Monday, February 27, 2012

Short headlines asia pacific digital marketing news I

Some short headlines on digital marketing news from Asia that got my attention the past few days.

Online video is increasingly popular in China. With more mobile phones and computers then TV's and skyrocketing tv advertising prices, the attention is shifting to online video.
Chinese online video market
This video from Pepsi had 100 million views in 2 weeks time!

Order and pay your mcdonalds menu in Japan via your car navigation system
Meanwhile in Japan it is now possible to order your mcdonalds menu via your car navigation system, before you arrive. You can pay via creditcard also through your navigation system. Next step is targeted ads via your car navigation system.

Also in Japan, it is no longer necessary to remember all these Japanese emoticons, just scan your face and it will be automatically be translated in the correct emoticon.

In Japan TV sets can be operated by the use of twitter hashtags.

South Korean e-commerce has reached an all time high in 2011.

China's weibo is getting popular. Even Tom Cruise now has a Weibo page. Something to watch and test. It's a twitter +. More on weibo later.

And another confirmation that social media (and related tools) is a great tool to use for after sales communication, is confirmed for Ford in India. This strategy will make it a big chance that these people's next car, will be a Ford also. The article tells more about leading social brands in India.

And Lady Kaga is welcoming you in a town called "Kaga" in Japan..

Pixiv, Japan's popular social drawing site, reached 4 million subscribers this week. 2.8 billion pageviews a month!
Ever wanted to play in a Japanese Facebook Viral? Here is your chance!

Example Booking Confirmation Cathay Pacific

Airports and Airlines have so many contactmoments that they still not use. Booking confirmations is one example..It would be great to work on that, and to know that you please people with information and help the airline with additional customer information..

This is a booking confirmation from Cathay Pacific. One that I received after flying to Hong Kong last summer.

I still do not understand why airlines make this booking confirmation not more fun. Add value to it, create new contact moments. Do something more then just the flight details. It is so boring. So many chances.

Most airlines have boring booking confirmations by the way.

Booking confirmation Cathay Pacific
Itinerary Example CX
The e-mail itself is probably one of the best read and opened e-mails ever. Ask people if it is a leisure or business flight and use targeted relevant content to get contact moments.
Of course the booking process at the website must be as easy as possible, but after the booking is finished so many chances!

  • Social sharing buttons are missing. I would have loved to tell everybody I was traveling to HK.
  • Try to get more information from the traveller to update the profile for more relevant communications via this e-mail.
  • Try to sell additional articles or services, not only hotels, or car's but also MTR tickets for example.
  • Let people download specific generated guide books or i-magazines for destinations that can be read at Ipad or cell phones. But do it personalised. Ask people's preferences. This add's value. If I am for leisure in Hong Kong and for the first time, I might want to visit the symfony of light, but if I already travelled there 5 times, I am in need for different information.
  • Give people the choice to rent an Ipad instead of the normal inflight entertainment system
  • Stay in contact with the people after the booking untill (and after) the flight. After the booking but before departure, inform people about the destination and collect information. After return, let people write reviews and use user generated content to improve the quality of the website and social sites. Good for SEO, good for returning and new visitors.
  • Inform people about the great cathay pacific service of checking in "in town" for example. If I did not read about it somewhere else, I wouldn't have known. These small things give extra service that CX can offer. Tell people.
  • Publish your facebook or twitter account at this booking confirmation.
  • Publish QR codes/links to information about the airports that are visited, but combine this with vouchers or promotions from local vendors at the airports.
  • Think social and multi channel with every contact moment.

Just a few idea's there are so much more improvements that can be made.

It has been since June now, I have not received any communication after my flight from CX. That's strange, if they had asked me more information, they would have known more about my preferences and I might have booked my last flight to Asia with CX instead of Finnair, as I did now.

The attached PDF's also can have some more interesting information:

How to improve the booking confirmation from cathay pacific
Booking confirmation cathay pacific
E-ticket Cathay Pacific example
This (below) is the pre-flight reminder, or check in e-mail. This is already much better, including the actual weather forecast. But also in this case, if you want to offer "service", give information about the best seats (many websites that have this information), some real time news about the destination etc.

Check in E-mail Cathay Pacific
But as I see in this video, improvements are on their way. Hope they speed up, since flying with CX was a good experience but I see many other airlines being much more active and much more social then Cathay Pacific. Dennis Owen, from Cathay Pacific explains.

But if you have the chance to go to Hong Kong, you will not be dissapointed. I had a great visit overthere.(and a great flight)
Some pictures below:

Symphony of light, Hong Kong. Great to visit, fly with Hong Kong's airline Cathay Pacific
Symphony of light, Hong Kong

The Peak, Hong Kong. I had a great holiday there flying with Cathay Pacific
Hong Kong, view from "the peak"

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Some digital (retail) trends for 2012

It is nice to watch trends and to extrapolate that to other branches or just to get inspiration. Good to see that almost every trend can be combined with social media. This once again shows the importance of social media.

Trendhunter's annual trend video is always nice to watch:

Some highlights of their video:

Digital eating

Trend to order via ipads or digital devices build in tables or other digital devices that make into restaurants.

Related idea's:
  • Custom build apps to order, to get details from people who order in your restaurant, so you can do follow up communication and stay engaged with your customers.
  • Show them interactive offers while they are sitting at your tables.
  • Cross and upsell while they sit. If they ordered something spicey, they probably like to have something to cool as well..if it is 30 degrees outside, show them an ice cream offer...etc.
  • Add value by let people use internet at the table
  • Let people sent messages to other tables (flirt tables)
  • Let people make their own food. So not only standard menu's but also let them
  • make their own digital meal that will be cooked then by the restaurant.
  • Play games at the tables. Easy to make an interactive game (pool or table tennis)
  • It is easy to make a button "call waiter" at the interactive table. Service!
  • If you have a clothes shop, make interactive tables to show product details or for service reasons.
  • Let people customize their own product via an interactive table
  • Robot cooks or robot restaurants that can be activated by a digital table (already saw this in Bangkok and Japan but also there is one in China now)
  • Improvement of internal communication inside businesses a table with the intranet at the coffee table or restaurant.
  • Fun: Make digital cup holders and when the waitress arrives, move the cup holders so people can make room :)
  • Festival's: digital playlists, interactive points
  • Great also to offer ipads as an inflight entertainment system for airlines.
Some more examples of digital tables (and a manufacturer) can be found here
Of course also vending machines will get an interactive experience.

Pop culture vacations

Batman, hello kitty or james bond hotel's

Theme vacations, special rooms based on events or movies. Like a James Bond Hotel, Hello Kitty Hotel.
Sleep in the batcave, or in a Hello Kitty house.
By making the vacation or night away special, you add value.

Related ideas:
  • Combine this with an interactive experience. Connect both online and offline worlds. Let people sent invitations for this room in an interactive way to their friends who they might want to go on holiday with.
  • Combine the themed hotels with transportation and offer e.g. "batman packages".
  • Lot's of contact moments can be found with these concepts. 
  • But also make special interactive experiences in the room that can be shared online
  • Make rooms connected to the news. New movies, strange idea's (earthquake room, star wars room) etc.
  • Special custom made rooms for congresses and seminars. Rooms that each time can be altered easily but have the same interactive experiences.
Renovated tradtion

Back to the past in a modern way in the retail. Attract customers with items and experiences from the past.
  • Think of pop up coffeeshops in your store.
  • Children's stores can attract the parents with things from their youth. If a commodore 64 computer is in a toy store, I bet many parents (especially dad's) will take a look..
  • Rebranded clothes with old -long gone- brand names

Make your store an experience and people will come and shop! Important: don't be to traditional, combine it with an online contact strategy.

Finnair painted a plane in the 1950's style

Combine the past with the present. Newsletter request at Lego store . Ok there should be  a QR code there, but the idea is nice.

Virtual Fashion

Design clothes with your online identity. It start's getting more important to people.

Related ideas:

You can use it everywhere.

