Last week, Crain’s Chicago Business took a look at which companies in the Chicagoland area are doing the best job of effectively leveraging social media to reach consumers, increase brand awareness and ultimately rise sales. As I was reading the article, it came to no surprise that leading companies like Kraft Foods, McDonalds and Sears Holdings were among the top (my guess is due to the ability to hire teams to develop and manage these digital campaigns).
The rankings were determined the by key factors, such as audience strength, content sharing, conversation strength and topical alignment. Kraft Foods was ranked No.1 on the list, receiving the maximum “very high” remarks in two segments: audience strength and topical alignment.
So what did Kraft Foods do to win the top spot for running its social media campaigns effectively? For starters, Kraft has what every company can easily achieve; a presence on social media channels like Facebook and Twitter. The catch? They’re actively updating and engaging with their consumers via these portals and responding to comments regarding its more than 70 product lines.
While many businesses might think that having a presence on social media channels is enough, the truth is it all depends on how well they are engaging, educating and sharing with customers, and in turn, how well customers are responding. Sometimes nothing seems worse than finding a company page on Facebook that is blank. Then again, not finding the company on Facebook at all triumphs a company page that contains limited engagement and information. A simple way to overcome this is by setting up a company page that contains a brief history description, logo and a list of services and/or products. Best of all, this can be achieved in a matter of minutes.
Even more important in determining Kraft’s social media success is its creativity when it comes to offering consumers recipes. All of its more than 30,000 recipes are in both English and Spanish, and receive 80 million visits per year. These recipes are also frequently discussed and shared among Kraft’s 770,350 fans on Facebook.
If your business doesn’t have the immense brand awareness that Kraft does, you might think that an active social media audience isn’t achievable since you might not have 30,000 recipes you can share. However, if you have a corporate blog, a few white papers and expert opinions, a little can go a long way by repurposing content.
So after looking at the list of the Chicago companies that are using social media effectively, did you think of a couple new ideas to try in your 2012 social media campaigns?