Textappeal’s 25th Advisory Board Dinner on Global Social Media
The ability for a global brand to pivot on a dime in order to meet the needs of an ever-changing digital marketplace is arguably one of the biggest challenges a company faces today. At an exciting and insightful Advisory Board Dinner hosted by Textappeal and Newsroom last month, a group of senior professionals gathered to share thoughts, opinions, and advice on the challenges of global social media.
The topic, How to translate global brands to local social, saw our own Director Elliot Polak pose a number of questions to representatives from Aer Lingus, Dunkin’ Brands, Microsoft, Montblanc and Ralph Lauren, as well as several agencies. Here we review some of the key takeways from the event.
Why Travel is a Powerful Brand Motivator
Second to only relationship updates (no surprise there) the top ideas shared on Facebook are travel related. From a psychology standpoint, why is that so?
Michelle Lee, the Director of Marketing and Guest Experience at Aer Lingus cited the inspirational aspects of the travel experience. “How you use your time outside work is why travel is so popular,” Michelle noted. “As a social currency, travel is used to show our best selves and truly engages our connections.”
Because airlines want to be envisioned as lifestyle brands by consumers, social media can help tap into the most inspirational aspects of travel across a variety of digital platforms.
Spreading Global Messages for Local Good
Psychological word techniques are a tried-and-true method to influence change in a consumer’s vision of a brand. Can the same psychology be used to motivate positive social change?
Alex Van Gestel, CEO of Verbalisation, explained how terror organisations like ISIS are able to use social media to their advantage to recruit and radicalise. To counter such messages, Verbalisation launched a campaign using the hashtag #NotAnotherBrother in order to counter extremists with a narrative that upends the risk and reward of falling into the trap of extremism, as well as a message of hope to disenfranchised youths. “Behavior change is the mission,” Alex said, “and we’re deploying a message that contrasts the promises versus the reality.”
Don’t Control the Conversation. Be a Part of It
Where does a brand live in a digital conversation? And if the audience is in control, do they own the brand? Lisa Lee, Chief Strategy Officer at Nomads Agency, explained the importance of influencing people’s experiences more positively. “You can’t control conversations anymore and you can’t tell people what to say,” Lisa explained, “so instead you want to be a part of the conversation.”
Not Just Big Data; But Nimble Data
“What if Unilever knew what it already knows?” asked one of our guests from IBM.
As one of the largest companies in the world, with dozens of highly-recognizable brands under its umbrella, Unilever’s challenge is to move quickly in the digital space. By using a thinking computer like IBM’s Watson, Unilever can take the info from a consumer package company and glean all sorts of insights in order to power it’s digital marketing platform.
Be Consistent…But Even More So Be Authentic
Maintaining consistency across each digital channel is a huge challenge for any marketing team, especially when a brand must create different messages for each market around the globe. But a phenomenon that is eclipsing into traditional aspects of marketing is the idea of authenticity, being genuine, and generating a story.
Jason Barret, the founder of Social Talent explains that brand influencers are among the most important individuals for any brand. “Advocates are authentic; they care about the brand,” Jason stressed. “They are loyal, and having a real fan that will stick up for the brand by themselves is tremendously powerful.”
As budgets migrate away from traditional channels and into digital ones, marketers and advertisers must rise to the challenge. For decades, the rule was that brands spoke, and people listened. That’s not so anymore. Deeply listening to what people say and what they are consuming can make a brand and it’s offering all the more meaningful. Instead of being the one’s talking, we should now be the ones listening.