Snapchat: brands, ready to get naked?

In response to my previous post, you’ll find within this article a few arguments in favor of the use of Snapchat for business purposes. Stating that Snapchat is trendy and that politicians or institutional actors take this leap of faith nowadays isn’t enough to consider if snapchat should be integrated to your communications efforts…

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Indeed, as in any communications plans you design you’ll have of course to determine if your target audiences use it or could be willing to use it before launching it… Yet, once you’ve done your homework, if you’re looking for the following effects within your audience, then it my be really useful!

Create more proximity with you customers

I think one of the main aspect to consider with Snapchat is the big opportunity to create more proximity and even some intimacy. Think of all these people sharing pictures of them on Snapchat. I would say that bands have to keep in mind this kind of mood. You can’t replicate what you do on other social networks. You have to adapt. In other words, I’m not saying that you should share nude pictures of your CEO but you have to give pictures of your company or your products that are not seen anywhere else.

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Backstage pictures are typically a good and valuable content to be shared on Snapchat. In France the famous L’Equipe, a sports daily newspaper signed an exclusivity contract with the Ballon d’Or organization in order to provide its followers with backstage pictures of this ceremony.

In other words: try to surprise them!

Snapchat is definitely the place to make surprise announcement. It strengthens the proximity you can have with your customers or readers by giving them preview or teasers from your future services and offers or during special events (Miss Universe 2015 ceremony below)

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You have to surprise them, and the best surprise I know is the gift you can give them! You have to create some content which is really original, genuine and unexpected. You ability to design unexpected communications will encourage people to follow you in order not to miss it!

In order to facilitate the success of your call to actions!

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Through reminders, you’ll give them more chance not to miss your content. think for example of HBO sending snaps before some of their tv shows, making sure their audience will not forget to watch live their latest favorite show.

Propose special promotions and operations: converting your audiences into customers should be your prior target like MacDonald’s did during 2015 Superbowl.

They reminded their customers that they were able to pay with Lovin during a short period: Mac Donald’s U.S. restaurants have been letting some customers pay for orders during the past two weeks with fist bumps, kind words, and other behavior qualifying as—per the official rules—”a random act of Lovin’. OK, I admit, Mac Donald’s didn’t use it genuinely as a particular way to create a reaction towards its community but the idea was there. Why not asking people to send their snaps of having a Mac Donal meal in front of the match in order to benefit a special discount even gift in their Mac Donald for example… Plenty of call to actions could be designed… Costly or not, but at least with considering of making it happen differently and again create real interactions with the customers!

But we could simply imagine to use Snapchat as a way to give your customers special fares and gifts only available through this channel (exclusivity again!). What about you, what would you expect from a brand you’re following on Snapchat?

Snapchat… just for kids? Really?

I recently had the opportunity to welcome a few kids around 12 years old who where visiting my previous company during one of the training sessions I used to animate. I don’t think I was boring during these sessions and I always tried to do my best to provide a vivid presentation. Yet… How could I be able to maintain them in the loop? Snapchat came to my mind!

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And after having realized my short introduction during which these kids where stuck on their mobile phone, I asked to the participants: “What social network, do you use? Facebook? Raise your hand please? – no sign about these teenagers…” Twitter? – are they still awaken?.. Snapchat? YESSS!!!”. They did it, they can answer to simple question… But they were not the only one to answer! (Indeed Barney!!!)

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The point is a few other people raised their hands too… And they were over 35 years old… Of course, in the field of social media strategy, when it comes to studies about social networks adoption, we can have in mind some shortcuts, sometimes useful in the short terms… But when it comes to plan the future, you still need to be more open minded. This short experience helped me to understand that. I was quite surprised of these outcome but it made an echo with a real challenge for Snapchat!

Snapchat is trying to have their network used more and more by other population and to increase their user base. And it seems to be already the case: last year in the U.S., Snapchat added 25-to-34-year-old users (103%) and older-than-35 users (84%) faster than 18-to-24-year-old users (56%) as we can read in the LA times article. Obviously, older people don’t want to be outpaced by the younger and therefore people try to catch up… Well I guess I have to finally use this network too as a personal interest and find some friends and brands to follow.