  • For bakery's: let people create their own twitter account in a cookie. Nice to give away! 
  • For airlines: let people share their online account at their luggage tag.
  • For online stores make wrapping paper with Facebook content or a Facebook address. 
  • For automotive: let people make their cars personally by using their online identity. Both inside and outside the car. 
  • For advertising: use of online identity in publishing campaigns (already possible in some bus stops)
  • Don't forget these things will be shared enormously. Do it right and you get as a company also a lot of information from your customers! Use that info!

Not completely related as it is more about the future of virtual fashion, but a nice video from Microsoft's connect in fashion.

Interactive out of home

Be creative in outdoor advertising!

Think of interactive couches, interactive billboards or just put some products at the street.
Already now it is possible to do facial recognition and show and to make a gender specific campaign.

That combined with RFID in products, such as cellphones can show narrowcast personalised advertising
give interactive advice through billboards, by voice recognition or touch screens.
show different content at day or at night. Make it possible to shop in your store even when you are closed by using digital technology.

McDonalds interactive billboard in Stockholm is a nice example. They used a billboard to get more people inside the local McDonalds. Nice to get information about customers and to get them to your store!

More about mobile phones that turn into a game controller here.

Of course a simular project can be used for every retail store even if you don't use a billboard you can use a small tv in your shopping window to get the same effect.
Think not only of games but also about selling online when your shop is closed or let people download information.
Next trend, interactive shopping windows! In Japan they are already seen a lot! Nice example in Paris also.

This spy tech billboard really get's your attention!

When you are walking in the subway in Seoel, you are treated like a celebrity with this interactive billboard while running a Nikon advertising campaign. Lot's of pictures are taken from you!

Social fitness

Fitness and social media have merged. Sports and social media have merged. Compete against friends or athletes.
I think known for everybody now. But this can be used with all kind of sports and activities. Ski resorts now let you compete against competitors from all over the world. The fastes descent, who rided the most in a day. All done via apps in cell phones.
Local sports organisations can develop interactive apps to make sporting more fun.
When you are gardening, compete with others to grow the largest flowers
When you are driving a route, show others with the same destination as well, so you can optimize your route.

Instant entrepeneurship

Entrepreneurship will be teached in much younger ages to younger people, by use of video games, crowd funding, crowd sourcing etc.
Everybody can work together, create logo's with total strangers, sell stuff to other part's of the world. A real nice trend that can help also undeveloped countries by getting more entrepreneurship and to professionalise quicker.

Digital Decor

Make your workspace or living space interactive and digital. Just like outdoor advertising and billboards, your home can be interactive as well.

And because I always focus at the continent where it is happening now, some trends for Asia:

More idea's at trendhunter! The world will see so much more fun things the coming years!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Emerce social conference 2012, Amsterdam

The social conference 2012

Last thursday, I was in the happy position to visit the social conference 2012. It was better then expected. Really a lot of international speakers and case study's. Exactly my interest.
Only negative point, but there were (with so many online people) not enough free power plugs to charge devices.

The day started with a presentation from Fons Trompenaars. I found this really interesting. Fons know a lot about trans cultural communication. He told a lot of things I recognized, but explained also with great humour a lot of things, I did not knew.

But is was nice to hear the examples from Korea, Japan, Germany etc. All very recognizable, if I think back about my travels.
I realized I have to learn a lot more quickly at this trans cultural area, so many interesting things, that can help build success in this global world. Luckily Fons gave a few tips for books to read on which : co-opetition (others to be added)

Emerce social conference 2012 in Amsterdam with a presentation from Fons Trompenaars
Fons Trompenaars kicking off the day, a great start!

Most problems are dilemma's and culture is the way we solve dilemma's.
Answers at dilemma's can differ a lot per culture. That's why corporate integrity values don't mean so much.
There are always more solutions then you think at first sight. This is important in trans cultural communication. Be aware of the differences between communication in countries and regions. Something I think is really interesting also when using social media.

Social media connects us so easily with different cultures, so we will be confronted more and more with different cultural interpretations of dilemma's.
Also Fons gave an example of Japanese people receiving an e-mail, but this e-mail is not showing really what people mean. In Japan facial expressions are (as I know from personal experience) very important. I think that is also why Japan has so many emoticons in their electronic communication.

