Taking Social Media to the Next Level – 3 Innovative Companies

When adopting a social media marketing campaign to your particular business, it is important to study successful social engagement strategies utilized by other companies. Even if your small business cannot implement all of the programs that larger multi-national companies can, many of their strategies can be duplicated. Reviewing the innovative uses of social media in the following three companies can help you become more knowledgeable about the possibilities of social media marketing in your own company. Consider the following:

1. Dell – The Listening Command Center

Taking Social Media to the Next Level - 3 Innovative CompaniesMonitoring and accurately responding to consumer trends as they voice brand “likes” and “dislikes” has become an important part of a company’s overall marketing strategy. For large multi-national companies like Dell this meant teaming up with Radian 6 to monitor Internet chatter about Dell in 11 different languages. This means that the 5,000+ Dell employees that interact with customers through social media can do so with a more informed overall picture of customer trends and recurring themes.
As more customers around the globe expect a higher level of social engagement from the brands they trust, companies will have to respond with authentic engagement of their own. Since chatter about a brand can directly affect reputation and sales, businesses of all sizes should be aware of the social media messages they are sending and receiving. Responding proactively with a positive and engaging social media marketing campaign is one way to stay ahead of the competition and promote brand loyalty. For more about Dell’s use of social media in their listening command center, see here

Creating Revenue from Twitter

Taking Social Media to the Next Level - 3 Innovative CompaniesDell has used Twitter in a number of ways. Announcing new products and sales keeps loyal customers informed. Fans of the brand Tweet about products and services. When a discontinued item is available at the Dell’s Home Outlet Store, Dell also sends out a Tweet and sales then can be tracked. This has led to over 1million in revenue for the company and you can read about it here. While the sheer volume of product going to an outlet will obviously not be the same for a much smaller company, the take home message is that people like to feel like they are getting a special deal. Utilizing social networks to announce special time sensitive offers is an effective way to grow your social network of fans and followers. Sending out periodic offers and relevant updates keeps your customer’s engaged throughout the year.

2. Morton’s Steak House Beefs up PR by Responding to a Tweet

Taking Social Media to the Next Level - 3 Innovative CompaniesYou may have heard about social media consultant, Peter Shankman’s, good luck last August when tweeting a shout out about how a Morton’s steak would be just the right ending to his flight arriving in Newark. The consultant who has 100,000+ Twitter followers was in fact greeted at the airport by a man in a tuxedo who was sent by Morton’s to deliver a complete steak dinner. Now, that tweet probably won’t work for you unless you are someone like Peter Shankman with many influential twitter followers who will probably frequent a Morton’s at some time in the future. But on the other hand, the take home message here is that building a social media following creates influence. Influence can sway business decisions and apparently every once in a while also score you a yummy steak dinner. See here

At the same time, Morton’s response to Shankman’s tweet cost little in comparison to the benefits of a widely communicated PR boost, subsequent payback of additional patronage, and the ongoing positive social media chatter. Creative uses of social media can benefit large and small companies; innovation is important!

3. Unisys – Evolving with the Times

Taking Social Media to the Next Level - 3 Innovative CompaniesWith a history as rich as the 100+ year old company, Unisys understandably had some obstacles to overcome when adapting social media to their corporate culture. With several top executives leading by example, departments began to openly share communication using internal social media applications. By aligning social media development with corporate goals, Unisys created a more open system for employees to share knowledge across divisions.

Creating unique adaptations to social media opens up doors to richer collaboration. New ideas flow more freely when a corporation builds meaningful networks for employees to communicate and create. Some executives resist social media for fear of losing control of information. However, case studies show that companies can enjoy huge innovative payoffs aided tremendously by the open sharing of information available through well-constructed social media platforms and corporate adaptations. Every company can benefit from a richer utilization of synergistic communication tools across divisions. The most successful business leaders are using social media tools to help drive growth in innovative applications that are evolving with the emerging technologies.

Conclusion

A well-constructed social media campaign becomes a powerful ally in the struggle to secure and maintain the competitive advantage in a rapidly expanding and increasingly diverse international marketplace. Though studying the examples of highly successful companies, smaller companies can widen their perspective about the role of social media in long term business development strategies. With the right knowledge and comprehensive application social media can help drive growth, increase profits, and build your sphere of influence one Tweet at a time.
Creating an authentic engagement with clients and customers is a vital component of any cutting edge marketing and sales strategy. Tailoring your social media marketing campaign to drive your goals can create large ROI’s and boost corporate longevity well into the future. As social media continues to evolve, companies that evolve alongside these tools will enjoy increased recognition and customer engagement as savvy customers and clients continue to drive trends toward continued corporate engagement. Business leaders who demonstrate the skills to create open forums for employees to share ideas and interact more meaningfully with clients are among the most successful and sought after commodities in today’s ultra-competitive economic environment.

This guest post was provided by Dean Vella who writes for University Alliance on topics pertaining to the subjects of mobile marketing training and social media courses.

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