It’s been a hit-or-miss experience with social media-related sessions at SXSW. They are either rich with concrete strategies and takeaways or simply devoid of good content. The Future of Social Business session was of the better social media related sessions I attended.
Lead by David Mearmann Scott, author of New Rules of Marketing and PR, the session focused on how different organizations have leveraged social media within different parts of their respective organizations. From Newell Rubbermaid to the United States Air Force, panelists discussed social media strategies related to marketing, internal communications, media relations and more. Here are my notes.
Future of Social Business
Social media and marketing
David Mearman Scott – New Rules of Marketing and PR – @dmscott
New rule is marketing with content.
1. Lose control
2. Nobody cares about your products except for you. The Gobbledygook Manifesto. “Innovate” Speak to buyers in their words
3. Create triggers for people to share. If they are interested in it, they will spread it. No need to cooerse.
- Old rules of measurement = press clips.
- New rule = content from your customers. David showed the HP example, shown below, that was created by students for awards.
Social media and media relations
Captain Nathan Broshear- United States Air Force – @usairforce
Air Force opens up all computers for social media.
- Try to humanize Air Force members (HUGE). Show it to the American people.
- The days of us calling the media are over.
- In Irac, there are whole units that post information to media through Twitter. No more press releases.
- Can talk to small – large media outlets without scaling.
- Whole office in DC monitoring social media. The Ann Curry example. Curry tweeted about not being able to land in Haiti after earthquake. Tweet was routed back to Air Force who helped start to organize air traffic.
- Shows Air Force Haiti response video created by actual USAF officers.
- People use the networks when they need them. You need to be there.
- Social communication cannot be about you. It has to be about your people or YOUR customers. It’s about an experience.
- Capt. Broshear used the following example when explaining to his ranking officers why you should allow service members access to social media. “You’ve got a 25 year old kid with $50 million airplane and you can’t trust them with a Facebook page.”
- He also said “The blogs that fail are about a person and the ones that succeed are about an experience.”
Customer service goes social.
Melanie Baker – PostRank – @melle
- Customers don’t care where you are, they just want to be able to get a hold with you.
Build the trust, can’t wait to come back.
- Look at the decision making process of your customers. Make sure you can connect with them at every point in that process.
- Customer service needs to learn about different types of no’s. Example. “No we don’t have that product, but check back in 6 months.”
- If the rest of your company beyond your community is not empowered to help via social, you are creating bottlenecks. But, you have to train your customer service agents where and hot to interact.
Hiring and recruitment goes social
Jeff Berger – Koda – @GenYjobs
- Online job industry is 8 billion industry. KODA aims to to use online recruiting to find people with zero to 5 years experience.
- Significant lack of innovation with job sites, as it relates to Gen Y’ers.
Where does Gen Y go to find jobs online.
1. They rely on the major job boards. More isn’t more to people who don’t know what they want.
2. They have no professional network so Linked doesn’t work.
Workplace collaboration goes social.
Glen Lubbert – Mojo Interactive – @glubbert
- Shows the New How Book by Nilofer Merchant. Says we should all read it if were interested in this topic.
- Social allows for real-time learning for employees.
1. Twitter – Be open and transparent. Promote your people. Join us page shows tweets and people.
2. Yammer – For business related items, that don’t need to promoted on email (kids email, latest cause), shout outs for good work, updates etc.
3. Facebook – Let your employees friends promote themselves and your biz to their friends.
Outsourcing goes social
Bert Dumars – Newell Rubbermaid – @BWdumars
In 2006, Rubbermaid was focused on retailers, Wal-Mart, Target, etc. Customers were looked at like the retailers problem.
Fast forward to 2008
- Rubbermain launched the Adventures in Organization blog.
- Rubbermaid partnered with BazaarVoice to publish consumer generated product reviews on Rubbermaid.com
Product Saver Response – Example – Showed reviews
- 7 reviews – 2 great, 5 awful
- If you a brand marketer, this should give you cold sweats at night.
- Brand team read the reviews and talked with the customers. Found out those with bad experiences ripped off the label and threw it away. Didn’t review the instructions. Those customers that did had great experiences with it.
- When you figure out the problem put it on the review, put a blog post up. Key is response.
- Brand team now reviews every review, every day. Changed the way they responded.
Rubbermaid sink mat example
- With all the flu, SARS, anti-bacterial sink mats, Rubbermaid though an anti-bacterial mat would be great new product. To get anti-bacterial, they had to give up staining issues. Customers didn’t want to look at perceived dirty sinks.
- Reformulated, and then outreached to those who didn’t like it.
- Customer responses were tremendous. Showed they cared.
Brand, customer service and ecomm teams work together. Have to share a common goal. That goal is customer centric products.
- Build a foundation on relationships
- Consumer driven insights drive change
- Move from listening to responding and acting
- Dont fear negative reviews
- The truth will set you free
- Respond and show you care.
How does brand, ecomm and customer service work together?
Groups and company have to be ready to work together. Have to evolve. Make your customers successful. Headed toward working together on content & common goal.
How do you learn what consumers want?
Newell Rubbermaid does ethnocentric studies. They follow their customers in real life.
Who do you identify those social people in the organization?
Those that are passionate and willing to learn. Rubbermaid went from 4 to 80 employees on social media.
How do you get brand to accept Bazaarvoice?
Moving from channel, brand focus to customer centric model. Build them what they want and it will sell.
How has it helped relationships with retailers?
Understand what is selling and what isn’t and why quicker.