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SAScon 2011: Social Media Insights

With Rob Brown, Stuart Bruce, Kevin Hoy (Web Manager – GMP)

GMP had a slow realisation (rather than a tipping point) that social media was really important.

At a conferences social media means: your slides are no longer your ow due to photographs and slide share, swarm badges are impossible (NOT TODAY!) and noone has to listen any more as it’s acceptable to be on laptops and phones.

Sony Ericsson found out through sentiment and social media to find out faults with the phone and to see what users really liked about the phone. This meant that they ended up fixing the manufacturing process, improving quality control and chenged their marketing strategy.

Nissan in 2008 – someone on Twitter was asking for a test drive through twitter and was complaining that he didn’t get one. He had a few hundred followers (Which was a lot back then) and he was also a BBC editor, so it was a PR and customer service issue.

One idea for a larger company to implementing social media across all sections was to chair a monthly social media council from R&D, customer service, legal issues, PR. Use current staff in each area and retrain. Sony ‘loved’ any ‘news leakers’ to death instead of beating then to death by inviting them to launch events etc.

Don’t recommend radical changes to more conservative companies when advising on social media. Also, always show them cash benefits.

GMPolice twitter experiment

A huge amount of what the police do is dealing with social issues. The police constable wanted to raise awareness of this. They would have in the past sent out a press release with details on. This might have got a small article in the MEN. At the same time, they were developing social media and were having an impact on Twitter. They decided to do something with Twitter instead.

They had to be careful that no locations were released and productivity wasn’t effected. They wanted to be as transparent as they could. So they numbered a tweet so that the office could deal with any calls coming in. The volume of calls was so large that they had to have 2 twitter teams.

They didn’t anticipate the response and feedback they got. massive impact. Started at 5am, by 9pm there were 19,000 followers. It opened their eyes on how social media and transparency could have so much impact on the public’s perceptions of crime and the police. They didn’t anticipate the level of spoof accounts. They don’t think they dealt with it well at first by asking them to stop, but then realised it was only helping the

greater cause by increasing viability and hashtag trendingness. (I know, I know!)

There was some resistance from people, but lucky in the fact that chief officers were trusting of the digital team.

PR team are now moving from traditional to a more progressive model.

It’s all about content and responding.

Klout is a good starting point, but you need human interpretation to understand influence. A big part of this is also being able to identify offline influence.

Staniforth looked at blog twitter account (used to be an RSS feed for blog) it’s been growing organically on followers, but is a decrease of click through rates.. so twitter follower numbers don’t show you how active and relevant they are. Use a bitly link and follow what actually happens.

B2B new brand is difficult, no matter how good your content is. How do you capture followers attention? Answer: Traditional PR. People care about how much expertise they have. Speaker platforms, see yourself as publisher. You don’t need huge numbers in B2B.

Tools: Feeddemon, Tweetdeck, Twitter counter, flitter, co-tweet.

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