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D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                                                                      博

                                                              WEIBO
                                               7 steps to better corporate
                                          reputation, crisis preparedness and
                                            digital communications in China
                                                                                  February 2012 v.1.1




                                                                            D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                                                                                                1
                                                             Burson-Marsteller l Asia-Pacific l Evidence-Based Communications
Weibo
                                                             Seven steps to better corporate
                                                             reputation, crisis preparedness
                                                             and digital communications in
                                                             China.
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                               1       Choose Your Direction
                                                                       Explore Your Potential
                                                               2                  Platforms
                                                                                  Audiences
                                                                                  Competitors
                                                                                  Integration
                                                               3       Define Your Goals
                                                                       Design Your Presence
                                                               4                  Framework
                                                                                  Following
                                                                                  Content
                                                                                  Engaging
                                                                                  KPI / ROI


                                                               5       Manage Your Streams
                                                                                  Followers
                                                                                  Influencers
                                                                                  Campaigns
                                                                                  Integration
                                                                                  Resources
                                                                                  Issues
                                                               6
                                                                       Plan Your Action
                                                                       Optimize Your Content
                                                               7



                                                                         D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
China’s Year of the Dragon
                                                             is the year of Social Media.
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Gaining popular traction at an unprecedented pace, Weibo
                                                             has risen from the ashes from a platform that faced many
                                                             challenges early on, to one that is, today,
                                                             at the start of the Chinese Year of the Dragon, the
                                                             undisputed phenomenon in China’s galaxy of home-grown
                                                             social media platforms.

                                                             Behind the hype, big challenges
                                                             remain for companies.
                                                             All too often Weibo is used as a tactical measure for
                                                             broadcast, push-based marketing. Weibo’s tremendous
                                                             opportunities for multinational brands and companies – as
                                                             a two-way conversational medium that bolsters corporate
                                                             reputation and aids crisis preparedness – has yet to be
                                                             tapped.

                                                             Our goal here is to support you with an actionable
                                                             framework for reputation, crisis and brand marketing
                                                             online.

                                                                 We hope these steps help lead to a
                                                                 more holistic and integrated approach
                                                                 to digital communications in China.

                                                                         路灯           张亮
                                                                         Zaheer          Leon
                                                                         Nooruddin       Zhang
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                                                                           D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
About the Authors
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                                      Zaheer Nooruddin
                                                                                      zaheer.nooruddin@bm.com

                                                                                      Zaheer is Burson-Marsteller
                                                                                      China’s Lead Digital Strategist.

                                                                                      With14 years of integrated 360
                                                                                      digital marketing-communications
                                                                                      experience and social media at
                                                                                      leading digital and PR agencies,
                                                                                      Zaheer’s client work spans a
                                                                                      range of B2B and B2C industries
                                                                                      in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) and
                                                                                      Middle East & North Africa
                                                                                      (MENA) regions.

                                                             Zaheer has worked in New York City, Dubai, Mumbai, Beijing
                                                             and Hong Kong.

                                                             A Global Emerging Markets social media expert, and the co-
                                                             author of the book on social media strategy “The Social Media
                                                             MBA: Your Competitive Edge in Social Media Strategy
                                                             Development and Delivery”, Zaheer has been based in China
                                                             since 2007.




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                                                                         D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
About the Authors
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Leon Zhang
                                                             leon.zhang@bm.com

                                                             Leon Zhang is Burson-
                                                             Marsteller China’s Digital
                                                             Strategy and Insights Lead.

                                                             Leon drives digital consultancy,
                                                             strategic planning, and
                                                             trainings through B-M’s China
                                                             offices, working closely with the
                                                             rest of Burson-Marsteller
                                                             China’s digital development
                                                             network.
                                                             Based in Beijing, Leon has over seven years of digital
                                                             marketing, communications and technology experience,
                                                             working with a range of multinational companies. Leon
                                                             has developed robust digital expertise and in digital
                                                             marketing and communications, as well as with SEO
                                                             and SEM strategies.


                                                                            With a passion and energy for all-
                                                                            things-digital in China, Leon
                                                                            founded DigiMarketing.cn, one of
                                                                            China’s first specialized web portals
                                                                            in digital marketing topics, in 2008,.



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                                                                          D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Welcome
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Weibo is a powerful digital
                                                             communications and
                                                             marketing channel.

                                                             The popular uptake of this
                                                             real-time microblogging
                                                             social technology in China
                                                             has been unprecedented –
                                                             and much has been written
                                                             about it.

                                                             Not so much, however, has
                                                             been said about how to
                                                             successfully create a
                                                             sustainable and results-
                                                             driven weibo program for
                                                             reputation management
                                                             and marketing.

                                                                     The core principles of marketing-communications
                                                                     apply to weibo - an approach to weibo needs to
                                                                     be consistent with an organization’s holistic
                                                                     business and marketing objectives.

                                                                     Yet, it’s necessary to consider the unique features
                                                                     of weibo when developing a social media channel
                                                                     strategy, to ensure cross-functional benefit and in
                                                                     order to maximize effectiveness and ROI.


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                                                                         D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Without a strategy, weibo
                                                             can lead companies to weak
                                                             ROI
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Organizations in China are very interested in weibo –
                                                             many have jumped in head-first, some with more
                                                             success than others - yet others remain hesitant due to
                                                             the lack of systematic approaches and processes. Many
                                                             organizations have set up official weibo accounts, but
                                                             they are still at the initial stage, without systematic
                                                             planning and management.

                                                                To help you get started
                                                                with a weibo strategy for business, we
                                                                have summarized our D/BM strategic
                                                                framework and implementation process
                                                                for your reference.

                                                                To make our guide useful we have by
                                                                consolidated both the general and
                                                                unique characteristics of weibo for
                                                                communications and marketing.

                                                                This guide is an introduction of the
                                                                holistic framework for weibo.

                                                                       Let us know how
                                                                       it goes!




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D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
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D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




    D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                       Choose Your Direction
                                                                               Step 1


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Step 1
                                                             Choose Your Direction
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Before moving into a strategic planning exercise for
                                                             your organization’s weibo, it is first necessary to
                                                             confirm your overall direction. This means being
                                                             clear about your business objectives, your
                                                             communication objectives and your target
                                                             audiences.

                                                             Business objectives are the operational goals
                                                             that an organization expects to achieve in certain
                                                             period. For example: To increase sales of Product A
                                                             by 20% in Tier 1 cities in China in 2011. Or better
                                                             brand reputation against an initial benchmark
                                                             score.




                                                                                         Weibo objectives?




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Properly map your
                                                              objectives
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Communications objectives are the results that
                                                             companies expect to achieve through communications with
                                                             an audience. For example: To enhance consumer awareness
                                                             of Product A in Tier 1 cities in China in 2012. Or to create a
                                                             perception of high performance-cost ratio.

                                                             Within communications objectives, fall digital objectives,
                                                             and within digital objectives lies social media objectives.

                                                                    Target audience is the group of
                                                                    people that the organization expects
                                                                    to reach. For example: 18 to 22-year-
                                                                    old students in Tier 1 cities in China.
                                                                    Or it could be the most influential
                                                                    commentators on a certain topic…




                                                                        Always begin
                                                                        with objectives
                                                                        and audiences

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                                                                            D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
If this sounds basic…
                                                             it’s because it is!
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Your direction is wholly-related to the success of
                                                             your strategy. Its development is a key stage in your
                                                             larger social media strategy development.

                                                             Because this is so basic and fundamental, it is often
                                                             overlooked. This can lead to your efforts working in
                                                             the wrong direction.

                                                             It is essential to confirm your overall business
                                                             direction at the very beginning, and that’s also why
                                                             “Direction” is at the core of our D/BM holistic
                                                             strategic planning process for weibo.

                                                             With the overall direction as the strategy’s
                                                             foundation, we can then further develop tailored
                                                             and strategic plan for weibo.

                                                                Confirming a direction
                                                                informs stronger social
                                                                strategy and execution
                                                                – leading to stronger
                                                                results




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     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                        Explore Your Potential
                                                                                 Step 2


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Step 2
                                                             Explore Your Potential
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             A good situation analysis should review both the
                                                             internal and external, macroscopic and
                                                             microscopic environments of a business. It can
                                                             serve as an Evidence-Based foundation for
                                                             objective setting, strategic planning and
                                                             management.




                                                             For weibo, analyze 4 groups
                                                             First is the target audience that an organization
                                                             would like to influence;

                                                             Second are an organization’s direct or potential
                                                             competitors that are marketing to the same
                                                             groups;

                                                             Third is internal; employees of your
                                                             organization.

                                                             Fourth is everyone else.


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Which weibo functions
                                                             can a company
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             leverage?
                                                             A good analysis of existing state of play, trends
                                                             and the overall environment of weibo will help
                                                             you find communications and marketing
                                                             potential.

                                                             Knowing and understanding the value of the
                                                             latest functions on Sina Weibo – such as Weibo
                                                             Live, Weibo Interview and Weibo Screen – to
                                                             name a few - will help you leverage valuable
                                                             opportunities towards a better strategic
                                                             approach.


                                                                                                 Different
                                                                                                     weibo
                                                                                                platforms
                                                                                               might have
                                                                                                 different
                                                                                                 audience
                                                                                                segments




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Use research and social
                                                             listening to inform
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             programming decisions
                                                             Quantitative industry reports that are openly available
                                                             provide important data and information.




                                                                Source: iResearch



                                                                            For example, from a recent iResearch
                                                                            industry report* we can see that ,from 2009
                                                                            to 2011, the popularity of weibo rose
                                                                            dramatically, while the number of bloggers
                                                                            and social network users has declined.

                                                                            There is abundant data already available that
                                                                            can serve as a good basis for weibo platform
                                                                            analysis.


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                                                                              D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Platform selection
                                                             What are the most relevant
                                                             features of weibo?
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Understanding audience preferences and
                                                             meeting these needs will help meet targeted
                                                             marketing and communications goals.

                                                             For example, timelines based on 24-hour or
                                                             week-long analysis of audience tweets, comments
                                                             and shares, will help you to identify the best times
                                                             to engage. As shown (see previous page), the
                                                             number of shares and comments on Wednesday
                                                             and Thursday is higher for this particular
                                                             audience. Organizations that target this audience
                                                             can take advantage while planning content and
                                                             engagement strategies.

                                                             For different organizations and different
                                                             audiences, behavior will be different. This calls for
                                                             companies to use social media listening tools to
                                                             better understand their core audiences, to serve
                                                             them with targeted content, and to develop
                                                             marketing strategies and plans.


                                                                    Use real-time listening
                                                                    to understand your
                                                                    audiences on weibo
                                                                    better


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                                                                            D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Mind your
                                                             competitors…
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                When analyzing industry
                                                                competitors, we need to
                                                                understand their key metrics - what
                                                                the company cares about the most.

                                                                Then, we can establish an
                                                                evaluation framework to guide a
                                                                detailed competitor analysis.

                                                                The metrics could be developed
                                                                based on the industry landscape
                                                                and particular needs of that
                                                                organization.

                                                                For example, to understand the
                                                                current industry, some basic
                                                                metrics, such as number of
                                                                followers, number following, total
                                                                number of tweets, the date when
                                                                they posted the first tweet, topic
                                                                focuses and so forth, should be
                                                                measured.




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                                                                    D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Stalk your
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             competitors!

                                                             When considering a competitor’s
                                                             unique activities on weibo, such as
                                                             competitor interaction frequency
                                                             and content, an organization can
                                                             develop activity-related metrics,
                                                             such as the number of shares and
                                                             comments.

                                                             Using these metrics, you can
                                                             review competitors’ weibo
                                                             usage.

                                                             If your company has a weibo
                                                             account, it’s good to include it
                                                             as well for a comparison and
                                                             benchmarking.

                                                             Doing so will help identify
                                                             opportunities and challenges as
                                                             we develop a powerful weibo
                                                             and social media strategy.




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Existing weibo
                                                             presences?
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             If your organization already has a weibo
                                                             presence or presences, then it is essential to
                                                             analyze your state of play.

                                                             Think of it as a “digital checkup” – first, you
                                                             assess your current condition and compare it
                                                             against benchmarks to identify any problems.
                                                             Only then can you determine the
                                                             prescription.

                                                             In addition to the competitor comparison,
                                                             other analyses from different perspectives
                                                             can be conducted to determine the direction
                                                             of the strategy. This includes an organization’s
                                                             existing own weibo situation analysis, target
                                                             users analysis and industrial best practice
                                                             comparison.

                                                             For example, by comparing the 24-hour
                                                             distribution of company-generated tweets
                                                             with the 24-hour distribution of shares and
                                                             comments from your target audiences, it’s
                                                             easy to review the effectiveness of your
                                                             existing activities.




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D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                        Define Goals




     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                                       Step 3


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Step 3
                                                               Define Goals
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Develop specific objectives and key performance
                                                             indicators (KPI) for your weibo program.

                                                             Your weibo communication and marketing objectives
                                                             should be consistent with business and integrated
                                                             communication objectives. We follow S.M.A.R.T Goals:
                                                             Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant
                                                             and Time-Bound.
                                                             Stage       Core           KPI                         KPI objective
                                                             Appeal      Quantity of    Number of followers         10,000 followers within 1 year
                                                                         users
                                                             Resonance   Quality of     Number of active followers 2000 active followers within 1
                                                                         users                                     year
                                                             Advocacy    Word of mouth Percentage of positive and   Percentage of positive and
                                                                                       neutral comments and         neutral comments and
                                                                                       retweets                     retweets >80% within 1 year



                                                             Goals can be: To increase corporate or brand
                                                             awareness. To improve word-of-mouth (WOM). To
                                                             improve brand sentiment. To drive product sales.

                                                             Appeal
                                                             Attract weibo followers to grow stream awareness

                                                             Resonance
                                                             Ensure follower quality and encourage
                                                             engagement (retweets and comments)

                                                                           Advocacy
                                                                           Gain positive WOM


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Set achievable
                                                             performance metrics
                                                             The number of followers is
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             easy to understand, but
                                                             the number of active
                                                             followers can be defined
                                                             differently.

                                                             There are different levels of
                                                             follower activity: followers
                                                             who share or comment at
                                                             least once a month versus
                                                             those who share or
                                                             comment three times a
                                                             week, etc. Once confirmed,
                                                             the criteria should not be If a weibo stream has
                                                             changed frequently.           2 million followers, but a
                                                                                           tweet attracts only one
                                                             Otherwise, it will be         comment and two retweets
                                                             impossible to compare         on average, then it’s
                                                             different time periods.       obvious that the
                                                                                           relationship between this
                                                             When setting KPI, avoid       weibo stream and its
                                                             the common mistake of followers is very weak.
                                                             ranking quantity over
                                                             quality. That is one of the The accumulation of high
                                                             reasons the “zombie           quality followers is similar
                                                             follower” prevails.           to the accumulation of
                                                                                           brand advocates - it
                                                                                           requires sustained effort,
                                                                                           building trust and
                                                                                           relationships, and one
                                                                                           should not expect success
                                                                                           overnight.
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     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                        Design Your Presence
                                                                               Step 4


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Step 4
                                                             Design Your “Presence”
                                                             by planning your strategy
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             After deciding on your communication
                                                             objectives and KPIs, you will have clear goals;
                                                             the next step is to plan a strategy and tactics.

                                                             What’s your weibo
                                                             framework?!

                                                             Companies may have multiple weibo accounts,
                                                             and their relationships determine how a
                                                             company should operate and manage them.

                                                             Companies must choose a strategic weibo
                                                             architecture and arrange their strategy focuses
                                                             on the overall direction while tactics focus on
                                                             the specific actions, and the two are tightly
                                                             linked.

                                                             For weibo communication, the following five
                                                             strategies are essential.




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                                              Weibo management structures




D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
                                                                  Source: Forrester




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D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Let the world know
                                                               A following strategy includes both who the weibo
                                                               stream should follow and how it can attract
                                                               followers.

                                                               To attract followers, promote your weibo presence.
                                                               Don’t be shy. Market your presence using all types
                                                               of media available to your organization.

                                                               Owned
                                                               Promotion on media owned by the company, such
                                                               as official websites, email, and blogs.

                                                               Paid
                                                               Promotion through traditional online / offline media
                                                               buying, such as cooperation portals like Sina, Sohu,
                                                               Tencent and Netease, and promotion through paid
                                                               advertising.

                                                               Earned (+ Social)
                                                               Attracting new followers through current followers
                                                               who share your tweeted content with their own
                                                               extended networks.




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D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Follow
                                                             There are certain useful strategies
                                                             and tactics to keep in mind when
                                                             following others.

                                                             Following other influential
                                                             weibo streams is a smart
                                                             way to increase followers.

                                                             “Following” is a method to attract
                                                             your audiences, but who might still
                                                             unaware of the existence of your
                                                             weibo presence.

                                                             An organization’s weibo stream can
                                                             reward “active brand advocates”,
                                                             such as those who continuously
                                                             engage with your weibo content –
                                                             simply by following them back.

                                                             An effective following strategy can
                                                             bring good results for your weibo
                                                             program’s effectiveness.




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                                                             D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Content, content!
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             A strong content strategy is vital to the success of
                                                             your weibo program. Ensure the quality of your
                                                             content, and post valuable content at the right
                                                             times.

                                                             There are three important points to keep in mind
                                                             while developing a content strategy. These are:
                                                             topic, source and posting timeline.




                                                                    Topic, Source,
                                                                    Timeline



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What topics should
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             your weibo posts
                                                             cover?
                                                             The most frequently shared content on Weibo

                                                             Top 3 topics: 1) hot social news and
                                                             events, 2) helpful info and tips for users or their
                                                             friends, 3) humor and interesting news.


                                                             Organizations can and should
                                                             take advantage of these topics
                                                             and integrate them with corporate positioning,
                                                             business objectives and communication goals.




                                                                     Tell stories,
                                                                     be generous,
                                                                     and funny




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The 1/3 Principle
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Of course, a corporate or brand weibo must align with
                                                             the corporate or brand communications objectives –
                                                             and not simply be based on what’s trendy and
                                                             popular!

                                                                         A general rule of thumb is the 1/3
                                                                         Principle for corporate or brand
                                                                         weibo content. This divides your
                                                                         content among three main areas of
                                                                         focus: Value-added content,
                                                                         Engagement content and Branded or
                                                                         Promotional content. Reviewing your
                                                                         audience’s feedback will help to fine-
                                                                         tune the content proportions
                                                                         specifically to your strategy and
                                                                         program.




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                                                                           D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
1/   Value-added
                                                                  Useful information for users and
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                  their networks to increase shares
                                                                  and exposure



                                                             2/   Engaged
                                                                  Content that encourages
                                                                  consumers to engage with the
                                                                  stream



                                                             3/   Promoted
                                                                  Content related to the company’s
                                                                  branding and products


                                                                  Generally, weibo content sources can be divided
                                                                  into three categories: your organization, other
                                                                  weibo streams, and real-time response (e.g.,
                                                                  replying to comments.)

                                                                  The 1/3 Principle can be a starting
                                                                  point with choosing content
                                                                  sources. A third of your content can be
                                                                  sourced from each category.




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Time to post
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Now that you know what
                                                             you are posting and where
                                                             it will come from, we must
                                                             decide when is best to post
                                                             it. Depending on your
                                                             business needs, you can
                                                             develop annual, quarterly,
                                                             monthly and weekly posting
                                                             calendars.

                                                             Prepare and maintain a posting timeline (much
                                                             like an editorial calendar) and develop and keep
                                                             ready your content in advance to guide daily
                                                             posts and updates. The table below is an
                                                             example of a content posting timeline.

