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Showing posts with label Social Media. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Social Media. Show all posts

Friday, July 19, 2013

Honda Asks Twitter Want a New Car? Responds with a Get a New Vine

On Monday July 15th, Honda launched a social media campaign using the short-form video application Vine as a way to reach people expressing their frustrations with their current car. They noticed a lot of people in social media share their daily vehicle problems, which could open up an engaging opportunity to help promote Honda’s Summer Clearance Event.

Prior to the day, they shared this video promoting what the social media team intended to do. Basically they would respond to people with car issues by creating a 6-second Vine video using the hashtag #WantNewCar.


Monday came and Honda created several Vine videos showing dealership sales people in khaki pants and blue shirts filming whimsical videos at Honda dealership.  They responded in the following way with people in need of a new car.


So how did it do as a way to increase social conversation for Honda? 

The following three charts show a couple things.  The first looks at the use of the #WantNewCar hashtag, with most of the activity coming from the paid Promoted trend on Honda bought on Twitter July 15th. 

The second chart looks at mentions of “@Honda” to see what kind of lift came from people talking about the brand account or retweeting content from the campaign.  The top piece of content shared was this Vine using YouTube sensation Rebecca Black that received 34 retweets and 25 favorites.


The third chart looks at overall mentions of “Honda” in the last 6 months. Ignoring the April spike due to the Boston Police looking for a Honda sedan at one point during the bombing manhunt, the conversation around Honda didn’t really move much and was normal during this past week’s vine event. This comes as no surprise as a lot of engagement on the #WantNewCar hashtag focused more on people wanting some other car than a Honda; though, quite a few people did ask Honda for a free car.

Mentions of "#WantNewCar"

Last 6 Months Tweets Mentioning "@Honda"

Last 6 Months Tweets Mentioning "Honda"

The campaign did provide some decent lift and received positive response from media and social media fans.  Plus it’s a fun creative execution that tried to engage Twitter users in a playful way.  That said, the hashtag might have been more of an issue with this campaign.


The night of the event I followed the conversation closely and came away with three common responses from the online community.
  • Most people who engaged with #WantNewCar thought Honda was asking them to share a negative experience with their current car (or lack of owning a car) so that they could win a free car from Honda.

  • Those who were hoping for a new car for free asked more often for something other than a Honda.  Pick your favorite aspirational sports car and that was likely what people were tweeting about.

  • Finally for those who found out that they were not getting any possibility of a free car, and may only get a free vine video, well that didn’t go over so well.


And while the Honda Vine videos were not as revolutionary or compelling as some other campaigns, the company did recently release this brand video showcasing Honda’s history in a fascinating way.


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Monday, March 25, 2013

Video Recap of Geneva Auto Show Social Media Activations


I woke up this morning to a pitch on my twitter account.  Unlike most 'hey can you post this on your blog,' requests this one is pretty good.  There are some good examples of social media activations happening at the Auto Show including uses from Nissan, Hyundai and Mercedes-Benz. There's even a little dig at Citroen who allows for email sharing only on a build application they have on the floor.

Anyway, thanks to Patrick Sweeney for some good content.

Oh and here's the pitch (and yes I'm following @PJSweeney now on Twitter.


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Monday, January 14, 2013

Honda Advertises on the Associate Press Twitter Feed



There was an interesting revenue tactic last week by the Associated Press when technology company Samsung advertised on the AP's twitter feed during CES.  AdWeek immediately covered the story, since there is some discussion about AP blurring the line of between "editorial church and state."

Another week and another big industry event, this time the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit and sure enough the AP's Twitter account is again posting sponsored tweets this time for Honda and Acura. Both posts featured the upcoming concepts the brands were featuring to interest AP's 1.5 million twitter followers.

This is an interesting tactic since one can assume a lot of media from other publications follow AP on Twitter.  If a brand can get their news to journalists in a quick way through what could be seen as a target media buy to a difficult to reach audience - reporters, this may not be all that bad of a tactic. Unless it backfires as crossing some line as some commenters on Twitter have expressed.

What will be telling is how long this lasts.  It could be seen by Twitter as a challenge to their own advertising model.  If Twitter accounts start selling their tweets directly to brands, this could usurp some ad dollars from the company providing the community and with a looming Twitter IPO on the way this probably won't last long.

