case study

The Rise of Social eCommerce in an Age of Dwindling Consumer Loyalty

The challenge of brand loyalty

Brand loyalty is harder to obtain than ever before. In fact, in our research study, Inside the Buy, AMP Agency found that only 3% of consumers say they are loyal to a brand and never buy anything else. A Contemporary Loyalty has been born where consumers are somewhat loyal to a product, but open-minded to similar products that are new or better. As such, companies need to differentiate themselves like never before to remain in the consumer’s consideration set at the time of purchase.

What’s in it for me?

The higher the perceived value a product or manufacturer offers, the more stickiness it has for a consumer. Consumers expect to be able to find information about products when they search, and where they search. In the same study, AMP Agency discovered that 43% of consumers always do research before making a purchase.

Instant gratification

In the same way that consumers expect to be able to find information on products when they search, they also want and expect to be able to buy things where they want, when they want, and how they want – and yes, that means on Facebook and other social networking sites if they so choose.  

Enter Social eCommerce

Companies that got ahead of this curve early on are seeing some great results in their consumer engagement, purchases, traffic, loyalty and word-of-mouth. Here are a few examples of successful social ecommerce stores on Facebook (also called f-stores):

1800Flowers f-store – the first f-store on Facebook opened in 2009

1800Flowers

Delta Airlines f-store – Delta was the first airline to offer ticket purchase capabilities thru Facebook

Delta

Best Buy f-store – Given their mantra of “shop & share,” Best Buy is taking advantage of their fans purchases by encouraging them to share their purchases with their Facebook friends – a pretty neat word-of-mouth strategy.

BestBuy

NBA Fan f-store – Great place for their 10MM+ fans to shop for their favorite teams’ logo merchandise

NBAStore

Lady Gaga f-store – Lady Gaga is the 2nd most popular female celebrity on Facebook, so her store is sure to get some engagement

Gaga

At the end of the day, It’s all about providing the right content to the right people at the right time in the right place! These are not new notions when it comes to the business and consumer landscape – the only thing that has changed is the storefront!

Questions to consider before launching your own f-store:

What do we hope to achieve?  

You’ll want to define the goals you have for your f-store. For example, is it strictly a revenue generation too, or do you intend to use it to help generate buzz and awareness about your brand, as well? Be honest about the amount of revenue your f-store will actually bring in. It should be viewed as an opportunity to realize additional incremental revenue, but not a primary revenue driver. You’ll be able to determine trends after it has been live for a period of time.

How do we intend to measure success?

You’ll want to define your measures of success and tie them back to your goals. What measures will tell you that you made a good investment and how long do you intend to give them to see the trends?

How does this tie in to my larger social media marketing strategy?

Your Facebook store should complement your overall social media strategy, not be a result in and of itself. How can  you use your Facebook presence, and therefore your f-store as a part of a larger strategy, campaign, contest, etc? You’ll also want to consider how you intend to market your f-store. 

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Jamie 

Blog: www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: @JamiePappas

 

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A little social media marketing helps EMC Break Records

EMC Breaks Records

Last week, in case you hadn’t heard, EMC launched a record 41 products. You can view the Record Breakers simulcast replay on EMC.com, if you’d like. But, I’m not here to talk to you too much about the product side of things – I’m no product expert although I think that there are some awesome new products out there from EMC. Instead, I’d like to talk to you about the social media side of things that went very well, and that I’m extremely proud of. It’s also a demonstration of how well things can go when you have the passion and drive to move them forward, budget or no budget.

How things came together

Pre-Event: January 3 – January 17

First off, we started out with a direct mailer of “broken record puzzles” to key folks around the industry. The feedback was positive on these, and the intent was twofold – 1) Invite them personally to the Record Breaking event on January 18th, and 2) Encourage them to tell others about it in the hopes that their networks would also be interested in the event and accompanying announcements – this is WOM (word of mouth) marketing at its best! (Photos courtesy of Michael Cote)

Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5327583777/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5327584807/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5328235196/in/photostream/   Photo Courtesy of Michael Cote: http://www.flickr.com/photos/cote/5328235628/in/photostream/

EMCCorp Facebook Challenge Close on the heels of the puzzle, we launched a nifty little Facebook game to drive awareness and encourage fans (yes, I still call them fans!) to break their own records! It’s still up there if you’d like to give it a whirl. Warning: It’s rather addictive!

