Study: Twitter, LinkedIn appropriate social media building blocks for retail marketers
ATLANTA — The Coca-Cola Retailing Research Council on Monday published the final installment of its five-part report on social media, which suggested that grocery marketers significantly can leverage any social media participation by simply responding to tweets on Twitter and exploring the potential of professional networking site LinkedIn, where activity has been supercharged by the recession.
“The explosive growth of social networking seems to have caught much of the marketing world by surprise,” stated Michael Sansolo, research director at CCRRC of North America. “In one survey, we found nearly 70% of supermarket chief marketing officers state they feel unprepared to integrate social media into their marketing mix.” The key dilemma? Lack of a starting point.
“This report provides ideas about where to begin and how to gain traction using social media tools,” said Craig Elston, SVP for The Integer Group, the shopper marketing agency that conducted the study. “It’s vital for the supermarket industry to engage because their customers spend significant time talking about shopping experiences, stores and products on social media platforms.” In fact, the research revealed that food is one of the top subjects of discussion among social Web users.
“Customers hope and expect that companies are paying attention, and responses are welcome," Sansolo noted. "Independent data reveals that more than 80% of people who complained about an experience via Twitter expected to hear back from the company, and 75% of those who received a response were satisfied.”
The report also examined how social networking is changing the workplace, especially recruiting. The nation’s recession has played a significant role in boosting activity of professional networking sites.
“In 2008 after five years online, LinkedIn had about 32 million users, which paled in comparison to Facebook,” Sansolo noted. “By early 2012, after more than three years of economic challenges, LinkedIn’s population jumped to 130 million, a gain of more than 400%. The number continues to grow by adding two professionals every second.”
Companies report a strong increase in their use of social networking sites and websites for recruiting, while also predicting a sharp reduction in campus recruiting, job board and third-party recruiters. Job hunters recognize this change and are increasing their use of social networking sites to seek employment opportunities.
The CCRRC report also examined questions companies must ask as they begin marketing on the social Web, especially as they try to project their core values.
“Merely providing coupons or specials is not enough,” Sansolo said. “The social web demands something deeper and provides an ideal venue to listen to and understand consumers, to participate in their discussions and to create places for them to gather and build loyalty.” As companies begin interaction, price is only a piece of this strategy. Some businesses find ways to build interest by creating specific triggers, such as time-sensitive offers, sweepstakes or limited supplies, to drive rapid responses.
The study, titled “Untangling the Social Web: Insights for Users, Brands and Retailers,” is available here.
Thermos Foogo makes market debut
SCHAUMBURG, Ill. — Thermos announced this week the launch of its latest line of drinkware and accessories designed for children ages 6 months and older.
Thermos Foogo drinkware includes Tripoli, a gray and green throwback design and Poppy Patch, a strawberry and black floral print. The BPA-free drink cups are offered in double wall vacuum insulated stainless steel and in Eastman Tritan copolymer. Foogo drinkware also features three interchangeable lid types that create 24 possible drinkware combinations, Thermos said.
In addition to the Foogo drinkware items, the line also includes food storage, diaper bags, totes, backpacks and more — all built with the signature Thermos insulation technology.
New Thermos Foogo products will be available this spring in Target and Babies "R" Us stores nationwide and Thermos.com.
Kellogg’s launches campaign to celebrate countdown to 2012 Olympic, Paralympic Games
BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — Kellogg’s has unveiled its "From Great Starts Come Great Things" campaign, which celebrates how U.S. Olympians became the athletes they are today.
As part of the campaign, Kellogg’s created exclusive videos, called "Start Story," of all eight Team Kellogg’s athletes, which detail their individual start stories in recognition that there is no destination without a beginning, the company said. Team Kellogg’s roster of elite athletes includes Michael Landers (table tennis), Dwight Phillips (track and field), Summer Sanders (swimming legend), Rebecca Soni (swimming), Casey Tibbs (Paralympic track and field), Juan Agudelo (soccer), Kerri Walsh (beach volleyball) and Jordyn Wieber (gymnastics).
The videos, which are available for viewing on Kelloggs.com/teamusa, mark the 100-day countdown to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
"It’s inspiring to see how all these great athletes got their start, from two-time Olympic gold medalist Kerri Walsh to U.S. Olympic hopeful and table tennis player Michael Landers," said Doug VanDeVelde, SVP morning foods at Kellogg’s. "These Team Kellogg’s athletes remind all of us that each day is filled with the potential to achieve your goals when you start it off right."