                                                                       Monday   Tuesday   Wednesday Thursday   Friday
                                                             Topic
                                                             Tag
                                                             Message
                                                             Type

                                                             Form

                                                             Content




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                                                             Define a process to
                                                             respond and engage
                                                             The goal of an engagement strategy is to guide
                                                             your weibo activities with your audience, such as
                                                             shares (retweets) and responses.

                                                             Guidelines and management processes can help
                                                             weibo operational team engage with users in
                                                             different situations – while ensuring compliance
                                                             with legal and company marketing rules.




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Reporting
                                                                            Successful weibo
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                         communications and marketing
                                                                         requires long-term commitment.

                                                                            Continuous review of
                                                                         reporting and optimization means
                                                                         ongoing improvement of
                                                                         performance.

                                                                            The following steps are
                                                                         essential in measurement and
                                                                         optimization:

                                                                Monitoring:        Collect data through
                                                                         continuous monitoring

                                                                Analysis:     Analyze data for insights and
                                                                         recommendations

                                                                Optimization:          Take action based on
                                                                         insights and recommendations

                                                                 It’s necessary to develop a measurement
                                                             and reporting system, as the foundation for
                                                             continuous monitoring, that is in-line with your
                                                             KPI framework. This system will provide
                                                             guidance for future optimizations through
                                                             regular review and analyses with an
                                                             organization’s management team.


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     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                        Manage Your Streams
                                                                              Step 5


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Step 5
                                                             Manage Your Streams
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                                                                              Your official weibo
                                                                           presence is just as much a
                                                                           part of your corporate
                                                                           identity as is your corporate
                                                                           website.

                                                                              Just like your website,
                                                                           your weibo stream is NOT a
                                                                           one-time investment - it
                                                                           requires ongoing operation
                                                                           and maintenance.

                                                                               With a comprehensive
                                                                           strategy and concrete tactics,
                                                                           weibo operational planning
                                                                           is used to direct long-term
                                                                           maintenance, relevant
                                                                           activities and integration with
                                                                           other communications
                                                                           marketing channels.

                                                                              This is critical for its
                                                                           success.




                                                                                                             37
                                                                 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Forming a community.
                                                             Your “wei-people”
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                  Different weibo users have different behaviors.
                                                             Approach your audience segments differently to
                                                             manage them more effectively and to build stronger
                                                             relationships and advocacy.

                                                                At D/BM we segment weibo audiences into 4
                                                             general types:

                                                                Creators
                                                                Sharers
                                                                Critics                  Creators
                                                                Spectators



                                                                     Spectators
                                                                                          Weibo
                                                                                         audiences
                                                                                                          Sharers




                                                                                         Critics

                                                                         Weibo management principles can be
                                                                         developed based on your own groups’
                                                                         unique interests and characteristics.

                                                                                                                    38
                                                                          D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Nurturing influence.
                                                             Your “wei-influencers”
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                              Influencer Relationship Management (IRM) is
                                                              another name for Key Opinion Leader (KOL)
                                                              Management.

                                                              KOL Management is not simple, short-term or static.
                                                              It is a long-term and dynamic process, that requires
                                                              support of methodology and resources to maximize
                                                              effects.

                                                              The benefits of good Influencer/ KOL Management
                                                              can be massive for social media communications
                                                              and marketing.

                                                              KOLs should be analyzed along 3 lines.

                                                              These are: Relevance, Influence and
                                                              Cooperation opportunities. Relevance is the
                                                              degree to which your organization’s communication
                                                              objectives and content are related to the Influencer/
                                                              KOL.

                                                              Influence is the KOL’s power among peers and
                                                              followers. Cooperation opportunity is the probability
                                                              of working with the KOL. Based on these 3 factors, a
                                                              KOL management model should be developed.



                                                                                                                      39
                                                                        D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
                     40
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Weibo campaigns

                                                             At D/BM we divide marketing and communications
                                                             campaigns into the following types based on the
                                                             objectives, content formats and channels involved:

                                                             1.   Weibo campaign (weibo platform only)


                                                             2.   Integrated online campaign (weibo + other
                                                             online channels)

                                                             3.   Fully-Integrated campaign (weibo + other
                                                             online channels + offline channels).




                                                                                                              41
                                                                   D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Weibo campaign
                                                             guiding principles
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             The basic principles for planning a
                                                             weibo campaign are as follows

                                                             Be consistent         with overall
                                                             business objectives and communication
                                                             objectives;

                                                             Tailor   particular communication
                                                             approaches for target audiences

                                                             Select     the most suitable weibo
                                                             features as the campaign platform (such
                                                             as weibo Big Screen, Weibo Interview,
                                                             and so on).




                                                                                                       42
                                                                        D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Insist on integration
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                               Weibo is one of many channels of
                                                               marketing and communications
                                                               available to you in social media.

                                                               It is one approach to achieve an
                                                               organization’s overall communications
                                                               and marketing objectives.

                                                               To be really effective, weibo MUST
                                                               integrated with other marketing,
                                                               communications, sales and customer
                                                               service programs. Doing so will really
                                                               serve a your overall objectives and
                                                               show stronger value and results.



                                                             Think of weibo as a
                                                             piece in the puzzle;
                                                             a key part of the
                                                             overall plan.




                                                                                                        43
                                                                       D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
An integrated framework
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             At D/BM, our framework for an integrated
                                                             marketing strategy development facilitates cross-
                                                             channel communication and delivers a complete
                                                             brand experience to influencers, individuals and
                                                             audiences.

                                                             Integrated communications and marketing is a
                                                             huge and important topic.

                                                             Below we share our integration framework as a
                                                             reminder that it must be kept in mind when
                                                             planning weibo and social media strategies in
                                                             China.




                                                                                                                 44
                                                                        D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Ready your resources
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                 Often organizations jump onto weibo
                                                                 without planning resources and
                                                                 investment, and they end up
                                                                 failing, giving up and achieving
                                                                 very low ROI.

                                                                 Proper resource planning is a step
                                                                 that must not be overlooked.

                                                                 When we say resources we mean
                                                                 talent/ skills resources, financial
                                                                 resources, materials - and so on.

                                                                 All are fundamental to ensuring
                                                                 successful and smooth operations.




                                                                                                       45
                                                                     D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Use weibo to manage
                                                             Crisis
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                          To so many organizations in China,
                                                                          weibo is a double-edged sword.

                                                                          Few will argue that the potential for
                                                                          marketing and communications is
                                                                          great.

                                                                          It looks so easy!

                                                                          Yet, customers complain, people
                                                                          say negative things, and
                                                                          organizations tend to be
                                                                          unprepared to respond and deal
                                                                          effectively when crisis occurs.

                                                                          This isn’t what you were expecting
                                                                          or “signed up” for…

                                                                          To manage crisis, real-time
                                                                          monitoring on weibo is critical.

                                                                          Understanding sentiment trends
                                                                          and conducting the necessary
                                                                          research and analysis is the basis for
                                                                          strong measurement and ROI
                                                                          modeling.



                                                                                                               46
                                                               D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
Performance
                                                             tracking
                                                             While there are many digital monitoring tools available
                                                             for organizations to choose from, only a tiny handful
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             can effectively monitor Chinese social media
                                                             conversations and sentiment in real-time, and analyze
                                                             results.

                                                             Select a solution that works specifically for the Chinese
                                                             social media environment, which is unique.

                                                             We use an exclusive software to listen and track the
                                                             performance of weibo and social media in real-time.




                                                                       D/BM’s Weibo & China Social
                                                                       Media Tracking System

                                                                                                                         47
                                                                        D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                        Plan Your Action
                                                                           Step 6


48
                                 博
                                 微
Step 6
                                                             Plan Your Action
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                                        We are familiar with the saying --
                                                                        “Implementation is the key to
                                                                        success”. This can be applied to
                                                                        weibo.

                                                                        After a holistic strategy and specific
                                                                        planning process, now it is the time
                                                                        for Action.

                                                                        Practice makes perfect. All the good
                                                                        ideas, content and processes that we
                                                                        have prepared need to perform.

                                                                        Develop an action plan - lay out the
                                                                        exact information of when and who
                                                                        to do what; and secondly, take solid
                                                                        actions.

                                                                        Actions refers to action plans -
                                                                        change management and project
                                                                        management skills. We refer to the
                                                                        issues of modifications to
                                                                        organizational roles and structures
                                                                        later in this guide.




                                                                                                                 49
                                                                  D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Empower your team.
                                                             Roles and responsibilities
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                              While planning action, it’s important to assign
                                                              roles and responsibilities within your
                                                              organization or agency, and to set up the right
                                                              team structure.

                                                              This is because in weibo management, different
                                                              types of work and skill-sets are involved. Team
                                                              members specialized in different areas will be
                                                              required.

                                                              For instance, for an annual strategic weibo plan,
                                                              more strategic planning talent and experience
                                                              is needed. For general weibo content
                                                              development and editorial calendar planning,
                                                              more content and copywriting skills are
                                                              needed. Video content requires video
                                                              production skills. And so on.

                                                              Or as for those weibo picture editing and
                                                              corporate weibo homepage design, graphic
                                                              and user experience design capabilities might
                                                              be required.




                                                                                                                  50
                                                                       D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Get set, go!
                                                                   Depending on your organization’s own
                                                                   requirements, consider both internal and
                                                                   / or external resources.

                                                                   Internal resources mean existing internal
                                                                   teams - or recruiting new staff - for your
                                                                   organization. External resources mean
                                                                   outsourcing certain tasks to a
                                                                   professional agency.

                                                                   Resource planning is critical, and all
                                                                   options have their pros and cons.

                                                                   A typical approach that many
                                                                   organizations use is to assign an in-
                                                                   house person, or team, to take charge of
                                                                   weibo. For example, a social media
                                                                   manager or online marketing manager.

                                                                   Other companies hire agencies (for
                                                                   example, a PR firm, or an interactive
                                                                   agency) to help with planning, execution,
                                                                   monitoring and optimization.

                                                                   Decide what’s right for your organization.
                                                                   No one size fits all.


                                                                                                                51
                                                               D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                        Optimize




     D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize
                                                                   Step 7


52
                                 博
                                 微
Step 7
                                                             Optimize
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             It is essential to maintain your
                                                             presence on weibo to optimize
                                                             its performance.

                                                             For optimization, tools are useful
                                                             to collect necessary data.

                                                             Along with the online buzz
                                                             monitoring tool mentioned
                                                             above, some monitoring tools
                                                             officially launched by weibo, such
                                                             as Sina Weibo’s (企业版) platform
                                                             statistics and analysis, are helpful.

                                                             Analyzing data is a critical step to
                                                             follow to gather valuable insights,
                                                             that can serve you as further
                                                             direction for future optimization.




                                                                                                     53
                                                                      D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Remember,
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             Content is KING
                                                               With your weibo strategy now off the
                                                               ground and in motion, the essential
                                                               point to remember is that content is
                                                               king.

                                                               Just like everything else, the shelf life of
                                                               digital assets, channels and programs is
                                                               related to the maintenance of
                                                               presence.

                                                               A good digital housekeeper will ensure
                                                               that the content is fresh and frequent,
                                                               while quickly addressing any bugs and
                                                               quirks.

                                                               There is no better way to conduct
                                                               quality assurance for a digital
                                                               campaign than the utilization of real-
                                                               time monitoring tools.




                                                                                                              54
                                                                    D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
D/BM China
                                                             What we do
D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller




                                                             We identify your social media
                                                             influencers, in real-time, we plan
                                                             innovative digital communications, and we
                                                             mobilize corporate and brand
                                                             programming for companies to promote
                                                             their reputation in the digital age.




                                                                              Listen
                                                                               Plan          Influencers
                                                                                             Advocates
                                                                             Mobilize       Communities


                                                                                Issues          PR
                                                                                             Reputation
                                                                                Crises       Marketing




                                                                                                           55
                                                                      D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China
Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China
Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China
Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China
Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China

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Weibo: Seven Steps to Better Corporate Reputation, Crisis Preparedness and Digital Communications in China

