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    Swix report Swix report Document Transcript

    • SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING AT THE LARGEST BRANDS IN THE WORLD SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX Go to www.swixhq.com to see a social media dashboard for all the brands in this report. By: Jad Saab Will Armstrong Scott Lake What is social media marketing? Social Media Marketing (SMM) is a new blog, use Twitter, be active on Facebook, provide them with something of value. In way for organizations to interact and and make use of other social networking short, organizations must show respect converse with their customer tools. All these tools share a common for their customer communities or they communities online. As millions of purpose: to create ‘buzz’ which leads to risk potentially ‘fatal’ backlash. In people flock to the social web, more conversations. SMM is about general, the phrase ‘conversation not organizations are realizing the true participating in conversations wherever sales’ captures a good guiding potential of SMM as a way to engage they are taking place. philosophy in SMM campaigns. with customers. SMM is all about conversations with customers while Why would anyone listen? What kinds of companies are engaged traditional marketing is typically a one- in social media marketing? way broadcast mechanism for specific Recent studies have shown that people messages. Really, it comes down to have very little trust in corporations and According to the recent 2009 Digital control - SMM is not about control, and their marketing websites (1). Other Readiness Report by iPressroom, large traditional marketing is. studies have shown that people are now brands are drawing the most coverage of much more likely to trust strangers online their SMM campaigns but it is the Small As larger brands continue to successfully because of the ability to have direct to Medium-sized Businesses (SMB) that use SMM to engage with customers, conversations with them (2). are the most active (3). The adoption of organizations of all sizes are looking for Twitter at SMBs is 64% versus 47% at ways to do the same. To be able to make The most interesting thing about SMM is larger organizations. Social networking is these connections, companies are the lack of central control by any one adopted by 74% of SMBs versus 38% recognizing the need to become part of organization or group of people. As a for larger organizations (4). the same communities as their result, organizations must be sure not to customers. This means that they need to take customers for granted and must 1
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world What tools are brands using? In this report, we have documented the social media Blogs campaigns of some of the largest brands in the world. The Many large brands use blogs to provide updated content to the most used tools were as expected: Blogs, Facebook, Flickr, customer community. Two commonly implemented solutions Twitter, and YouTube. Although many of the brands use other are the use of multiple blogs tied into the specific website / tools too, the above five are by far the most prevalent in the product / service to which they are related (e.g. Microsoft) or SMM landscape so they form the focus of this report. the use of a metablog that aggregates all blogs in one place and links to the multiple online properties and communities What does this mean? they serve. Adidas, Starbucks, Google, and Nike all have very different but equally engaging blogs. The single common From a marketing perspective, things are changing and they denominator: they all work in service of their respective are changing fast. Only a few years ago, marketing was a communities. message broadcast to ‘recipients’ who barely talked to one another. Today, the way people share opinions and interact Adidas Basketball Blog with favorite brands has fundamentally changed. According to http://www.adidas.com/campaigns/basketball2008/content/ Universal McCann’s recent study, “When did we start trusting index.asp?strCountry_Adidascom=us#/home/ strangers?”, the result is an influence economy that forces brand owners and the public to be more honest, transparent and conversational. Marketing communications must be rethought, from now on the conversation is, for the most part, dictated by consumers (5). How are the largest brands in the world using social media marketing? Many of the largest brands in the world have connected with their customer communities through some of the most interesting and innovative SMM campaigns ever seen. For the purposes of this study, the following brands’ SMM will be discussed: • Adidas • Reuters • Disney • Nike • Starbucks • SAP • Dell • Intel • Google • Blackberry • Microsoft • Oracle Adidas' basketball website / blog exudes, first and foremost, a love for the game. As is common in sporting-gear ad The SMM campaigns of the above listed companies use a campaigns, there are pictures and videos of celebrity athletes standard social media toolkit that includes blogs, Facebook, endorsing the latest and greatest gear. However, Adidas takes Flickr, Twitter, and YouTube. The following sections will their involvement a few steps further. The 'Brotherhood Blogs', examine the different ways that each of those tools can be for example, feature Q&A interviews with NBA rookies, chats used as part of an SMM campaign. with coaches, and playoff updates from the players themselves. For a personal experience, site visitors can sign- up for customizable voicemail alerts, text alerts, and ringtones pre-recorded by famous NBA-ers. The focus is on 'brotherhood' - basketball-lovers coming together whether they're established professionals or up-and-coming grade- schoolers. 2