At the same time, we launched a couple of viral videos on EMC’s YouTube channel, which have accumulated over 700,000 views between the two of them, and successfully drove registration to the EMC event.

All this time, we were also tweeting about the event using a common hashtag - #EMCBreaksRecords - to drive awareness, registration and buzz. We were sharing the videos, making folks aware of the game, and also tweeting world records that had been previously broken – asking them in the form of questions in the morning to gain responses, and giving the answer at the end of the day.

I should also mention a practice that has worked very well for us to keep EMC employees around the globe in the loop of our activities in the social space, as well as enable them to join in on the activities in a consistent and measurable fashion – “social media activation kits.” These kits contain a high level overview of the program at hand, as well as links to content and collateral (both traditional and social), tracking links, hashtags, suggested tweets/posts, social hubs and just about anything else you can imagine to participate in a truly organized social marketing campaign. These are hosted the internal employee community that I used to manage, EMC|ONE – now thoughtfully managed and curated by our own community manager extraordinaire, Michelle Lavoie. Michelle was kind enough to host a front and center widget on the home page to drive further awareness of the activation kit, as well as the overall social media plan for the launch.

In-Event: January 18

The tweeting continued around things that were going on during the simulcast – EMC actually arranged to break a couple of world records with the folks at Guinness during the event. I’ve shared the videos of each within this post – check them out.

 

#EMCBreaksRecords The tweeting during the event also resulted in EMC’s first ever trending topic on Twitter across the entire United States. Last may, we reached trending in Boston for EMC World 2010 – but this is the first U.S.-wide achievement – so you could say we set a record in social media, as well!

EMC Community Network Also, for the first time ever, we held a live Q&A session within our own EMC Community Network. Envisioned and championed by the folks on the ECN team – this was the company’s first ever live simultaneous Q&A session – so another record for us, in a matter of speaking!

Also, the day of launch, our super stellar EMC Blogroll of subject matter experts along with other industry folks produced over 40 blog posts released on the day of the launch, further generating buzz, awareness and affinity for the EMC brand.

So what does all of this mean?

Well, at the end of the day, it means that social media engagement played a critical role in generating awareness and buzz about EMC’s most important and most impactful launch!! Here are a few key statistics and milestones:

  • 1,000+ Broken Records Mailed out to key influencers >> generated buzz, awareness, brand affinity, and ultimately registrations for the event
  • EMC’s first Facebook game generated 80,000+ tab views and over 6,500 new fans of the EMC Facebook page >> generated buzz, awareness, brand affinity, event registration and increased our social audience and the potential realm of our future conversations with these enthusiasts
  • Thanks to our viral videos, EMC’s YouTube channel was ranked #55 in the Gurus Category on YouTube >> increased awareness, buzz, brand affinity, and free advertising
  • The #EMCBreaksRecords hashtag achieved trending status across the entire U.S. during the event on January 18th with over 1,500 tweets across multiple geographies around the world! >> increased awareness, buzz generation, brand affinity, and free advertising
  • The EMC Community Network attracted new users to the community with the live Q&A –in fact, 42% of the visitors that day were new users to the ECN! >> Increased awareness, affinity and exclusive access to the subject matter experts people wanted to talk to the most!
  • EMC bloggers, as well as other bloggers generated over 40 blog posts on the launch >> generating buzz, awareness, and access to the SMEs on the topics surrounding the launch, as well as the products announced.
  • All of this amounted to thousands of mentions in the social space – blogs, tweets, Facebook posts and shares, and industry articles amount to an uber-magnified awareness of EMC and the company’s offerings, messaging and plans for 2011. Heck, even our stock price reached one of the highest points in the past 10 years.

Up Next?

With all that activity and success, you might be wondering what’s next – how will we keep the momentum going?

