Social Media is impacting everything. Not only in the usual ‘everybody is living on Facebook and email is dead’ kind of fashion, but in real, measurable business impact and technique. Chris James, Director of Social Media at GMC, for example, shared a case study on how GMC used social media and crowd-sourced innovation for the development of Phenom Coconut Water:
To improve the taste of coconut water, GMC set out to find flavours. They used Radian6 and other social listening tools and social media interaction for that. Not only did GMC save $250k on research, they also unearthed the primary consumers for it (Yoga practitioners), which led to product alterations not only in flavour but in ingredients (calories, etc) and also a route to market. So ultimately GMC applied the old school marketing favourites of segmenting, targeting and positioning, but the use of social media made it more cost effective, more direct and more instant.
Beth Lapierre, Chief Listening Officer of Kodak, told a similar story. As traditional research is taking too long, Kodak is using social media instead and has developed ‘social intelligence’: “The management, analysis and transformation of social conversations to uncover insights and opportunities that drive product innovation and customer satisfaction.”
- product development, as real time feedback from consumers leads to shorter and cheaper product cycles, permanent iteration enters all product spheres and most importantly differentiators
- Crowd source the name of products
- averting rumblings becoming fully-fledged PR disasters
- media planning and buying: they pulled TV advertising when it’s frequency would have damaged the brand and used the freed-up money for a different communication method (obviously based on social intelligence insights)
- Influencer engagement
Social Media impacts everything and changes everything: every industry, every skill, every approach and it’s not only the brands that have to react but also the research companies, the media buyers, the media owners, the manufacturers, the entire supply chain. As we’ll see in tomorrow’s post, this has a knock on effect on the people we recruit and the skills we require.