Social Media and ROI for Steaz Organic Tea Drinks

Hello Readers,

This is the final destination on my Enterprise 2.0 blogging journey and I am pleased to say I have actually enjoyed this experience immensely and do feel I have learnt vital information to assist with my own and a company’s online presence. This week’s topic is ROI and the role that it plays in social media or more specifically:

“Your task this week is to identify and discuss an additional ROI case example on your blog. What is your view on how ROI was calculated? Did they include all the tangible and intangible benefits? What are the strengths and weaknesses of their approach?”

ROI and Social MediaImage Source: Bullet Point Branding

In simple terms, ROI (Return On Investment) means knowing the value of what you have invested (or your costs) and the value of what you have received or gotten back (your gains). The actual formula is (Gain from Investment – Cost of Investment) divided by the Cost of the Investment, which gives you the ROI percentage. So basically, having a high ROI means that you have a high amount of gains from that investment compared to the costs that you put into it. That is as simple as I can explain it, but ultimately it is a number that many Board of Directors and CEO’s are extremely interested in when it comes to budgeting and seeing the success of a campaign or activity. A recent Forbes survey revealed that for those working in social media alone, 66% of them felt pressure from their bosses to measure ROI in regards to social media activities.

The ROI case example I have selected to discuss is Steaz. It is an American company that makes organic tea soda and energy drinks and has only been in existence since 2002. Steaz and Social MediaThe case begins in 2009, when Steaz had the opportunity to sell their products in 1500 Target stores around the US, but in such a competitive market, they knew being quite an unknown brand they would need to optimise on this opportunity even though their budget was limited.

With the help of Chemistry, a marketing and PR agency, a $100K social media campaign budget was set (the organisation’s costs). As the brand’s primary target market was mothers, they researched and determined that 72% of this market found out about new products via social media and online channels, which could work to their advantage.

The results of this campaign were far greater than Steaz hoped for, originally just wanting Target to notice the new brand they had started stocking. By using social media monitoring sites like SocialMention and Viral Heat, as well as PPC, downloadable Internet Coupons, Blog and Twitter posts, and Facebook Ads, the brand had a number of ways of measuring how ‘engaging’ their campaign would be.

The Results:

  • 250,000 Internet Coupons were downloaded in 8 weeks (with a 20%+ redemption rate)
  • The brand received 3000+ new fans and followers on social media sites
  • Over 6000 blog mentions and reviews were recorded.
  • The PPC ads saw 20,000+ visits to the Steaz website.
  • A total of 30, 000, 000 impressions.
  • The Steaz brand was emptied from the shelves of Target and production had to be increased to meet the demand.
  • By December 2009 their sales were double the amount of their best month ever at over $1,000,000.

The fact that the brand used a variety of monitoring tools to be able to see tangible and intangible benefits was a very smart move. The biggest tangible benefit is obviously that production was increased as a result of their campaign and sales doubled, meaning their ROI was high. However, the brand was also interested in the intangible benefits like the promotion and word-of-mouth aspects that meant better relationships were built with their consumers.

Overall I think this was a great campaign and a good demonstration of how powerful social media can be for brand awareness and engagement with a customer to overall impact a businesses ROI. Building strong customer two-way relationships via these interactive tools, or the ‘intangible’ benefits can lead to many ‘tangible’ benefits as seen in the case, but can often be a lot harder to measure for bigger organisations or when a campaign is spread across a multitude of mediums.

While conducting my research for this topic, I found a few online ROI Social Media Calculators: ROI Calculator and Social Networking Media ROI Calculator. I am not sure I really understand how they would work for an organisation, so if anyone reading this has given them a go, I would love to hear your thoughts!

I appreciate any feedback or comments you have for me and thank you for reading through my adventures on Enterprise 2.0!

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Qantas and Social Media Monitoring

Hello Readers,

This week in Enterprise 2.0 we have been focusing on social media monitoring and networking. This topic is often of particular interest for an organisation’s marketing/advertising/ PR team, in terms of being informed about their target markets online as well as what is being said about their organisation. The advantages of social media monitoring are great, with real-time data available in just a few clicks! There are a number of free social media monitoring tools available to organisations and users, two of which that I was not previously familiar with being Addictomatic and Tweetlevel.

I decided to try out these two tools to see what kind of information they presented for a Qantas and Social Mediaspecific organisation. As it is nearing the Christmas holidays and my mind is thinking about travelling and no longer having to do uni work each weekend, the organisation I have selected is Qantas Airways. The results of my experience using each website and the insights I found about Qantas are below.

Addictomatic. The website is quite easy to use from a user experience point of view, you simply type in the topic/organisation you are interested in and ta-da, you are presented with information sorted into categories, such as Bing, Youtube, Flickr, etc. I took a screen grab of the information that popped up when I did a search on Qantas.

Addictomatic and QantasWhat is interesting is that despite Qantas having an official Twitter page, they did not get any results for Twitter searches. This makes me question the reliability and accuracy of this social monitoring tool in terms of all of these different channels. If I search Qantas on Twitter, I receive thousands of hits. I also assume that if Qantas were not in the midst of a headline story having a snake found on one of their planes (The snakes on a plane jokes are already all over twitter) that the information for news searches could be quite old at times.

Tweetlevel. Again this website was very interesting to use and I didn’t have to sign up or log in to my twitter account to be able to review the results, unlike some platforms such as Tweetreach. This site lets you search for your organisation/ topic and shows the tweet ‘buzz’ or engagement for those key words, over a recent time period. I took a screen shot Tweetlevel and Qantasof the graph that was presented to me. I think this would be a particularly interesting tool if promoting a campaign, an organisation like Qantas could analyse how well it might be going depending on the buzz that is being created on those particular days.