  • 1. 微 D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller 博 WEIBO 7 steps to better corporate reputation, crisis preparedness and digital communications in China February 2012 v.1.1 D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize 1 Burson-Marsteller l Asia-Pacific l Evidence-Based Communications
  • 2. Weibo Seven steps to better corporate reputation, crisis preparedness and digital communications in China. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller 1 Choose Your Direction Explore Your Potential 2 Platforms Audiences Competitors Integration 3 Define Your Goals Design Your Presence 4 Framework Following Content Engaging KPI / ROI 5 Manage Your Streams Followers Influencers Campaigns Integration Resources Issues 6 Plan Your Action Optimize Your Content 7 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 3. China’s Year of the Dragon is the year of Social Media. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Gaining popular traction at an unprecedented pace, Weibo has risen from the ashes from a platform that faced many challenges early on, to one that is, today, at the start of the Chinese Year of the Dragon, the undisputed phenomenon in China’s galaxy of home-grown social media platforms. Behind the hype, big challenges remain for companies. All too often Weibo is used as a tactical measure for broadcast, push-based marketing. Weibo’s tremendous opportunities for multinational brands and companies – as a two-way conversational medium that bolsters corporate reputation and aids crisis preparedness – has yet to be tapped. Our goal here is to support you with an actionable framework for reputation, crisis and brand marketing online. We hope these steps help lead to a more holistic and integrated approach to digital communications in China. 路灯 张亮 Zaheer Leon Nooruddin Zhang 3 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 4. About the Authors D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Zaheer Nooruddin zaheer.nooruddin@bm.com Zaheer is Burson-Marsteller China’s Lead Digital Strategist. With14 years of integrated 360 digital marketing-communications experience and social media at leading digital and PR agencies, Zaheer’s client work spans a range of B2B and B2C industries in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) and Middle East & North Africa (MENA) regions. Zaheer has worked in New York City, Dubai, Mumbai, Beijing and Hong Kong. A Global Emerging Markets social media expert, and the co- author of the book on social media strategy “The Social Media MBA: Your Competitive Edge in Social Media Strategy Development and Delivery”, Zaheer has been based in China since 2007. 4 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 5. About the Authors D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Leon Zhang leon.zhang@bm.com Leon Zhang is Burson- Marsteller China’s Digital Strategy and Insights Lead. Leon drives digital consultancy, strategic planning, and trainings through B-M’s China offices, working closely with the rest of Burson-Marsteller China’s digital development network. Based in Beijing, Leon has over seven years of digital marketing, communications and technology experience, working with a range of multinational companies. Leon has developed robust digital expertise and in digital marketing and communications, as well as with SEO and SEM strategies. With a passion and energy for all- things-digital in China, Leon founded DigiMarketing.cn, one of China’s first specialized web portals in digital marketing topics, in 2008,. 5 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 6. Welcome D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Weibo is a powerful digital communications and marketing channel. The popular uptake of this real-time microblogging social technology in China has been unprecedented – and much has been written about it. Not so much, however, has been said about how to successfully create a sustainable and results- driven weibo program for reputation management and marketing. The core principles of marketing-communications apply to weibo - an approach to weibo needs to be consistent with an organization’s holistic business and marketing objectives. Yet, it’s necessary to consider the unique features of weibo when developing a social media channel strategy, to ensure cross-functional benefit and in order to maximize effectiveness and ROI. 6 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 7. Without a strategy, weibo can lead companies to weak ROI D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Organizations in China are very interested in weibo – many have jumped in head-first, some with more success than others - yet others remain hesitant due to the lack of systematic approaches and processes. Many organizations have set up official weibo accounts, but they are still at the initial stage, without systematic planning and management. To help you get started with a weibo strategy for business, we have summarized our D/BM strategic framework and implementation process for your reference. To make our guide useful we have by consolidated both the general and unique characteristics of weibo for communications and marketing. This guide is an introduction of the holistic framework for weibo. Let us know how it goes! 7 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 8. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize 8
  • 9. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Choose Your Direction Step 1 9 博 微
  • 10. Step 1 Choose Your Direction D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Before moving into a strategic planning exercise for your organization’s weibo, it is first necessary to confirm your overall direction. This means being clear about your business objectives, your communication objectives and your target audiences. Business objectives are the operational goals that an organization expects to achieve in certain period. For example: To increase sales of Product A by 20% in Tier 1 cities in China in 2011. Or better brand reputation against an initial benchmark score. Weibo objectives? 10 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 11. Properly map your objectives D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Communications objectives are the results that companies expect to achieve through communications with an audience. For example: To enhance consumer awareness of Product A in Tier 1 cities in China in 2012. Or to create a perception of high performance-cost ratio. Within communications objectives, fall digital objectives, and within digital objectives lies social media objectives. Target audience is the group of people that the organization expects to reach. For example: 18 to 22-year- old students in Tier 1 cities in China. Or it could be the most influential commentators on a certain topic… Always begin with objectives and audiences 11 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 12. If this sounds basic… it’s because it is! D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Your direction is wholly-related to the success of your strategy. Its development is a key stage in your larger social media strategy development. Because this is so basic and fundamental, it is often overlooked. This can lead to your efforts working in the wrong direction. It is essential to confirm your overall business direction at the very beginning, and that’s also why “Direction” is at the core of our D/BM holistic strategic planning process for weibo. With the overall direction as the strategy’s foundation, we can then further develop tailored and strategic plan for weibo. Confirming a direction informs stronger social strategy and execution – leading to stronger results 12 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 13. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Explore Your Potential Step 2 13 博 微
  • 14. Step 2 Explore Your Potential D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller A good situation analysis should review both the internal and external, macroscopic and microscopic environments of a business. It can serve as an Evidence-Based foundation for objective setting, strategic planning and management. For weibo, analyze 4 groups First is the target audience that an organization would like to influence; Second are an organization’s direct or potential competitors that are marketing to the same groups; Third is internal; employees of your organization. Fourth is everyone else. 14 D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
  • 15. Which weibo functions can a company D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller leverage? A good analysis of existing state of play, trends and the overall environment of weibo will help you find communications and marketing potential. Knowing and understanding the value of the latest functions on Sina Weibo – such as Weibo Live, Weibo Interview and Weibo Screen – to name a few - will help you leverage valuable opportunities towards a better strategic approach. Different weibo platforms might have different audience segments 15 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 16. Use research and social listening to inform D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller programming decisions Quantitative industry reports that are openly available provide important data and information. Source: iResearch For example, from a recent iResearch industry report* we can see that ,from 2009 to 2011, the popularity of weibo rose dramatically, while the number of bloggers and social network users has declined. There is abundant data already available that can serve as a good basis for weibo platform analysis. 16 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 17. Platform selection What are the most relevant features of weibo? D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Understanding audience preferences and meeting these needs will help meet targeted marketing and communications goals. For example, timelines based on 24-hour or week-long analysis of audience tweets, comments and shares, will help you to identify the best times to engage. As shown (see previous page), the number of shares and comments on Wednesday and Thursday is higher for this particular audience. Organizations that target this audience can take advantage while planning content and engagement strategies. For different organizations and different audiences, behavior will be different. This calls for companies to use social media listening tools to better understand their core audiences, to serve them with targeted content, and to develop marketing strategies and plans. Use real-time listening to understand your audiences on weibo better 17 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 18. Mind your competitors… D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller When analyzing industry competitors, we need to understand their key metrics - what the company cares about the most. Then, we can establish an evaluation framework to guide a detailed competitor analysis. The metrics could be developed based on the industry landscape and particular needs of that organization. For example, to understand the current industry, some basic metrics, such as number of followers, number following, total number of tweets, the date when they posted the first tweet, topic focuses and so forth, should be measured. 