So what do you need to do with social media? Centralise or Decentralise? If you don't decentralise you cannot centralise.  It is important to find a hybrid model. This is also what later the day in other international presentations was being told.

The complete interesting presentation from Fons:
TCS12 - Fons Trompenaars - THT Consulting
View more presentations from Emerce

Second session: KLM

KLM also had an interesting story. Of course I know, KLM is one of the most active airlines at social media, but KLM is getting further then that. They are now transforming from a social media airline to a social business. Now that's challenging!

KLM has 3 strategic social media pillars:

  • Customer Service Department
  • Brand and Reputation
  • E-commerce

With most social media campaigns, they do not have an ROI based on sales, but they often use other KPI's, like engagement and reach. Of course the campaigns have to be cost efficient. They use multiple agency's to develop campaigns. They "shop" for the best idea's.
KLM has now good experiences with using a twitter bot for selling tickets. Twitter @klmfares.

KLM now employs 40+ people in their social media hub but this will rapidly increase.

The new service from KLM , meat and seat, where people can choose next to whom they want to site for a flight is of course a real nice feature, that will make me fly KLM next time, just to try it out.
I think that's one of the goals from KLM. Beiing innovative and adding value makes people choose for your airline.
The nice thing that by leaking some information about this new service, they created a massive buzz even up to CNN. Something to remind..
KLM en Vodafone, hanteren eenzelfde SLA: within one hour an answer and the problem solved within 24 hours. Great!!!
Almost 70% of KLM"s turnover is via online, but already 25% of the turnover has some relation with social media.


Microstrategy talked about CRM in the facebook age. About the social graph from facebook and the difficulties and challenges in this field. For example:

The most important challenges (with facebook)  in social CRM are:

  • Data in facebook is not structured
  • Facebook is so innovative, they are in permanent beta.
Below some more issues in the facebook age:

There is an app, made by microsstrategy that can give you some nice social graphics information collected by facebook fans from microstrategy.

Check out www.wisdom.com.

It is possible to play with the data, and I believe he said there is data from 6 million people in the application.
It looks like this:

An application to use facebook's social graph

I have entered one activity "gardening" and the application shows me that people who like gardening, also have a strong affinity with walking or cooking. All interesting information, that can be used in communication and promotions. Of course it is possible to filter much more from within the application.
They also have an app called: www.alert.com which enables you to broadcast segmented content to your fans. FC Barcelona's facebook page uses it. I have to check this out more...

During the day a lot of the talks went about cultural changes within organisations because of social media. Of actually because of social. Facebook/youtube etc. these are just tools , the social aspect and transparency is the movement that is being enforced by social media. Just like other movements we saw in the past decades.

Social Media is communication based, it is more PR and Marketing then direct sales, therefore so many traditional company's and especially the higher management is struggling with social media. It often won't give you direct sales, but it will help you to sell more in the end.

It is important in most cases to have a top down cultural change! Avoid political problems high in the organisations. Explain what social media is, what it does en why it is different from the traditional points of view.
Slow moving companies (for example when it has to do with social media) are often having leadership problems, mostly because of misunderstanding the power of social media.

Maybe it has to do because leaders of organisations have to share much more information then previously and sometimes they have to act themselves at social media.

One advice was: make social media campaigns based at the top 10 irritations of your customers and solve those irritations.


One of the most interesting and well given presentations was the presentation about Philips global social media strategy and practical work processes. Thomas Marzano gave this presentation.

The presentation started with explaining what a brand is. Important of course, since you have to know what a brand is, to understand how social media works.
A brand is the consumers feeling about your product, your services or your organisation, is  a good definition..

Thomas Marzano from Philips and his interesting presentation about international social media

But the conclusion at the end was: a brand is what people think it is.

I think it is important to have some kind of brand values or principles when you use corporate social media.

It is important to have cross functional teams, that can share knowledge. Internally the communication needs to be optimized as well. In some other presentation, I noticed some tools, like Yammer or Base camp. Philips internally uses social cast it helps people collaborate and this is really important when using social media at a global level.

