Thursday, February 25, 2010

Blogwell Blog

Well, I attended Gas Pedal’s Blogwell event in San Diego last week to hear how leading brands are operating in the social media space. The case study sessions I sat in on included Starbucks, USAA, Community Medical Centers and State Farm. There was also a “keynote” in the middle on social media ethics from the event organizer – the Social Media Business Council. All the sessions were illuminating in many ways and below you will see the tweet-trail of highlights I generated during the course of the afternoon. However, let me first provide some overarching observations for your consideration:

  • While all these brands (and others represented at the conference) are certainly well into their use of social media, this is still new territory for them and they themselves are still learning how to best leverage the social space. In other words, even if you are just starting out in exploring social media, you are really not that far behind and have the benefit of learning from other brands’ experience (successes and failures).

  • Even these large enterprises are struggling with resource allocation for social media both in terms of staff and budget.

    o In terms of staff, most only had 3-5 people tasked with social media responsibilities in total. And these people often had cross-functional responsibilities – social media and digital marketing, social media and public relations/public affairs, social media and advertising, etc.

    o In terms of budget, most did not have dedicated social media allocations but were siphoning funds from other sales/marketing buckets. The ability to provide management with compelling ROI data was cited by many as a barrier to getting more direct budget.

  • Every single presentation mentioned the importance of getting senior leadership to champion social media across the enterprise.

All in all, I walked away from the conference feeling very energized and validated in terms of the 5-Phase Process DBE is using to help our clients enter the social media environment. From name-claiming to auditing to strategy to tactical implementation is certainly the right path to social media success.

Here's the tweet-trail:

4:06pm, Feb 16
At Blogwell conference in San Diego - already met some good people in the enterprise social media space #blogwell #social #marketing
starbucks: social fits within larger digital strategy
starbucks: build internal coalition across enterprise. c-suite, legal, hr, mktg, etc
starbucks: social media part of digital budget now but stole from other projects initially
usaa financial: built on wom and using social for brand reputation
usaa financial: using ratings/review apps to facilitate social engagement
usaa financial: also using webinars to share expertise
usaa financial: transforming call centers to contact centers to handle social scale up
#blogwell social media blurs editorial and advertising line
#blogwell create social media policies and training programs to stay ethical and lawful
#blogwell ftc says brands are responsible for social media monitoring - can't claim ignorance
community med ctr: uses leadership blogs, employee podcasts for social
community med ctr: bloggers include drs, nurses, exec staff and others
community med ctr: testing twitter and mobile texting of health tips
community med ctr: employee engagement important goal of social strategy
state farm: social media balancing act includes personal vs business use
state farm: brand name claiming issues on all social properties at start
state farm: risk vs reward includes risk of NOT participating
state farm: need to provide employees path for asking questions re social use
#blogwell thanks for a great afternoon of social media case studies

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