“Today people don’t trust companies. One of the things marketers want to do is to humanize their brand. What better way to do it than put a live person in front of them”. Jackie Huba (http://www.churchofthecustomer.com/).
Why do you think 80% of the top 100 fortune companies are using at least one social media profile to engage with their customers (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Blogs)? If you guessed correctly, then you now realize the power of social media campaigns to these large companies. I know that it seems that social media is saturated and there is no room for new businesses to gain more customers across all the social media platforms. However, I bet that you probably don’t know that most companies still don’t use social media yet or don’t know how to use it properly. This shocking fact let you think for a while of the doors social media can open to your business.
I know that some of you may argue on the fact that this article should be entitled “5 big companies that don’t use social media yet” as all big companies have already moved on board. However, here are 5 big companies/corporations that are using social media effectively:
Ford really has an open minded mentality toward new marketing techniques, and that’s why they are considered as one of the top companies worldwide. This large company maintains several social media accounts across most of the platforms. The overall number of their Facebook fans is at almost 4 millions by the time of this post. According to Scott Monty, who is the head of Ford’s social media, platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have helped them amplify their message and gain trust through human to human interaction (not the old way of corporation to human). This has resulted to more than 5 million people sharing and interacting with each other. They also use: Youtube, Flickr, Delicious, Scribd and many other platforms. Ford has actually many projects going including releasing 3 electric cars next year. Farley says that he will be relying heavily on social media to promote these vehicles.
I know that you might say: “how come a technology company doesn’t make use of social media”. Believe me when I say that there are many other that still think social media is a toy. T-Mobile is well known for its wonderful adverts that drive a lot of attention. In a matter of fact, they are running a beautiful advert on their Facebook page called: The Great Dress Debate. What’s more interesting is that this company use Facebook and other social media platforms for seasonal hiring as well. Some experts even go further and say that there is no company that have embraced social media effectively more than T-Mobile.
This company also tries so hard to make social media as part of its culture says Thomas Knoll. It’s considered as one of the best companies that really know how to make use of social media. Knoll added that social media is a priceless opportunity to network and build relationships with customers. This online retailer takes micro blogging very seriously especially twitter. Zappos.com CEO has almost 2 million followers on his Twitter profile and their Facebook page has almost 170.000 fans. According to many experts, Zappos.com does 2 things very well (shoes and social media). Most of this company’s employers are on Twitter or other social media platforms in order to make this company as human like as possible.
HP has also a really unique social media approach. Their main focus is on integrity, innovation, education and of course collaboration. A few years ago, HP released a laptop called “The 20-inch HDX “Dragon”. They used all the conventional marketing methods including engaging blogger through giveaways. After almost a year, they decided to make use of social media through a company called Buzz Corps Inc (now called ivyworldwide ‘http://www.ivyworldwide.com/’) to manage their social media campaigns. What this company did is contacting 31 top tech bloggers that have very successful social networking profiles and blogs. They agreed with these bloggers to make a contest of 31 days in order to give away 31 laptops which they called “31 days of the Dragon http://www.31daysofthedragon.com/”. This contest has created a buzz through the web and HP ended up increasing their sales by 85% after almost a year from the first release. From then, HP has learned the lesson that the web is changing toward social media and started relying on it heavily to promote their products and services.
By the time I’m writing this now, Starbucks has already more than 25 million Facebook fans only on one page and more than 1.5 million Twitter followers only on one single profile of theirs. This number is considered crazy when you think of social media measurements. Starbucks uses Twitter mainly to engage with followers and answer their questions. This company has also a long history with social networking sites. In 2008, they have launched one called ““My Starbucks Idea”. This website allows users to submit their creative ideas and thoughts about Starbucks in order to be voted by consumers. After a while they launched a blog called “Ideas in action” which gives updates on the most voted ideas in action. A month later, Starbucks launched another site called “Starbucks volunteer to volunteer” which is a community for collaboration and discussion. With Starbucks being an idol in using social media, many companies are trying to replicate its processes in order to achieve such a success.