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We’ll see in a other article how brand try to target this older users… But think of how much proximity it can bring during special events…  (sports team have understood it)

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At least, Snapchat gave me the opportunity to create a discussion with these teenagers… Finally the tool is really able to gather different generations 🙂

2016 has arrived! Let’s get social and enjoy!

Dear readers,

I’ve been quite busy since my last post in late November 2015. I gave my resignation a few months ago in order to be released from my professional duties and be able to start a new job in the coming months.

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Currently based in France, initially based in Nice – French Riviera, I decided to relocate to Paris in order to face new challenges. How exciting it is! As 2016 is just beginning, I’m very excited by this white sheet I have to complete and hope to be able to write this story with you.

Therefore I hope 2016 will be as enjoyable as excited it is to me today for all of you!

Since digital jobs require open-mindedness, feel free to connect with me in order to discuss content management, social media crisis or digital marketing, wherever you might be located from the US to Asia and who knows, may be we will be able to meet IRL soon

May 2016 will bring you everything you need, want, desire and above all, may the force be with you (and… don’t blink! Sorry, I wanted to make a mention to Dr Who, I’m a big fan!)

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Your clients are social! Will you get engaged (and how)?

I recently went through an interesting article on Social Media Today compiling some interesting data and statistics about customer service and social media I would sum up one ot these statistics in a simple manner: people have an important use of the web. OK, I agree, nothing to be surprised about but…

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… when you consider that they can spend a significant amount of their time on internet, then you have to face that reality: your customers have a great chance to be on social media. So if you have something wrong to apologize for… You can be pretty sure that they’ll have something to tell about it… or they already did!  Are you ready to live a great love affair with them or not? What can you do to deal with it?

#1 Be present!

Even if you don’t have the dreamt resources to do it, you have to be out there. Otherwise, your reputation will be on hold by a few customers you might have apologized to, helped if you’re lucky and creative… And you even might might benefit from something unexpected: an angry customer becoming a thanking and faithful customer!

Customer relationship is a relationship. It’s not a one night stand! You have to be commited, take care of your customers, make them feel important and unique (see below a few examples of engagement). In other words, love and cherish them for what they are: your most important stakeholders to make a living… and the ambassadors that can help you to attract new ones!

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Then you easily understand that when I say be present… it’s also to be in the present! you can’t afford to let people posting things and considering that it has not yet reached a level that requires action. You have to do something, from the moment you sold them something or you plan to do it!

Have a look at what Michel et Augustin a Paris based brand organizes on regular basis: meetings with its customers in their headquarter (named La Bananeraie) in order to taste their cookies. Not only it is important to be in real-time, but also to be in real world and create connections!

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But how can you proceed in order to develop such connection between your brand and services and your customers and create this possibility of a great customer experience… even when you’re facing difficulties?

#2 Monitor and listen

One of the best way to do it is to monitor what can be said on your brand. There are a lot of solutions nowadays; Personnally I’ve been using quite a few for big companies with budget to do so: Synthesio, Digimind, Meltwater of course are really interesting tools. Of course the list can be more detailed: from Sprinklr, to Falcon Social, Radian 6 or Sysomos… I’m sure I’m forgetting a lot of such tools and services providers… But what to do when you don’t have a budget? Stop trying to collect information and data about your brand or products?

Many platforms can be used for free. From the traditionnal Google Alerts, to Tweetdeck… But at some point, you will require to use more “systematic” tools that allow you not only to collect information but also to analyze it at one glance…

All this of course depending on what you are looking and what you are expecting… Is you priority only to be a fireman when something goes wrong? Or do you want to embrace the full opportunities that social media can bring to you like: analyzing your competitors moves (and sometimes difficulties), understanding other topics in which your customers are interested, finding new ways through best practices…

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But if monitoring and social media listening are to me the cornestone of your plan, you can’t reduce your commitment to this “back office plan”. At some point you have to go public and confront with your customers.

