Twitter – three companies that get it right and 3 corporate Blogs that are a good read

Twitter

I’m delighted to announce that I set up my very own twitter account. It might seem unusual to some that there are still people out there who don’t use this social media platform to interact not just with other people but with their favourite brands, people and much more. As I started to find my way around I kept wondering what is it that companies need to do use their twitter accounts to their full potential.

As mentioned in my last , most consumers buy brands if they can connect to the companies on a more personal level. Twitter sounds like a great opportunity for companies to do so. However, it is not enough to just tweet about the company’s products and newest inventions as this is just another way of promotion.It is about interacting with followers, respond to their queries and let them be part of the company’s social media activities.

The most successful brands on twitter seem to be more like a real person, sharing content that is of interest to their target market and who interact with followers as if the company is a person like everyone else.

Scrolling through number of twitter accounts I picked three companies that do exactly that. Filling their twitter account with interesting content people want to share, respond and re-tweet followers views and experiences.

OLD SPICE

Looking at the @oldspice twitter account description one can see that the company doesn’t take itself too serious. The brand wants to create the image of being a young and fun brand and they follow up on this with their tweets and content on twitter.

old-spice-account

Their brand endorser Von Miller, American football player, is the latest Old spice guy. Old spice connects to their target audience, men that are physically active, in a very humorous way. The company tweets  videos about during matches and featuring Von Miller.

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What also makes a twitter account more successful is engaging with followers by re-tweeting and answering directly to them.

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The Company also used twitter before to create personal and real-time marketing. The Old Spice guy created videos on YouTube for followers that asked him questions and gave suggestions on Twitter.This campaign turned out to be a huge success and helped the company to re-brand.

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R/GA

R/GA is an american advertising agency  with its’ headquarters in New York and offices all around the world. They are experts in creating marketing content based on technology and design. Their social media appearance is one other companies can look up to. They’re target market are organisations and companies looking to improve their marketing activities with new technologies and I think R/GA’s twitter account does well in speaking to them on social media.

Chapin Clark is the man behind the company’s twitter activities and found away to present the company well with humorous links and tweets. He talks about what is happening in the marketing world on a personal basis and captures funny and important moments of what is happening in the world around us.Here are some examples for his work on twitter. There is much more and it’s worth following.

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Snickers

Almost everyone knows the Snicker’s tagline “You’re not you when you’re hungry” and there is a reason why. This campaign succeeded on all levels and social media especially twitter played a huge part in it. In the UK celebrities tweeted 5, for them unusual, statements about current news and the 5th on includes the snickers tagline. Examples are Rio Ferdinand and Katie Price, which created a buzz around the brand.

The tagline leaves room for creativity for followers to use themselves. It’s all about interaction and entertaining your followers. Another reason why this campaign is so successful is the integrated marketing communication strategy they are using. All marketing efforts have on clear message, offline as well as online.

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Companies get blogging!

Blogs are growing to be a very important part of digital advertising for companies. Successful organisations have realised how important it is to give their company a personal touch by adding blogs to their social media presence. As I have probably mentioned before it is essential to create sharable content on social media to keep the company in the top of consumer minds, increase traffic on their website to engage with consumers on a more personal level by giving them insides to the organisations activities. A good way to do so is by including a blog in social media activities. Not only get other bloggers to talk about our business but to have a blog of your own. Here are three examples of companies that have understood the importance of blogs and are very successful to do so.

Microsoft

A huge company that is trying to create a more personal and reachable corporation for their consumers. Microsoft has successfully created a blog that gives consumers a personal inside to their company. Employees and other insiders of Microsoft write about their experiences, new inventions and current issues surrounding the overall company which makes consumers feel like they can be part of the successful journey of the company. Visiting the official Microsoft website, the user can go the news section and find the Microsoft Blog. The design of the news section itself is easy to navigate and designed in way that makes it simple to find the stories and blogs.

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There is a section of the different blog the consumer can choose from, related to products like office and other programs.

The ‘on the issues’ section for example includes blog posts about how Microsoft technologies can help solving issues occurring around the world.

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With the range of different blogs on the website viewers have the chance to get inside into all the different areas of the organisation which makes it possible to connect with the big Microsoft corporation.

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Birch Box

Birchbox is a New York City-based online monthly subscription service that sends its subscribers a box of four to five selected samples of makeup, or other beauty related products. These products include skin care items, perfumes, organic based products and various other cosmetics” (Wikipedia). Not only do they have a great and successful business idea but they know how to do social media right. Especially successful is their Blog section. With the idea of sending samples to their consumers they’ve created the ideal platform of advertising through bloggers around the world, that’s why they publish and support other bloggers on their site , Guest Bloggers. This strategy makes it possible to show consumers real people using their products not unreachable celebrities.