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world The concept of ‘brotherhood’ represents a community of Google Blog athletes directly associated with the Adidas brand. The blog is http://Googleblog.blogspot.com inclusive for all levels of players and facilitates interaction with others who share their passion for basketball. With a simple, back-to-basics blog, Google conveys their interest in what they do and presents a solid case as to why My Starbucks Idea their readers should be interested too. Topics range from http://myStarbucksidea.force.com updates on the business end of things, developments in existing products, and insight into upcoming projects. The posts tend to balance the technical and conversational with enough detail to peak one’s curiosity. There is also a consistent effort to link their online tools to the greater good…how will this make peoples’ lives better? Highlighting the people-centric nature of their technologies is engaging since it tells readers’ that its in their best interest to be proactive contributors to Google’s conversations. Google’s strategy for its blog is of particular interest because so many people care about what Google does and would like to influence the company’s product directions. The core concept that runs through the blog is that the company is doing its best to do good for its customers. Since many companies much smaller than Google employ a top-down broadcast approach, it is a ‘breath of fresh air’ to see a huge company like Google doing its best to engage with its customers. The hallmarks of their blog are authenticity and writers who genuinely believe in what they are doing. Consequently, it comes across as ‘real’, in the truest sense of Starbucks’ ‘My Starbucks Idea’ site brings vocal customers to the word, and one of the reasons why it is so well regarded. its door-step. Comments and suggestions posted by customers form the core of the uncluttered blog. Customers Nike Running Blog can then vote for their favorite ideas, help Starbucks refine http://nikerunning.nike.com/nikeos/p/nikeplus/en_US/plus/#// those that rank highly, and follow the company's progress in dashboard/ implementing them. Starbucks lends credibility to the site by making voting-results publicly visible and taking action Nike’s running website caters to the running community with accordingly. At the end of the day, the company gets a better sections on training, important running news, and promotions understanding of what it's doing well and which improvements for events like the Nike+ Human Race (a combination of charity are in-demand while customers are empowered to influence fundraiser, urban race, and party). The strong community is the direction of the large, global corporation. It's a win-win most apparent in the Nike+ section of the site. Amongst other situation. things, a profile on the site allows users to log their run statistics, follow carefully designed training regimes, propose Starbucks has chosen to serve a specific community of running challenges to one other, and discuss their sport (and people who are passionate about their Starbucks experience. their gear) via a forum. Having launched the very popular Nike+ The community is made up of people who want to provide product, Nike has created online tools that ensure a continued valuable feedback and ideas. As compared to Adidas, this relationship with their customers who, in turn, can better approach is much more direct. Creating a community around pursue their athletic goals within a supportive community. improving customer experience is ingenious given that, whenever a customer’s suggestion is implemented, the result is a great degree of goodwill across the entire community. Although the idea of using customer feedback is not new, making the empowerment of customers the central theme of a blog is a drastic change from the past. The very idea of the site can engage customers even if they don’t contribute to its content…the fact that user-driven changes take place is empowering in itself. 3
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Facebook’s ingenuity is partially responsible for the ‘dumping’ effect. Adding content is very easy so pages can be populated quickly and appear active even if they are not. The following are a few examples of innovative uses of Facebook in SMM by Disney, Microsoft, Nike, and Oracle. Disney http://www.Facebook.com/Disney Nike uses a similar approach as Adidas for its blog, but has taken it a step further. Nike’s features enable their readers to interact with each other in real life by organizing local runs. One of the most effective uses of social media is bringing people together in ‘real life’ (e.g. organizing local runs) then allowing them to grow those ‘real life’ relationships online. In this case, the Nike running blog facilitates rich connections between people, both online and in ‘real life’. What can be learned from this? Since it was founded in 1923, Disney has had a rich history The key to success for large brands’ blogs is not an incredible with generations of fans. Its Facebook profile makes this amount of money to spend – it’s a consistent focus on known with historical footage alongside more recent videos. In providing value to its own community. Nike and Adidas both effect, Facebook-ers ‘experience’ the journey of one of the do this very well. As a businessperson, the key to making a world’s most established media and entertainment companies. blog successful is to do the same - find out what is of value to A simple status-update that asks, “What is your favourite the customer community and provide