Iconic brands join in with social media strategy

28 09 2010

 It is great to see some of the bigger players in the industry developing and   launching their own social media policy. For such a long time traditional TV and print media mass marketed has been the way to communicate the brands messages with customer. Many of the bigger companies are not familiar with the benefits associated with social media and the benefits in creating a two way interactive conversation between customers and themselves. I think many more of the larger well recognised brands should also take the intuitive and develop a strategy for social media just like   Coca Cola have done.  

Adam Brown, Head of Coca Cola’s Social Media discusses the key parts in developing the principles and the reasons behind them. He explains that Coca Cola is a global company with over 200 initially the key guidelines were implemented in 2008 and have been revamped for 2010. The three page document includes guidelines and principles around specific social principles for official spokespeople covering what to say and what not to say and how to address twitter and Facebook posts. Coca Cola have taken a very clever approach to utilise marketing and to ultimately become apart of the online conversations which are already happening.

Coca Colas vision includes:

            LEADERSHIP: The courage to shape a better future;
            COLLABORATION: Leveraging our collective genius;
            INTEGRITY: Being real;
            ACCOUNTABILITY: Recognizing that if it is to be, it’s up to me;
            PASSION: Showing commitment in heart and mind;
            DIVERSITY: Being as inclusive as our brands; and
            QUALITY: Ensuring what we do, we do well.
 

The Marketing and Legal team have assisted in the development of these strategies and they will be adopted globally and the top ten principles for online spokespeople are listed below:

  1. Be Certified in the Social Media Certification Program.
  2. Follow our Code of Business Conduct and all other Company policies.
  3. Be mindful that you are representing the Company.
  4. Fully disclose your affiliation with the Company.
  5. Keep records.
  6. When in doubt, do not post.
  7. Give credit where credit is due and don’t violate others’ rights.
  8. Be responsible to your work.
  9. Remember that your local posts can have global significance.
  10. Know that the Internet is permanent.

Adam’s advice for other companies is to keep the principles/strategy simple. The Coca Cola strategy is 3 pages in the length and the main objective is to empower their associates.

Chaffey notes that the importance of an internet marketing strategy is to provide direction for the company’s emarketing activities to ensure that they integrate with the other activities. Further more Coca Cola’s approach to social media with provides benefits in the form of relationship marketing. Coca Cola will not have any acquisition costs, less need to offer incentives, customers will be fewer prices sensitise, loyal customers will take part in recommending the company to friends and family and they can expect to see increased revenue growth as the trust increases. With the right SEO and Google analytics for campaigns Coca Cola will also be able to determine their customers by values working out which customers contribute the most profit and who is the smaller portion of customers, this too will assist in develop targeted campaigns.

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One response

20 10 2010
techeffectiv

Your post raises important issues, and Coca-Cola, true to form, are playing a leading role in an emerging area of marketing.

I think a key takeaway point from your article is the fact that Coca-Cola’s guidelines are relatively succinct – when was the last time you saw corporate guidelines that fitted into three pages?

Social media thrives on authenticity, and this is why it’s so exciting and dynamic. However, as I discuss in my blog post Do You Really Need a Social Media Strategy (http://blog.aktiv.com.au/2010/09/10/do-you-really-need-a-social-media-strategy/), there are a variety of perspectives on how much strategy and structure is productive when it comes to social media. My personal view is that corporations need to find a balance which allows sufficient flexibility for their staff to engage freely and in a manner which reflects their own personality and interests, and it appears that Coca-Cola have tried to allow this within a certain risk management safety net.

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