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If you want to hear some more on this topic, checkout this week's BeanCast Marketing podcast that I was a panel member on. We discuss this topic in depth as well as several other current marketing and social media topics.


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Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Infographic Your Superfan Status with BMW

Ever wonder how you rank with a brand's "official superfan" on Facebook?  Yeah me neither.  Regardless, BMW brings its fans the opportunity, through a Facebook data generated personal infographic, to see how superfan they are.

The BMW Infographic application showcases several key stats for their Facebook fan page including the most viral post, most popular video, and a tag cloud showing popular words used by fans: Love, Nice and Awesome top the list.

The application entices fans to create their own infographic to see how they rank against Todor Todorov, someone the BMW social media team has identified as the "Official BMW Superfan." At the end of the personal generated infographic fans can see how they score against Todor. I wasn't too far from making superfan status generating a score of 217 vs Todor's 295. If only I liked more International pages or liked a few more BMW posts, superfan status could be mine!

What the infographic does well is give fans a desire to become more engaged fans.  The whole idea of making it a bit competitive is to show how fans can be more engaged with BMW by liking more BMW fan pages and showing how engaged a person is with BMW content on Facebook. More engagement equals higher scores.

There are a couple misses though with the application. First of all, one can only share the application as a shared link that brings others to a person's created infographic on the application tab.  It seems an image of the infographic would've been a better solution, especially since mobile still lacks support for Facebook tabs and you get comments like the one I received from a friend, "Link didn't work for me." Also if the generated infographic was an image, it could be shared on other websites, social sites, or email.

Unfortunately, the infographic doesn't have a similar viral impact of say Intel's Museum of Me which did some similar things; though, to be fair, the Intel idea requires significantly more budget to do. Intel created a personal video that brought people's Facebook content into a museum like walkthrough.  Perhaps a personal museum of BMW content shared by the person and their friends could showcase interaction with the brand in a more interesting way than an infographic.

Overall the idea here is a good one and it's great when brands use their fans' Facebook content in a way that relates past interaction in a way that tells a story.

Try it out at: BMW Infographic Application
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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Cost to Not Ignore Nissan



The simple equation of Return on Investment (ROI) is a hot topic in social media circles as the discipline evolves to prove its value in the media and communications mix for business.  It's a topic that has spawned several conference topics, a multitude of articles and several books all vying to show how social media experts can realize ROI in their social strategy.

Within the ROI dialog is another set of value acronyms that try to show other forms of value other than direct monetary value. One popular one is Return on Engagement (ROE) that looks to show value provided by conversations and the establishment of deeper relationships with one's customers or prospective customers.

Thanks to yesterday's AdAge, Nissan has now entered a new acronym to the social value lexicon: Cost of Ignoring (COI). Erich Marx, Nissan's director-interactive and social-media marketing, shared "you have to be there [social media]. It's not about ROI, it's about COI-- cost of ignoring. It's too big to ignore."


Nissan's COI strategy is currently focusing on five vehicle launches in the next 15 months, all of them to include a "heavy emphasis" on social media.

Ever since General Motors pulled out of a $10 million Facebook campaign, the marketing and investment world has been interested in what automotives are doing on the site.  I'm not sure the story about Nissan's latest Facebook activities is that different from what's been happening on Facebook for the past several years from many car companies.

Nissan will be asking Altima fans to share car ideas that might be implemented in a future product and recently they did an essay contest where winners were selected for a drive event at Nissan's proving grounds.

Which brings us back to COI.

Any idea what the equation is for Cost of Ignoring? Perhaps it's something like Cartman's equation for gold.




[Source]: AdAge "Nissan Looks to Facebook to Help Launch Five New Models"



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Sunday, May 20, 2012

How Did Honda's Pintermission Perform?



Most of us in social media are fairly tired of writing POVs on whether a brand should be on Pinterest and the resounding response from many companies is 'yes we should and here are some boards to prove it.' Honda is one who decided to make an early entry on Pinterest.

They built their brand boards around the current launch of the 2013 Honda CR-V, but instead of leaving it to a few well posed pictures of a car in various scenes Honda decided to apply their campaign idea in a fun and unique way on Pinterest.

The current campaign talks about "What's on your leap list?" What's a "leap list"? It's basically a bucket list but without the morbid implication you should do x things before you die. Good idea to change it from bucket list as one's mortality isn't really the inspiration for buying a utilitarian vehicle like the CR-V.

