Yet, how do you pull off “authentic” while maintaining the company brand message?
It’s tough enough for a small business. What if you’re #2 on Business Week‘s best global brands list, with nearly 400,000 employees across 170 countries?
At IBM, it’s about losing control.
“We don’t have a corporate blog or a corporate Twitter ID because we want the ‘IBMers’ in aggregate to be the corporate blog and the corporate Twitter ID,” says Adam Christensen, social media communications at IBM Corporation.
Her resume includes digital strategy for global companies like Procter & Gamble, General Motors, Sun Microsystems and Zappos.
But her local Domino’s Pizza joint left her “completely shocked.”
On a rainy Sunday night, her Domino’s Pizza order took an hour to arrive and then was the wrong pizza. She turned to Twitter to vent: “hardly any room for human error, but still a mistake.”
Imagine marveling at Peru’s Machu Picchu ruins, and a guy nearby asks if you’ll take his picture. But it’s not just him; he’s proudly holding a paper cutout of a smiling tomato.
What, exactly, inspired this traveler to carry a cartoon tomato to one of the wonders of the world?
In a word, fun.
He’s just one of nearly 140 people who vacationed with the tomato, named “Sweetie.” These fans of the restaurant Souplantation, or Sweet Tomatoes in some markets, were enthusiastically participating in the chain’s latest social media promotion, “Where’s Sweetie?”
At a time when businesses are using social media to promote content and start discussions, Avaya has found that listening trumps talking.
“We’re listening to social media and responding,” said Paul Dunay, Avaya’s social media ringleader, who is global managing director of services and social media marketing.
“There is no Tweet that goes unturned. No forum post that goes unturned where our name is mentioned.”
What began as a way to engage and support customers has evolved beyond even Avaya’s expectations. And if Avaya ever doubted its investment in social media, those concerns are now put to rest.
In 2004, Steven Cox sat down with a fellow musician after a gig. Cox’s friend and his wife were expecting their first baby and hoping to buy a house. But as a musician and private instructor, he struggled with making ends meet.
“Playing music doesn’t necessarily pay all the bills, unless you have a really big contract or gig,” Cox says. “My friend was hanging flyers in drugstores and music stores but still not finding enough students.”
Cox, once a full-time musician, worked a day job in IT and management consulting at the time. When he suggested his friend go online to connect with aspiring musicians, the friend confessed, “I’m a musician. I don’t know anything about that.”
With that, Cox began orchestrating TakeLessons.com.