Philips headquarters focuses as a knowledge centre, but also they provide tools for the local offices. Think about Bazaarvoice for reviews, social media monitoring (a tool that can also understand cultural differences in writing), content management systems etc.
They have guidelines for every social channel for local offices.
Brand guidelines for the local offices, a web care toolkit etc.

Philips introduced a 7 step gateway system. 7 steps that need to be followed before campaigns can be done at social media. On which targets, roi etc needs to be described. I think a good solution to make sure campaigns have a basic quality.
Education about social media is very important and therefore is provided continuously and I guess also around the clock from within Philips HQ.

New KPI's are digital sentiment and engagement.

I think one of the nice things to learn is how to deal with different social networks, like mixi in japan or renren in china for example. Or to ask questions how to make your strategy work in Vietnam, where facebook access is still a problem and people are more passive at social media. Or how to work in countries where e-commerce is much further then in home country holland, like south korea? but also the cultural differences in writing or telling the message you want to broadcast. Per country, network etc. Nice things! To bad there was not time to get more information on these questions. 

Working in such a large organisation is like getting an orchestra play in line, but also nowadays with customers that want to play as well. 
After a purchase there is now a new world. A world to keep your fans , customers. Remember keeping customers is 6 times cheaper as acquiring customers. 
Keep learning, keep adding value for customers or prospects.
Thomas gave a nice extensive example about a kitchen equipment. 
Make joint effort teams to convince stakeholders.
The whole contact line, improve it. Like offering return boxes inside parcels, customer care information, social information, and promote your brand ambassadors with for example new products. Treat them special! They are special for you!
The complete presentation can be found here on slideshare.

Book review/summary: the end of traditional retail stores

Book review/summary:

The end of traditional retail stores : www.eindevandewinkel.nl by Cor Molenaar.

Book review: het einde van de winkel by Cor Molenaar

I found this book (although most is obvious for me) interesting and easy to read. Especially because many improvements that Mr Molenaar suggests, already are common in many other countries (e.g. Asia or the USA). I have seen a lot of examples Cor Molenaar describes in his book, during my recent travels.

It seems like we (in Holland) are running behind.

What are the dangers for traditional retailing?

Internet: is a threat to traditional retail because, traditional retail has to compete against unknown competitors and competitors who have less limitations like shop opening hours and location.

Wholesalers/suppliers who are going to sell at the web: for example big brands are starting their own webshops to get into contact with customers.

Customers: have a new way of buying and internet is integrated in this shopping process.
Grocery's are still bought locally and often in traditional shops, emotional shopping also still takes place in traditional retail, but more and more people buy specific products via internet. Think about books, music, clothing etc. Also a trend is that big web shops are more and more opening physical stores.

New buying behavior: "information" is being de-attached from buying. A good example is the travel business.

What kind of shopping can we define :

  • Shopping 1.0 - traditional retailing, personal contact with customers.
  • Shopping 2.0 - (mail order for example) there is no personal contact with customers.
  • Shopping 3.0 - the new shopping is centralized around the customer.
The book starts with summarizing a few (Dutch) problems in retailing.
  • The limited shopping hours (most shops are open only 54 hours a week
  • The absence of big shopping malls with plenty of parking space
  • The extreme costs of parking 
  • The unfriendliness of shop staff
  • The lack of making shopping "fun"
  • The high costs of shop rental (is getting more difficult since there will be less people visiting the shops in the traditional city centre's) 
Customers have a choice nowadays where they buy the products. They might even buy it abroad. And I think this will (with the EC plans to build more trust in e-commerce) only increase. The shop or company who gives the most information and who who sets the customer at the first place, will benefit the most, worldwide. The next competitor can be in France!

The future of shopping is based on social shopping and social buying.

There is a difference between traditional retail, where location and assortment was important and with a strong focus at transactions. And the new way of retailing where the customer is in control. The demands and wishes from the customer should be the new focus.

Yes mr Molenaar, Internet can really help traditional retailers with listening, and engaging with customers. Many chances here, for both big and small companies. They should start with a communication and engagement strategy. Use social media tools, use email, use special internet events, use a combination between online and offline (reviews printed on goods sold in the store for example) etc.

