Here are all of the posts tagged ‘case study’.
Good news has arrived from the The Word of Mouth Marketing Association Summit in Las Vegas. The WOMMY Awards have been announced, and we’re proud to say we picked up a Gold in the Innovation category and a Silver in the Introduction category for our Marmarati campaign for Unilever. Our congratulations go to all of the other winners!
One of the projects we’ve been busy with recently is the launch of a new, stronger variant of Marmite for Unilever. We’re very proud to be working on such an iconic brand, and really pleased our work has been so well received by New Media Age and that it has been included in Contagious Magazine’s Most Contagious 2009.
Here’s an overview of the strategy we developed to launch “MXO” exclusively through social media by engaging with the brand’s most passionate fans. Bear in mind that the launch is still in progress – in fact you have until midnight on Wednesday 16th December to make your application to join The Marmarati.
One of the exciting parts of this project is the way we were able to use social media to help Unilever develop the recipe for the final product – hats off to the Marmite team for making this happen, and enthusiastically joining in the theatrical experience. It’s great to get brand advocates actively participating in the product development and packaging design, as well as creating content for the launch campaign. And of course getting involved in the conversation.
Imagine a futuristic farmers’ market getting hit by a science lab and a truck full of the sexiest booze and food on Earth.
It’s presented by The Tasting Sessions, who’ve been creating unique and immersive experiences that are unconventionally radical compared to a traditional ‘tasting’. It’s an approach that generates plenty of conversation: not only about the events, but also the products that they showcase.
We’re big fans of the concept, especially as many of the principles apply to our work at We Are Social. Getting a group of interesting, influential people to learn about something firsthand in a memorable and immersive environment is a great way to get people enthusiastically talking.
A few weeks ago, a press and blogger briefing previewed some of the food and drink to be featured at the festival, with their trademark “slightly surreal, informative and lots of fun” attitude.
Some of the more ‘guerilla art’ marketing activity has been amplified into social media via Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr, whilst the festival blog serves as a hub for the online activity, and a platform to present the various food, drink (including whisky, gin, cognac, sake, beer and wine), art and performance that are part of the multi-sensory and interactive journey into the Fluid State.
If you head to Dalston for the event (and we recommend that you do!) you’ll be better off getting your ticket online beforehand. As the Londonist puts it, this “upstart extravaganza” is “an especially tasty opportunity to have some fun”.
Last month in Cannes, Jonathan Mildenhall, Coca-Cola’s VP of global advertising strategy, admitted the multi-national corporation had been slow to embrace social media and historically, they did make some mistakes. However, if you scratch the surface a little, they’re doing some interesting things.
In April they created a new office of digital communications and social media within its public affairs and communications department, giving Adam Brown, digital communications director, and Anne Carelli, digital communications manager, oversight of corporate digital and social media communications efforts.
It’s worth watching Adam speak about Coca-Cola’s social media strategy at the recent BlogWell New York conference (start 50 secs in):
You can also see Adam’s slides here.
Coca-Cola Conversations is the blog Adam mentions, check out the Coca-Cola Facebook page, and for a UK perspective it’s worth looking at this article about ‘Let’s get together’ and the Coke Zone blog.
Of course, there’s also the famous story of the Coca-Cola Facebook page:
Update 2: Coke’s new social media policy
Update 3: Coca-Cola and social media: Fans first
Update 4: Coca-Cola builds new social media model
Last month we were proud to be one of the agencies working for Dunlop, and their specially-commissioned loop-the-loop stunt created by BBH. An ordinary car with Dunlop tyres was driven round a custom-built loop by Steve Truglia, one of Britain’s top stuntmen – not only to demonstrate Dunlop’s quality and endurance under pressure during the peak period for tyre sales in Europe, but to stoke the ‘wow’ factor and passion amongst fans of driving stunts and Dunlop’s brand adherents. It was shown across multiple media, including a dedicated microsite, a spot on TV’s Fifth Gear and social media outreach to car and viral fans in the UK, France, Germany, Italy and Spain to spread the message. That last part was our job, and as simple as it sounded on paper, we had to be quick on our feet throughout.
