Gaining Experience in Emerging Media
IMC 619 – Emerging Media

It’s All About the Deal

Social sites such as Facebook and Twitter are said to be key ingredients in any integrated campaign to build brand awareness.  According to Mark Walsh’s November 9, 2009 article in MediaPost.com, it’s the draw of the deal that is attracting users to social media as reported in a recent study conducted by Razorfish.  “That to me is a big ‘Aha!, said Garrick Schmitt, Razorfish group vice president of experience planning and editor of the study, in an interview. “What we’re finding is that with Facebook and Twitter, marketers are assuming some deeper dialogue, but what’s really going on is — people want deals.” (Walsh, 2009)

Of those who follow a brand on Twitter, for example, 44% said access to exclusive deals is the main reason. And on Facebook and MySpace, 37% cited special deals as the main reason they have “friended” a brand. The report points to companies such as Starbucks, which has amassed nearly 5 million fans and soared to the top of Facebook brand pages by offering coupons for free pastries and ice cream. (Walsh, 2009)

Razorfish identified customer service as the other key driver of consumer interaction in social media, with 33% friending a brand on Facebook and MySpace for that purpose, and 24% on Twitter. Companies such as Comcast, Zappos and Virgin have all gotten high marks for using the latter as a customer relations management (CRM) tool. (Walsh, 2009)

So, what are the social platforms best for?  Can that answer differ company by company and strategy by strategy?  I believe so.  I also believe that while marketing to social networkers appears to be a viable strategy overall, it also needs to be considered seriously as part of an overall approach (avoiding the use of the word ‘campaign’ here) with specific goals in mind.  Using Facebook to redeem the face value of Starbucks may be a flash in the pan.  For example, was the popularity of the free ice cream and pastries at Starbuck’s just a fluke?  Was it studied?  Those are questions (among others)  that support a solid approach to continually successful campaigns.

Walsh, M. Razorfish study: special offers drive engagement in social media.  November 9, 2009.  MediaPost Publications Online.   retrieved from  http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=117008 on November 16, 2009.

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One Response to “It’s All About the Deal”

  1. Facebook and Twitter used strategically are effectives ways to inform, tantalize and build curiosity about a brand. Used effectively they could also help to build curiosity around a product or sevice launch and whet consumer’s appepite for upcoming promotional events. Personally, I believe it’s more the later. At any given time I’m following a handful of brands on Twitter and/or Facebook, but only for one thing and one thing only – the deals. After the promotional campaign ends, so does my trekking behind the brand. Which leads me to my question: How can marketers use social media to help build brand loyalty? Is this even in the cards? Just a thought!


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