Use internet in the communication strategy of traditional retailers and learn and listen to your customer or prospects.

New chances and trendds for traditional retail:
  • Shopping in "out of town" shopping malls
  • Traditional shops in city center
  • Orientation and information at the internet and then buying via internet or at the physical shop
  • Service, advice, touching articles, take away immediately etc.
  • Build relationships with customers and prospects.

Just like in the internet marketing, the important words for traditional retail are also: build a relationship/engagement.

The book is about understanding the principles of internet and the change of buying behavior. A lot of interesting case study's and examples are described.

In the book often the example of "Trafford Centre" in Manchester is described. A big shopping mall that makes shopping fun. It is not only shopping at Trafford Centre, there are pubs, a movie theater, easy to reach by both car and public transport, nice decoration, always open, free WiFi etc. I have seen similar malls in for example Bangkok and Tokyo, and indeed it makes shopping fun.

Let's face it: the current customer knows more then the salesmen in the shop. Find a way to work with this, it will not change. 
Find a way to work with customers that know more then the salesmen in the shop. Don't just say  (what still often happens) : "I cannot compete with the webshops" or, what also often happens, tell people that they are wrong with the information they found at the internet. 
A salesmen should make a change to listening and motivation of visitors of their shop.

One of the companies that is really doing a good job at social media and in their stores is Best Buy. Of course this book also has some examples from Best Buy. According to an article in the book, Best Buy has in their stores "ambassador's" that talk to visitors and show them new gadgets. Best Buy has a pricing system that can vary each day and they really focus at service. 
In the shops they have touchscreen kiosks to order products online (and pick it up at their checkout or to check reviews, or just to compare prices). Now that's transparency. I haven't visited such a shop in Holland /Europe yet.

The book has advice for retailers: it is very important to give more service: e.g. free WiFi, special apps for mobile phones, free transport to their shop etc. These are things I already saw in Hong Kong and Japan during a recent holiday.

The book describes about cannibalization, so who is the strongest, the local retailer or the big brand that both are active at the internet (and sometimes in stores as well)

The question is who has the best contact strategy with the customer. 

I think many chances are here for the local retailer. Big brands are far from ready for the personal touch local retailers can give at this moment. When local retailers discover the possibilities of online communication there are a lot of opportunities for them.

Retailers big or small, need to actively keep a (communication) relation with the customer or prospect.

A good example is Kruidvat with their "extravoordeelkaart"

The book is filled with a lot of retail news..many examples of shopping malls that are re-inventing themselves.

What are the limitations for physical stores?
  • Limited radius 
  • Limited assortment
  • Limited shopping hours
  • Often no knowledge of individual customers
  • No direct communication
  • It takes time for customers
What are the advantages for web shops compared to physical stores.
  • Worldwide
  • Unlimited assortment
  • Always open
  • A lot of knowledge about customers
  • Only direct communication
  • People can shop when they want

A big part of the book describes the possibilities of internet marketing but all known to me.

Retail and technology

Technology is coming into physical stores. This is a real nice trend. In Japan I already saw a lot of nice examples, but the book also describes some idea's..

Tweet mirrors (already exist) and I used one recently is a great tool. Simply wear some clothes, go to the mirror, make a picture and share it with your friends and ask them what they think. In my opinion (not described in the book) this is not only a way to sell directly to the customer that uses the tweet mirror but an excellent opportunity to make your physical store known to all of the friends of the person that uses the tweet mirror.

Real life images are coming up as well. You can see yourself in new clothing in a shopping window. You won't have to enter the shop!

Electronic customer recognition in stores and to give personal advice using video is coming up as well. Narrow casting will be personalised, recognition in shopping windows when you pass by etc.

What is not really mentioned in the book is the future of location based marketing. Signals or marketing messages people get, when they are near your store, or even more targeted, when they are near your store and most likely want to buy something you sell. This all based on information from social networks.

Important throughout the book: increase your margin by service/advice.

The consumers role is changing. From push to pull. From the last part in the chain to the first part in the chain.