Here is a TV spot showing a grandmother and grandson taking a drive to where grandma grew up.




It's a charming story of getting out and exploring one's world and family roots. At the core of the idea, it's all about getting out into the world and experiencing fresh air and a bit of adventure.

So where does Pinterest fit in?

With all of the excitement happening online with Pinterest, Honda developed the idea of a #Pintermission, where one takes a break from online and gets out to live life to experience more than pinning things.

I love the idea here because it turns the excitement of a new social media platform into something tangible and still relates to the message of the campaign.

To encourage participation, Honda engaged 5 very active Pinterest users who all have significant 6 and 7 figure followings on the site. Each person has their own #Pintermission board on Honda's page (parenthesis indicate # of Pinterest followers): Bonnie Tsang (551,738), Caitlan Crawley (1,362,965), Jennifer Chong (1,713,868), Jonathan Lo (849,949), and Michael Wurm (1,044,820)




The Pinterest effort launched a month ago and that seems like enough time to see how it did.  Before we get into the numbers I should caveat that I never expected anything big here. What was significant is the coverage this simple execution received in the advertising a social media publications and blogs.  That in and of itself was a win because now Honda is seen as a solid case study of what a brand can do on Pinterest, beyond just create a few boards and call it a day - basically what most other brands seem to be doing.

For those wondering how many CR-Vs it sold, I would venture a guess of zero. So for the ROI crowd this isn't a a good use of time. The branding crowd however will find some benefit here since it shows Honda is paying attention to social trends and found a playful, meaningful way to fit it into their new vehicle launch.  There's little doubt it generated some positive brand impressions from people on #PinChat and others who love this new social platform.


Finally from a PR perspective it worked brilliantly after getting some good media coverage showing earned media works well when the idea is creative, there's a new technology to be innovative on, and it's a social platform gaining a rapid audience.

Here are the results (keeping in mind Pinterest has a very limited reach):


Impressive? Got me.  This is a new platform and there really isn't much to benchmark from on the site. I will add that of all the metrics publicly available on Pinterest, Repins is the best indicator of successful content.  I say this because repins show someone else finds a post personally relevant enough to include it on their personal board.

To end, this was a beautifully executed idea that fit with the Honda CR-V marketing campaign.

Want to see more of the creative? Checkout all of Honda's #Pintermission posters on AdWeek.


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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Toyota What the--?!




There are some things I just do not get. Perhaps it's more about turning 40 years old in about a month or the fact that I haven't read a comic book in 25 years? Whatever the reason, the latest co-branding content marketing concept from Toyota makes no sense to me and in fact leaves a painful grating sound in my ears that is sure to annoy me for the next hour.
What I'm talking about is a video content collaboration between the Toyota Yaris and Marvel's What the--?! which is Marvel's self parody comic book.

Perhaps that is what's so annoying about the content. It is self-deprecating parody from the comic book company instead of someone else mocking them.  Add the self-mockery with some automotive brand advertising and you get something quite odd. Leaving one YouTube watcher to state the obvious: "I like these but kinda weird."

So what do you think?  Are you a fan of Marvel's What the--!? and I'm not the target here so I'm missing what's cool about this?

Though I do like their mocking of Cleveland (especially after Cleveland mocked Detroit.)


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Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Chevy Is Featured in WSJ Klout Story


Chevrolet gets some attention in the Wall Street Journal's video showcasing several brands using the online influencer ranking tool Klout. Chevy did a Klout Perk earlier this year giving some people in social media a few weekend with a Volt.

Unfortunately, the video doesn't share any results of what comes from participating in a Klout Perk and if that truly leads to any goals a company has when going this route in social media. In other words, did someone tweeting about the Volt, influence purchase or increase awareness in a way that was worth giving the car to said influencer for a few days?

If you are interested in improving your own personal score, you might be interested in a blog dedicated solely to that activity and possibly you too can get a car for the weekend or some cooking tongs from Bravo simply for having a high score.


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Saturday, October 1, 2011

Automotive Facebook Fans by Brand: September 2011



 September was a fairly quiet month with only a few decent bumps in fan growth. I'm also seeing a lot less automotive fan driven ads from automotive brands. That's not to say the OEMs are not advertising on Facebook, it's just their ads are driving to the brand's website instead of a Facebook fan page.  Perhaps we are seeing a move away from the importance of fan growth to drive to transaction or consideration at a brand website that hosts content relevant to purchase.


