cheapest and easiest way how to build a blog is by using Wordpress (or another content management system such as Drupal, Joomla etc). There are plenty of different templates to use and a number of freelance blog builders who can take over for a small fee, although using in-house human resources will minimize your total marketing expenditure. Don’t forget to implement the Google Analytics tool to measure your traffic and What is your goal? It is important to gather as much information as possible about your consumers so that you can create targeted, effective content for your blog. Remember, your audience is MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 8
  9. 9. exposure, and to discern what kind of content is the most popular. You will gain insight into the sort of information people are searching for in your sector, such as typical reasons for complaints or a product or service that is desired but unavailable, and you will find topics being discussed by consumers which you could use as a communication strategy. Google Analytics is a great social media monitoring tool as it will enable you to adjust your content according to the information. Finally, when you have constructed your blog, you should implement a social media sharing toolbar, as there is a huge space to promote it on your other social media platforms. With social media sharing, your blog posts will keep on giving long after they have been published. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 9
  10. 10. FACEBOOK Why Facebook? The answer is simple; with 665 million active daily users 4 it is by far the most frequently used social media platform. Consumers in your industry are using Facebook on a daily basis, engaging with each other and sharing their experiences, desires, delights, and disappointments. Through Facebook you can connect with these active users and consumers by joining discussions, offering advice and recommendations, and replying to any criticisms they might have about your product. However, in order to benefit from this communication strategy, you must first create a Facebook page. How to set up your Facebook page? Begin by creating a Facebook page which will be attractive to your consumers. You should use images which represent your brand, and a cover photo which communicates the main message of your enterprise. Remember to keep the profile photo simple; using your logo or mascot will create a strong brand association when it is shared and Liked on the network. The Like button on your page is very important for generating Facebook followers. When you’re ready to launch your page, think about campaigns (both free and paid) that will help you generate Likes and a following for your page. Here are some ideas. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 10
  11. 11. FACEBOOK CAMPAIGN IDEAS “Fill in the blank” posts Let your fans finish your post, for example; “This summer I will wear _______ (color).” These types of posts generate much more engagement than normal posts. Offer your followers an exclusive discount, information or special offer on your page This will generate interest in your page, especially if you make the giveaway conditional upon them posting about your brand. Furthermore, by posting something like ‘For more info go to: (link to your main website)’ you will generate more traffic to your official site. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 11
  12. 12. Use an events page to promote your new product, charity activities, promo offers etc. This will generate social media buzz for your brand. If you decide to host an event, be sure to post photographs of the event on your page so that your consumers see the people behind the brand. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 12
  13. 13. Ask your fans to create a new product A great example is Create Dunkin’s Next Donut” 5 contest which generated more than 130,000 donut submissions and 174,000 votes. Let your fans play games or enjoy your special videos/apps The big advantage of this kind of content is that you can collect user info. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 13
  14. 14. Connect your social networks and integrate instagram feeds The app calls “Instagram feed for your fan pages.” Create a customer service portal on your Facebook page Consumers can use this page to check for updates about the brand, enquire about services and see answers to frequently asked questions. A common goal for many brands who decide to implement a social media strategy is to improve their customer service, and this is a great way to do so. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 14
  15. 15. FACEBOOK BEST PRACTICES: • Share photos and videos rather than a link It is important to ensure that all of your content is accessible in one place. • Keep your posts short You want to capture the attention of your consumer without overloading them with information. • Call to action Asking your followers for their opinion is a good communication strategy, and a good way of generating leads. • Always answer your follower’s questions You cannot expect people to answer your calls to action, if you are not willing to do the same in return. Answering your followers is a key communication strategy as you need to build a relationship with consumers in order to convert leads into sales. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 15
  16. 16. “Social media is about getting people talking about your product. You need to find the most suitable way to engage with your target market...”