18 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 19. Stalk your D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller competitors! When considering a competitor’s unique activities on weibo, such as competitor interaction frequency and content, an organization can develop activity-related metrics, such as the number of shares and comments. Using these metrics, you can review competitors’ weibo usage. If your company has a weibo account, it’s good to include it as well for a comparison and benchmarking. Doing so will help identify opportunities and challenges as we develop a powerful weibo and social media strategy. 19 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 20. Existing weibo presences? D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller If your organization already has a weibo presence or presences, then it is essential to analyze your state of play. Think of it as a “digital checkup” – first, you assess your current condition and compare it against benchmarks to identify any problems. Only then can you determine the prescription. In addition to the competitor comparison, other analyses from different perspectives can be conducted to determine the direction of the strategy. This includes an organization’s existing own weibo situation analysis, target users analysis and industrial best practice comparison. For example, by comparing the 24-hour distribution of company-generated tweets with the 24-hour distribution of shares and comments from your target audiences, it’s easy to review the effectiveness of your existing activities. 20 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 21. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Define Goals D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Step 3 21 博 微
  • 22. Step 3 Define Goals D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Develop specific objectives and key performance indicators (KPI) for your weibo program. Your weibo communication and marketing objectives should be consistent with business and integrated communication objectives. We follow S.M.A.R.T Goals: Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound. Stage Core KPI KPI objective Appeal Quantity of Number of followers 10,000 followers within 1 year users Resonance Quality of Number of active followers 2000 active followers within 1 users year Advocacy Word of mouth Percentage of positive and Percentage of positive and neutral comments and neutral comments and retweets retweets >80% within 1 year Goals can be: To increase corporate or brand awareness. To improve word-of-mouth (WOM). To improve brand sentiment. To drive product sales. Appeal Attract weibo followers to grow stream awareness Resonance Ensure follower quality and encourage engagement (retweets and comments) Advocacy Gain positive WOM 22 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 23. Set achievable performance metrics The number of followers is D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller easy to understand, but the number of active followers can be defined differently. There are different levels of follower activity: followers who share or comment at least once a month versus those who share or comment three times a week, etc. Once confirmed, the criteria should not be If a weibo stream has changed frequently. 2 million followers, but a tweet attracts only one Otherwise, it will be comment and two retweets impossible to compare on average, then it’s different time periods. obvious that the relationship between this When setting KPI, avoid weibo stream and its the common mistake of followers is very weak. ranking quantity over quality. That is one of the The accumulation of high reasons the “zombie quality followers is similar follower” prevails. to the accumulation of brand advocates - it requires sustained effort, building trust and relationships, and one should not expect success overnight. 23 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 24. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Design Your Presence Step 4 24 博 微
  • 25. Step 4 Design Your “Presence” by planning your strategy D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller After deciding on your communication objectives and KPIs, you will have clear goals; the next step is to plan a strategy and tactics. What’s your weibo framework?! Companies may have multiple weibo accounts, and their relationships determine how a company should operate and manage them. Companies must choose a strategic weibo architecture and arrange their strategy focuses on the overall direction while tactics focus on the specific actions, and the two are tightly linked. For weibo communication, the following five strategies are essential. 25 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 26. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Weibo management structures D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize Source: Forrester 26
  • 27. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Let the world know A following strategy includes both who the weibo stream should follow and how it can attract followers. To attract followers, promote your weibo presence. Don’t be shy. Market your presence using all types of media available to your organization. Owned Promotion on media owned by the company, such as official websites, email, and blogs. Paid Promotion through traditional online / offline media buying, such as cooperation portals like Sina, Sohu, Tencent and Netease, and promotion through paid advertising. Earned (+ Social) Attracting new followers through current followers who share your tweeted content with their own extended networks. 27 D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
  • 28. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Follow There are certain useful strategies and tactics to keep in mind when following others. Following other influential weibo streams is a smart way to increase followers. “Following” is a method to attract your audiences, but who might still unaware of the existence of your weibo presence. An organization’s weibo stream can reward “active brand advocates”, such as those who continuously engage with your weibo content – simply by following them back. An effective following strategy can bring good results for your weibo program’s effectiveness. 28 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 29. Content, content! D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller A strong content strategy is vital to the success of your weibo program. Ensure the quality of your content, and post valuable content at the right times. There are three important points to keep in mind while developing a content strategy. These are: topic, source and posting timeline. Topic, Source, Timeline 29 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 30. What topics should D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller your weibo posts cover? The most frequently shared content on Weibo Top 3 topics: 1) hot social news and events, 2) helpful info and tips for users or their friends, 3) humor and interesting news. Organizations can and should take advantage of these topics and integrate them with corporate positioning, business objectives and communication goals. Tell stories, be generous, and funny 30 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 31. The 1/3 Principle D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Of course, a corporate or brand weibo must align with the corporate or brand communications objectives – and not simply be based on what’s trendy and popular! A general rule of thumb is the 1/3 Principle for corporate or brand weibo content. This divides your content among three main areas of focus: Value-added content, Engagement content and Branded or Promotional content. Reviewing your audience’s feedback will help to fine- tune the content proportions specifically to your strategy and program. 31 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 32. 1/ Value-added Useful information for users and D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller their networks to increase shares and exposure 2/ Engaged Content that encourages consumers to engage with the stream 3/ Promoted Content related to the company’s branding and products Generally, weibo content sources can be divided into three categories: your organization, other weibo streams, and real-time response (e.g., replying to comments.) The 1/3 Principle can be a starting point with choosing content sources. A third of your content can be sourced from each category. 32 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 33. Time to post D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Now that you know what you are posting and where it will come from, we must decide when is best to post it. Depending on your business needs, you can develop annual, quarterly, monthly and weekly posting calendars. Prepare and maintain a posting timeline (much like an editorial calendar) and develop and keep ready your content in advance to guide daily posts and updates. The table below is an example of a content posting timeline. Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Topic Tag Message Type Form Content 33 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 34. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Define a process to respond and engage The goal of an engagement strategy is to guide your weibo activities with your audience, such as shares (retweets) and responses. Guidelines and management processes can help weibo operational team engage with users in different situations – while ensuring compliance with legal and company marketing rules. 34 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 35. Reporting Successful weibo D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller communications and marketing requires long-term commitment. Continuous review of reporting and optimization means ongoing improvement of performance. The following steps are essential in measurement and optimization: Monitoring: Collect data through continuous monitoring Analysis: Analyze data for insights and recommendations Optimization: Take action based on insights and recommendations It’s necessary to develop a measurement and reporting system, as the foundation for continuous monitoring, that is in-line with your KPI framework. This system will provide guidance for future optimizations through regular review and analyses with an organization’s management team. 35 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 36. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Manage Your Streams Step 5 36 博 微
