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  • Organic tea brand Steaz came to Chemistry needing to generate nation-wide awareness and drive Steaz sales at Target stores -- and quickly. Steaz's new presence in 1,500-plus Targets nationwide had just quadrupled its shopping audience -- in geographic and demographic markets where the brand was practically unknown. The brand needed to keep that window of opportunity from shutting as fast as it had opened.Why social?Three factors converged. We had an audience -- moms -- that indexes through the roof for online and social media; we had a budget that was a fraction of most of Steaz's competitors' budgets; and we needed immediate impact. Social media is a long-term proposition, but the startup time and cost is well below that of traditional marketing channels. And one other factor was in our favor: We were confident that the brand (socially responsible, health-focused) and product (natural, organic, healthy) were ideal for word of mouth (WOM).We felt that if we could get moms talking about Steaz, the sales would follow. To initiate the process, we sent roughly 30 sample kits before Thanksgiving and another 30 before Christmas. We offered to provide giveaway prizes to bloggers who wanted to make use of them.Our arsenal:Internet coupons: Many family shoppers use social networks to share "deals."Social media marketing: Listening tools such as and Viralheat, as well as Facebook and Twitter.Twitter party: We wanted to kick the campaign off with a bang to get maximum exposure in the social media channels. We sponsored a party on the subject of how and why to select organic and natural foods when you are at the grocery store. The event generated 2,830 tweets in a one-hour period.PPC search: We knew that increasing buzz would spike the number of searches for Steaz (search went up 30 percent as buzz increased). Investing in PPC allowed us to capture the audience that picked up the buzz and went to Google to learn more. Through search, we drove roughly 20,000 site visits.Facebook Ads: A highly targeted and effective means to increase awareness and increase our Facebook fan base. 2.7 million impressions and 1,930 clicks.Blog: Eric Schnell is one of two founders of Steaz. He is charismatic and passionate about social responsibility and health. A blog provided us with a means to show the human side of Steaz as well as address subjects that the audience showed interest in (sugar content, etc.).Email: Steaz has a robust database of opt-in consumers. We sent two emails to all 68,000 in the list.Great expectations. Greater returns.We were confident that we would generate 50,000 coupon downloads, 1,000 new fans/followers. Our goal was to get Target to notice the little tea brand it had just adopted.Actual results were 250,000 coupon downloads (with a 20+ percent redemption rate), 6,000 blog and social network mentions, and more than 3,000 new fans/followers. Steaz's December sales were double its previous best month ever. And Steaz shelves in Target stores nationwide were emptied.Ready. Fire. Aim.I suppose the best social campaigns are thought out in advance and in detail. This wasn't one of those. Steaz came to Chemistry in late October, needing a campaign that would be over by New Year's. Rather than starting with a thoroughly laid out plan that was then executed on, we started with a strategy and adjusted tactics as we went.An inherent advantage of web marketing is that you can monitor and adapt as your campaign is in motion. For example, we learned from the first reviews we saw posted online that moms were eager to find alternatives to soft drinks for their families. So we decided to sponsor a Twitter party on the topic of selecting healthy products when shopping. We were also able to "see" the individuals who were most passionate about the products, so we decided to create live gatherings with these bloggers as hosts. This required responsiveness -- and the trust of our client. Responsiveness was a challenge as Steaz is a small company that was stretched thin trying to keep up with Target and Whole Foods demands. Steaz marketing VP Lee Brody moved into our offices, and we were given the authority, and trust, to make tactical decisions.Next time?With 20/20 hindsight, we should have pressed Steaz earlier to increase production. There were signs that the campaign was generating interest and results above expectations, but we were hesitant to increase production and get stuck with excess inventory. Needless to say, a lack of inventory did slow a very steep growth path.We were also surprised by the number of bloggers who asked to review Steaz. We did not have a system for selecting bloggers and communicating decisions back to them. We did respond to all requests, but the delayed responses no doubt frustrated some.Paul Magnani is SVP of digital strategy at Chemistry.Read more at 
  • The insight: customers want to access help service the way that suits them best.The business problem: how to deliver “dream support”? Ultimately the goal was to increase business and customer loyalty.The campaign: use the strength of the Best Buys sales specialists and customer service representatives and enlist a legion of them to respond to questions and concerns about Best Buys products and services that arise in the Twitter stream.The results***: after three months of activity (supported by a TV launch) the Twelpforce had grown from 400 to 2,200 Best Buys employees. They had responded to over 13,000 public questions, concerns, and opinions. The Twitter feed @twelpforce now counts over 29,000 followers and the number of questions averages 100-125 per day. This campaign won the 2010 Bronze Cyber Lion award in Cannes.The great thing about this campaign is that Best Buys did encourage their employees to actively take part in the program. They provided training and guidelines and gave them a voice to express their passion and knowledge. Spontaneity, involvement was all it took to get this project to fly… What a useful and valuable tool for the customers, and for the employees!
  • One of the largest airlines in the world, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, is also considered one of the best in converting “Likes” into paying customers.  Part of their marketing success is their willingness to take bold yet calculated risks.  They are able to do this because they understand the customer buying journey.  The touch points along the journey a lead or existing customer takes as they experience the KLM brand and then, how KLM works to improve each touch point along the path.They began in social media the summer of 2009.  Since then, they had a few failures along with great successes.  One of their more controversial and successful campaigns is their Meet and Seat initiative.  See below video.  It’s a way for you to see who you may be sitting next to days before you board the plane.