It's been awhile since we've seen a brand lose fans in the span of a month. In fact, the only time it's happened since tracking this data in April 2009 is when Infiniti had lost fans due to their over promotion of a circ de soleil event they did one month where their sponsorship team posted too many photos of acrobats to the annoyance of its fans.  This September Kia dropped 8%, the largest negative drop we've seen in one month. There is nothing blatantly apparent why they had a negative fan growth, perhaps it's due to their younger audience who may have fanned the page due to their hamster Soul campaign only to unfan later once the interest waned?


Mercedes Benz is driving consumers to a social campaign they are running on Facebook. The C-Coupe Your Week contest will give 10 of its Facebook fans a C-Coupe to drive around for a week. Fans will also be featured on the Facebook page and given $2,000 and camera equipment to capture their week. Contestants must complete a form and upload a video by October 14. 

Subaru's 25% increase in fans for September was the largest gain. Their push was most likely driven by their charitable campaign Share the Love Charities where fans voted on several organizations resulting in Make A Wish as the winning charity for the Facebook fans. People who purchase a car between November 19 and January 3 get to choose where to allocate $250 to one of five organizations. The campaign resulted in 183,000 likes demonstrating fans responded positively to the effort. 

Finally in my evaluation of this month's fan growth several fan pages operated outside of a secured connection causing Facebook tab experiences unavaiable if a user has security settings active (use of https.) Odd because this is a fairly easy situation to get around with a good tab development team.  


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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Automotive Facebook Fans by Brand: July 2011



The struggling brand smart grew more than any other brand, at least on Facebook where their global page had a 109% gain of 25,821 fans while only selling 327 cars in the United States in July. Therein lies a problem that is growing in this report. Several European brands have created USA based pages, smart being one of them. BMW, Audi, Mercedes, and Volvo all have USA pages now and perhaps it is time to modify this report to show a United States view of fan growth by brand.


My only issue with switching to the USA pages is that the USA pages have much smaller budgets, lack a lot of the organic growth that happens. Why? Because people looking for a brand's Facebook page are far more likely to click on the one with the most fans and the cleanest page name. You follow BMW, not BMW USA especially when you see all of the fans and activity on the BMW page. This is a behavior I've seen for years on Facebook and so I tend to focus on the primary brand page.

With so many USA pages, is it time to switch this report to a USA focused report, especially considering I don't track non-USA brands like Peugeot or Citroen.

Let me know your thoughts. Should I switch to this tracking the USA focused fan pages?


One other thing of note last month is Mercedes-Benz overtaking Audi's page in the race for fans. One of the big pushes for the brand is their "Mercedes-Benz & Friends" event coming August 25-28 bringing together all international official Benz clubs.

But most of the fan growth likely came from the marketing efforts of their Drive & Seek game helping to launch the all-new Mercedes C-Class Coupe. The game is centered around the player being a special agent who is trying to outsmart a security system.




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Friday, July 29, 2011

Chevy Pits Its 100 Years of Cars in a Bracket Challenge



Congratulations to Chevrolet as they get ready to celebrate their 100th birthday on November 3. As part of many festivities that are to happen until then, the brand developed an online experience that pits its 100 years of select models against each other. It is basically a bracket challenge where people vote for their favorite Chevrolet cars and trucks.


The 100 Years of Chevrolet website combines several social media connections with the brand where people vote by clicking a Facebook like button all to answer the age old question "What's the best Chevy of all time?" I know I wasn't asking that question either, but it is fun choosing which car or truck you like best in each round.

Most votes have a clear winner in the first round, but the 1970 Chevelle SS convertible and the 2010 Camaro are in a pretty close match with only 100 votes separating the two cars after almost 4,000 total votes in the match. Psst...I voted for the Chevelle SS.

I'm already a fan of Chevrolet on Facebook, but if you are not you need to be to cast your votes. Unfortunately, once you are a fan the experience got a little spammy after I went back to my Facebook profile since the Chevy 100 website doesn't tell you that every vote is published to your Facebook wall (see image on right.)

Other than the minor publishing to Facebook situation, and yes I get why they did it that way as it creates interest to my friends on Facebook and hopefully more traffic for Chevy's website, the experience is solid and focuses more on people's love of the current lineup and their love of Chevy's prolific automotive history.

So go and vote for your favorite Chevrolet vehicles!


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Monday, July 11, 2011

Looking Into the Share of Voice of Volt and LEAF



This blog has followed a lot of the marketing efforts of two very compelling vehicles from the past several years: The Chevy Volt and the Nissan LEAF. Both cars are currently taking charge (pun intended) in the battle for green bragging rights with consumers and now Nissan has thrown a new punch at its Chevy competitor.

The new ads feature life with gasoline fueled appliances. The ads look into the continued dependence of gasoline engines as an old technology that is far behind the times, of course most of Nissan’s own portfolio of vehicles are hence old technology, but this is about green bragging rights and Nissan showcasing its competitive advantage.

Chevy has ensconced its Volt as a fighter of “range anxiety.” Range anxiety is the uneasy feeling that one’s all-electric vehicle may run out of charge before reaching the owner’s destination. Chevy has a backup gas engine to avoid such moments of concern, of course that’s pretty expensive backup plan but thankfully both the Volt and LEAF gain from current $7,500 government incentives to offset costs.

I wanted to take a look at how performance for both of these vehicles is doing online and worked with some great people from MutualMind here in Dallas who ran some social media analytics against the two cars for the week of May 29 - June 4, just to get a peek at what is going on in the social conversation.


IMG 1: Brand Hits refer to the Nissan LEAF, Competitor Hits to the Chevy Volt



It’s interesting to see they are both neck and neck as far as coverage, mentions of the two vehicles are with the Nissan LEAF having a slight edge, but that may be due mostly to the new ad campaign that is gaining some visibility internationally since it is creatively similar to a Renault ad running in Europe.





Sentiment is where the data gets a bit more interesting. Negative sentiment for the Volt is almost two times higher than it is for the LEAF, but that’s only half of the story. Positive sentiment is 34% higher with Volt than LEAF. What's this tell us? At least in social media conversation, Volt is a more polarizing vehicle meaning people are either defending it or criticizing it.

There are some rumors circulating around GM doing an all-electric Volt (GM has denied this.) It’s highly doubtful GM would use the same vehicle name (or even the same brand Chevy) to compete more directly with Nissan’s LEAF and Ford’s coming Focus EV. Like the hybrid market, the electric-vehicle (EV) market is sure to get very competitive and not be as simple as evaluating two primary competitors.

For now though, it is interesting watching these two solutions from two big brands battle for the hearts and minds of the green crowd as we move into the Post-Prius green vehicle movement.

Later this week I'll be sharing some of my personal thoughts on the Chevy Volt after driving one several days.

Thanks to Babar Bhatti from MutualMind for providing me with some great data. For more information, please contact:






Company: Mutual Mind
Website: http://www.mutualmind.com/

MutualMind is a social media management and intelligence platform that enables businesses to monitor as well as promote brands on social networks while providing actionable analytics and insights to increase social media ROI.

MutualMind offers a platform that allows users to aggregate and analyze feedback and conversations regarding their products or services on all of the major social media platforms. While many alternatives on the market today are limited just to listening or publishing, MutualMind’s has taken its value proposition further through the ability for users to actively engage with and manage the various social media outlets.

The functionality of this platform can be used for a myriad of business applications including: measuring market receptivity to products or services, tracking consumer or political sentiment, reputation/crisis management, generating sales leads, benchmarking versus competitors, and customer relationship management to name a few.


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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Google+ Is More a Threat to Twitter than Facebook



Let's talk about the latest buzz in social media and even though this article will not be talking directly about automotive I still think it is relevant here.

After a week of using Google+, I think a lot of pundits are off on who Google+’s competition is. It is not Facebook. It is Twitter. It may be Facebook someday, as Google continues to rollout more functionality and soon will launch brand pages, which will begin their pilot phase in two weeks, but for now the site really looks like a challenger to Twitter.

Let me explain.

