How Fortune 100 brands are using social media

The Global Social Media Check-Up 2010

Interesting stats on how Fortune 100 brands are using social media.  The study considers Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and corporate blogs. 

Slide 5: Interestingly, Twitter is the most popular social media tool, perhaps because it allows companies to promote existing content rather than create new content.  In my experience it was easy to set up a Twitter account and post frequently.  Identifying subject matter experts to participate in a corporate blog was a harder proposition, and once identified, gaining their commitment to post frequently was even more difficult.

Slide 9: Only 40% of Asian companies are on Twitter and most use it to communicate with Western stakeholders – I wonder how many non-English language Twitter accounts are live?

Slide 12: Analysis claims that stakeholders want to hear what companies are saying based on the number of followers and tweets about companies.  These stakeholders would also comprise business partners, competitors, employees… Depending on the organisation’s Twitter strategy pure numbers aren’t necessarily a sign of success.  Better metrics would be linked to engagement and potentially lead generation or conversion.  Again, the metrics need to be mapped to the strategy behind the company’s Twitter account.

Slide 19: US companies are the most prominent on Facebook with 69% having fan pages.  I’d be interested in understanding the split between B2B and B2C organisations.  I also feel that cultural differences play apart, as well as age groups and gender.  Some of my more cynical colleagues would NEVER join the fan page of a brand – and look at the stats, it appears my fellow Aussies in the Asia-Pac region are also more reluctant to become “fan’s” of brands.  However, with Facebook adoption so mainstream, it appears that people are looking at fan pages as a way of conversing with brands and voicing opinions (Slides 22-23).


Building connections – social media behind the corporate firewall

Building connectionsJust when I was starting to doubt whether there’d be any opportunity to utilise collaboration tools at my new company, we wrap up an offsite meeting with a great overview of the social media vehicles available for employees.


Similar to IBM’s Blue Twit, Infosys have created their own internal version of Twitter.  Continue reading “Building connections – social media behind the corporate firewall”

Viral marketing: Can you set out to create a viral video?

I loved the interview with “The Running Mad Professor” (@RunningMadProf) on the BBC coverage of the London Marathon this morning.  In an effort to raise awareness (and money) for his participation in the London Marathon he’s created a great viral video on YouTube.  It just goes to show that with a little creativity and an engaging, unique concept, you can create content which captures the attention of people and helps you achieve your objective.  In this case, raising money for the Encephalitis Society – encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain, usually caused by infection or an inappropriate auto-immune response to infection.

The YouTube video currently has close to 4,000 views and has been picked up by the mainstream media.

Can you set out to create a viral video?  I came across the following article which identifies The 7 Viral Video Campaign Elements by Jerry Bader: Continue reading “Viral marketing: Can you set out to create a viral video?”

Generating marketing responses: is it a numbers game?

The implementation of a marketing dashboard built using Cognos (a plug for what’s proving to be an indispensable tool) has meant that, for the first time EVER, we’ve had a single view (almost real-time) of all the responses generated from our marketing activity.  I’m building a scorecard for my team to ensure we generate sufficient web responses (i.e. someone has given us their contact details) to meet our targets…

And the data is giving me a headache.

I’d like to say that my headache is caused by analysis paralysis.  But no – the data is giving me a headache because the numbers DO NOT STACK UP.  In a B2B environment we don’t have the luxury of generating thousands of responses.  Current conversion rates for web responses are low, in part because of the complex solutions we sell and the lengthy sales cycles involved.  It’s almost impossible to attribute a white paper download to a deal worth thousands (hundreds of thousands/millions) of GBP£.  (How we’re able to attribute the same opportunity to a customer attending an event has me shaking my head in exasperation…)

In fact, current measurement systems make it very difficult to justify the investment in digital tactics FULL STOP.  And the measurement issue drives self-perpetuating behaviour.  Tactics are chosen because they are easier to measure, not necessarily because they are the right thing to do.

So I look at my lead targets, the number of responses required to meet these, and the lovely Cognos cut of what the web is generating, and a couple of things become clear: Continue reading “Generating marketing responses: is it a numbers game?”

Digital eminence – building your personal brand online

I’ve had a number of conversations recently about running internal workshops to help some of our consultants build their digital eminence, and I thought I’d put together some of my ideas.

First things first, let’s take a definition of eminence:

1. a position of superiority, distinction, high rank, or fame

And digital eminence?  I came across the following definition on an IBM internal community:

“Digital Eminence is a term that describes/defines the digital contributions that a user makes that add value to others.

Users with high digital eminence publish high quality articles, blog entries, and add value to key online business discussions.  These individuals not only produce/publish information, they also consume existing information and contribute by rating that content.  Evidence of their eminence is supported by others who have rated their contributions as valuable and have tagged them for reuse by others.”

What are some of the steps you can take to build your brand online? Continue reading “Digital eminence – building your personal brand online”

Big brands and their digital plans – in the firing line!

Yesterday afternoon a last-minute arrangement saw me on the keynote panel at the Search Engine Strategies event in London.  The panel was billed as, “Big Brands and their Biggest Plans Yet“, and I was alongside companies such as Yahoo, the British Museum, and SAP, with some agency representation as well.

At the end of a long day I thought the room would be fairly empty, but the promise of cocktails after the session must have kept people hanging around – and Aaron Kahlow of Online Marketing Connect, who was chairing the panel, prompted the audience to go for a “no holds barred” approach to their questions.

Following are some of the questions and responses from the panel (paraphrased from memory!): Continue reading “Big brands and their digital plans – in the firing line!”

Collaboration – beyond the firewall

On Thursday I had an opportunity to present at a networking event organised by West London Business in partnership with Brunel University, along with my colleague Karl Roche (check-out Karl’s write-up of the event on his blog).  The theme of the event was “Innovation” and Karl and I gave an internal and external perspective on how IBM is using social tools for collaboration.

Prior to the event Karl and I spent hours discussing what we were going to present and how we were going to link to each other’s presentation.  And realised that splitting internal and external comms in the world of web 2.0 wasn’t easy.  Leveraging IBM’s internal audience is imperative in all of our external communication efforts.  In the end, we decided that we’d focus on IBM’s culture and values, and how these enable IBM and its employees to utilise social tools. Continue reading “Collaboration – beyond the firewall”