Social media gets everywhere these days. Only last week The Ryder Golf Cup Teams were warned about using Twitter. Campaign groups appear on Facebook to save X-Factor contestants. And businesses are repeatedly told not to ignore these growing communication channels. But is this just hype? Does your organisation really need to engage with social media marketing? Does it only matter for certain sectors? And what are the benefits? Over the next few months we’re going to help you find your way through the hype and find out what is really going on. We’ll look at the movers and shakers of the social media world. We’ll give you concrete examples of what they’re doing and we’ll look at what they’re getting out of it. As you read these articles, ask yourself:
- How might this work for my organisation?
- What would be the benefits?
- What would be the potential costs/risks?
- And is it worth integrating into my overall marketing strategy?
We’ll start by looking at a sector we all know something about, even if it is only as consumers, the fast food giants and FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) suppliers.
Fast food and FMCG suppliers
Domino’s Pizza – Affiliate schemes and link-ups
In March 2010 Domino’s launched a pilot for their Affiliate widget – http://dominos.oosocial.com/. This tool allows fans to host an advert for the pizza company on places such as blogs and Facebook pages. For each click of the advert that generates an order, the fan earns 1% commission. According to a press release on PRWeb UK, up to and including the beginning of August 2010, over £29,482 was generated from orders for pizza and other sundries after clicking on a Domino’s widget.
Also in May 2010 Domino’s Pizza linked up to foursquare and offered free pizza and discounts if users visited their stores. These, and other, offers and tools are promoted via the Domino’s Pizza UK and Ireland Facebook page.
Starbucks UK – Gaining customer insight and developing loyalty via Facebook
Starbucks UK has adopted a different strategy. Their aim is to use online media to develop conversations with customers, gaining a greater understanding of the background and needs of their customers. They use Facebook to promote events at the local Starbucks and encourage fans to come along. The Starbucks UK Facebook page has over 349,000 fans (October 2010).
McCain – Rewarding customers and building a loyal community
In September 2010 McCain foods launched an online campaign to reward customers. An article in Marketing Week explains that McCain’s strategy is designed to develop brand loyalty by creating an online community for customers. The campaign website www.mccainitsallgood.co.uk offers video recipes, information about local events and money-off coupons. Once registered, you can earn ‘Spud Shillings’. Every time you visit you earn more and 100 points = £1. The points can be redeemed at a number of high street retailers. At this point, early October 2010, it is too early to say what the actual benefits of the campaign to McCain will be. It will certainly be an interesting one to watch.
We’ve looked at three big companies, in the fast food and FMCG sector, and their approach to using social media and online marketing. Take some time to have a look at the various sites and tools they’ve set up. Go back to the questions we posed earlier and think about your own online strategy. What do you think? Is it all hype? Or could your organisation benefit from doing something similar? Next time we’ll be looking at how social media has affected the charity sector. So subscribe to our RSS feed to make sure you don’t miss out! http://bit.ly/aHK6qQ