The book has much more chapters, especially about internet marketing, new business model's and case study's.Interesting for everybody to get some insight in the new way of retailing.

Multi channel: collecting email adresses, bol.com example

Simple, but still a good idea. The first time I get one in my snail mail box.
Nice example, how to work cross channel. And in the near future, they can probably connect to facebook social graph and see I am single (or not) and then personalise even better.

Example bol.com: collecting email adresses

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Book review /summary : The Executive's Guide to Enterprise Social Media Strategy.

The executive's guide to enterprise social media book review

I just finished reading the "The Executive's Guide to Enterprise Social Media Strategy" by David B. Thomas and Mike Barlow.

Below I wrote a short summary of this book. I only described the chapters and passages that I found interesting.

The book can help managers and people who are interested in social media for both small, big and enterprise companies. The book has a lot of "aha" moments, things you have in your memory, but when they are described in the book, you recognize it and see it slightly different.
I summarized the chapters that I think are interesting or give nice examples.

Chapter 1:

The book (chapter 1) starts with telling that there is no "social media" revolution, but an e-social revolution going on. Social media are just the tools, but all electronic commerce and information is going social. It is a different philosofy.
A nice example is given from a big hotel in NYC, where a line of people is waiting to check in the hotel. There is no information from the counter, why checking in is taking so long. People start twittering about it, since they are slightly bored. Then suddenly a hotel across the road is tweeting something like: Hey, if you are tired of standing in the hotel line of hotel X, we'll set up a room for you at 50 % of the regular price. Some people actually pick up their bags and moved to this hotel across the road.

This describes the power , speed,, complexity, power and potential of using social media.

So learn from following your competitors at social media.

The book is filled with these kind of nice to read examples. A lot of examples also consists of in company use of social media. This is also very interesting. An example is given from the CEO of a large company who updated his status in an internal social media site, where he tells people he has a meeting with a big customer. Somebody at the office noticed that the CEO is traveling to visit this important customer, but this person also knows that the company is late on paying this customer. He warns the CEO about this, so everything could be fixed before this important meeting.

Chapter 2:  is about social media, teamwork and collaboration.

In this chapter also a lot of nice examples are given of successfulcases with social media tools. Nice stories about the use of Social Media by the Vice President of IBM social software group.
The book explains that by using the internal social media software people can create value with these tools.

By updating a status, value is created. In the past with a standard "calendar" that was shared with 1 or 2 or maybe 3 people, there is no value created. Now, with the tools of today, value is created. A vice president is followed by a lot of people inside the company. See the example above, but the book gives much more examples.

Chapter 3: is called the social enterprise

This chapter gives a lot of information about social HR. It gives a lot of reasons and motivations about the use of social media in recruitment but also that it is increasingly important to hire people with social skills. The authors warn companies not to bog down in a discussion with your legal department about the risks of using Facebook by employees and makes a difference between social HR and traditional HR.

The book continuous with a part about social CRM. It tells that the old CRM was mostly about using transactional information, stored in a database to sell more stuff, but the new CRM or social CRM is about figuring out what your customer really wants and then anticipating at their needs.
The customer strategy is now one of engagement, interactivity. It means that you have to optimize or create a customer strategy and engage with your customers in ways that you can create advocates. That is what you want and not (only) satisfied customers. Brand ambassadors you need. There you should focus on.

Part II of the book is called "Building a structure for success"

Part II starts with explaining that to make a success of your social strategy, you need to have every stakeholder involved: marketing, PR, the web team, IT department, Legal, etc. Don't forget customer service!
An important recommendation is to invite also the practitioners and not only the rule makers. So, if there is someone in your company who is passionate about social media and uses it a lot in his/her spare time. Use these people even if they are not in a rule making position.

The book says:

- Identify people who are already active in social media
- Create a social media council
- Make a list of what you are already doing and what your competitors are doing
- Make a list of what the most innovative companies in your industry are doing
- Look at your existing goals and see which ones could benefit from a social media component.

Chapter 5: creating social media guidelines

The book gives again a lot of examples about creating social media guidelines and emphasis that you have to include also the do's and not only the don'ts and to give examples. The book refers to a very interesting website called socialmediagovernance.com. A site filled with examples from social media guidelines.