  • How does an analytics company celebrate National Ice Cream Month? Answer: We analyze the social media presence of a leading ice cream brand. With over 4M fans and followers, Ben & Jerry’s was the perfect case study to satisfy our sweet tooth.What we discovered is that social is a core component of their marketing initiatives. With a seamless flow between their website  and all their social channels, this isn’t just something they “have to do.” It is something they fully embrace and reap many benefits from. In this post, we are breaking down some of their social media strategies to highlight why they are so successful.Increasing Engagement with New Flavor AnnouncementsBen & Jerry’s is known for their innovative ice cream flavors that fans can become quite fanatical about. (Just ask our CEO about the merits of Cherry Garcia if you need more proof.) Their new flavor announcements area great example of product promotions done right through social media. Their formula is simple: announce the flavor and include a tantalizing product shot.  Given how “tasty” these look in a Facebook feed, it’s not surprising that the most recent announcements averaged 23K engagements per post.Driving Offline EngagementBen & Jerry’s also uses social channels to facilitate consumer participation both online and offline. For example, this summer @BenJerryTruck(s) are traveling up and down the East and West Coasts, promoting their new Greek Frozen Yogurt. While they are in a particular city, followers Tweet and tell them where they should show go. This Twitter activity increases their social engagement. This campaign also drives offline activity with the truck visits. By raising awareness for their new product line in this way, they are turning social fans into actual consumers, via free ice cream. All of which (we can assume) results in increased sales.Amplifying Their MessageBeyond the world of ice cream, Ben & Jerry’s is also known for promoting social change. Currently they are a part of the “Get the Dough of Politics” campaign to “put democracy back where it belongs.” By communicating these messages through their social channels (see below), they are able to amplify their content and connect with an even greater number of people. All of whom could turn into Ben & Jerry’s consumers.
  • Adele was no doubt the star of last night's Grammys, taking home six awards. And although Coldplay performed at the event, the band's live performance was overshadowed by Chipotle's "Back to the Start" ad, which featured Willie Nelson covering Coldplay's "The Scientist."The two-minute spot is the chain's first national TV ad, but Chipotle released the ad online in late August; it also aired in some 5,700 movie theaters. The ad takes viewers through one farmer's journey, from a huge industrialized farming compound to one with more-sustainable and humane practices. Chipotle encouraged viewers to download the song at iTunes, with proceeds going to the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation.That Chipotle even aired a TV ad is a bit unusual. The chain has made a concerted effort in recent years to take its advertising in-house, and CMO Mark Crumpacker has said that traditional advertising has become less important for the company.But reception of the spot, at least on social media, appears to be mostly positive. Some Twitter reactions:@poniewozik Coldplay-based Chipotle commercial > actual Coldplay performance. #grammys@mikelafloyd WAIT. THIS WILLIE NELSON THING IS A COMMERCIAL FOR CHIPOTLE?!?! I was getting emotional over burritos?! #grammys@WilsonTech1 The Chipotle commercial is single-handedly the best part of the#Grammys so far.@JayDeMarcus This Chipotle commercial is way weird. Wow.The chain has long had its "food with integrity" stance, but it's clearly benefiting from increased consumer concern over where their food originates and wanting food that they see as fresher than traditional fast food. Last week, the chain said its same-store sales for full-year 2011 were up 11.2%; net income was up 20%.It's also not the only long-form ad Chipotle released. In October, the chain unveiled "Abandoned,"which focuses on the hardships farmers endure as American agriculture becomes increasingly industrialized. Again there's a Willie Nelson connection. The song, "Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys," performed by Yeah YeahYeahsfrontwoman Karen O., was written by Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings.
  • If you follow social media marketing closely, you’ve probably heard the story of Fiskars , the Finnish maker of fine cutting tools that has used a private social network to dramatically boost specialty store sales. What's less well-known is how customer communities have transformed the way this 300-year-old company does business.I wrote about Fiskars' remarkable community of crafting enthusiasts called the Fiskateers in the introduction to my latest book, Secrets of Social Media Marketing. The company has leveraged this group to take its message to the under-utilized channel of small retailers. Reaching these merchants would have been prohibitively expensive if done by a core marketing team. So Fiskars let its customers do the talking. The result: a threefold increase in year-over-year sales.I recently caught up with Suzanne Fanning, Director of Communications at Fiskars Americas, to see how the program was going. In a word, very well. What I hadn't understood from earlier interviews was the degree to which quality customer feedback comes to pervade everything the company does. The Fiskateers demonstrate why social media should be thought of as much more than just a marketing program.Some basics: Prospective Fiskateers must fill out an application form to gain entry. While the company rarely turns down applicants, this requirement gives members a feeling of belonging. Once you’re a Fiskateer, you’re special to Fiskars.And boy, are you special! When my wife, a hopeless crafting enthusiast, heard about this program, she immediately applied. A few months later, the company invited her to a local member meeting. Some 30 Fiskateers spent an entire day swapping techniques, trying out new tools and generally bonding with each other. Dana came home that day laden down with hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise. It's safe to say she will be a Fiskars customer for life, and she's not shy to share her enthusiasm.More Than a WebsiteThe company does plenty of live events at the local and national level to connect members with each other and with Fiskars. Its overarching goal isn’t to sell more scissors as much as to “have that emotional bond with consumers,” Fanning told me. “Customers didn’t have that bond with Fiskars the company, but scrapbooking and crafting is a very personal and intimate thing. We wanted to tap into that and say "We understand. We get you."The meeting Dana attended was hosted by two Fiskars representatives, one from communications and the other from engineering. In fact, nearly every meeting of the Fiskateers now involves someone on the product development side. The value of the Fiskateers as a driver of product innovation was the great unexpected dividend of the whole program, Fanning said.At first, people on the business side resisted the idea of bringing customers into the product development process. There are competitive concerns, and frankly, engineers aren't known for inclusiveness.Once the dialogue