RBTour1

The EMC Record Breaking Tour, of course! You’ll be able to follow the tour drivers around the world as they make stops, break records, and demo all the latest and greatest from EMC! You can follow the drivers on the Twitter account we set up for them, and keep an eye out for the Record Breaking Tour blog coming soon! There will also be Facebook components, and an invite to all EMC customers, partners, and enthusiasts to share their own record breaking moments!

I’m looking forward to seeing what this next chapter holds!

 

 

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Jamie 

Blog: www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: @JamiePappas

 

 

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Do you get social? A Peek into #EMC's Social Business Journey

And, more importantly, do you “get” social?  Jive does! Conversation  

A few weeks ago, on Friday, June 18th, I had the pleasure of being invited to present EMC’s Social Business Journey to a group of friendly folks at the last session of Jive Software’s Get Social Tour 2010. I’m saying 2010, because I sincerely hope there is a 2011, 2012, and every year thereafter! This was a great opportunity to meet and converse with folks at all stages in their social business journey, and I absolutely loved it!

For those that were not able to attend any of the Get Social sessions for a variety of reasons, I highly encourage you to join the Jive Community take a look at some of the stellar case studies presented along the journey and see if they might be helpful to you in yours.

The cliff notes on my presentation are in my deck, and hopefully will provide a good starting point for you. Please let me know if you find them helpful, what’s missing, or even what you’ve done in your journey differently that met your stakeholder needs. I always love hearing others’ stories about their social journeys so that I can learn and evolve our own journey.


EMC Case Study - Jive Get Social Tour

View more presentations from Jamie Pappas.

While I love sharing EMC’s story, I have to say that the true value of such events comes from the ability to converse with and learn from others who are at various points in their own journey to a social business. And I particularly love hearing what has worked and what has not, so that I can test that our in our waters.

There was definitely overlap among the persistent themes I mentioned about Enterprise 2.0 Conference in Boston that same week:

  • There is still a ton of interest in getting started in this space, which is great! People want to start community and collaborating efforts and are coming in droves to see what works best to get going.
  • A whole lot of companies have started their journey and are seeing positive results from enabling their employees to connect and collaborate with one another
  • There is a keen interest in learning what other companies are up to, what is working, what is not, and why.
  • The ROI question seems that it will never die, nor should it. But it’s also amazing to hear the stories of the level of push-back some folks have endured in their journey to get social. As I said before, my answer to the ever-challenging ROI question is it’s a mix of both qualitative and quantitative measures.  Separately, they don’t mean a thing, but together, you can highlight savings, efficiency, and the power of networking and collaboration, so that it’s no longer a question of whether or not it’s providing tangible business results.
  • In person conversation and collaboration is just as important as staying connected online. The buzz and conversation in the air the entire morning is the strongest testament to this reality that I can offer. People were excited to meet others going through the same things that they are and you could feel the excitement in the air! Bringing people together in person is still an essential part of learning, development and networking. I don’t believe that will fundamentally ever change.
  • Carrying on the conversation after the in-person get together is just as important – which is exactly why Jive is offering up a group for us all to continue the conversation!

 

In fact, I can’t emphasize this point enough. It’s a really, really tough job to drive forward any type of social business collaboration initiative within just about any organization. Staying in touch with those that have been on the same path for some time, and those that are just starting their journey will provide you with a network of invaluable resources and people to bounce ideas off of, learn from, and develop lasting friendships with.

Your network, both in real life and online, will be one of the most important tools in your arsenal of the journey you are about to embark upon

So, what are you waiting for? Go - Get Social now

And if you're a large company with over 10,000 employees, come get social with us at The 2.0 Adoption Council, too!

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Jamie

Blog: www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: twitter.com/jamiepappas

 

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Understanding Human Organizational & Social Behavior in an Unusual Way– A Chat with Ben Waber of the MIT Media Lab

Ben Waber, Courtesy of http://web.media.mit.edu/~bwaber/  A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of sitting in on one of the free EMC Research Cambridge Lectures with guest lecturer Ben Waber of the MIT Media Lab Human Dynamics Group regarding the group’s research on human behavior and human dynamics using wearable sensing technology called “sociometric badges” (see image).