  17. 17. YOUTUBE As we mentioned earlier, you’re in a very visual sector and it is important to capitalize on this in this age of distraction, as people are reading less and prefer receiving information through interactive formats like video. Thus, YouTube is a great option for you. There are two big advantages to using YouTube: 1. Videos are more likely to go viral than purely text posts. 2. You can easily embed YouTube videos into your blog or website without the weight of the video slowing things down. Still not convinced? Here are the facts about YouTube, courtesy of YouTube Press, and information about how it will benefit your brand: 400 Tweets per minute contain a YouTube video – Online videos are a media which will keep contributing to your brand long after they have been viewed. YouTube’s search bar is the No.2 online search bar, second only to Google – YouTube has also been part of the Google group since 2006, meaning that your brand automatically benefits from SEO when any of your videos are searched for on Google. Per month, YouTube attracts more than 1 billion unique visitors, who are spending 2.9 billion hours on the site and watching 6 billion hours of video – These numbers speak for themselves; your brand can capitalize on the huge volume of traffic that YouTube videos generate each month. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA YouTube Analytics Tool allows you to keep track of your audience – Who are your viewers? How do they find you? What do they like/dislike? You will have all the details to understand and engage with your target audience. YouTube is available on smart phones and tablets – This means your brand will be automatically mobile-optimized. There are many different ways of getting your brand on YouTube, from setting up your own brand channel to turning a popular YouTube user into a brand ambassador. Here is how one company successfully capitalized on this social media platform. Shoes of Prey Case Study: Who: Shoes of Prey - An online Australian shoe store that enables visitors to design their own shoes, which are handmade and can be shipped all over the world. When: 15th March 2010 What: The company approached teenage YouTube phenomenon Blair Fowler with a free sample of its product, in this case a pair of black gladiator style stiletto shoes, and arranged a promotional competition and giveaway for her YouTube followers with a pair of shoes as the prize. Blair, also known as juicystar07, announced this to her viewers with a YouTube video, in which she presented and described the shoes she had received from the company, explained what the company did and how it functioned, and highlighted the benefits of using this particular company. She then asked her 17
  18. 18. followers to design their own pair of shoes on the website, and then tell her what they had designed and why, with the winner receiving their custom designed shoes as a prize. How: Blair Fowler’s YouTube Channel had over half a million subscribers and over 95 million video views at the time. Her videos about fashion and make-up catered to a vast audience of 13-17 year old girls, which was the same audience that the company needed to target. Thus, by targeting one of the main influencers in their market on YouTube, the company was able to get information to their target customers in the fastest and most effective way. The competition gave viewers and potential customers an incentive to visit the company’s website, and also created a buzz on social media sites, as the video was reposted. By 17th March 2010, Blair’s video was the 5th most viewed video on YouTube, and the most commented on worldwide. By 20th March 2010, it was the 2nd most discussed video worldwide. It had over 450,000 views and more than 90,000 comments, each of which was a potential customer who had visited to design their shoe. traffic to their site into sales, as there was more web traffic to the website in two days than in the company’s entire previous history. As a result, they saw a permanent 300% increase in sales. Conclusion The ‘Shoes of Prey’ case illustrates the huge impact social media platforms can have on your brand’s success. Social media is about getting people talking about your product. You need to find the most suitable way to engage with your target market, whether you choose to use existing influencers in that market or establish a new influence yourself. With YouTube, you can instantly connect with potential clients across 61 languages and 56 countries in a medium that is universal, and use videos posted on this site on all other social media networks, such as blogs, Twitter and Facebook. Results: The company capitalized on the success of the video by branching out into other forms of social media. They monitored mentions on Twitter and enabled competitors to share their designs on Facebook, which meant they were able to convert the extra MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 18
  19. 19. How to set up a YouTube Channel? It’s simple to get started. The first step is to create your profile and channel, then you can customize your channel to reflect your brand identity. Google provides a great guide on how to customize your Youtube channel: https:/ / Then it’s time to create a content strategy. You can simply share your beautiful commercials, interviews or how-to videos. In any case, make sure your content is original, frequent, and no longer than 15 minutes. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 19
