Jennifer Van Grove
Brand management in the current era means not just keeping an ever-present eye on the social web, but also engaging in meaningful ways with brand advocates and detractors. Professionals in the field have come to accept social media as crucial to their jobs, but most know that managing a company’s brand on the web is so much more than setting up shop on social sites like Twitter and Facebook.
Here we’ll give you an inside look at the strategies of avant garde industry leaders who’ve spent years figuring out how to move beyond social media hype and implement practical management practices into their daily work routines.
Brad Nelson, Jeremy Thum, Joel Price, Joel Frey and Bowen Payson are all marketers behind big brand names. They’ve done the dirty work. Their lessons and words of wisdom range from finding ways to unify digital assets to knowing your niche, and each tip should be heeded by those looking to follow in their footsteps.
1. Let Someone Else Say It
Starbucks is at the forefront of mastering the social web. The company is one of the most popular brands on Facebook, is adept at social media to drive foot traffic to stores, is a beta tester for Twitter’s Promoted Tweets platform and was the first big brand to offer a nationwide Foursquare special.
Product Manager Brad Nelson is often the genius behind the company’s online and social media initiatives, he’s also the primary person behind the brand’s very popular Twitter account. Much of his day-to-day responsibilities involve online brand management, and as such he’s learned that sometimes the best way to say something on the social web is to, “have someone else say it.”
Nelson advises other brands to take the same course of action. “If you can find a tweet, photo or blog post that says what you’re trying to say then use that instead of writing it yourself. It does a couple of great things. Your readers will see it as an external validator, so they’ll be more likely to respond than they would if it was a billboard on the side of the road. It also makes the original author happy. Everyone wants to see their content get exposure.”
In fact, Nelson says that he tries to “find things to retweet every day.”
Recently the coffee retailer started a Treat Receipt promotion; customers that purchase coffee during the day can return after 2 p.m. for a $2 grande cold beverage. Of course, Twitter is proving to be a great medium to promote the campaign, and Nelson is employing his own strategy by retweeting tweets like this one from @jaredbtaylor: “This whole go to @Starbucks before 2 pm and get a $2 grande drink after 2 thing is pretty sweet.”