Chapter 6: staffing and structuring

The book tells that it is important to have a "social strategist" in house. A person responsible for the overall social media programme (including ROI).
Of course you need also community managers, persons who are the face of a company in social media.

There are different models:

A centralized model:

One department controls all efforts at social media. The book gives examples of organisations who work this way. The risk is that a centralized model may not look authentic.

An organic model:

Not all "dots" may be connected. When there is no strong leadership, often this model is used. It looks very authentic, altough the downside is, that you might have an inconsistent customer experience. If this model is used, there is often no social media team with all stakeholders involved and this might be a risk for inconsistent reporting and systems in the future.

Hub and spoke model:

A cross functional team, led by someone in marketing or web marketing. The team serves as a hub between all business units. It takes resources by doing it this way.

Multiple hub and spoke model:

In larger enterprises you have multiple hub and spokes, often within product units and geographies.

Holistic or Honeycomb model:

Each employee is empowered to participate in social media. There is little or no central control. Best uses by companies in regulated industries.

Chapter 7: Listening measurement, analytics and ROI

This chapter gives examples about tools one can use for measuring and "listening". I think every month new tools are released so it is important to search around and not just copy paste the tools from the book.

Listen but think bigger.

Five different types of conversations organisations should listen for.

  • Customers talking to you
  • People talking about you
  • People talking about your competitors
  • People talking about your customers, suppliers and partners.
  • People talking about your market, withouth mentioning brand names.

In chapter 7 a model is displayed where KPI's as exposure, influence, engagement action, conversion and retention are explained.
They respond at the question: what is the ROI of social media? With What's the ROI of picking up the phone? Because it is a start of a conversation and engagement.
Also some formula's are described how ROI is working and could be measured.

Part III Putting your social media strategy to work

It describes the "old spice" case and why it has worked.
Also many examples from companies that started with social media and made it into a success, like "Graco" that wanted to use social media to reinvigorate the brand. By listening to the community "Graco" did a great job. A while ago, after their social strategy already was a big succes, Graco had to recall some products because it could hurt a child finger's. By using their social media contacts, and apologizing and giving advice, they could see, that after 3 day's moms were telling each other how to get the fix!
To get this, it takes years to build up your community, but this example shows the importance of it.

  • Think like your customers and make a list of the most important issues to them.
  • Find the online communities where your customers engage
  • Start looking for people who are already passionate evangelists of your brand. Spend a lot of time listening to them before saying anything.
  • Once you understand the communities they use and the way they communicate, start finding some genuine ways to show them you recognize and appriciate them.

 Chapter 10: Social Media for B2B

Social media does not change the fundamentals of the relationship between the company and the customer. It provides a channel to extend those relationships far beyond what is possible in the physical realm.  Many examples of the use of social media in B2B, by providing news, white papers, blog posts, video's etc.

Chapter 11: Public relations

The old model of PR was writing a press release.
The new model of PR is that you do not write a press release and hope someone sees it and writes a good story, no you write a good story. Interview your product manager, your ceo and your customers. Make it interesting and fun to read. Promote it using social media tools. Examples are given from various companies for example the Mayo clinic, that did an excellent job by getting nation wide tv attention.
One of the things the Mayo clinic did, was creating a social newsroom, with the free software "wordpress". They made a lot of video's often based on the actuality and news. Social media can excellent be used in a strategy and the book explains more about this.

Chapter 13: The voice of the customer

Customer service isn't a chore, it is the new PR.

Examples are given about using twitter to get people from complainers to brand ambassador's if you are authentic and listen to the complainers.
Dell has social collaboration tool : Dell's ideastorm and it was launched already back in 2007 as a way to talk directly to the customers. Dell has gotten 400 idea's that helped improve existing products and to develop new products.
Often improvements are not even high cost. Rubbermaid's example of people complaining about their sinks, could be solved by the use of some antibacterial material. By giving the solution to the online group the customers were happy to be heard and it saved a lot of phone calles for example.

There is a lot more in this book, but this summary highlights the most important parts in my opinion.

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