them with ‘more of that’. Disney movie?” strikes a chord of nostalgia amongst older Sometimes, this may not be directly related to a product. Of generations while an announcement for an upcoming Mickey course, there’s a good chance that, in the long run, Adidas Mouse video game appeals to the youngest crowds. If the and Nike’s support of their communities will lead to more fans, number of fans is any indication, Disney is in great shape on greater loyalty, and improved product sales. Facebook, but more importantly, judging by the volume of comments on the ‘Fan Board’, many of those fans take their Facebook involvement quite seriously. Disney’s fan page success stems from providing value to its most loyal fans by allowing them to access rare and exclusive From an SMM point of view, Facebook fan sites have been a Disney content. The vintage content, in particular, allows fans bit of a disappointment. Many organizations employ very to see the company’s history in full since it was in existence basic strategies such as using fan sites to ‘push’ content from well before the advent of social media. other locations. A few top brands try to give fan sites a personal feel by asking fans questions and providing some customer service. For the most part though, organizations have done a poor job, using Facebook as a dumping ground for unoriginal social media content. 4
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Microsoft With their rich fan site, Microsoft keeps fans up-to-date on all http://www.Facebook.com/windows that is happening. At over 230,000 fans, the company has been quite successful with their approach. The disadvantage, however, is the immense amount of time, money and effort required to maintain such an active page. For the most part, this type of campaign is not feasible for the average SMB. Nike http://www.facebook.com/Nikestore Microsoft Windows’ Facebook page makes great use of Facebook’s features. Aside from the ‘Wall’ (where there’s lots of interaction between the company and its customers through contests, links etc.), there are many additional tabs that make the page rich in useful and interesting content. Examples include the ‘Spotlight’ tab, featuring great deals on software, the ‘Win7 Meetups’ tab, which uses a map to show the stops on the Windows 7 U.S. tour, and the ‘Follow Us’ tab, which makes the latest information from Microsoft’s other Nike's Facebook page seems to take the 'something for social media sources visible in Facebook. With so much to everyone' approach. For those who are technically inclined, explore, Microsoft increases the likelihood of Facebook-ers there are behind-the-scenes videos on the development of finding something interesting and joining the Windows high-tech products. The people involved in developing these community. products are sometimes featured in the videos, allowing viewers to meet some of the passionate individuals within this Microsoft is a great example of a company using Facebook to massive organization. For those who are interested in its full potential. In addition to the tabs mentioned above, the professional-athletes who endorse the brand, there are videos page includes: to get to know them better. For those who live and breathe sports, organizations that use sports to change communities Info: Basic company information can be nominated for grants as part of the company's 'Back Worldwide: Links to country specific fan pages Your Block' program. Although selling Nike products is clearly Win7 is Here: Community comments on Windows 7 part of the goal, the building of a community with a shared PC Toolbox: Ways to build your perfect PC passion seems to be just as important. YouTube: All Windows videos from YouTube Photos: Photos from Windows 7 events from all over the The biggest strength of the Nike Facebook strategy is its world attempt to humanize a very large brand. Showcasing designers Discussions: Windows 7 discussion groups who make Nike products helps buyers attach faces to a Emerging Filmmakers: Contest for short videos purchase, increasing the ‘feel-good’ of the purchase. This Polls: Simple polls strategy has been used by a few big brands in the past, such Student Offers: Offers for discounted software for students as Microsoft where Robert Scoble humanized the company Events: Windows 7 launch events using video blogging as part of the Channel 9 MSDN team. Windows Ambassador: Contests for Windows ambassadors Nike recognizes that all athletes are driven by passion and, as Video: Lots of Windows 7 videos a result, many of their social media properties promote the theme of passion. 5
    • SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX Social media marketing at the largest brands in the world Oracle What can be learned from this? http://www.Facebook.com/Oracle Ultimately, organizations need to be active wherever their customer communities are active. Facebook is an extremely flexible medium when it comes to connecting with customers. It allows for promotion of many aspects of a company. It’s important to keep in mind that every product has a potential community on Facebook. Supporting the customer community should be the primary goal of every organization and Facebook is an excellent place to start. Flickr Flickr is a popular photo-sharing site that allows users to post photos and participate in groups with shared photography interests. For the most part, organizations using Flickr successfully are ones that have easily photographed products. However, Flickr is very flexible and should be considered as part of any SMM campaign. On their Facebook page, Oracle makes it clear that they are listening to what their customers have to say. This comes