Circles are Better Lists

Everyone is talking about Google’s Circles functionality that allows one to select which group a new person you add will exist in. People can be placed in multiple groups, for example I can add someone to my local Dallas group and in a work-related group. To me, this is an improvement over Twitter Lists where one can divide their community in an easy way and filter their “Stream” by circles, similar to how one might display a Twitter list as a feed only viewing the tweets for that group. I use lists more than I’ve ever used groups on Facebook and the intuitiveness of Google’s Circles feels like a great evolution of this functionality.


Add to Circles is More a Follow than a Friend Request

You can add anyone to a Circle who is on Google+. There is no request, the person being “circled” does not have to approve your decision to include them in your community and I’m sure we’ll see social media articles in the near future talking about the ratio of people in your circles and how many have you in their circles and if you should circle back others who circle you. Community building sounds more Twitter-like than Facebook-like to me.

Extending One’s Community is Like Watching @ Mentions

I find a lot of new people in my social sphere by seeing who people I follow on Twitter are conversing with and when it looks interesting and that person’s profile and content looks compelling I follow them on Twitter. I don’t do this on Facebook. I don’t send friend requests to people my aunt might be talking to in a comment thread or send a request to a co-worker’s high school buddy even if I think that person’s comments are interesting.

Google+ is different since I can easily add people to Circles who have common interests and it’s not as awkward as sending a friend request to someone you have never met before. Perhaps adding people to Circles will be less social as more people join and it really does become an alternative to Facebook than Twitter. Currently adding people to a Circle is a behavior that is more socially similar to a Twitter Follow action.


Hangouts are the New Hashtags

Want to join a more focused instant conversation that anyone can join and jump out of easily? Well Hangouts are for you and I’m sure we’ll see brands using this functionality in a way twitter hashtags are used. I’m guessing Hangout trivia contests to win products and weekly Hangouts will develop around specific days and times for the community to come together to discuss their shared interests.

SEO is Google+’s Silver Bullet

Like Twitter, Google+ content is publicly available on the world’s most used search engine and many are wondering how Google might change its search algorithm to benefit Google+ content. This is important to brands, publishers, content creators and others who concern themselves with things like Page Rank and Search Engine Optimization (SEO), but I can guarantee you my old high school friends or family members have no idea what Page Rank and SEO are nor will they ever care. So the Google+ silver bullet may be an audience that is interested in how content better lives in search and again here is where the link to Twitter as a competitor is more apt than Facebook. Many are on Twitter trying to get better SEO and I’m sure they will also join Google+ to improve their search rankings.



The Stream

Google’s feed is called the “Stream” and it pretty much behaves like Facebook’s News Feed with the ability to add links, images, videos, or a location along with commentary plus your community can comment and +1 (similar to “Like”) your posts. This functionality is very much like Facebook today, but if people recall the evolution of Facebook’s News Feed borrowed from Twitter’s interface (and Friendster.) Sure it is more media-rich than Twitter, but this feels like Twitter on steroids and allows for conversations around a particular topic, but I agree this functionality is most like Facebook and hence why most feel Google+ is a Facebook competitor; however, I feel this is where Twitter ultimately may have evolved if Facebook hadn’t beat them to it.

Still Evolving

Google+ certainly feels more like Twitter today, because a lot of the people I’ve connected with have come from my Twitter connections than say real-life connections. That of course may change if the masses, read my mom and non-social media types, start to gravitate to Google+. Without a compelling reason to move to another social community platform for the masses, it is doubtful my mom will want to re-establish all of her connections on a new website when Facebook has years of photos, years of accepted friend requests, and years of familiarity she has come to like.

For now, Google+ isn’t replacing either Facebook or Twitter since the community is still small and invitations are slowly trickling out, but as the site gains momentum it will be interesting to see if Google+ takes time away from Twitter more than Facebook. My guess, after a short week of using it and liking it, is it may be a formidable challenger to Twitter.


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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Do You Have Automotive Klout?




I ran across an interesting development in the online influencer news today. No I don't know what Brian Solis had for breakfast; instead, there is news today that the controversial influence score website Klout teamed up with Audi's Facebook page to create unique content only available to those fans who have enough social "influence."

I put quotes around influence because many feel, and yes I'm one of them, that Klout's scoring system is far from perfect, but I will give Klout credit in that they are trying and evolving their system in ways that are interesting and worth watching. They also are not trying to determine one's full influence, it is only a view at one's online influence which mainly focuses on social conversation and how much one talks online and one receives two-way conversation in return. It's more accurate to call it a volume score than an influencer score, but you can read a gizillion blogs on that topic.


So what is Audi doing in this? They are using the Klout engine to provide special access to content. Today's launch of the functionality is around their recent win at Le Mans. It was a great race and win from Audi. What a year and what a horrific beginning to the race that fortunately resulted in zero causalities other than a couple really expensive Audi cars.


If you have a Klout score high enough to gain special access, you will be granted the bonus of a Le Mans wallpaper to save to your computer. Wallpaper? Can't I just use Google Images and find a ton of them including some amazing pictures from the great coverage provided by blogs like QuattroWorld (props to my good friend Mike Juergens)?

Regardless of how 1996 the free wallpaper incentive feels, there is an interesting event here. Brand pages can now reward their most social media active fans. Unfortunately, it's doubtful most fans know what Klout is or how to get it. And there is a potential backlash that a brand's most hardcore Facebook page fans lack enough Klout to get special access, since they may only be active on the brand's page and not across social media.

It will be interesting to see how this develops and kudos to Audi for taking the first try at this approach. I just wish it was something cooler than a wallpaper...



NOTE: Please let me know if you tried it and failed regarding your own Klout score, I would love to know how much one needs to score to get access.

UPDATE: There is no qualifying Klout score, at least for the current promotion today. Perhaps that will change, but according the Audi Facebook wall team "everyone gets one." You can see their Facebook post on the topic and fan feedback here. Most of it is very positive, no surprise. Here is an image of Audi's wall team's response to a fan asking about the score question:


I don't feel as "special" anymore. ;)


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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Automotive Facebook Fans by Brand: April and May 2011



I've been tracking Facebook automotive fans since November 2009 and have never missed a month of data until last month. Unfortunately my early May was extremely busy and I overlooked capturing Facebook fan numbers that month. What is here is fan growth for the months of April and May 2011 combined.

Let’s get to what happened in April and May for automotive brands on Facebook. MINI had the strongest growth over the past 60 days. MINI has been activating user participation with their simple, but elegant idea of “Getting Billboarded” where fans
were able to show their image on a MINI billboard in Berlin. Fans were given the opportunity to share their image from Facebook and those in Berlin were given a photo booth to shoot a picture that would appear on a real billboard. It was a great way to create out of home media with social media. Plus participants were able to save their billboards as images that they could share or use as Facebook profile pictures, but they weren't doing this to only engage but rather to win their very own MINI car.

MINI is also activating their global fan base as a lot of its fans are coming from many countries. This is creating some significant separation on this analysis as brands like Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Porsche are also all activating their global fan base and that is why they are growing at such a stride compared to brands with less of a global impact. Plus all of these brands are aspirational, which helps organic growth dramatically on Facebook, since people fan luxury, high social value brands.


The other brand with some significant growth is Mazda. It’s an interesting time to see some big growth from Mazda since they do not have a vehicle launch during this time.

Mazda is doing their best to increase engagement with their fans and are leveraging their other social properties on the Facebook fan page. They added YouTube and Flickr tabs and are actively promoting content through wall posts. They have also implemented a #MiataMonday idea that asks open questions to their fans.

Mazda is also doing a “Flickr Photo Spotlight” where they are actively looking for Mazda photos on Flickr and then asking photographers to join a Mazda photo Owners Group. Then they are choosing photos to feature on the Mazda Facebook fan page. See the image at left showing one such engagement from Mazda with a Flickr user. This is a great example of showcasing owner enthusiasm and it also brings some fame from the brand to the owner and does it in a simple, respectful way. Bravo to Mazda for being creative in how they leverage multiple social media channels.

One quick thought...

Most automotive ads I’m seeing on Facebook seem to be driving less and less to the brand’s fan page. Most automotive ad buys on the site are sending people to the brand’s website. This makes me wonder if brands are not seeing significant value in growing fans and instead are finding value in Facebook’s ability to segment ad buys by consumer interests and bringing people to brand pages where there is abundantly more information about the products than the brand’s Facebook fan experience.

We are all learning what works and does not work so well on Facebook. After seeing massive ad buys the past couple years from automotive brands spending media to grow fans and now not seeing that behavior; it causes one to wonder if fan growth is not THE metric of success as it once was, that said this blog will still track it to see how a brand’s audience grows.




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