  20. 20. YOUTUBE BEST PRACTICES: • Create a good title for each video Keep it short but informative and think about keywords. • Provide descriptions Always provide a description and include a link to your website. This helps optimize your visibility to potential consumers and Google. • Tag your videos Video tagging is crucial to help viewers locate your video through search. • Annotation YouTube lets you add interactive commentary to your videos. These annotations allow you to add background info about your video, create stories with different endings, and/or link to other videos. Use these to improve the viewer’s experience, but be sure to keep them short (5-7 seconds). • Share your videos on other social media platforms Be sure to have an integrated social media strategy. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 20
  21. 21. PINTEREST Pinterest has revolutionized the way social media users share information. Making use of this social media network is an innovative way for brands to offer their consumers visually stimulating content associated with their image. The site is taking the social media world by storm and as its customer base keeps growing, more and more companies are rushing to understand and successfully utilize it. According to Business Insider, Pinterest accounted for 23% 6 of social media generated e-commerce sales during the second quarter of 2012, because of its three main benefits: 1. It can increase your brand authority - This is especially useful for the smaller and less well-known brands. You pin your own content and share pins from a carefully vetted combination of sources in order to add value to your brand image. 2. It will allow you to expand your reach and grow your consumer base - By using Group Boards and collaborating with popular pinners who have a large following you can expose your brand and content to more people. 3. You can use it to drive traffic to your site - In order to do this, you must first make your content attractive to other Pinterest users who will repin to their boards. The most successful pins are those that mix solutions to a problem or query with a great image, or pins that appeal to the interests and hobbies of your followers. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA However, companies in your industry are failing to capitalize on the many benefits that Pinterest has to offer. Here are the facts about Pinterest, and information about how it will benefit your brand: It has over 70 million users and 2.5 billion monthly page views - These numbers speak for themselves; it is the fastest growing social network and your organization can translate the huge volume of traffic that posts generate into leads and sales. You can create organic content and re-pin or share content from other organizations - This will allow you to give consumers a good idea of your organization’s vision, values and influence. Furthermore, by re-pinning you can provide information about your industry without having to constantly create new content, which will save you time and effort. You can engage and interact with other Pinterest users - Not only will you be able to positively influence your consumer, but the viral effect the site provides will give valuable exposure to your brand, creating brand awareness and generating leads. The content is heavily visual - This will make your brand more attractive and memorable to consumers, as it is easier to obtain and retain information through a visually rich media. Want more inspiration? See Pinterest success stories here: http:/ / 21
  22. 22. How to set up your Pinterest page? You can open a new account by email, or with a Twitter or Facebook account. Once you have set up your page, you can start pinning or re-pinning images to your board and you will have the option of sharing this content with your Twitter and Facebook followers. By adding a Pinterest button on your website, and announcing your Pinterest page on your blog, Facebook and Twitter pages you can raise awareness about new content on all these social media platforms. However, as Pinterest’s online manual recommends, be sure to set goals and a social media strategy for your Pinterest page. Do you want to increase trafic? Sales? Awareness? It is only when you set a goal that you will know what you need to pin and whether you will use more product, brand, company or sales focused pins. The golden rule with content is not to dedicate your Pinterest board to self-promotion as it should be used to add value to your existing brand image. This means aggressive marketing content is a big no-no. If you use it correctly, Pinterest will facilitate sharing, interaction and discussion. You can for example show your fans how to combine different articles of clothing and accessories, let them know about your latest sales/promo events or simply display photos of any celebrity brand ambassador to add value to your brand through endorsement. But remember, you should always provide a description for each pin. For fashion photos, Pinterest recommends including the type of clothing, designer, and season to wear it. You can also include details like pricing, availability and where to buy it. Also think about individual categories to divide your board up; MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA rather than using broad categories like ‘Men’s Clothing’ you can make groups of pins more targeted by using titles like ‘Men’s Gifts’ or even ‘Men’s Christmas Gifts.’ As with all social media sites, the more you use it the more comfortable and skilled you will become, and by carefully monitoring the page you will be able to see what content is the most successful and make adjustments. Case Study: Walmart Here’s how American Retailer Walmart is capitalizing on this social media channel: Walmart are leading the pack on social media. The world’s largest retailer has been using social media to manage and promote its reputation, as well as improve and grow relationships with their customers. They are capitalizing on a number of social media platforms and they are a good brand to look at for inspiration for your brand’s Pinterest page. Walmart have revamped their image as a low budget store by showing customers how their products can be used as a cheap way to enjoy luxury. Their account uses bright, fresh images to promote creative ideas and special occasions; from the image on the following page you can see they created a board to give their customers tips on dressing in the heat and entertaining in the spring using their products. For food companies, offering new and seasonal recipes is also a great way to engage with customers on social media. Most of the pins on this site link back to the Walmart ecommerce site, but it also pins content from third party sites such as cooking and parenting blogs so that they are not constantly aggressively marketing their products. Social media is first and foremost 22
  23. 23. a means of facilitating discussion and engagement around your brand. Walmart even launched its own competition on Pinterest; they offered users the chance to win a $500 gift card by sharing images of products that help them to live more eco-friendly lives using the hashtag #WalmartGreen. Not only does this add value to the brand’s image as a protector of the environment, but it also generated discussion when it was shared on all of its social media sites. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 23
  24. 24. PINTEREST BEST PRACTICES: • Use tags This will make it more likely that your content will be re-pinned, which translates into increased exposure for your brand. • Pin at least once a day As with all social media sites, using them often is the only way to really benefit from them. • Don’t just pin your product photos Pinning inspiring photos that align with your brand will provide varied, attractive content and emphasize your brand’s message. • Don’t stop after pinning Remember to engage with your community by re-pinning or following interesting people who are potential customers. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 24
  25. 25. INSTAGRAM Like Pinterest, Instagram suits companies with a visually-driven product or service. Using Instagram can be tricky but when used effectively it is one of the best (free) marketing tools for brands. How to set up an Instagram page? Sign up for an Instagram account - Be sure to choose a username that clearly represents your brand. Add a profile photo, a biography and a link to your website - Instagram is a great way to increase brand awareness through your brand image, but users must also be able to access your site if they want more information. Instagram still does not allow comments and captions to be clickable so the URL to your website will be the only way to generate real leads. Connect your account to Facebook and many other third - party sharing sites where you have an account - This will allow you to share photos on your other social networks, including your brand’s Facebook page if you are an Apple iOS user. Your Facebook friends will easily be able to find you using the Find Friends tool and it will enable you to create a news story in Instagram for anyone who follows you on Facebook and has connected their Facebook account to Instagram. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA Use and search tags to connect with your audience - You can find tips for using hashtags here. Create your own hashtag that people can follow; this works especially well if you create a contest for your fans based on a certain hashtag. For example, General Electric created a successful contest this way. They were on the hunt for a new ‘Instagrapher’ so they created a special hashtag #GEInspiredMe to let people post photos in four categories - building, powering, moving and curing. The winner would become GE’s professional Instagrapher. It was a hugely successful contest, as nearly 4,000 photos were submitted and tagged #GEInspiredME. GE now has more than 140,000 followers on Instagram. Start sharing photos on Instagram and across your other social networks Instagram helps you create a strong visual identity for your brand or company. There is a user-friendly mobile application which allows you to take cool photos everywhere you go which can be enhanced using the filters and instantly posted to your company profile. In fashion, many brands use it as well as their photographers during photoshoots to create buzz around an upcoming campaign. It’s also a great app to use at industry events or simply in the office to give consumers a glimpse of the people behind the brand. 25
  26. 26. Here are some great brands to look at for inspiration: Adidas: http:/ / Red Bull: http:/ / Levis: http:/ / Sevenly: http:/ / Top 10 Brands on Instagram: 1. Nike: 1,677,064 followers 2. Starbucks: 1,313,459 followers 3. Forever 21: 1,377,048 followers 4. Adidas: 739,792 followers 5. Victoria’s Secret: 2,105,199 followers MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 6. Topshop: 1,081,389 followers 7. Vans: 474,223 followers 8. Red Bull: 774,398 followers 9. Michael Kors: 908,694 followers 10. Converse: 377,799 followers 26