#3 Engage with them!

I’m not going to detail all the possible rules of engagement or ways to engage with your customers. But when it comes to what you define as customer service, don’t forget that for your customers it goes beyond the service! They are willing to have a good service… because they are living their own customer experience!

In other words what you think is just a service with dedicated procedures and actions is far more than that. You create what your customers will remember from you.

So if you want to engage… Do it like a pro! Ask for the information you don’t have in order to really solve their problems!

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Apologize, correct what’s going wrong and let people know you’ve done your part!

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Share the feedbacks if you have some!

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And then… repeat! 🙂

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And you, how do you deal with your customers satisfaction?

Content strategy: what is a sticky content? Rugby!

A very good friend of mine shared this impressive video which is part of a campaign launched by Beats By Dree during the Rugby World Cup.

This brand has been used to be associated to sports professionals from Lebron James to Serena Williams and soccer stars  yet, we can’t deny that this video with rugby living legend Richie Mc Caw is quite astonishing and is a great example of a sticky content.

Let’s see what are the key elements in this video if we compare it to a few points summed up in the famous book from Peter C. Brown  ”Making it Stick

1/ Stick to a plan: let’s tell a story then!

How do we get people to act on our ideas? We tell stories”. And this story starts simply with Richie McCaw starting his day, having a coffee… like anyone else!

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“Wake up Richie, you have a world cup to prepare!”

2/ Stick to simplicity

“Saying something short is not the mission—sound bites are not the ideal. Proverbs are the ideal” Then… In this case… What about a legend? Legend are embedded in the deep souls of everyone… As a result The video is rythmed by the famous known Haka of the blacks

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3/ Stick to your audience: surprise it!

“How do we get our audience to pay attention to our ideas, and how do we maintain their interest when we need time to get the ideas across? We need to violate people’s expectations”

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Me: ok this again the story of a sport professionnal fighting against the elements while training… Of course it is but… wait a minute, is it still the same movie? What are these fishermen doing in it? (they appear really quickly in the beginning of the film)…

The truth is, it is the story of a new zealander among others, within his country, belonging to this country made of mountains and boarded all along by the sea. But underlying these natural elements, you have the people, the ancestors, their culture and… rugby of course!

4/ Stick to concrete things

entrainementNaturally sticky ideas are full of concrete images” I think it’s pretty obvious. Richy is getting fit for the Rugby World Cup and apparently ready for the fight against the French Team tomorrow

5/ Stick to your credentials

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Sticky ideas have to carry their own credentials” I think Richie seems quite credible isn’t he? Preparing like a boxer, the confrontation is almost there, is focused, determined…

6/ Stick to your emotions, above all!

Last but not least, these aspect is one of the most important to me. I agree, all this is a cricle. A good story is necessarily made of emotions. But don’t neglect it. Here again everything is made to reach this goal. The music, the landscapes, the meaning of the Haka. the introduction scene with Richie Mc Caw shutting off the television and having a coffee… Until the end with this breathtaking view… Mission accomplished for this point: How do we get people to care about our ideas? We make them feel somethingMcCaw

To conclude, I would say this video is all the more exctiting when you check out the other stories made by this company regarding other teams including the French Squad… which is a pity when you are French and support your own team… But could our sense of humour make us win?

No matter, how difficult it can be for France tomorrow, “allez les bleus” let’s have a Kiwi smoothie! 😉

Social media content: exclusive doesn’t mean to exclude

I discovered this morning a briliant video posted on the Nike’s YouTube channel. I was recently attending to Azur Digital Day in Nice French Riviera (actually last week… and time flies I don’t have yet made a short digest of this conference on my blog… soon, soon!) during which  vice president of TBWA’s Europe explained that exclusivity was a good leverage to create shareable content (along with ego and experience).

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This video of Nike is really interesting and seems to use a good angle to create differenciated content. What if we decide to speak to all the people who are not sports stars? Those who are not the front runners? Have a look at it!