began, however, that resistance quickly melted. “We started with small projects to make Fiskateers feel like they were giving input and quickly they realized we were getting fabulous insight,” Fanning said. "They really wanted a voice in our company."Speak, Customer!That voice of the customer now pervades nearly everything Fiskars does. Fiskateers are polled for advice early in the development process and the group has even taken responsibility for naming some new products. Engineers, who initially doubted the value of the community, renamed themselves the “Fiskaneers.”Fiskars now channels most of its first-line market research through the group, saving money and time. It no longer conducts expensive focus groups. Research has shown that the Fiskateers almost perfectly reflect the larger community of crafting enthusiasts.Fanning remembers one product manager who approached her looking for ideas for new shapes to head to the company's line of cutting templates. Fanning posted the request to the Fiskateers and gathered 70 good ideas within 12 hours.Next LevelWith a hit on its hands, Fiskars is running with it. Some Fiskateers have been qualified as official product demonstrators. A new website now lets members submit and rate ideas for new products. Product managers hold live chat sessions to get feedback. Vendors of sewing machines and magnifying glasses devices have offered to buy advertising on the site.The lesson: social media is about much more than marketing. Anyone who touches or serves customers in any way can benefit from a closer relationship with those people. Recent McKinsey research revealed that a majority of companies that have bought into Web 2.0 marketing are finding benefits in other areas of their organization. Many say social media is changing the way they do business. Just like it has at Fiskars.Not every company can create a community like the Fiskateers, but then again, Fiskars never expected its program to be such a runaway success. Instead of looking for people who were passionate about cutting tools, it focused its energy on people who cared about what you could do with cutting tools. The results were more than a pleasant surprise. The company originally expected to recruit no more than about 200 Fiskateers. It will soon welcome its 6,000th membe
  • Founded in 1908, Harvard Business School (HBS) is one of the United States’ most prestigious business management schools. The main HBS website averages about 50,000 unique visitors per week. Meanwhile,Harvard Business Publishing — a wholly owned subsidiary of HBS — has more than half a million subscribers around the world.What do you think?Tens of thousands of pages of content are spread across the HBS site alone, with fresh content being added daily, using a content management system embedded in a SharePoint platform. So, how does HBS manage this ever-growing mountain of content from website data to email newsletter and social media updates? And what can other content creators take from the HBS experience?We spoke with Brian Kenny, chief marketing and communications officer at HBS, to find out.Content Mountain“The way to manage a diffused website like ours is to distribute responsibilities across the marketing function,” says Kenny. “So, creating web content is the collective responsibility of our marketing and communications team as they work to tell our story.”In total, 15-20 people are involved in HBS’s content creation team, supported by school faculty.“The faculty come up with the ideas. Then editors and writers take those ideas and help to shape them in a way that we know we can reuse and make relevant to different audiences including academics, practitioners, alumni, and other stakeholders,” explains Kenny.“Our job is to animate the mission of the school through stories about the impact that our teachers, faculty, students, and alumni are having in the world. Sometimes that plays out in the form of developing content – the ‘content’ to my mind is really just a method of storytelling.”Caring for CreatorsLarge, complex organizations looking to develop a content strategy should actively support and encourage content creators by supplying them with easy-to-use tools and providing clear content creation guidelines, says Kenny.Towards this end, HBS has created a web council of people involved in managing the school’s digital content. The council — which has developed into a community of content creators — meets to share best practices and new ideas.“We’ve found that it’s a very rich discussion every time they get together. They learn about what their peers are doing across the school and share ideas. And we benefit from a collective knowledge increase each time this group gets together.” Write Once, Publish OftenOne of HBS’s content strategies is to leverage one piece of content across many sites, says Kenny.“Our ‘Working Knowledge‘ e-newsletter, for example, goes out once a week to about 150,000 subscribers. Its mission is to interview faculty about early stage research and emerging ideas. We leverage that content across every other area of the school from the Exec. Ed. Group and the alumni relations group through the MBA group and on our homepage.” Similarly, articles from the print and digital editions of HBS’s alumni magazine can be found on the HBS homepage. Broadcasting via Social MediaDespite being early adopters of Twitter and having a four-year Facebook presence, HBS uses social media platforms in what could be seen as a traditionally academic fashion, says Kenny.“We’ve been pretty good at using those social media platforms as broadcast tools to push content, but we’ve been less good at using it as a social tool. If you look fundamentally at academia, we’re used to teaching people. Perhaps, we’re not so good at listening.” However, taking inspiration from the way academics at HBS develop their ideas through dialog with colleagues and business leaders, Kenny wants to use social media as a tool for generating discussion and creativity. “We need to engage people in discussions around some of the big ideas that are coming out of the school. Our publishing section has done this pretty successfully. They put their leaders directly in discussion with editors around big ideas. And their website hosts running discussions and dialogues back and forth between the readers and the editors.” Targeting Business GoalsIn line with HBS’s overall marketing strategy, Kenny’s team is using social media to target conversations around entrepreneurship. “Even though the term ‘entrepreneurship’ was literally created at HBS and we have a history of entrepreneurship going back fifty years, we still are not thought of as a place for entrepreneurship. People typically think of MIT or Stanford instead. So, we have a challenge there and we’re trying to change people’s perceptions about us in this area,” explains Kenny. Kenny’s team closely monitors conversations about entrepreneurship on social media platforms to develop new ways of injecting their presence into online discussions. “Tracking social media helps us to understand whether or not our content is creating a spike in the social media realm, whether we’re starting to become more common to those conversations, and in fact, we’ve been able to crack an increase in our presence in what we consider to be the most influential dimensions of entrepreneurship on the social networks. It’s a great way for us to gauge whether or not we’re moving that needle.”