I would recommend that every organisation engage in social media monitoring in some way and I have no doubt that a large organisation like Qantas has numerous people keeping track of what is happening and being said around their brand. Interestingly enough, I found in a news article this afternoon that Qantas is trialing watching social media conversations that happen within their lounges, check it out here.

If you’re still interested to hear more about social media monitoring, my assignment team, 4Social is hosting a Live Google Hangout Event on the topic on Tuesday 24th September 2013 at 7pm. You can join us live in the hangout or watch it on youtube at a later date.

That’s all from me for now, again I really appreciate any feedback, comments or questions you have!

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Is social media helping or hindering our lives?

Hello Readers,

I have been writing a lot of blog posts recently about how beneficial certain social media platforms are to enhance productivity and add value to our lives and an organisation’s business procedures. However, there are people who sit on the other side of the fence of this argument who say that social media is making the next generation lack in social skills and is just downright a waste of time.

Now, you probably all know where I stand. Social media I think, purely from a marketing perspective, (as for those of you who do not know, I have a bit of a marketing-lead brain), is changing the way organisations do business and for the better.  The interaction that can happen on social media is working towards Grunig and Hunt’s two-way asymmetrical two-way-communicationmodel, which in PR terms is the ‘ideal’ model of communication to create mutually beneficial relationships.

Image Source: Boadroom Metrics

Not to mention the data that can now be captured via social media platforms, such as using Facebook insights on an organisation’s page. These statistics, such as posts that are getting engagement and those that are not can often form the basis of an entire marketing campaign.

Social media is not just a useful tool for organisations to interact and inform its followers on a marketing level though, consider the 2011 Queensland floods… Both Twitter and Facebook were used during this time of disaster by emergency services like Queensland Police and Brisbane City Council to inform people of updates and warnings, but also by flood victims in need of help and during the clean up period. Statistics revealed that more than 35,000 tweets used the hashtag #qldfloods over the six days and this is not the only example of social media helping out those in need during times of crisis, particularly when phone lines or electricity have been down.

Queensland Floods and Social Media

Image Source: News.com.au

I’m not saying there are not negative aspects surrounding social media that have appeared over time.  As many as 55% of organisations are now having to block social media sites from their work places to avoid employee misuse or because they are significantly reducing productivity. I can particularly relate to that when it is time to write an assignment! Also, cyber bullying, particularly for school children, is a terrible example of a result from social media and really is a huge problem that is hard to be managed in an environment like this.

I have only really just covered the very smallest tip of huge iceberg here; there are so many different perspectives and arguments surrounding this topic. I would love to hear your thoughts about this though! Facebook may not be the best tool for Superman, but is it for you? Where do you stand on this issue?

Superman and Social Media

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Blogging and Tweeting Can Enhance A Business: BCM Partnership

Hello Readers!

Update from my previous blog post: For those of you who are interested, the dachshund (Invader), who needed adopting from the RSPCA is no longer available on their website which gives me high hopes that someone has adopted him- yay!

So after that positive note, I will get into the guts of what our task is for this week. We were required to select an organisation from the Professional Services Sector and discuss how they are using a blog, twitter or wiki to enhance their business, of course with connections to relevant value levers from the McKinsey Report that we are all familiar with now!

The organisation I have selected from the Professional Services sector is BCM Partnership. BCM is now one of Australia’s largest advertising and integrated marketing communication organisations, and are an organisation that I personally follow on their social media platforms (they have a plethora of interesting pages).

BCM PartnershipAs well as having a visually pleasing and well designed website, or at least I think so anyway, they also have an official Facebook page, Twitter page and Blog. However, while I could not find any wiki pages affiliated with BCM- it is always possible that they could use a wiki as an internal tool to assist in collaboration among different members of staff or organisational areas.

As an advertising and IMC business, BCM has to be a heavily socially active organisation to not only be able to communicate work of their clients, but also develop new business or attract customers. Twitter alone has reported having over 200 million active users, that amount of potential target markets and influence is a huge incentive for any organisation in the professional services sector.

I definitely feel that BCM are optimising on this with their twitter account and blog posts, and if they weren’t they would ultimately be lagging behind their competitors in the advertising/marketing arena, as well diminishing their chances of the types of clients they may be able to attract, such as one of their current clients, QUT. As QUT is the ‘university for the real world’, I doubt that if BCM was not engaged in up-to-date applications and marketing practices, such as those of social technologies, that QUT would have hired them (I am not saying QUT hired them just because they use twitter and blogs, so hopefully you understand what I mean).

BCM Partnership and QUT

Source: BCM Partnership Website 

Two of the value levers of social technologies that I think are particularly relevant to BCM and their blog posts and twitter feed are: using social technologies for marketing communication/ interaction and deriving customer insights.

Blogging and Twittering allows BCM to share and spread marketing communication messages (of their own and their clients) on a large scale level for relatively no cost at all, that in itself is a huge benefit. But, the two-way communication that this enables allows for people to feel involved in the conversation and contribute their thoughts and opinions. BCM interacts with their followers on twitter and in blog posts, by asking them questions, responding to queries, as well as sharing tips to the marketing/ advertising community about how to be more successful in that area. By BCM responding to people’s thoughts (even the negative ones) they are fostering some of the key affordances of social technology such as participation and transparency.

What I particularly like about their blog and twitter posts is that they add to their credibility as knowledgable professionals in the field by coming up with new ideas and topics on a daily basis.

BCM TwitterSource: BCM Twitter Feed

While at the same time, they as an organisation seem relate-able from the way they present and word content (such as this blog post of theirs about mediocre superpowers), their work is not shovelling marketing content and how great they are down your throat all the time, and to me that’s really using social technologies to enhance a business and its in a smart way. What do you think?

Thanks again for taking the time to read through my blog post! I appreciate any feedback or comments you have for me.

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