Whole Foods

Whole Foods is a distributor of natural foods, products and healthcare in Ireland. Their blog section on their website includes their own corporate blog and guest blogs. the content of their blog posts is mainly on how to life a healthy lifestyle, which is what their target audience is looking for. They gain credibility by creating content that is related to issues of their consumers and not just plainly promoting their products. The viewer can choose from the different categories related to their specific interests and needs like exam stress, mother and baby or recipes and much more. Again content that users might share with their social network. The blogs are written by experts and employees of the company and also consumers in the Guest Blog section where Bloggers can share their opinions and experiences.

 

 

Companies can, if they do it right, use social media to create a brand image, attract attention to their brand and increase sales by engaging interacting and entertaining their audience on numerous platforms. Twitter and blogs being only two of the many tools that have proven to be important marketing tools.

 

 

 

 

 

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Millennials are mobile first: What marketers need to know

Millennials – who are they?

The Basics

Every Generation has its own (Nick)name that unites people sharing similar interests and are of roughly the same age. As it is difficult to define the exact year of when one generation ends and the next one starts, there is some disagreement on when the first Millennial was born. Most sources, such as Wikipedia, however agree on the start of this Generation being between the late 1970’s and early 1980’s and the end ranging from the late 1990’s and 2000’s. If you are aged between 18 and 35, you can proudly call yourself a Millennial.

What makes us different?

There are a number of names used to describe the Generation of Millennials, some of them hinting certain characteristics and behaviours (that aren’t always flattering).

Generation Smartphone, Digital Natives, Generation Technology or IGen (hinting the popularity of smart devices of a certain company called Apple) are only a few names that suggest Millennials are a generation that grew up with advanced Technology and are not afraid to use it (mostly) to their advantage. This would be the most agreed on characteristic of Millennials.

Other personality traits may vary depending on the country the Millennial lives in. In Germany (my beloved home country),  my generation,according to an article published by  the Guardian, Millennials are also referred to as Generation Maybe. With nearly unlimited possibilities Millennials sometimes find it hard to make final decisions and be satisfied with something because there might always be a better way of dong things. This could be Job related or the general way of life. A good and entertaining read relating to this is ‘Why generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy’ by Tim Burton.

There are numerous other characteristics that can be connected to Millennials, after all they are trying to describe a whole generation which can’t be easy.

Just a warning before I go into more detail about how Millennials use technology. If you want to find out more about Millennials and who they are and type it into Google, the top suggestions aren’t very positive.

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Mobile First

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I personally cannot count the number of times people (mostly around my parents and grandparents age) have said something along the lines ‘ You people spent all your time on your phones/laptops/tablets etc. and are not talking to each other anymore’ – and I don’t think I’m the only one to have heard this. We are surrounded by advanced communication technology and it is hard not be part of the online world these days. The question is if we are using mobile devices too much so it could acutally harm our physical and emotional health.

As a Millenial I did the obvious thing to do in finding out how much time I spent on my phone and what am I actually doing while on my mobile phone – I downloaded an app.

The App BreakFree can be downloaded for free in the Google Playstore . What the app does is it meassures your activity on your phone, how many times you unlock your phone, how much time you spent on it and what are the most used apps. It then gives you the addiction score which is divided into 3 levels. If you find yourself in the Red area the app suggests to put down your phone for a while. After thinking to myself that I’m actually not endangered of being addicted to my phone (before the app download) I was in for a surprise.

Today (5/10/2016) my addiction score is 63, which is the yellow level of addiction, so far I have unlocked my phone 58 times (which is not including the amount of times I only picked it up to check the time or if there’s any notifications on the locked screen). Total phone usage 2 hours and 8 minutes and it’s not even 9 pm yet. Most used apps are Facebook, WhatsApp, GoogleChrome and SZ.de a German newspaper app. The weekly average time I spent on my phone everyday is 2 hours and 10 minutes.

It is hard to tell if this is too much or not, it depends on who you campare yourself with. An article on digitaltrends.com found that Americans spend 4.7 hours per day on their phones. So I could pride myself in saying I’m only spending half that time on my phone. But lets be honest I knew I was monitoring my own phone usage which means under different circumstances I probably wouls exceed the 2 hours.

The important thing is that we should realise how much time we spend on mobile devices and be able to control it. Put it away when you are meeting friends and family and talk to people face to face. You can’t buy empathy and social interaction (not online) in the AppStore.

What Marketers need to know

In order to get Millennials attracted to brands, products and services etc companies have to adapt to their specific needs. Technology has given this generation a huge advantage when it comes to education about products, information regarding the company’s ethical behaviour and much more. The broad access to the global market has brought competition to the market and consumers are not afraid to switch to other producers at any time. Therefore it is very hard to win Millennials as loyal costumers or to keep them. It is not just about the products anymore Marketers need to conduct research on what Millennials buy, why they consider buying something or not and where they buy.

Research by Millenialmarketing.com shows that almost 50% of american Millennials would be more willing to purchase from a company if they’re purchase supports a cause. That shows that companies have to look at a broader picture and maintain public relations in order to market their products successfully.

Millennials are well informed about a product well before they buy it. They ask friends and research online about the product and read other people’s opinions and experiences. As a company it is important to keep up with the technology and advertise and interact with the consumers.