  • Platforms UsedFacebookPinterestInstagramTumblrFoursquareTwitterApproach UsedContent Driven – create custom content, solicit guest bloggers/commentersReal-Time updating along with scheduled content releases dailyBuzz building – events, giveaways, exclusivesDeepen engagement on channels – those managing channels invested more timeShowcase partners and sponsors – utilize their social influencePhotos worth sharing – upload the hottest new styles in shoes, clothes…Daily measurement and refinement – change tactics as neededThe Numbers Audience reach – 71% women, median age – 24Page impressions during 5 weeks – 951,000Total stories on Facebook – 24,874Page views – Up by 64%22,000 engaged users 2 weeks prior to the event70% of attendees heard about the event first on Social Media
  • There is so much buzz and hype around social media, it’s hard to determine if/when social media has real proven  success for a business. Well, we have found the perfect case study for you! Mari Luangrath owner of Chicago’s well-known and loved gourmet cupcake bakery, Foiled Cupcakes, uses ONLY social media to market and, yes grow, her business. [Updated: By the way, check out what Mari's fans have to say about her cupcakes and finding her via social media!]Beth Harte:  Mari, you are a successful entrepreneur and on your third adventure with Foiled Cupcakes, a gourmet cupcake bakery serving Chicago. When it comes to marketing your business, how has using social media helped you to brand and grow Foiled Cupcakes? Mari Luangrath: Social media fell into our laps, quite honestly. We launched our business primarily using Twitter without knowing a single thing about it. And by connecting with new people who found our story interesting, we haven’t had to use a single traditional marketing initiative yet. All of our business growth has happened organically via word of mouth referrals and online buzz. To date, 93 percent of our business has come from social media leads and we’ve surpassed our initial revenue target numbers by over 600 percent. BH: Even though you’re a bakery, you don’t have a storefront. Are you telling us that integrating a website with social media can help companies to still deliver personal service, get delicious cupcakes (AKA ‘product’) in people’s hands *AND* make money? ML: That’s correct. We operate without a storefront so we can focus our energy on personal service. I really do believe that’s what sets our business model apart from our competitors. We know every single one of our customers by name. We’ve probably had a good Twitter or Facebook conversation with them before they even call us. We have a relationship with them in which we’re invited to their corporate events, birthday parties, weddings, and girl’s nights. Because community and interpersonal relationships are at the very top of my personal value chain, I can’t imagine doing business any other way. BH: You have a bunch of followers and fans on Twitter and Facebook. And just like your cupcakes, I am guessing it’s about quality…not quantity, right? How can we get companies to recognize that? What’s your secret for using Twitter and Facebook? ML: It’s absolutely about quality. It’s easy to get a ton of Twitter followers the wrong way. But what good is that if there aren’t any business leads as a result? My personal opinion, based on my experiences, is that interaction with the community is key. You can tweet all day long. You can update your Facebook page all day long. But are people listening? They’ll listen if they know you care about them. So my personal mandate is that I reply to every single tweet and make a comment on every single post to our Facebook page. And once we interact, the community realizes that we care about their thoughts and opinions. And then they become engaged. BH: You’re a smart business owner…are you demanding social media ROI? How would you advise business owners to think about ROI in a way that doesn’t snuff the life out of their social media programs? ML: That’s a tricky question. There are no standards by which to measure ROI (yet) in social media. That said, I’m not sure there’s a magic formula for results, either. But the great thing about social media is that it’s very dynamic, fluid, and testable. Throw something out there and see if people respond. Like any marketing program, I always try to begin with the end in mind. What do we want to accomplish? Who is going to care about what we have to offer? We identify the answers to those questions then work backwards. And the other thing? We don’t spend a ton of time on it either. A Tweet or a Facebook status update are fleeting moments in most people’s eyes. Spending more than a minute or two figuring out what to write, in my opinion, is just a waste of time. Get it out there and see what happens. BH: Who doesn’t love a delicious cupcake, right? But I am willing bet that when it comes to marketing and selling you’ve encountered speed bumps along the way just like any other business. What strategies/tactics are you using to get folks to head on over to your website to order up some shiny happy goodness? ML: I’m not a big believer in push marketing. I just don’t think it works. It never works on me, and I’m actually more or less turned off by people who blast their message in my face. For us, it’s all about community. We get involved in conversations around pop culture, shoes, weather, chocolate, travel, music, or traffic. Those tend to be very relatable things across the board. We support other businesses and help bring awareness to charitable causes we believe in. And I’m pretty sure that it’s because we engage in conversations, people know who we are. Over 70 percent of our search words in Google have been “Foiled Cupcakes.” That means a lot, especially since nobody even heard of our company a year ago and we have spent exactly $0.00 on any sort of advertising or brand awareness campaign. In hindsight, the two things that were absolutely critical in helping us gain speed: Connecting with social influencers on Twitter in our target markets (the only real social networking platform we’ve used in which we’re able to interact with people we haven’t met yet.)Making real life connections in person at networking events. Because refer people to companies they know, like, and trust, networking was absolutely key in making it all snap together for us. Final thoughts…All said and done, I think that social media is a great way to start a business. And it’s also a great addition to any business marketing plan. It doesn’t have to be a big time investment, and for the right personality it can be a lot of fun. Just be real and transparent. The community loves people like that.