We had planned to build up anticipation about the outcome of the stunt prior to its debut on web and TV. However five days before the stunt went live, a national newspaper leaked photographs of the stunt, and as the day rolled on, the story was picked up by an increasing number of blogs and Twitter users. Months of careful planning was being undone, all without a mention of Dunlop in the coverage or Dunlop branding in the leaked photos.
To turn things around, we tracked down the key blogs and started a conversation with them about the video, introducing them to the microsite, talking about Dunlop’s involvement. We used the immediacy of Twitter to join the conversation about the stunt by setting up an official Twitter channel for Dunlop, talking with people who had spread the link and offering them more information about the stunt, while being as conversational as possible.
Having steadied the ship somewhat and set the record straight, we were then able to use the momentum created to reinforce our original idea, contacting driving and stunt video bloggers in five territories, providing them with photos and videos that were exclusive to Dunlop, and giving them the chance to ask questions the team behind the stunt.
The results were fantastic, and we’re really happy with them given the tight turnaround time. Not only did we get some great enthusiastic reactions on Twitter from the people we got in contact with, but we got great coverage in the blogosphere, with 60 blogs in five languages linking to the microsite, and at least another 24 discussing the stunt with Dunlop branding associated – amongst them blogs such as Gizmodo who had initially reported the leak were more than happy to set the record straight, strengthening the Dunlop brand association. And it wasn’t just about the sentiment – the total reach of the blogs involved was 8m unique users/month and 420k RSS subscribers, far outstripping the reach of the initial misinformed coverage from the leak – and almost all of the coverage was positive to boot.
There were several things that the video’s success brought out. Not only was it a demonstration of the power of social media to create and develop the conversation around something people love, but also a testament to the power of listening and responding to quickly and decisively correct mistakes or misconceptions. Social media offers you the opportunity to react and turn around a conversation at lightning speeds compared with more traditional messaging. However, you have to be friendly, open and willing to listen to and converse with the enthusers around your brand if you want them to listen and contribute back.
They’re also not the sort of company you would immediately assume would be ahead of the curve in terms of social media – they’re the world’s largest multi-channel home electronics retailer (similar to Currys or Comet in the UK) who have recently made moves into Europe with the acquisition of 50% of Carphone Warehouse’s European stores (and with rumours they may go further than that).
It’s also worth finding out more about Best Buy Connect, Blue Shirt Nation (a community for Best Buy Employees), how they use customer reviews, their recently launched API and looking at how they use their own forums and Get Satisfaction to support their customers.
Let’s finish with a 4 minute video looking at Best Buy’s internal use of social media followed by a 20 minute interview with Best Buy’s CEO Brad Anderson talking about the issues in detail:
A very important part of what we do at We Are Social consists in helping brands engage in social media by having meaningful conversations with people and igniting positive word of mouth. So as I was watching Loïc Le Meur’s video on ‘How to launch a product using your community’, I thought it was a brilliant illustration of why word of mouth is so important. As it’s in French, I’ll try and recap some key learnings here.
According to Loïc, traditional advertising, PR and marketing are all still very valid but are nowhere near as important as the power of word of mouth. He illustrates this by saying that when you are about to buy a product, what you want is to know what your friends think about it before you purchase it. You want to know what your community has to say about that product.
And to be honest, in some ways, this has always been the case. In the past, we would probably have asked our neighbors, colleagues or ‘real’ friends what they thought about product X or Y. Nowadays, those conversations about products and brands alike are happening online. And rather than transiently involving two or three of your friends, these conversations can now potentially reach millions of people and are permanent (as they’ll appear in Google’s results for ever). This is good if the conversation is positive and not so good otherwise.