Sociometric Badge, Courtesy of http://hd.media.mit.edu/badges/ The sociometric badges are equipped with infrared sensors to determine if interactions are face-to-face, a wireless radio to determine proximity, an accelerometer that can track movement including walking, running, sitting, body gestures, body mimicry, boredom, and even bluffing, and a microphone that doesn’t record actual words, but from vibrations can pick up on tone, speaking speed, intonation, persuasiveness, influence, and interest level.

The goal of their research is to truly understand how social signals, both conscious and unconscious, affect people, particularly within their work lives and social spheres at work, and how understanding these signals might lead to better or different communications, increased work performance and productivity, and even greater job satisfaction among employees.

Honest Signals CoverBen’s group, led by Professor Alex “Sandy” Pentland (who has out a fascinating new book on the group's work - "Honest Signals") has conducted several studies at large organizations, and based on my observations during the lecture, a few things continually come forward:

  • Social support networks are a major factor in job satisfaction
  • Social collaboration and network cohesion generates greater productivity
  • Little changes, such as taking a break together, can have large positive effects
  • Face-to-face interaction is a core component of developing the strongest of social networks
  • Information shared via face-to-face social interactions is often different than information shared via email
  • In at least one study, one-standard-deviation increase in network cohesion equaled a 10% increase in productivity; in other words, collaboration equals productivity

The group’s research is of particular interest to me, given my focus on social media and social networking as tools that can aide in business process change, information exchange, complex problem-solving, networking and collaboration, and an increased sense of belonging for an organization’s employees that use social business tools as a way to do their jobs.

I do believe that their work can translate nicely to social media and social networking tools, in at least some form or fashion. I think it’s particularly relevant in the network’s contributions to your overall job satisfaction. The elements of social media and social networking that I believe have the strongest potential to increase job satisfaction include:

  • a greater sense of feeling connected to the organization and its strategy
  • opportunities to help solve complex problems
  • greater ease in solving your own problems
  • increasing  your knowledge in areas of interest
  • sharing your own knowledge and expertise and having it recognized by your network
  • intrinsic rewards and self-satisfaction that come from helping others
  • the opportunity to network with a group of like-minded individuals one can relate to

I could go on and on...the research being done at the MIT Media Lab is fascinating to me, and I see it applying on so many levels – both in-person as well as online – when it comes to the things that help people to feel a sense of belonging and satisfaction. I love the notion of enabling people to have real-time feedback in order to even further their understanding of themselves and their network and its full potential! Looking forward to hearing more from this group on their work!

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Jamie 

Blog: http://www.jamiepappas.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/jamiepappas

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A look back at the Intranet Insider World Tour 2010

Communitelligence I had a great time a few weeks back now at the Intranet Insider World Tour 2010 in NYC presented by Communitelligence and hosted by the folks at Con Edison headquarters, right in the heart of Union Square. A group of hand-selected folks presented on their endeavors to introduce social intranets and social collaboration into their organizations, some farther along in the process, but all of us there to learn and share. It was a fantastic feeling to be among such kindred peers.

There were a lot of case studies, best practices, and general findings presented from the likes of companies such as Intel, Alcatel-Lucent, ESPN (owned by The Walt Disney Company), Intranet Benchmarking Forum, General Electric, Peppercom, Deloitte, and many others. And many, if not all, of the companies present faced the same challenges, successes, and questions as to what to tackle next to continue to meet the needs of their stakeholders who are, in many cases, ready to try out each new kind of tool that comes out before the organization can even get it fully implemented.

One thing is for certain – everyone at this conference was there to share and learn from one another. It was evident from all of the speakers that things in this area move at the speed of lightning in terms of new technology and their employees’ interest in the new tools and technologies. This also presents one of the major challenges that every organization faces is that if they don’t introduce the social collaboration tools as new things come to market – if the organization cannot get these tools deployed quickly to meet the needs of their employees and embrace the use of social collaboration tools, the employees will find ways to get to the tools they need to do their jobs more effectively and efficiently.