  • The top notch blogging of the Indium Corporation. This global developer, manufacturer, and supplier of specialty alloys, solders and indium compounds is one of the best examples of business blogging in the B2B space I have seen.And if you want some background into how researchers and scientists at a chemical company were convinced to blog, read this interview with Director of Marketing, Rick Short from the Hubspot website.The first thing Indium does right is provide a prominent link to its series of blogs on the home page. This graphic show all ten blogs in a sidebar. Each blog is listed by name, with an author photo. For the multi-author blogs, the photos rotate among the authors. With this sidebar a reader can choose to view a specific blog, or go to the blog directory. This blog directory is also prominently listed under the Home navigation tab.The blog directory shows all the blogs, author’s photos, an excerpt from the most recent post, as well as a link to the author’s bio and an RSS subscribe button. Since these are specialty area and industry blogs, it is key to provide subscriptions options to each individual blog. There is also a tech support blog, a B2B marketing blog and a blog for the Chinese language audience.Each blog has a similar look, which matches the company branding, and has many standard blog features, unique to each blog, like RSS subscription options, social bookmarking and sharing buttons, recent posts, most popular posts, a blog roll, author contact information, and archives listing.Each blog carries a Creative Commons license, which is certainly contrary to most corporate ideas of copyright, This allows other bloggers to use the information from the Indium blog, so long as they provide attribution. There is also a statement that these are personal opinions, rather than company positions. The statement continues “Content published here is not read or approved by the Indium Corporation and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the company. In addition, they are not guaranteed to be correct, complete, or up-to-date.” While this does sound like it was inspired by the legal department, it actually gives the bloggers more freedom to write what they want.With the most popular post listing, it is easy to find posts with many comments. While the blog authors definitely respond to all comments, and in one case to follow up a sales lead by saying that a regional sales rep would contact the commenter, there are not many recent comments. It would be great to see more readers leave comments. As some of these bloggers have been writing for a couple of years, they need to challenge themselves to generate more reader comments. While I would not advocate controversy, it does work. But asking for comments is another way to get response. Simple questions about readers’ experiences can also help tease some comments out. Even though they are tracking page view and visitor metrics, comments are important part of engagement metrics.So if you are looking to start corporate blogging, definitely check out what Rick has done at Indium, but realize that this was not launched overnight. Develop your plans and start with one blog, but make it fantastic. And make sure your site readers can find it.Read more:
  • How do you dethrone Google temporarily?  You execute one of the most creative marketing campaigns of the year.  It yielded 1.1 billion media impressions, took precious market share from Google, and got a book on the best-seller list.  Bing teamed up with Jay-Z to launch his new bookDecode by plastering all 320 pages of it — one page at a time — in different locations and in very unusual ways around the world for 30 days before the book was released for sale. Primary Goal of CampaignTo drive millions of people away from Google to start using BING for Internet search and maps.The CampaignThey began by staying true to each brand weaving Jay-Z’s very personal story, his journey through life and where it took him around the world, into Bing’s search and mapping technologies every day of the 30 day campaign.  Each page of the book was reproduced and put into the real world in a number of innovative ways including on billboards, the top of parking garages, on building walls where Jay-Z grew up, to the bottom of a swimming pool.  A website was created for the campaign where each day new clues were released on Twitter, Facebook, and Bing. You would then use Bing’s search and maps to “decode” the clue and find the location of the page and be the first to locate where the pages released that day were around the world.  Over the 30 days, all the pages of the book were released so by the end of the campaign, you would have read the book.ResultsAverage time a person was on the campaign’s landing page was 11 minutes.Bing got 11.7% increase in visits to their search engine which finally tipped them into the Top 10 of most visited websites in the world.The campaign yielded 1.1 billion media impressionsJay-Z’s Facebook page grew by 1,000,000 fansJay-Z’s book, Decode was on the best seller list for 19 straight weeks.Every major news channel and newspaper covered the campaign.Large numbers of people started using BING for search and mapping over GoogleThis campaign became part of popular culture for an entire month. 