Loïc adds another interesting point about online conversations: the years 1993-2000 were about static media – i.e. the online environment was a reproduction of traditional media; since 2000, we’ve seen the explosion of what we refer to as ‘social media’ – i.e. people interacting with people but also brands, via blogs, social networks, etc. And now, as Loïc highlights, since the beginning of 2009, the web has entered a new area. People still want to interact with their community but they want to do so in real time, via Twitter or Facebook statuses for example. Which means that when people talk about products and brands, they also do it in real time.
Hence the importance of listening and responding in real time as Robin was highlighting in his interview with emarketer ‘Social Media: Joining the conversation’. And both Seesmic & Twhirl are a great examples of brands who have understood the importance of listening in real time to the community’s feedback, to get insights into what’s good, or not so good about their products. And Loïc is the first one to say that this means sometimes he’s checking Twitter Search at 3am to read about the community feedback and to reply to it. Because Loïc knows that if 1,000 of Seesmic’s fans are convinced about the product, they’ll tell another 10,000 of their friends about how great the product is.
It’s all about ‘micro interactions’ as David Armano calls them. It’s about turning your fans into brand advocates. And it works – this is how how he managed to get Seesmic Desktop application downloaded 1.5 million times in a few days. This is the power of word of mouth.
In September 2008, Ford were launching the new Fiesta with an integrated pan-European campaign based on the idea of the Fiesta representing the zeitgeist, the moment, aimed at an audience in their mid-to-late twenties (who don’t tend to read either the motoring press or motoring blogs). We were asked to activate the campaign socially by encouraging members of our target audience to submit their own definition of ‘now’ to a Flickr group. Apart from the deal with Flickr, there was no media spend and we weren’t able to incentivise submissions.
After some very late nights and weekends in the office we came up with an approach that turned it into a unique European collaborative art project.
We spent a lot of time thinking about the cross section of online communities that both influenced and reached our target audience and would be interested in the project, and then even more time finding the influential voices in those communities and crafting copy that would get them interested. We also came up with the idea of the This is Now blog, which we’d go on to use to encourage contributions by highlighting some of the best submissions to the Flickr group.
We initially spread the news (and built link equity for the blog) by talking to the marketing community about the campaign. Then, over the last nine months, we’ve reached out to hundreds of influential art, design, fashion, photography, music and cinema bloggers from across Europe, giving them and their audiences a chance get involved by uploading images that define ‘now’ for them.
Between all of us working on the project here, we’ve written over 130 posts highlighting a variety of amazing images that the public have submitted to the group (some of my favourites are Driving home, Four and I want to rock and roll)
We’re using the This is Now Twitter account to extend the conversation around the project. If you haven’t said hi yet, come on in. I swear I don’t bite and we can enjoy a chat about the latest This is Now submissions (or perhaps even about some great new street art in Berlin). We are very proud of the community we’ve built and it’s a pleasure to spend every day following everyone’s updates and the exchanges on many different topics from the latest gigs in London to exhibitions in Paris or Madrid.
We’re also giving participating bloggers the opportunity to share their own vision of ‘now’ by becoming guest editors of the blog. We have had over 50 to date, illustrating what ‘now’ means to them and re-engaging their audiences in the process. You should check out some of the heartfelt posts, including English fashion blogger Aimee Marie, Spanish film blogger Manuel and French music blogger Julien Seveno.
How is the project going so far? Well, we’ve had over 150 blog posts written about the project such as La Petite Nymphea, Cajon DeSastre, or Zimba which together have reached an estimated 1,050,000 people from all over Europe. Over 40,000 images and videos have been submitted and more than 6,000 have been accepted into the group, making it the second biggest sponsored group on Flickr.
But what’s much more important than the numbers, for me at least, is the friends we’ve made all across Europe in a diverse set of communities, friends who’ve really got involved in the project. Without them, none of this would have been possible and the Flickr group would not be what it is today – an amazing crowd sourced collection of images that represent ‘now’ for the people of Europe. One that makes me draw breath every time I look at it….