  27. 27. tweet will get you 21% more engagement from other twitter users. TWITTER Twitter is another strong social media platform for companies in the fashion and retail industry because it is a great source for potential customers, followers and brand ambassadors. There are millions of users logging on every day which means your audience is vast and you can provide them with quick, easily digestible news about your brand and products. As you can see, Twitter is a place where you can build brand awareness, provide customer service, retain loyalty or promote your product or service. Here are some facts about Twitter, courtesy of and bufferapp.com7, and information about how it will benefit your brand: 140 million tweets are sent per day on average 40% of people on Twitter don’t tweet but watch other people tweet – You can generate leads and sales simply by providing good, informative content. You can link your Twitter account to your other social media sites – You can increase exposure for your blog and official website simply by linking them to your Twitter account. Furthermore, you can provide links to content on your other social media networks. Remember, including links makes tweets 86% more likely to be re-tweeted. You can #hashtag certain topics – This will enable you to interact with other twitter users who are talking about the same topics as you, which will help you to build relationships with prospects and create your own online community. Including 1 or 2 hashtags in every MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 27
  28. 28. Let’s look more closely at different ways to use Twitter. Twitter competition Building brand awareness A good way how to gain more followers is to organize Twitter competition. Jeff Bullas wrote a great article “4 Awesome Types of Successful Twitter Contests” on this topic in which he describes four types of Twitter competitions: creative answers, sweepstakes, photo contests, and Question & Answer. If you haven’t yet set up your Twitter page, you must create a profile with your logo, a header and a good biography (you can get inspiration from well-known telecom firms). The next step is to start tweeting, follow people, and of course gain your own following. Below are three tools which will help you find the most suitable people to follow on Twitter: http:/ / http:/ / http:/ / Remember, photos are particularly important when it comes to brand awareness, and good ones are worth far more than 140 characters. You can be creative, or focus on a specific event, while still marketing your products or services, and below is one example from the coffee chain ‘Starbucks’ after the birth of the royal baby in Britain. Creative answers - The organiser will ask users to reply to a question using a specific hashtag. The winner will be the person who tweeted the best or most creative answer. Note that it is very important for people to follow the specific hashtag mentioned. Sweepstakes - Sweepstakes are very popular in the US. The main principle is that winners are chosen at random or through a ‘lucky’ draw. Here you can ask people to retweet a specific tweet to win a prize. Photo Contest - Ask people to take a photo with your product to win the contest and get a prize. Of course, don’t forget to add a specific hashtag for the contest. Question & Answer - This is a very simple way to organize a contest, but it is still effective. You can simply ask a question about your product or service that has a right or wrong answer, and the winner will be the person who answers most quickly or accurately. REMEMBER ALL COMPETITIONS OF THIS NATURE MUST BE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE LAW AND TYPICALLY REQUIRE OFFICIAL RULES AND REGULATIONS. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 28
  29. 29. Lead generation 140 million tweets are sent per day on average. Amidst all of this noise are your target consumers talking about products and services you offer and asking for advice. It is the perfect opportunity to reach out to these consumers, recommend your products/ services and perhaps offer a sample or demonstration. It might seem like an impossible task to sift through the Twittersphere to find your target audience, but we will show you how through a simple keyword search. By simply using the query -http ? “keyword”, you can bring up a targeted stream of search results for a given keyword on Twitter. Let’s see an example. Imagine you are a company selling cosmetics and are launching a new face cream. By entering the query -http ? “face cream” into Twitter search, you will see a stream of all people who mentioned face cream in a tweet. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA Here are two good query results. The first girl is asking for suggestions for a night time face cream. Do you offer a similar product? If so, hit reply and send her your recommendation. If you look closer, you can see she is a blogger. There is also an opportunity to send a sample of your cream and get some coverage. Let’s have a look at the second result. Katie Collin is tweeting about her reaction to a particular face cream. If you provide a cream for very sensitive skin, you can again react and offer her a better product. As you can see, this is a powerful way to generate leads, drive sales and generally manage your brand using Twitter. You can always turn to your in-house community manager for help. 29
  30. 30. Customer Service The days of sending letters and using Customer Service hotlines are largely over, especially for companies in your industry. However, consumers are now demanding more immediate attention, so customer service has moved online and more specifically, onto social media sites like Twitter. Nielson’s 2012 Social Media Report showed that 47% of customers looking for customer service turn to social media, with 27% turning to Twitter. This is good news for you, as Twitter is free and already has millions of existing users; it is just up to you to find your customer base. Dell began a customer service campaign on social media which has been extremely successful. They offer solutions to unhappy customers in real time, meaning that they have recovered their brand reputation and escaped the ‘Dell Hell’ catchphrase. Dell are offering one of the best customer services out there, and they are receiving positive feedback on their Twitter page which will encourage other social media users to buy their products, because they know there will be help at hand if they have a problem. Dell is a good company to look at when it comes to company service After Jeff Jarvis posted the catchy phrase ‘Dell Hell’ referring to poor customer service on his blog, it travelled around the internet and was even mentioned in the New York Times, resulting in an online crisis for the company. In response, MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 30
  31. 31. TWITTER BEST PRACTICES: • Keep tweets shorter than 140 characters People will be more likely to retweet your comment as every RT includes the @nickname of the user who tweeted initially. Shorter tweets are therefore simpler to RT. • Use hashtags Hashtags are being used more and more by Twitter users so it is much easier to locate and target your audience. But remember, you should use max.3 hashtags per tweet. • Grow your following You should keep adding followers as a number of people will follow you back. This is a very simple way to grow your online community. • Retweet with a comment Whenever you retweet, be sure to add your own insight or comment on the topic to make it more personal for your followers.. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 31
  32. 32. THE POWER OF GOOGLE+ When brands are planning their social media strategy, they often overlook Google+ which means they are missing out on the important benefits that Google+ has to offer. It has already surpassed Twitter in its number of active users, and is fast becoming known as the social network for companies and professionals.8 One important feature of Google+ which has attracted professional users is the ‘Circles’ feature which allows companies to segment and target specific audiences with unique messages. For example, you could separate your prospects and current customers into different circles which will give you more flexibility in terms of how you contact people and approve posts. You can also access existing communities or circles on Google+ which already contain people with shared interests. Here is a list of some recommended communities for your sector: Men’s Fashion & Lifestyle Fashion Lovers Fashion Bloggers Gift Metropolis You can also create your own community, which gives you a lot of flexibility in terms of how you contact people, approve posts, etc. There are many possibilities with Google+. Below are some more advantages, courtesy of Pardot 9, which set it apart from other social media channels, as well as tips and best practices on how to capitalize on these benefits. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA SEO: Google has completely integrated Google+ pages into their search algorithms. This means that when a Google user searches for something online, they will see a ‘personal results’ section in their search results, containing content from Google+ networks that relate to their search. So if you are active on Google+ your page will contain more relevant content for indexing into search results. Share content with your circles regularly - You should create a schedule to make sure you are updating your Google+ page often. The more content you share, the more likely your page is to be viewed by prospects. Connect your Google+ with your other websites - By adding the +1 button to posts on your blog or official website, you will improve the search rank of your content on Google. You should encourage other Google+ users to share your posts, as the more +1’s you get the more relevant your content is. Vary your content - Google indexes various content types differently, so incorporating different media like articles, images and videos will not only make your page more appealing, but will also increase your reach. AdWords Integration: Google’s new AdWords feature, ‘Social Extensions,’ is an integration of AdWords and Pages which allows users to leverage the +1’s on their posts into their AdWords campaigns. So if you are using AdWords and a Google user searches for your company, their search results will contain the relevant ads as well as how many of their connections have given a +1 to your content (i.e., 30 of their friends recommend this company). This can 32