 

In other words, there is only one winner… But what about all the followers? We’ve all seen videos form sports brands claiming how unique was the brand in helping sports stars to achieve their goals, or to overcome their defeats and losses…

 

This video doesn’t focus on the winners. We are not all front runners. So are we doomed and must be exclusively seen as loosers? Are we exluded from this feeling of having the power to overcome some difficulties? No because, finally, you just have to do it because you want to do it, even if it is a matter of resitance and pain while you’re running. You are somone, entitled to enjoy your own moment of satisfaction and therefore, being a finisher or a “doer” are thinks that make you part of this exclusivity! This content has been design to target exclusively those who are not the most accomplished participants… and naturally speaks to our ego and is definitely about experience.

Because competition implies there is a ranking… But when it comes to the field of running, we are not speaking of loosers, but the last to arrive is also the one who is the last one standing! You become exclusive because the brand cares for you and your efforts no matter what is your ranking… “just do it” 😉

PS: I just came back from a difficult run when I saw this video. Thanks Nike for reminding me that the most important is to participate 😉

Social web is the doorstep of customer care: open this door… and your arms!

Doors can be easily opened. Yet while you’re a guest you’re expecting for someone to open this door. If you invite your customers to be part of the party, then you can’t let them wait for a long time at the door, you need to invite them to come in. How a brand can do that?

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It is frequent to read that you need to think out of the box. Ok, but how can I be sure not to remain in the box while I’m thinking as a I do think (or at least hope to do so!) like any other days in my life?

OMG!!! This reminds of Kant and really conceptual philosophy courses during my studies… Or maybe The Matrix… The spoon doesn’t exist! 😉

Whatever, please, stay there, relax and keep reading: Kant might be helpful, but I consider of giving you a few pieces of advice. And to be honest I hope to be a little bit more pragmatical and less philosophical than Kant could have been (or at least what I can remind of his books!)

1/ Forget the concepts! Start by being pragmatic, opportunistic and be fantastic at that!

We all have heard of presentations within companies, made internally or by agencies starting by « here is the concept ». The concept is not an objective.

Hublot watches: simple but efficient!

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First, think of what you propose and try to be really critic towards what you usually create and do internally.

In other words, try to change what you do: either by creating something really new, either by doing something really improved compared to what it used to be

2/ Does it mean I necessarily have to create a buzz?

Personally I don’t think so. Buzz is something that can attract attention. But what seems to be really important is not attention but loyalty. And customer loyalty is what you should be looking for (through customer satisfaction of course).

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As a result, a buzz can be a good leverage in order to drive attention but you have to think of making something more! Something that makes a real difference!

Simplify things and especially, simplify you customer’s life. Be at their service by proposing the content they are waiting for!

What then? Once you have created this amazing Facebook page with great contest, what are you going to share with them? How are you going to interact with them?

3/ Be innovative considering your own starting point!

You’ve never really cared for your customers online? Then start by doing this!  (Don’t panic!  70% of customer service complaints on Twitter are never answered!) Isn’t it already innovative to change this? Remember the first point, be pragmatic and be fantastic at that.

 bigstock-First-Class-Service-23649035You‘ve decided to be present on social web, don’t be passive, act! Thank people for liking you page and sharing content! Be friendly with them, care for what they share with you, whatever it might be: from critics, to questions, remarks or even a simple “hello”. Welcome them! (all my apologies to the recent followers I did not thank or mentioned on Twitter by the way). Remember? You’ve opened a door to them!

This reminds me of something I heard during a conference in Asia. For Hyatt Asia: “treat people on the web as if they were customer waiting in your lobby”. You have to care for them: whoever they are!

I really appreciate this campaign by Dove: what a great and innovative idea to include men and their stories in their campaign!

And if your confident with these basics! Then you’ll become truly fantastic: by surprising them, giving them unforgettable (but really good!) experiences.

Social web is definitely the doorstep of customer care. Open this door, say hello to them, invite them to join your club, make sure they take a seat, relax and just enjoy what’s next! That’s to say, the great content and experiences you’ve designed for them!