This is a really great read, and I definitely recommend it to anyone concerned with branding their business. I found the five tips section of this article to be particularly interesting- not only does Julie explain what works in social media, she explains WHY these tactics (when implemented correctly) work so well. I will summarize the part of the article that I found to be the most useful (for me at least anyway). For those of you who don’t have the time to read the entire article (although I highly recommend you read it), I’ve provided a link to the original text at the bottom.
1. Creating Buzzworthy Experiences- Julie gives the example of her company- Virgin- who did not create virgin airlines to be tweeted or blogged about- but to create an airline that was remarkable, and different from all the others. (Yes, there are plenty of people blogging and tweeting about it, but it’s a by-product of a remarkable service.)
2. Connect with the people, don’t “market” them- Ms. Cottineau explains that although at times it’s necessary to pass along a marketing message, it’s just as important to communicate with your audience in less “business-y” ways. She highlights Virgin Money’s promotion from last Thanksgiving that encouraged people to share pictures and explain what they were thankful for.
3. Surprising and delighting with service- find a way for your social media to provide the gold standard of customer service. In Julie’s example, Virgin Mobile took their “Angels” concept and put it on Twitter. The Virgin Mobile Angels are real life young women who attend Virgin Mobile events to help answer questions and distribute promotional items. Now, if you have any customer service questions, you can tweet @VMangel.
4. Keeping it real- Richard Branson (founder of Virgin) utilizes his blog and twitter to not only speak about things he has a passion for, but also to highlight star employees, and reach out to his readers/followers. This (in my opinion) is the ultimate example of a visionary that truly cares about what his customers and followers are saying. It makes it a personal experience, it makes people feel like more than just a number.
5. Joining forces with like minded brands- If you’ve ever flown Virgin, you would notice Method Soap in the bathrooms, and in November and December, Google picked up the in-flight wifi fees for all Virgin America Flights. You don’t have to pair with a huge brand, or a powerhouse, just another brand that has the same marketing mentality as yours.
In conclusion- Julie Cottineau gives her readers some great information on why these tools can be so useful, her main point being – “deliver the goods and the fans and friends will follow.”
Regardless of any social media, your product still needs to be remarkable.
I will echo the same sentiments she did by asking you all this: How has social media helped your brand? Do you think you can improve on your customer service by using a similar strategy to the Virgin Angels customer service Twitter account?
For Lumetrics customers: How can WE provide you with better service using some of these strategies?