  • 37. Step 5 Manage Your Streams D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Your official weibo presence is just as much a part of your corporate identity as is your corporate website. Just like your website, your weibo stream is NOT a one-time investment - it requires ongoing operation and maintenance. With a comprehensive strategy and concrete tactics, weibo operational planning is used to direct long-term maintenance, relevant activities and integration with other communications marketing channels. This is critical for its success. 37 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 38. Forming a community. Your “wei-people” D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Different weibo users have different behaviors. Approach your audience segments differently to manage them more effectively and to build stronger relationships and advocacy. At D/BM we segment weibo audiences into 4 general types: Creators Sharers Critics Creators Spectators Spectators Weibo audiences Sharers Critics Weibo management principles can be developed based on your own groups’ unique interests and characteristics. 38 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 39. Nurturing influence. Your “wei-influencers” D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Influencer Relationship Management (IRM) is another name for Key Opinion Leader (KOL) Management. KOL Management is not simple, short-term or static. It is a long-term and dynamic process, that requires support of methodology and resources to maximize effects. The benefits of good Influencer/ KOL Management can be massive for social media communications and marketing. KOLs should be analyzed along 3 lines. These are: Relevance, Influence and Cooperation opportunities. Relevance is the degree to which your organization’s communication objectives and content are related to the Influencer/ KOL. Influence is the KOL’s power among peers and followers. Cooperation opportunity is the probability of working with the KOL. Based on these 3 factors, a KOL management model should be developed. 39 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 40. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize 40
  • 41. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Weibo campaigns At D/BM we divide marketing and communications campaigns into the following types based on the objectives, content formats and channels involved: 1. Weibo campaign (weibo platform only) 2. Integrated online campaign (weibo + other online channels) 3. Fully-Integrated campaign (weibo + other online channels + offline channels). 41 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 42. Weibo campaign guiding principles D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller The basic principles for planning a weibo campaign are as follows Be consistent with overall business objectives and communication objectives; Tailor particular communication approaches for target audiences Select the most suitable weibo features as the campaign platform (such as weibo Big Screen, Weibo Interview, and so on). 42 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 43. Insist on integration D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Weibo is one of many channels of marketing and communications available to you in social media. It is one approach to achieve an organization’s overall communications and marketing objectives. To be really effective, weibo MUST integrated with other marketing, communications, sales and customer service programs. Doing so will really serve a your overall objectives and show stronger value and results. Think of weibo as a piece in the puzzle; a key part of the overall plan. 43 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 44. An integrated framework D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller At D/BM, our framework for an integrated marketing strategy development facilitates cross- channel communication and delivers a complete brand experience to influencers, individuals and audiences. Integrated communications and marketing is a huge and important topic. Below we share our integration framework as a reminder that it must be kept in mind when planning weibo and social media strategies in China. 44 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 45. Ready your resources D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Often organizations jump onto weibo without planning resources and investment, and they end up failing, giving up and achieving very low ROI. Proper resource planning is a step that must not be overlooked. When we say resources we mean talent/ skills resources, financial resources, materials - and so on. All are fundamental to ensuring successful and smooth operations. 45 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 46. Use weibo to manage Crisis D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller To so many organizations in China, weibo is a double-edged sword. Few will argue that the potential for marketing and communications is great. It looks so easy! Yet, customers complain, people say negative things, and organizations tend to be unprepared to respond and deal effectively when crisis occurs. This isn’t what you were expecting or “signed up” for… To manage crisis, real-time monitoring on weibo is critical. Understanding sentiment trends and conducting the necessary research and analysis is the basis for strong measurement and ROI modeling. 46 D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
  • 47. Performance tracking While there are many digital monitoring tools available for organizations to choose from, only a tiny handful D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller can effectively monitor Chinese social media conversations and sentiment in real-time, and analyze results. Select a solution that works specifically for the Chinese social media environment, which is unique. We use an exclusive software to listen and track the performance of weibo and social media in real-time. D/BM’s Weibo & China Social Media Tracking System 47 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 48. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Plan Your Action Step 6 48 博 微
  • 49. Step 6 Plan Your Action D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller We are familiar with the saying -- “Implementation is the key to success”. This can be applied to weibo. After a holistic strategy and specific planning process, now it is the time for Action. Practice makes perfect. All the good ideas, content and processes that we have prepared need to perform. Develop an action plan - lay out the exact information of when and who to do what; and secondly, take solid actions. Actions refers to action plans - change management and project management skills. We refer to the issues of modifications to organizational roles and structures later in this guide. 49 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 50. Empower your team. Roles and responsibilities D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller While planning action, it’s important to assign roles and responsibilities within your organization or agency, and to set up the right team structure. This is because in weibo management, different types of work and skill-sets are involved. Team members specialized in different areas will be required. For instance, for an annual strategic weibo plan, more strategic planning talent and experience is needed. For general weibo content development and editorial calendar planning, more content and copywriting skills are needed. Video content requires video production skills. And so on. Or as for those weibo picture editing and corporate weibo homepage design, graphic and user experience design capabilities might be required. 50 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 51. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Get set, go! Depending on your organization’s own requirements, consider both internal and / or external resources. Internal resources mean existing internal teams - or recruiting new staff - for your organization. External resources mean outsourcing certain tasks to a professional agency. Resource planning is critical, and all options have their pros and cons. A typical approach that many organizations use is to assign an in- house person, or team, to take charge of weibo. For example, a social media manager or online marketing manager. Other companies hire agencies (for example, a PR firm, or an interactive agency) to help with planning, execution, monitoring and optimization. Decide what’s right for your organization. No one size fits all. 51 D/BM l Listen Create Mobilize
  • 52. D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Optimize D/BM Listen Plan Mobilize Step 7 52 博 微
  • 53. Step 7 Optimize D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller It is essential to maintain your presence on weibo to optimize its performance. For optimization, tools are useful to collect necessary data. Along with the online buzz monitoring tool mentioned above, some monitoring tools officially launched by weibo, such as Sina Weibo’s (企业版) platform statistics and analysis, are helpful. Analyzing data is a critical step to follow to gather valuable insights, that can serve you as further direction for future optimization. 53 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 54. Remember, D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller Content is KING With your weibo strategy now off the ground and in motion, the essential point to remember is that content is king. Just like everything else, the shelf life of digital assets, channels and programs is related to the maintenance of presence. A good digital housekeeper will ensure that the content is fresh and frequent, while quickly addressing any bugs and quirks. There is no better way to conduct quality assurance for a digital campaign than the utilization of real- time monitoring tools. 54 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize
  • 55. D/BM China What we do D/BM l China Digital and Social Media at Burson-Marsteller We identify your social media influencers, in real-time, we plan innovative digital communications, and we mobilize corporate and brand programming for companies to promote their reputation in the digital age. Listen Plan Influencers Advocates Mobilize Communities Issues PR Reputation Crises Marketing 55 D/BM l Listen Plan Mobilize