Disney across in their frequent status updates, responses to http://www.Flickr.com/groups/waltDisneyworld/ comments, and videos that directly address how they've accounted for customer feedback in their new products. They The pictures on the ‘Walt Disney World’ Flickr page present take a casual approach (with occasional doses of humor and Disney’s recreational resorts in all their glory. There are emoticons) that lends itself to more personal interactions with discussion posts in which users discuss the type of customers. The sense of community is revealed in the hype photography equipment they should bring on their vacations. surrounding events like the Oracle OpenWorld Convention Clearly the photogenic-resorts offer avid photographers plenty (due in part to a related video contest and free streaming of of reasons to spend time capturing great photos. The company programming from the event). reaps the benefits in the form of a flattering visual presence online. Unlike many large brands, Oracle has found a way to interact with customers on a more personal level. In the past, help For the most part, only companies offering something centers were the only opportunity for personal interaction with inherently photogenic end-up with a Flickr page as rich as customers. The emergence of Facebook and Twitter in Disney’s. particular has changed this dynamic. By supporting an active presence on Facebook that is focused on customer Google interaction, Oracle has made itself immensely more http://www.Flickr.com/groups/gmaps/ approachable. Customers know that, when they ask Oracle questions, they will generally get responses. As a ‘by-product’ Based on the ‘Google Earth, Maps & Mash-ups’ Flickr page, it of this strategy, the Oracle Facebook site has also evolved into appears that the company’s products have artistically inspired a place where passionate Oracle users can find one another. many. Members of the public group post images and screen captures from Google Earth and Google Maps, finding beauty In addition to its Facebook presence, Oracle runs a vibrant in photographs of landscapes (generally aerial) from around the internal social network as well as several Twitter accounts. world. By sharing their finds, the powerful capabilities of Their strategy, at its core, is to position the company in the Google’s products are put on display. middle of its customer communities. 6
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world The use of mashup photos is a great idea and works very well The Blackberry Flickr group is another example of ‘Nike-style’ for Google since the creations of users are, for the most part, passion. The Blackberry’s added advantage is its camera, a very interesting. Unfortunately, this strategy can really only convenient feature for a customer community that wants to work if your product or service lends itself to mashups. share its experiences with, and passion for, the device. Nike What can be learned from this? http://www.Flickr.com/groups/Nikeairjordan/ Flickr is a powerful tool for products that are physical goods - In comparison to some other athletic brands, the ‘Nike Air something that can be photographed. Many product Jordan’ Flickr page suggests that Air Jordan fans take extra companies solicit user photos of their products but this is care to properly light and frame their shoes before taking usually only successful if a passionate customer community pictures of them. Discussions about Air Jordan shoe already supports the product. Service companies will have a collections make it clear that the products have a serious harder time finding utility with Flickr but it’s still useful in following, which might explain the effort that goes into presenting, for example, pictures of special occasions, photographing them. In the end, Nike’s product is presented in community involvement, and people. Flickr is great at giving a ‘a better light’, literally. human face to a company that would otherwise be unseen by its customers. The Nike Air Jordan Flickr community exemplifies the serious Twitter passion that some customers develop for their favorite products. This type of passion does not come easily and is always supported by substantial customer community building efforts. Twitter is the most common social media property used by Blackberry organizations. Twitter profiles are often created for each http://www.Flickr.com/groups/Blackberryaddicts/ division of the organization. Much like Facebook, the profiles are often used to ‘push’ links to (company related) content, On the Blackberry Addicts Flickr page, users post many announce contests, and interact with customers. However, its images of actual Blackberry devices as a way to express their most common use is real time customer service. In the past, it attachment to the product. Other pictures on the page flaunt would have been rare for a customer to call or email a large the devices’ ability to take decent quality photos (which may organization over a small problem. Today, people Tweet about make carrying a stand-alone camera unnecessary) and all sorts of questions and concerns specifically related to highlight the convenience of having a Blackberry camera products and services that they use. This provides an handy at all times for those spontaneous moments. The opportunity for large organizations to converse directly with resulting publicity is generally positive for Blackberry. their customer community at times when customer satisfaction is particularly important. 7
