Every customer touchpoint, or even any public touchpoint, is an opportunity to reinforce a brand message (or mess it up as the case maybe). Consumer trust might start from your storytelling; but a cross section of what they hear and experience forms your brand reputation. Word of mouth trumps most TV spots or glossy magazine ads and it’s that kind of esteem that determines where companies sit in a ranking like Asia’s Top 1000 Brands (or if they make it in at all).
Branding matured during the 20th century when the press still moved at the speed of paper and word of mouth was always a one-to-one transaction; companies could afford to rely more on storytelling and less on actions. Only the most horrible incidents turned into a crisis. But today the bulk of consumers carry an international megaphone in their pocket. Praise and complaints can be heard round the world at the push of a virtual button and the word “retweet” has entered multiple languages. One guy getting a slow burger at a fast food chain can mount a campaign to tarnish a brand’s image. (Slight exaggeration there but you get the point).
Customer service and retention, recruiting and internal communications are all operational areas that were once entirely offline. These have migrated into the social space and companies handle it in a number of ways, some proactively and some not at all. Thomas Crampton, global managing director at Social@Ogilvy points out that brands that don’t engage on social media do not get a free pass. If you won’t be part of the conversation he explains, then all the talk essentially goes on behind your back and you could automatically create poor impressions. Crompton gave me a lot of other interesting tips about how brands can turn social media conversations to their advantage and I’ll be getting him to repeat and expand upon those in our webinar on 26 August.
Jamshed Wadia, head of social media, APAC & Japan for Intel; and Ken Mandel, managing director, APAC at Hootsuite will also be on the panel to talk about best practices and things that brands can do to become more active and integrate operational aspects into social strategies to ultimately reflect back positively on the brand.
Responsiveness was one major theme Mandel highlighted and he has many suggestions about how companies can build that into their approach. I’ll ask him about those tactics during the webinar.
Intel is a brand that has built strong international recognition and I’ll be asking Wadia how his company conducts social listening and recruitment as well as marketing on social channels to reinforce positive perceptions about the company. “Everything we do reaches back to the brand,” he told. We’ll hear more about how that works and what companies can do to instill a consistent personality and tone into social actions as well as more traditional marketing.
The webinar conversation takes place on 26 August (7:30am India; 10:00am Singapore/Hong Kong; 12:00pm Sydney) but you’ll be able to listen on demand after that once you register. But tune in live to get the most from the session, where you’ll be able to ask questions of the panel. Or feel free to use the comments section below to pose queries, or tweet a question @CampaignAsia right now using the hashtag #hashtagsyndrome.