Communiqué PR attended a Puget Sound American Marketing Association (PSAMA) event on Wed., Nov. 11 entitled, “Building Brand with Social Media: How Starbucks does it and what they’ll do next.”
Interestingly, Starbucks, which in 2008 was named one of the worst brands in social media, now has more than five million fans on Facebook and nearly 500,000 followers on Twitter. Starbucks has more Facebook fans than Coca-Cola and is now the third highest rated brand in social media. Starbucks’ social media initiatives are intimately integrated with traditional media efforts and enable the company to build its brand, listen to conversations, gather feedback from consumers, answer questions, and launch new products and promotions.
Brad provided some interesting insight on the use of social mediums, such as Twitter and Facebook, and how companies can leverage these networks to interact with and provide value to consumers.
Some of the highlights include:
Social media is about engagement. While social media can be used to provide valuable information to key audiences, it is really about meaningfully engaging with consumers and other key audiences. It’s not about talking at others; it’s about talking with others.
Responses on Twitter should be instant. Starbucks does not employ an approval process for Twitter responses. While some companies have approval policies that may cause them to take up to 24 hours to respond to direct messages and questions on Twitter and Facebook, Starbucks is able to respond almost instantaneously because Brad does not have to secure approval for his responses before replying. Brad’s use of Twitter is similar to the discussions a customer might have with a barista in one of the stores. After all, a barista does not check with upper management before interacting with or responding to a customer’s inquiries.
Social media is not a fad – it is here to stay. According to Brad, the first social medium was instant messaging, which became popular in the early 1990s. Over the years, social media has evolved and matured. And it will continue to grow in the years to come. Those who are not engaging and learning about social media will be left in the dust as more employers and companies begin to leverage these mediums and expect their employees to have experience and knowledge of these platforms.
To learn more about leveraging social media to align with business objectives, send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.Tags: Barista, Brad Nelson, Coca-Cola, Communique PR, Facebook, Instant Messaging, Marketing, PSAMA, Public relations, Puget Sound American Marketing Association, Social media, Starbucks, Twitter