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Adidas http://twitter.com/Adidasrunning Disney knows that people are passionate about their animated movies. They also know that, by continually engaging fans with information that’s hard to find elsewhere, they can help fuel With only the brand’s signature three-stripes adorning the that passion and, in turn, expand their fan-base. black background, Adidas’ Twitter profile is simple but familiar. The topics on the profile are varied, ranging from product Dell discussions to important news in the running world (like http://twitter.com/DellOutlet updates from the Berlin Marathon). The conversations tend to be two-way - the many re-Tweets suggest that Adidas’ There is no shortage of discount codes on the Dell Outlet Tweeters are listening to their customers and not just saying Twitter profile, a great way to reward individuals who stay things to them. engaged in the brand’s community. Customer support is another major use of the profile…it seems as though the Adidas’s Twitter strategy is one of participation. The company majority of Tweets are helpful responses to customer feedback. is present at the same running events as their community. This Overall, the company’s profile is likely to leave a positive shared experience allows them to be part of rich discussions impression on its visitors, whether they’re getting special deals in which company Tweeters come across as runners rather on Dell purchases or getting help resolving their technical than just marketing people. Again, this strategy plays to issues. passion which is consistent with all of Adidas’ social media properties. Disney http://twitter.com/DisneyPixar Disney-Pixar’s Twitter profile lists plenty of links to keep their followers ‘in the loop’. For example, there are links to recruiting events for animators, fan reinterpretations of popular soundtrack songs, and chances to meet the people behind the latest animated flicks. In fact, there are many Tweets recognizing individuals within Disney-Pixar for their accomplishments, like winning the Humanitas Award for the film ‘Wall-E’. With many followers and frequent Tweets, the company is doing a good job of staying in touch with its fan- base. 8
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Interestingly enough, Dell is the only major brand that has recognized Twitter’s ability to convert readers into customers by disseminating discounts and offers. The process is much the same as email marketing in that traffic to a landing page can be fully tracked from an ROI point of view which is how Dell has attributed sales of over $2 million directly to its Twitter strategy (6). The company’s understanding of the benefits of Twitter has made it one of the largest corporate users of the site on the planet. Dell currently runs dozens of Twitter accounts for many of its product lines and has a team dedicated to engaging its customer community. Google http://twitter.com/Googlereader The Google Reader Twitter profile clearly prioritizes users of the product. The majority of Tweets are suggestions on how to make the most of the product, responses to users’ Microsoft has “taken a page” from the Dell playbook and have questions and concerns, or direct questions to followers developed an extensive marketing strategy for promoting the asking for ideas on improvements to make. The Google Windows 7 launch. The strategy includes well-developed social Product Ideas website helps organize those ideas and media content that showcases the most interesting features of bring the ones with the highest votes to the forefront. the operating system. Google has chosen a more ‘traditional’ approach to Twitter What can be learned from this? for its Google Reader profile, using it primarily for customer service and customer suggestions. This is one of the only Minimal overhead and quick set-up are part of the reason for places where real-time interaction with the company is Twitter’s popularity. It’s generally as simple as creating an possible. The company has several Twitter accounts and account, promoting the presence of the account, and keeping all follow essentially the same guidelines for customer the community informed. From there, the specifics of using the service. service depend on how a organization would like to interact with their community. Microsoft http://twitter.com/MSWindows On the Microsoft Windows profile, the lead-up to the release of Windows 7 was very active. Tweets highlight new features of the operating system, often posing rhetorical questions about them to entice followers to click on links and learn more. There is also a concerted effort to keep followers satisfied with timely answers to questions about the new product. Of course, the software give- aways help too. 9
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world YouTube The ‘Adidas Football TV’ YouTube channel proves that the company knows how to take a theme and create an experience around it (the same holds true for their ‘Adidas Originals’ and ‘Adidas Basketball’ channels). The Football channel’s YouTube is the most popular video-sharing on the internet. background is what first grabs the eye, paying homage to The most common use of YouTube channels is posting Frank Miller-esque graphic-novels (think “Sin City”). A series of promotional material and providing insight into an dramatic videos in the same vein simultaneously celebrate the organization’s offerings, organizational culture, products, world’s greatest players while promoting the latest Adidas and the ‘people behind the logo’. products. Based on the comments on the channel, Adidas’ YouTube audience is impressed and consequently makes their The most viewed channels were related to media love for the brand known. companies (e.g. trailers, short films, events etc.) and to interesting promotional video content of product Adidas