  33. 33. drastically improve ad performance as so many people are influenced by recommendations. You will need to: Enable Social Extensions - Click the Ad Extensions tab in your account and select Social Extensions from the drop down menu and choose ‘new extension.’ Use social report segments - AdWords reporting now offers a ‘+1 Annotation’ segmentation in its report to provide insight into the impact of social media on ad performance. Add +1 button to your content - The more social recommendations for your company that can appear in search results, the more success your campaigns will have. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 33
  34. 34. CONCLUSION As you can see, creating a fully integrated social media strategy for brands in the Retail and Fashion industry is important. There are a vast number of opportunities and advantages out there for companies that are willing to branch out and find new channels and methods for engaging with prospects and existing customers. The best thing about social media is its immediacy, meaning engagement can be quickly translated into brand awareness, customer acquisition, online community creation, valuable market research, customer retention and ultimately, sales. But remember, online relationships are between people and not businesses so social media should serve as a channel to humanize your brand and create relationships with the people behind the social media accounts. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 34
  35. 35. MORE DIGIMIND EBOOKS Your Guide to Social Media Success How to conduct competitor analysis 10 Myths About Online Reputation http:/ / white-papers/your-guide-to-socialmedia-success/ http:/ / white-papers/how-to-conduct-acompetitor-analysis/ http:/ / social-media/myths-about-onlinereputation/ Read our latest analyses and articles on our blog: http:/ / MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 35
  36. 36. CONTRIBUTORS Katerina Malinova Katerina is a Community Manager in Digimind’s Paris office. She manages social networks, designs marketing materials and prepares marketing strategies. Diana Kilner Diana is a member of the marketing team in Digimind’s Paris office. She is an experienced digital marketer and writes extensively on social media. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 36
  37. 37. ABOUT Digimind Digimind is a leading global social media monitoring and competitive intelligence company that provides businesses with unrivaled insights into their true standing in the market. Digimind’s proven intelligence technology has provided Fortune 500 brands around the world with critical information for their business for more than 15 years. Profitable since its founding, Digimind has a 92 percent customer retention rate and more than 100 employees across offices in North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. For more information, please visit Digimind at http:/ / Digimind Services Digimind’s experienced consultants and analysts form the backbone of our Services Team, which helps our customers implement and succeed in their digital strategy. We provide a wide range of services, from working with you to build your digital strategy to providing fully outsourced analysis and reporting services. This publication has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only, and does not constitute professional advice. You should not act upon the information contained in this publication without obtaining specific professional advice. No representation or warranty (express or implied) is given as to the accuracy or completeness of the information contained in this publication, and, to the extent permitted by law, Digimind does not accept or assume any liability, responsibility or duty of care for any consequences of you or anyone else acting, or refraining to act, in reliance on the information contained in this publication or for any decision based on it. MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 37
  38. 38. CONTACT DIGIMIND To have a deeper conversation, please contact: EUROPE AMERICA MIDDLE EAST AFRICA ASIA Daniel HOUSE UK +44 7730 372 913 @DannyHouseCI Chris HOTE BOSTON +1 617 943 8564 @chrishote Ichraq OUBRAHEM MORROCO +33 01 75 43 03 45 ichraq.oubrahem@digimind. com Stephen DALE SINGAPORE @stephendale81 Bonnie BAILLY FRANCE +33 (0) 1 75 43 44 28 @bonniebailly Olivier GIRARD SINGAPORE @OliverGirard Cassandra KRAUSE GERMANY +33 (0) 1 75 43 91 45 cassandra.krause@digimind. com @CassandraDigi Adam NORS SWEDEN +33 (0) 1 75 43 08 45 @adam_nors MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 38
  39. 39. REFERENCES 1 STELZNER, M. A. (2013, 5). Viewed on 10 2, 2013, on2013 SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING INDUSTRY REPORT : http:/ / SocialMediaMarketingIndustryReport2013.pdf 2 Brenner, J. (2013, 8 5). Social Networking (full detail). Viewed on 9 5, 2013, onPew Internet: http:/ / 3 Cohen, H. (2012, 9 2). How To Plan Your Blog. Viewed on 10 26, 2013, onhttp:/ / http:/ / 4 Bullas, J. (2013, 6 21). 21 Awesome Social Media Facts, Figures and Statistics for 2013. Viewed on 11 1, 2013, onhttp:/ / 5 Dunkin’ Donuts Wants You to Create Its Next Donut. (2010, 8 2). Viewed on 9 26, 2013, onMashable: http:/ / 6 Youtube Press, Statistics. (2013). Viewed on 10 10, 2013, http:/ / yt/press/statistics.html 7 SMITH, C. (2013, 8 30). Twitter And Pinterest Account For Nearly Half Of Social Commerce Sales. Viewed on 10 22, 2013, onBusiness Insider: http:/ / 8 Twitter Statistics. (2013, 7 5). Viewed on 10 15, 2013, onStatistic Brain: http:/ / twitter-statistics/ 9 Wesson, M. (2012, 4 18). Reasons B2B Can’t Ignore Google+. Viewed on 10 15, 2013, onSalesforce Pardot: http:/ / MAKING SENSE OF SOCIAL MEDIA 39