  • If you’re a digital marketer who decided these past 10 days were the days you’d “completely disconnect from the digital world and find your analog-self,” then you picked the wrong week.Monday, March 5th saw the launch of the most successful viral marketing campaign in history, branded or otherwise. Nonprofit organizationInvisible Children published their KONY 2012 campaign video, taking the social media world by storm. On the day it was launched, the video was practically unavoidable. It seemed nearly everyone posted it on every type of page and platform. With over 100 million views on YouTube and Vimeo combined in only one week, the video has reached iconic status as the most viral video of all time.While the video has since sparked a powder keg of intense political debate, there’s another side of this moment that shouldn’t get lost in the arguments: Agree or disagree with the message, no one can argue that the marketing of the campaign is anything but outrageously successful. To help isolate lessons from the campaign that can benefit anyone trying to tell a story in social media, we spoke with Pat Walsh, co-founder and CMO of, the social fundraising platform behind Invisible Children, for his insight on the campaign’s virality.Here are five lessons that brands can take away from Invisible Children’s monumental social media campaign:With the video’s success, predictably, came significant criticism, but there’s no questioning the primary lesson learned from the San Diego-based nonprofit’s experiment in social activism: Everyone (like every brand) has a story, and those who tell it best, win.Invisible Children were able to turn their eight-year mission into a compelling story that pulled at the heartstrings of millions. They told the story in a way that nearly everyone watching the video could understand, regardless of age or knowledge. Some have argued that it was too naive, oversimplifying a complex problem. However, if Invisible Children were going to create a video that could both keep the audience’s attention and spark a worldwide movement, the story had to be gripping and easy to understand to be effectiveThe knee-jerk reaction of most anyone who yearns for viral success is to try and replicate the idea. But this is no nyan cat. This video has been nearly a decade in the making, and the depth (and 30 minute length) of the story makes it difficult to replicate with any amount of success. “I have no doubt that the success of the video (seen by more people than any single TV show this week) will lead many organizations astray in the naive belief that they can emulate this one,” said Seth Godin. “If a non-profit board decides to spend precious resources on a video hoping it will change the world in three days, I think they’re misguided.”However, that’s not to say that brands, particularly nonprofits, have no chance at creating a groundswell that effects change. “One of the greatest effects of KONY2012 is that it’s inspired people to get involved and champion the causes they’re passionate about – whether that’s removing a 3rd world warlord or supporting something more personal to them,” explains Pat Walsh, co-founder and CMO “Hopefully the long-lasting momentum of this campaign will continue to drive young leaders to advocate on behalf of social and humanitarian injustices at every level throughout the world.”Invisible Children’s success put them under the microscope. Alongside their success, Invisible Children has faced harsh criticism in the last week over a wide range of issues, one of which questioned the effectiveness of the video.While the video ends with a clear call to action to order action kits (at $30 a piece, or free with a recurring donation), Invisible Children has openly acknowledged that their overarching goal as a nonprofit (and the goal of the Kony 2012 video) is to raise awareness, and no one can argue that the video hasn’t accomplished that. Opponents, however, have said that regardless of video views, this is pointless “slacktivism.” Viewers watch, share, and go back to their lives having felt as though they were social activists for a minute. But the content itself shouldn’t bear the burden of ROI. You can quibble about how much money it did or didn’t bring in (they have run out of $30 kits), but that’s not the point. The point is that a vast majority of the globe now knows about this issue and, most importantly, knows who Joseph Kony is. Invisible Children set out to make him famous, largely fueled by this video, and that’s exactly what was achieved.Creating compelling content can be very effective, but if you don’t give your audience a clear call to action at the end, your audience’s journey with your brand may end right there. Around the 22-minute mark, the narrator (co-founder Jason Russel) proclaims, “We know what to do. Here it is. Ready?” The final seven minutes lays out Invisible Children’s goals and, specifically, what they want the audience to do:Order an action kitDonate a few dollars a monthReach out to culture-makers and politicians to show that you careOn April 20th, paint your town or city with the posters and stickers in the action kit Not everybody is willing or able to be deeply involved in an issue, but if you give your audience easy ways to begin their involvement with the project, they might find themselves becoming more passionate than they thought they were.But sometimes asking isn’t enough. You have to make it very easy for them to do what you’re asking. If you want them to share your infographic with their social networks, make sure there are social sharing buttons nearby. If you want them to donate, show them exactly where they need to go to donate and even ask for a specific amount. The KONY2012 site makes it easy for people to tweet at the culture- and policy-makers with the click of a mouse (along with a pre-written tweet, which provides a thank-you if they’ve already tweeted).But will this viral spread translate to real-world in time for the declared group action date of April 20? “I think it already has,” Walsh says. “Invisible Children has brought an elevated level of awareness and a new call to action to a long-standing silent war. As a result of the campaign, media organizations like NBC Nightly News are sending teams to Africa to further investigate and build awareness around the issues. Politicians are coming out in strong support of taking action. Invisible Children’s awareness tactics have led to tangible action in the past, and I think this latest campaign has the momentum to make their largest impact yet.”When your audience can see themselves in your story, the burden of persuading them disappears. The Kony video had a variety of characters that made it easily relatable to viewers of all ages. When we saw Jason’s son, we saw our own sons and/or daughters. When college-aged kids (the primary target audience) saw the video, they saw the hundreds of other kids who look just like them painting the streets with Kony posters.Of course, you can’t do this for every audience. This video had a negative reaction from those in the areas of Uganda where Joseph Kony’s reign was the worst. That’s an understandable reaction who those who have lived through true suffering, but to be fair, they weren’t the target audience. Invisible Children targeted an audience that could immediately respond to their call of action to share, reach out, and donate. Judging by the rapid sharing of the video, it obviously resonated with the audiences they targeted.Through all of this, it can’t be forgotten that global storytelling has a long tail. If Rebecca Black is still getting work, then we can expect that Invisible Children’s message will be around well into 2013 and beyond. It’s this widespread success and awareness that may motivate politicians to act. It’s not perfect, but the story is simply too effective to ignore.For anyone trying to tell a story, the main lesson to be gained from the Kony campaign is to make sure your story is compelling for your target audience. Your brand may not create the next viral sensation, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have your own story to tell—you simply need to determine how to tell it in a way that captivates and compels audiences to share.Why do you think the Kony 2012 video went viral so quickly? What else can be learned?—We’ll be peering into the future of all things content marketing, advertising, journalism and social media at our Post-Advertising Summit, March 29th in New York City. We’ll pull back the curtain and teach attendees how to truly unearth their brand’s story. Speakers including Simon Dumenco (AdAge), Shira Lazar (What’s Trending), Joe Pulizzi (Content Marketing Institute) and more will be on hand to share their expertise. In order to get the best price, reserve your seat at the Summit table today! Use code “PABLOG” for $100 off!