uses its football channel as an on-demand marketing companies (e.g. Adidas Originals’ party commercial and platform for all that is football and Adidas. The production other sports related advertising by Adidas and Nike). quality is high and very costly, giving the channel a professional feel. It’s unlikely that the average SMB would be able to create With YouTube, the goal comes down to brand awareness, videos of this quality. With that said, high production quality is company relations, customer service (e.g. tutorials), or not a prerequisite for effective videos provided that their some combination of them. Brand awareness focuses on a messages are well delivered. high view count to spread a company’s name and put its products on display. Company relations include interviews Starbucks with high-ranking employees, conference videos, and work http://www.YouTube.com/user/Starbucks environment videos that encourage viewers to take an interest in the workings of the company while attracting future employees. Customer service is centered on product demonstrations, how-to tutorials, examples of features, and other support that leads to satisfied customers. Adidas http://www.YouTube.com/user/Adidasfootballtv On its YouTube channel, Starbucks treats the release of the new VIA product (instant coffee) as a chance to further engage with its fan-base. A short, elegant video asks customers to share their preferred places to use VIA and offers the chance to win a prize in return. A map shows the different stops a Starbucks VIA promotion team will make as it travels across North America and asks customers to take part in person or via Twitter. Aside from VIA-specific content, the channel is set-up for finding information about the company and its products with ease (e.g. playlists are used to group videos by theme) which is likely one of the reasons for its high view counts. 10
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world The Starbucks VIA campaign on YouTube is amazing Intel #1 because it documents community participation. Posting http://www.YouTube.com/user/channelIntel videos of the company engaging with its customers is a great use of a platform like YouTube. For the most part, this type of campaign has a ‘reality show’ feel to it which effectively reduces the distance between corporation and customer. Windows http://www.YouTube.com/user/windowsvideos A stylish ‘reel’ of video thumbnails greets visitors to the Windows YouTube channel, the theme of which can be changed with the click of a tab. Below, playlists organize videos covering all things Windows 7, from ‘how-to’ tips to launch party celebrations by fans. If channel comments are any indication, the Windows 7 hype is catching-on. Microsoft is using YouTube to highlight Windows 7’s successes and promote the need to upgrade to the new operating system. Their campaign uses many different This report highlights three different Intel channels that have kinds of videos to create the perception of a groundswell little to do with manufacturing computer chips. The light- movement. This strategy is quite common in all types of hearted 2009 ‘Sponsors of Tomorrow’ ad campaign focuses on marketing but YouTube makes it very easy to promote the company’s unique culture rather than new products. The many different kinds of videos which all have the same ‘Intel Inspire’ group features videos in which employees overall goal. discuss why they’re inspired by their work while the ‘Intel STS08’ (Science Talent Search 2008) group presents some up- SAP and-coming pre-college scientists recognized by Intel awards http://www.YouTube.com/user/SAPCommunities and scholarships. The videos, in general, are casual yet professional and create considerable online conversation With a stated aim of “harnessing the collective power of related to Intel’s technologies and the company as a whole. developers, partners, customers, business process experts and others…”, it makes sense that the videos on SAP’s Intel #2 ‘Communities of Innovation’ profile feature speakers from a http://www.YouTube.com/user/IntelExtremeMasters variety of backgrounds. Examples include SAP customers vouching for the importance of online SAP communities As the head sponsor of “Intel Extreme Masters” (a global and special guests (such as the founder of LinkedIn) league of electronic sports champions), this YouTube channel shedding light on the changing face of social networking. allows Intel to keep in touch with some of their most The profile seems to be on the right track in engaging the demanding gaming customers. There are many videos many people involved in the SAP community to “usher in capturing, among other things, heated-moments in competition the new era of enterprise service-oriented architecture”. and interviews that introduce the channel’s community to some of the world’s most famous gamers, putting faces to their SAP’s YouTube strategy is very diverse in that it highlights screen-names. By supporting and documenting very popular different aspects of the business and its customer gaming events, the company becomes an important part of the community. This adds ‘depth’ to the company…it’s gaming community while helping to strengthen it. important to put forward a balanced image of ‘who’ a company is and ‘what’ it does, something SAP does a great job of. 11