There really are two choices – the organization embraces the tools and incorporates them as a part of their standard toolset, or employees will embrace them outside of the organization. Not a good thing in the eyes of most organizations, which is why every organization at the conference had recognized the need to drive forward the use of social collaboration tools within the organization.

A few themes resonated with me during the conference that I wanted to share with you:

Checklistgr

  • Social collaborative tools are becoming more and more a requirement as a part of the suite of tools available to employees
  • The forward-looking companies that are able to successfully use social collaboration tools do so both behind the firewall as well as outside of the firewall
  • Companies must embrace a model of listening - both internally and externally - in order to have a full picture of the information and feedback about the organization
  • Companies must embrace both the positive and the negative sentiments that are shared, and develop a trusting relationship with their employees and stakeholders by responding to both positive and negative feedback
  • Employees and external stakeholders expect a bi-directional communications model with companies, and companies that do not embrace that (i.e. continue to broadcast, even on social channels) will find themselves at a disadvantage
  • Employees are more insistent than ever that they need to have an opportunity to contribute their own knowledge to the organization, as well as seek knowledge from the larger audience outside of their immediate work group or organization
  • Collaborative intranets do indeed increase employee satisfaction, productivity and the feeling of contributing to the organization, as well as a feeling of knowing more about the organization and the direction it’s headed
  • Listening to employees and identifying tools that meet their needs and use cases is critical to the successful implementation of these tools, as well as continued adoption and use
  • Employees will find a way to use collaborative tools to do their jobs, whether or not you incorporate them as a part of your suite of employee tools and arm them with the knowledge to use them successfully
  • Multimedia such as video, podcasts and photos are becoming increasingly desired types of content in the fast-paced work environments that we are all in
  • Mobility is key – employees are increasingly demanding that the information they used to consume in a static website experience be more mobile and accessible to them in their preferred format, at their preferred location and at a time that is convenient to them

Gone are the days of one-way pushed content where employees are strictly consumers of a corporate message, and here are the days where employees demand the ability to contribute to the organizational “memory” and history of the organization and its successes and failures.

All in all, I had a great time at the conference, and am looking forward to continuing the conversation with all the wonderful new folks I met!

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 Jamie 

 Blog: http://www.jamiepappas.com

 Twitter: http://twitter.com/jamiepappas

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EMC Enterprise 2.0 Case Study Webinar

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of sharing EMC's Enterprise 2.0 story with a large group of webinar attendees.

I tried to cover the whole gammit of topics from our journey. They include:

  • Tools and Milestones
  • The Business Case
  • Getting Buy-In
  • Dealing with the Critics
  • User Adoption
  • Moderation Process
  • Creating Communities
  • Training and Education
  • Benefits
  • Defining Success
  • EMC's Key Ingredients

Here are the slides from the presentation. I'll post audio as soon as it's available.

EMC Enterprise 2.0 Case Study Webinar for The 2.0 Adoption Council & Newsgator

View more presentations from Jamie Pappas.

Thanks to EMC (of course!) for giving me such a great job that has enabled me to create such a wonderful story to tell! Thanks also to The 2.0 Adoption Council for all of the wonderful opportunities they provide, including being able to participate in webinars such as this one! Thanks to Newsgator for sponsoring The 2.0 Adoption Council webinar series, and providing the opportunity for many of us to share our stories. Finally, thanks to Jive Software for their great product and supporting us along our journey.

Check out the first two webinar presentations, as well!

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The "Before" (Click for audio replay)

Featuring Bruce Galinsky from MetLife, Anu Elmer from Swiss Re, and Greg Lowe from Alcatel-Lucent

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The Before

View more presentations from The 2.0 Adoption Council.

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The "After"  (Click for audio replay)

Featuring Claire Flanagan from CSC, Megan Murray from Booz Allen Hamilton, and Kevin Jones from Dynetics

2.0 Adoption in the Enterprise - The After

View more presentations from The 2.0 Adoption Council.

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Please, share your journey - have you seen some common themes? Some common challenges? Some common success?

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