  • Yahoo! Movies, a division of Yahoo! wanted to get a bigger piece of the multi-billion dollar movie going pie by the summer of 2012 through their Facebook page.  Their goal is to become the source for movie goers who love to research, be in the “know,” get VIP passes to early showings, and communicate with other movie aficionados.They get 24 million visitors on their main website but lack that kind of traffic on Facebook where they see untapped potential to grow their brand.Joint VentureTheir campaign strategy was a joint effort with their offline partner, Regal Cinemas, who put up banners in theaters promoting the Yahoo! brand along with a QR code pointing to an offer most movie goers couldn’t refuse – free popcorn.  People who did a social check-in via their Smart phones and liked the page got the popcorn.  Offer applied online also.  They would just redeem the popcorn when they arrived at the theater. The Results From Campaign1.2 million new Likes on their Facebook page200,000 Check-ins1.4 Million minutes spent on Yahoo! Movies Website$1,000,000 of popcorn given awayLet’s Test Their Million Dollar SpendThey say their long-term goal is not about the “liking” it’s about building an audience of repeat visitors who will engage and make Yahoo! Movies their online source.The great part about case studies like this is that you and I can take a peek behind the curtain and see if this is hype or really working. Below are the objectives/goals they hope to achieve now since the campaign began a few months ago. I encourage you to go to their Facebook page and see if the goals below are being lived out.How Yahoo! Measured SuccessTarget a Season – focus on summer movie seasonHit Fans From All Angles – Reach fans online and offlineRelevant – Reward movie goers and capture “Likes” in return for continued activity on their Facebook pageConnect More – Interact with more movie fans via their website and Facebook pageBecome The Movie Source – provide great content to keep fans coming back to their page regularlyMy TakeI would question their last two goals – connecting and becoming the source. Out of the 2.15 million fans, they are not averaging the comments and interaction I would expect to consider this successful. It’s about amazing content and some of their biggest days of activity are based on movie blockbuster debuts or contests/giveaways they may be doing in a certain month. Their ratio of commenting back to people is very low and not that of a Sage archetype or the “in the know” type of a person I would expect running the page.To view the full case study on SlideShare - go here.  What do your think?  Was it successful?5-25 Minute Videos Work Better Than 30 Second SpotsThis case study features 4 examples of long form branded video content that drove millions of additional dollars and tens of millions of views using long-form copy in place of the typical 30-90 second spots.What these videos prove is that people will make the time for well crafted stories that intersect with the narrative of their personal story.  It is true that consumers are getting more savvy about the “noise” online by deleting, skipping, or unsubscribing from your site faster than ever but for valid reasons.Most of the content online is not worth their time.  Studies show that if you can capture their imagination and interest within the first 15 seconds of a video they will stay as long as you keep enriching them throughout the video.Three of the four videos (HBO, Nike, KONY) in this case study are long.  The forth, featured below, Chipotle, is just over two minutes but considered long because it’s a TV commercial.  It was originally to air at the 2012 Super Bowl.  Risking it would have to be shortened to 30 seconds due to budget concerns, Chipotle opted to preserve the full story and air it during the 2012 Grammy Awards.  It ended up being so impactful it upstaged some of the Grammy performances that night.
  • Crm case studies

    1. 1. CRM 2.0Case StudiesMT 115
    2. 2. StorytellingA PlotThe Journey to Value Hi Nikos! Signout Switch1. The Confict2. The Characters3. The Roadmap4. The MetricsCustomer Relationship ManagementExecuteReviseStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    3. 3. What make’s a good story?• In what ways are a case study and astory similar?• Something original, something “deep”,something surprising• Understand your audiences’perceptions, expectations, andexpérience• Grab attention on the very first page• Make the story memorableBernardine EvaristoStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    4. 4. Take 1 : Quicker, faster, better?• F.W. Taylor : “In the past the manhas been first,” he declared; “in thefuture the system must be first.”• He created a set of preciseinstructions for each worker “should”work.• His goal was to go faster, quicker,better.• Aren’t all management issues todayabout time to market and loweringcosts?”Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    5. 5. "Experience is knowledge,everything else is information"-- Albert Einstein• What are the stories Starbucks,Michelin, Hermès, Apple tell?• Service economy – value comesfrom services embedded in theproduct• Pine and Gilmore argued thatdifferentiation today comes fromcreating “experiences”• Companies provide “stages”,managers are “actors”, customersare active “spectators”Take 2 : The experience economyStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    6. 6. After SteazMarket : Food and Beverage Process : SalesBusiness challenges :• Brand was unknown, Low budget, Need for immediateimpactTargeted Skills• Social and brand awareness, Get moms talking, use socialnetworks to share "deals.“Roadmap* Internet coupons, Twitter, Facebook, PPC Search, blo, e-mailMetrics• Sales doubled, 250,000 coupon downloads (with a 20+percent redemption rate), 6,000 blog and social networkmentionsWhy do organic teas matter?Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    7. 7. Best BuyHow do you deliver“dream service”?Market : Distribution Process : Customer SupportBusiness challenges :• Deliver better support, enrich customer loyalty, generaterevenuesTargeted Skills• Express passion and knowledge, Leverage salesspecialists, give a voice to customer serviceRoadmap* Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, TV launchMetrics• Twelpforce grew 400 to 2,200 employees. Reponses to13,000 public questions, concerns, and opinions in 3months. 29000 followers on TwitterStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    8. 8. BlendTecBlendTecStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamplesMarket : Small appliances Process : MarketingBusiness challenges :• Great products + Weak branding = Weak salesTargeted Skills• Social and brand awareness, Crowdsourcing, producttestingRoadmap* Internet coupons, Twitter, Facebook, PPC Search, blo, e-mailMetrics• Networked company,
    9. 9. GiffgaffMarket : Telecom Process : Customer ServiceBusiness challenges :• Brand was unknown, Low budget, Need for immediateimpactTargeted Skills• Social and brand awareness, Crowdsourcing, producttestingRoadmap* Internet coupons, Twitter, Facebook, PPC Search, blo, e-mailMetrics• Networked company,Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    10. 10. KLMMarket : Transportation Process : SalesBusiness challenges :• Maintain a unique brand, differentiate on something overthan price, turn “likes” into salesTargeted Skills• Social and brand awareness, understand the customerbuying experienceRoadmap* Internet coupons, Twitter, Facebook, PPC Search, blo, e-mailMetrics• Sales doubled, 250,000 coupon downloads (with a 20+percent redemption rate), 6,000 blog and social networkmentionsStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamplesA social media journey?
    11. 11. Student Exercises• The Hook• One sentence elevator pitch to set the tone• Conflict– Seen from a customer’s point of view– Staged as an opportunity or a threat• Characters– What lack of skills or knowledge created thisproblem?– Where does the organization what to focus?• Roadmap– What vision does CRM offer of the future?– Which technologies, methodologies?• The Happy End– Which metrics will be used to judge success?Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    12. 12. Ben & Jerry’sMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    13. 13. Canon EOS photo chainMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    14. 14. ChipoteBack to Start?Market : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    15. 15. FiskarsWhat is a Fiskateer?Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamplesMarket : Process : Channel OptimizationBusiness challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•
    16. 16. Harvard Business PublishingGreat content creators who are giftedin storytelling are King”Market : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    17. 17. ©2006 LHST sarlFashion WeekIntroduction Complexity PracticeShadow ConcernsFashion WeekMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•
    18. 18. Foiled CupcakesIs anybody listening?Market : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    19. 19. IndiumINDIUMMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    20. 20. Jay-Z.Why the name Decode?Market : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    21. 21. KonyInvisible ChildrenMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    22. 22. Yahoo MoviesYahoo MoviesMarket : Process :Business challenges :•Targeted Skills•Roadmap•Metrics•Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    23. 23. MetricsStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples• Profitability: Profitability measures the added value of anorganization in comparing the cost of its resources with thatof the products and/or services.• Utilization: Utilization focuses on the extent to whichcompany resources are employed at any given time.• Quality: Quality has been defined variously as„conformance to standards” as well as „client satisfaction‟• Innovation: Innovation can be understood in the context ofan organization‟s ability to react to real or perceivedchanges in the market or in the economy.• Passion: Passion represents the affective response of peopleto their work environment.• Effectiveness: Effectiveness can be viewed as an output-input ratio that addresses the question of “doing the rightthings” to meet customer needs and objectives.
    24. 24. Value Metrics• Profitability: Profitability measures the added value of anorganization in comparing the cost of its resources with that of theproducts and/or services.• Utilization: Utilization focuses on the extent to which companyresources are employed at any given time.• Quality: Quality has been defined variously as „conformance tostandards” as well as „client satisfaction‟• Innovation: Innovation can be understood in the context of anorganization‟s ability to react to real or perceived changes in themarket or in the economy.• Passion: Passion represents the affective response of people to theirwork environment.• Effectiveness: Effectiveness can be viewed as an output-input ratiothat addresses the question of “doing the right things” to meetcustomer needs and objectives.
    25. 25. Funnel Analysis• Why are users are failing to complete proposedactivity?• Monitor conversion rate using unique visitorsand click-through rates.• Landing pages provide the biggest challenge todigital challenges.• Reduce number of steps to facilitateengagement.• Reduce the number of fields that require userinput.• Check for leaks: visitors might not be droppingcompletely but using other routes.Cian O Sullivan Exercises MetricsExamples
    26. 26. Social stickiness• What aspects of your app are influencing themindset of your users?• Monitor the « stickiness » of your messagethrough number of visits, time spent pervisit, citations and redirects.• What customer challenges/opportunities are youaddressing?• What skills and knowledge are you targeting?• How does your application fit into the story thatyour customers are trying to tell?Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    27. 27. Mapping context• Why your user base does what it does?• Tracking time and location to map outthe spaces where "whats going on"happens.• Context is a means of measuring theextent to which a vision (product,service, idea) can be shared• Social spaces are constructed from avision, “actors”, repeatable events, andoutcomes.Storytelling Exercises MetricsExamples
    28. 28. Social graph and emergent behavious• How does your data elucidate userbehavior?• Social graphs are the global mappingof your customer base and howtheyre related• Capture and monitor identity, qualityand structure of relationships withothers• Emergent behaviors – what newbusiness opportunities might beexplored? Alex IskoldStorytelling Exercises MetricsExamples