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Tracking ROI Intel #3 http://www.YouTube.com/user/Intelfilmfestival The Return on Investment (ROI) of SMM has been somewhat elusive since the beginning of the social web. This is partly due to the fact that the traffic and buzz that gets created is rarely on a corporate website. Instead, it tends to occur on sites like the ones mentioned above (YouTube, Facebook etc.). Popular brands often assume that there is an ROI because of SMM’s potential in expanding a brand’s reach. However, many of the aforementioned campaigns likely have little or no quantifiable ROI. Ultimately, campaigns cost money and their effectiveness needs to be measured in some way. To be able to calculate true social media ROI, organizations need to do at least one of the following two things: 1) Quantify the results of their efforts relative to how much The ‘Intel Virtual Film Festival’ YouTube channel is money they have spent dedicated exclusively to the Intel-sponsored contest. Contestants from around the world were invited to submit 2) Link their social media results to future sales creative videos to compete for a laptop prize and a chance to travel to Venice. Instead of only receiving content from Since most social media usage statistics are public, quantifying participants, the channel posted content as well in the results is possible. Therefore, determining the ROI of SMM form of videos with filming tricks and tips suitable for campaigns is possible as well. In its simplest form, SMM ROI beginner and experienced filmmakers alike. Intel’s contest can be calculated by dividing the cost of a campaign by the drew some great community participation and showed number of views, friends, or followers that the campaign aspiring filmmakers on YouTube what can be achieved to arrive at a cost per statistic. YouTube is a great accomplished with some basic home-computing example of this since it is common to assess videos by view technologies. counts. If a YouTube video costs $5000 dollars to produce and it generates 200,000 views for a brand, the cost per view is 2.5 Obviously, this kind of dedication to promoting a company cents. through video requires a considerable financial investment but, as with most YouTube campaigns, it’s the message But what does the viewing of the video actually do? That is a that’s important. In this case, Intel’s people-focus is the much better question. If watching an online video is treated like fundamental message, revealed by showcasing the watching a TV commercial, the ROI will remain relatively company’s culture and by giving-back to its customers unknown because of the disconnect between watching the through ‘Intel Extreme Masters’ and ‘Intel Virtual Film video and performing a quantifiable action. However, if a causal Festival’. relationship can be established (eg. watching the video and, as a result, going to visit a specific site), then we are much closer What can be learned from this? to being able to determine ROI. YouTube allows companies to create videos to represent Since almost all social media properties have unique URLs, themselves in any number of ways. As with most SMM, SMM is perfect for exposing causal relationships. For example, the important part is the first step - getting started and a user may read a Tweet and follow a link which brings them to doing something. Videos are great for this because the the owner’s website to perform some task or conversion. The technology is fairly straightforward and a good idea initial Tweet can be associated with the visit to the specific generally translates well to the medium. website and completion of the specific task. If the task is to buy something, then that the original Tweet has a quantifiable ROI. 12
    • Social media marketing SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX at the largest brands in the world Currently, most organizations are just scratching the surface in terms of quantifying social media metrics as they relate to ROI. The next step is to incorporate such techniques as embedding links and landing pages into their campaigns, similar to what is being done in email marketing campaigns. Whats Next? The true mathematical ROI of SMM campaigns can only be measured when causal relationships can be established between social media content and conversions on a related business website. In the future, it would be great to expand ROI measurements to include customer satisfaction or customer passion. However, in the short term, being able to determine how much user traffic from a SMM campaign is directed to a specific site is a great starting point. About SWIX: SWIX helps companies measure the ROI of their social media marketing campaigns. We're totally committed to building applications that help social media marketers do their jobs more efficiently and we love what we do. SWIX tracks, trends and allows you to share metrics from the following social media applications: You can find SWIX online at: Contact SWIX: http://www.swixhq.com info@swixhq.com http://www.twitter.com/swixhq questions@swixhq.com http://blog.swixhq.com sales@swixhq.com http://www.flickr.com/photos/swixapp http://www.youtube.com/user/swixapp 13
    • Endnotes SWIX - SOCIAL WEB INDEX 1 http://www.edelman.com/trust/2009/docs/Trust_Book_Final_2.pdf 2 http://www.universalmccann.com/Assets/strangers_reportLR_20080924101433.pdf 3 2009 Digital Readiness Report – Essential Online Public Relations and Marketing Skills - http://www.ipressroom.com/pr/ corporate/document/ipr_2009_Digital_Readiness_final.pdf -Page 7 4 2009 Digital Readiness Report – Essential Online Public Relations and Marketing Skills - http://www.ipressroom.com/pr/ corporate/document/ipr_2009_Digital_Readiness_final.pdf -Page 7 5 When did we Start trusting strangers – Universal McCann - http://www.universalmccann.com/Assets/ strangers_reportLR_20080924101433.pdf - Page 4 6 @DellOutlet Surpasses $2 Million on Twitter - http://en.community.dell.com/blogs/direct2dell/archive/2009/06/11/ delloutlet-surpasses-2-million-on-twitter.aspx 14