Here’s something worth perusing: “Coke’s ’Fans First’ Approach in Social Communities,” a Slideshare presentation by group director Michael Donnelly of worldwide interactive marketing.
We gave the 38-page piece a quick run-through and learned about everything from Coca-Cola’s “history of ’painting the town red’,” to how many Cokes are consumed a day, to the philosophy that its homepage isn’t just coke.com; it’s google.com. And Twitter.com. And YouTube.com. And hyves.nl. And … you get the idea.
What’s Coca-Cola learned from listening to buzz? That its brand doesn’t belong to the company; it belongs to those who talk about it. And Coke not only watches what kind of material its fans produce; it occasionally asks them to share experiences as well.
You’ll see numbers that demonstrate Coca-Cola got it right over the ’net, but there are also admissions about how its past approach — possibly the approach of many traditional brands — was wrong, and why. The so-called “less about us-more about them” mantle it’s taken up since is inspired by the insight that fans-first pays long-term relationship dividends — provided you don’t desert the people you’ve attracted the moment a campaign ends.
But don’t take our word for it; read for yourself: