« February 2012 | Main | April 2012 »

Kotex + Pinterest = An Innovative Campaign: A Case Study With Yael Linen-Zuchman

03/30/2012

Pinterest_creative KotexSeems we can’t turn a virtual corner without bumping into a post about the hottest social network Pinterest.

What started as a playground for mostly women to share life style images is morphing into a serious business platform. Many brands, B2b, B2C, as well as, nonprofit and even the military and higher ed are pinning.

Recently I was contacted by an Israeli agency about a Pinterest campaign that they launched for Kotex: Kotex Inspiration Day.  Smoyz logoThe strategy capitalized on Pinterest in an innovative way beyond brand pins on a board. Let’s call it a “Pinterst” relationship strategy a la blogger relations. In fact, it might be the first. But I can assure you it will not be the last.

Yael Linen-Zuchman, CEO of the agency smoyz, kindly agreed to fill us in on the back-story, offer her insights about the strategy and share some lessons learned. 

Yael Linen-ZuchmanAbout Yael Linen-Zuchman, CEO of smoyz. She is a 30 year-old who graduated with a BA in business in 2009 at IDC Herztelia Israel. She established smoyz, a creative agency in 2010. She's "always looking for the next (simple yet brilliant) big thing."

About smoyz. A creative agency founded in 2010. smoyz is an agency for unique marketing on New Media, specializing in creative and novel content activities and building optimal platform for the brand on the web. Eran Sion – Digital Marketing Manager at Hogla-Kimberly

In several questions Yael asked Eran Sion, Digital Marketing Manager at Hogla-Kimberly to share his views. We have a unique view of the campaign from two perspectives: the brand and the agency.   

 

Diva Marketing/Toby: Yael, let’s start at the beginning. How did the idea to reach out to pinners come about?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: To communicate the launch of "Kotex Design" designed pads and panty liners by Kotex. We searched for an innovative social platform where women can express themselves freely and openly in a unique way.

Pinterest, and especially pinners, were found to be the best candidates because of the simple and brilliant (and not too invasive) way Pinterest works. In one simple action (pin) you can express yourself.

Diva Marketing/Toby: So, if I understand you, it seems that before you could reach out to women to give them the unique gifts from Kotex you first had to identify them and Pinterest was how you chose to do that.

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: That is correct!

Diva Marketing /Toby: Although you were going into a new area of social marketing… call it social visual communication, as marketers we seem to always be held to the standard of achieving goals/objectives. What were the goals/objectives that the client wanted to achieve for this program? 

Eran Sion/Hogla-Kimberly: Kotex is "the underdog brand" at the feminine category in Israel and Kotex logo therefore we looked for a unique and unconventional activity that will encourage Israeli women to talk about the products and rethink their habits and attitude towards the brand. 

Diva Marketing /Toby: Since this was a novel approach to Pinterest, what did you/smoyz want to learn from the experience that might have been different from Kotex’s goals?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: We generally think the same as Hogla-Kimberly. We were looking for an activity that would generate buzz around the product/brand. My brief was to create the conversation and maintain the brand as the creator of the move.

Diva Marketing /Toby:  Creating a YouTube video to tell your story of the brand strategy was nothing short of brilliant. Note: if you have not seen the video it's worth a click and watch.

In the video you indicated that 50 women were contacted. Let’s dive into what many marketers would like to understand .. your process of the hows and whys. Now, we’re not expecting you to give away any trade secrets Yael but a high level over view would be great. 

How were the women identified? In other words was it done manually or through technology?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: The women were identified by a few categories: viral, trendsetters and active on pinterest (many profiles on pinterest are open though not active enough to be relevant for this campaign). The women were identified first via social media monitoring and analysis technology  and then manually picked the most inspiring ones.

Diva Marketing /Toby: Did smoyz and Kotex develop a set of criteria e.g. age, country, type of interests, etc?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: We looked for profiles / pictures that could creatively be transformed into "real life products."  

Diva Marketing /Toby: I guess it goes without saying, the women were from Israel (smile).  Was an “influencer” or “power pinner” part of your criteria? If so how did you define that e.g. by number of pins, followers, ect?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: Yes, an influencer & power pinner were part of our criteria; we looked for profiles which are both active and both viral (followers wise).

Diva Marketing /Toby:  What were some of the challenges that you encountered?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: The main challenge was to make the pinners cooperate with a commercial activity owned by Kotex. Because we were very accurate and relevant to the Pinners, we received fantastic collaboration.

Diva Marketing /Toby:  From the video it seemed as though the gifts were a surprise. I’m curious as to how the women’s addresses were located.

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: After monitoring an inspiring pin we prepared the gift and pinned a photo on our Pinterest profile (Get Inspired). Then, on each pin that we monitored we commented and added a link to the gift, in order to receive the gift all they needed to do was repin our photo.

The repin was a signal of their interest, the addresses were taken via personal message approach. We used both the @ symbol and both the pin & like in order to get their attention properly. 

Diva Marketing /Toby:  Your results were beyond impressive; especially since the women posted across multiple social networks. How did you track the analytics? Note: almost 100% participation.

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: Technical social media monitoring and manually monitoring these 50 women.

Diva Marketing /Toby: Yael , I’d love to see how the women positioned their pins? Can you share a couple of the Pinterest board with our community?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyze: The profile we created, was deleted and no longer exist, that's why you can't see the photos. We decided to open the Kotex Pinterest "Get Inspired" profile temporarily and closed it after the campaign. (Note: Eran addresses this approach further below.)

Following are some of the women who participated in the Pinterest Kotex campaign.

Products I Love . My StyleLegally Blonde . Urban Wilderness

Diva Marketing /Toby: My friends (and I admit me too!) are so curious .. what were some of the presents that were in  the boxes? That must have been a fun part of the project .. making sure the gifts reflected the pinner’s interests.

 Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz: This was the most amazing part of the campaign. After locating each womens inspiration smoyz team went out for an inspiration treasure hunt.

We went to markets, malls, searched the internet..and finally bought 50 unique inspiring gifts. After buying these gifts artists designed on these gift the new kotex design look. Among the gifts:

Kotex_kittyA women pinning cat photos received two bowls designed and with her cats names. (Note: Maxie pup approves!)

A women that pinned sweets, got a kotex designed jar full of hearted sweets.

A women that pinned cupcakes & got kotex designed cupcakes.

A young girl pinned diaries & got a pocket diary with her name painted on the diary.

A women that pinned pastry-cooking stuff received a cooking kit designed with her initials.

Kotex_gift1 Kotex gift_2
Kotex gift 3

Diva Marketing /Toby: Yael what fun .. buying presents. I want that job! By the way, does Kotex have a Pinterest page? And if they do would you be so kind as to give us the link? If not are any plans in the works that you can share with us?

Eran Sion/Hogla-Kimberly: We believe that any activity on behalf of the brand, should give true value to our consumers and reflect the core values of the brand. The latest activity did just that. We are in a constant search for a platform that will enable us to provide added value to our consumers – It does not have to be a long lasting engagement, short term relations are also welcome.

Diva Marketing/Toby: Interesting approach to Pinterest and social media. Not only short term boards for campaigns but taking them down after the run of the campaign. Eran, I'm curious .. why wouldn’t Kotex want the long-term awareness that the board would bring?

Eran Sion/Hogla-Kimberly: The main goal of our digital platforms is to promote awareness to the brand and we support them constantly. Nevertheless it would be ambitious to create constant excitement on behalf of Kotex on a Pinterest profile; but due the success of the "Kotex Inspiration Day" activity, we will examine our long term presence on the platform. 

Diva Marketing /Toby:  Diva Marketing is all about learning from each other. Yael, would you please share a couple of the overall lessons that you learned?

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz:

  • In my opinion New media marketing in 2012 is all about creating intimate moments with the brand.
  • These amazing platforms enable the brands to touch their audience in the most intimate way. 
  • Conventional advertising and marketing cannot stand alone today without a simple yet brilliant touch to blow people away and create a real organic engagement.

Diva Marketing /Toby: In the tradition of Diva Marketing interviews,  you get the last word. So the virtual stage is yours .. wrap it up any way you’d like.

Yael Linen-Zuchman/smoyz:  Would it be cheesy if I quote my most favorite one? Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication -- Leonardo de Vinci

Pinterest Pinning For Business Learning Series 

Friday Fun: Entrepreneurial Spirit

03/30/2012

Friday Fun is Diva Marketing's virtual happy hour from cosmos to Jack to lemonade. A waiting for the weekend playground time to be sophisticated-silly. Or sometimes just plain silly.

  • If you don't have a dream how you gonna have a dream come true? - South Pacific 

Social media is built by people who dream and create. Two qualities of what I think of defines the entrepreneurial spirit.

Even if you're not developing a new social widget or strategy, but are exploring and using social media, I believe you have some of that spirit. You're thinking in new ways, trying a different approach.  Toss of a pink boa to you! By the way, in an innovative imitative Babson College is asking people to define "entepreneurialship." 

Entepreneurs inspire. We look at their accomplishments and perhaps we're encouraged to take our dream one step further. We look at the lessons learned that they pass along and take a few to heart. Perhaps we'll stumble over one less rock in the road. I'd like to introduce you to a couple of people who took a chance and are making their dreams come true .. some beyond their own expectations.

Think that fashion and bargains are just for divas. Think again. Jason Ross, founder of JackThreads tapped into guys who want to be cool on a budget. He built an eCommerce sample site ..with a twist. It was members only. Every aspect, from the products to the photography reinforces the brand value and promise.  Jackthreads

"We're kind of like the Robin Hood of men's clothing, minus the grand larceny and the pointy hat." - Jason Ross. MSN  Business On Main has a great interview with Jack. Worth a click and a watch. @jackthreads JackThreadsFacebook 

This week in Atlanta, the Digital Divas, a SIG of the AiMA (Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association), brought together a panel of women entrepreneurs.  Lynne Laube, President and Co-Founder, CardlyticsCaroline Van Sickle, Founder/CEO, Pretty in My Pocket and Kris Zagoria, founder, Moxie Interactive shared their stories and lessons learned of taking start-up companies to multi million dollar enterprises. 

I find it interesting what people take away from a speech. In tweets, here are some what the audience found inspirational. 

Digital divas tweets_1Digital divas tweets_2

Let's Have FUN .. You Can Win $100!

MSN Business On Main/Diva Marketing Small Business Tip Contest

 Your challenge is to share 1 idea on what inspires you when it comes to tapping into your entrepreneurial spirit.

 Rules of MSN The Business on Main/Diva Marketing Social Media Small Business Tips Contest 

1. Post your tip for how to use social media for branding on this Diva Marketing post And on this MSN Business On Mail PostIf you don't post on MSN BOM and indicate Diva Marketing you cannot qualify for the $100 prize. 

2. Identify your post on Business On Main with the words Diva Marketing

3. Winner is at the pleasure of Diva Marketing.

4. Contest ends midnight Saturday April 14, 2012.

5. You must be at least 18 years of age

6. A valid eMail address must be included on the "Post a Comment Section" of your Diva Marketing comment. (How will I know where to contact you to send your check?)

That's it .. now it's your turn! Wouldn't $100 a great way to say thank you to You? 

Looking forward to your ideas!

Thanks Rob for the edit!

Diva Marketing is part of an online influencer network for MSN Business on Main. I receive incentives to share my views on a monthly basis. All opinions are 100% mine.





 

Social Media Impacts The Trust of People Not In Our Digital Networks

03/26/2012

Computer woman _2
Sometimes the smart people can be the most naive when it comes to social media and social networks.

In the post I wrote on employee personal branding I offered the premise that an employee's digital personae will likely be affilated with their employee's brand during, as well as after, employment ends. Hold that thought please.

When I teach, especially social media workshops, I make every attempt to create what I call a "social media offline environment." As with social media online, although I have material to present, listening and sharing play important roles. Adults learn best from peer-to-peer interaction and people are generous to share their own lessons learned.

I want to pass along a story that a participant, a small business owner, shared of how she discovered one of her managment employees felt his job was boring and un-challenging. Let's call the business owner Ruth and the employee Bert.

To frame this, the guy was in his early thirties and not at the beginning of his career path. He had been using Facebook, Twitter and LInkedIn for personal and professional use for several years. One afternoon at work, he dropped a seemingly innocent remark on his Facebook wall (privacy setting set to allow friends only) that he was bored with his job and was looking for a new position. 

You can easily connect the series of dots and dashes. A "friend" who wanted to be helpful to his friend's job search efforts, copied the update and sent it to someone who sent it to someone who sent it to the business owner.

As Ruth told our class, sometimes the best intentions of placing what you think is the right person in the right position just don't work. When she read Bert's post she had a lot of emotions. She was angry. She felt betrayed. She also was concerned about the perceptions people might have of the company, as well as, the job that she would sooner than later have to fill. 

Her company was a small business where she tried to create a trusting environment. Evidently Bert didn't feel comfortable discussing his concerns with his manager or even with her. Ruth was at a cross road at how to handle the sitution. Was she not utilizing Bert's capabilities? Should she find another opportunity for him? Hop over to MSN On Main for some ideas on how to identify "diamond in the rough employees" that you may be overlooking. 

As our in class discussion continued, it was became more obvious that the bigger issue for Ruth was the trust that she felt had been broken. In social media we talk a lot about building trust in the digital world. However, sometimes we forget that trusted relationships are continuously being played out in on-line public forums. We can impact people (and organizations) casually mentioned in a tweet, update or even a pin. Often these people don't belong to our merry band of of Follwers, Likes, Friends, Connects, Pinees, or well .. you get the idea.

In this situation we have three smart people who were naive about the impact of social media. Bert of course. Ruth who should have offered training and established guidelines to her staff. The third is Bert's friend who was only trying to help find a a pal a new job. 

Lessons Learned: There are no gated communities on-line. Don't post what you don't want passed along. Employers it is critical to teach your employees good social media/networking etiquette and periodically remind them of your corporate guidelines.

You do have social media/networking guidelines? Excellent! I knew you did. Just in case you want to freshen them up .. here's a post with links to many examples.

I left off the ending purposely. Wondering how would you handle the situation?

Diva Marketing is part of an online influencer network for MSN Business on Main. I receive incentives to share my views on a monthly basis. All opinions are 100% mine.

Graphic credit: David Castillo Dominici / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Personal Branding Within The Corporate Workplace

03/20/2012

Do you remember Tom Peters’ innovative Fast Company article The Brand Called You?

Computer womanBack in the ‘90’s Peters presented what for the time was an unusual concept: employees could position themselves, within their organizations, as though they were a brand.  His idea was employees were more than cogs in a corporate wheel. By taking a lesson from how marketers branded products people could successful manage and grow their careers. 

There have been volumes written about how to create a “personal brand” including right here on Diva Marketing posted in 2009. However, social media and social networks have added an interesting dimension. 

What if ..

  • your employer helped you develop your personal brand to the benefit of both you and them?

What if ..

  • then you both leveraged the credibility, visibilty and goodwill of each to create a an earned halo effect that supports and aligns your values and the company's brand promise? 

Answer: You have an Employee Personal Branding Strategy.

Enterprises which place a value on encouraging employee branding, experience multiple benefits. For instance it strengthens corporate branding both internally and externally. When an organization helps its employees create their brand for mutual value, from the company’s  point of view, many positives can occur from decreasing business costs to increasing market awareness.

Six Benefits of Employee Personal Branding

1. Industry knowledge transfer which may decrease training costs

2. Trend identification which may present new product development and sales opportunities

3. Stronger collaboration with subject matter experts which may increase  logistic efficiencies

4.  Increased leadership development which may decrease recruitment acquisition costs

5. Employees can serve as brand champions increasing visibility within the industry and building important relationships with customers, prospects, influencers and thought leaders.

6. Improved corporate brand perception which can positively affect not only marketing goals,  but improve recruiting top people to the organization by becoming a more desirable place to work. This is the ultimate “halo effect.”

Employee personal branding is a aspect of social business that I believe will become increasingly critical as employees take for granted using social networks, like LinkedIn, to cultivate relationship building opportunities.

On the flip side, organizations are neglecting low cost ways to increase brand awareness, credibility and goodwill through the people who know their brand the best .. their employees.

I am excited to be working with Bernie Borges to create an important training workshop sponsored by the American Marketing Association: Personal Branding within in the Corporation. Please enjoy this podcast where Bernie and I take you on a deeper dive of this exciting concept. 

Update: After my conversation with John Cass, I'm adding one more 

What if ..

  • the "halo influence" of employer/employee continues even after you leave an organization. Why not work together to create a mutual beneficial employee digital presence .. for the present and the future?

Graphic credit: ymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Is Social Media A Strategy or A Tactic?

03/08/2012

  • In real life, strategy is actually very straightforward. You pick a general direction and implement like hell. – Jack Welch 

Strategy freenetwork
As BBF B.L. Ochman recently reminded me, social media has been around, and included in varying degrees (!), as a business initiative for the past ten years. Although most marketers agree social media is not a fad there is still a debate on what is social media. Is social media a strategy or is social media a tactic?

Just One Crowd Sourced Question

I was curious to understand what and why marketers thought on this issue and thought it would be a great question for Diva Marketing's sometimes series: Just One Crowd Sourced Question.

I reached out to people within social networks and invited them to reach out to their networks and answer .. just one question. It's a quick turn around .. a few days to respond. The goal, of course, is to bring you diverse opinions so we can learn together. 

Let's frame the question with a high level overview of strategy and tactics. The following is from Euromed Marseille School of Management, World Med MBA Program - Information Systems and Strategy Course

"Strategy and tactics are about means and ends: they bridge the gap between our vision of the future and our day to day decisions. Both strategy and tactics are about deciding the means by which a goal is reached. Ultimately the goal of strategy as a concept is to find a rigorous and systematic way of making these decisions."

Or put another way .. strategy is identifying which song to sing and tactics are identifying how to sing it. Then sing it out loud and strong! 

Crowd sourceOut of the 17 responses received, most people felt that social media was both a strategy and a tactic.

It was interesting that several marketers considered social media to be neither. They came up with their own creative descriptives ranging from "a corporate culture and state of mind to a platform and communications tools."

 Is Social Media A Strategy or Is Social Media A Tactic?

Social Media Is A Strategy

1. Social media is a strategy for communicating and engaging in/expanding dialogue with your brand's consumers/advocates/constituents. Sure, it's one tactic for broadcast marketing messages, but successful use of social media includes using it as a customer service, just as much as a marketing, tool.

Developing a strategy prior to implementing social media ensures that your company has the resources/manpower to keep it running; that you have the tools in place to measure its value; that you'll know what to do with it with a crisis strikes; and that you get the bang for your buck integrating cross-departmental use (customer service department, communications department, user experience, operations, etc.). - Laura Bellinger @madamebelle

2. Utilizing social media is a strategy. Tactics are how you accomplish the goal. Interestingly the idiom for strategy is "tools of the trade". - JoAnn Hines Packaging Diva

3. Because it helps to get your name/product out in the world by a host of different means. - AmyJo

Social Media Is A Tactic

1. While you can have a strategy for your social media program, it is a tactic within your overall marketing tool kit. It should be one element of a complete business/marketing strategy that aligns with business goals and objectives. - Katharine McMahon @marketingbykat

2. I think it is more of a Tactic than a strategy. A strategy is what you need to do to implement your goal(s). The tactics are the How's. Moreover, I believe that Social Media is more of a connector - it's the glue that links the offline and the online efforts of your marketing campaigns, it connects you to your fans, would-be fans, competitors and general public. That is built-in market research right there. - Sue Duris President M4 Communications, Inc. 

3. Like other forms of 'marketing' or engaging with your customer, social media exists to bring you face-to-face, either in real time or virtually. The strategy of your business needs to be finding the best ways to serve your customers - the tactic is in using social media, among other tools, to achieve that goal. - Yvonne DiVita, Lip-sticking 

Social Media Is Both A Strategy And A Tactic

1. SM is a great tool (tactic) to achieve and meet goals, but it truly needs a strategy to be successful. Without the strategy, how do you know if the tool is working? - Rachel Simon @raksimon

2. Offense is strategic, Defense is tactical. I see the world of social as offense versus defense. Tactically, I see the defensive positioning of responding to comments about your brand. Strategically, I see the opportunity to remain in an offensive position - pushing social campaigns and predicting results so you can stage the next campaign (think business process flows for social campaigns). - David Favero @mdavidfavero

3. Social media needs to be addressed as part of every marketing strategy. With a coherent, cohesive strategy in hand, a tactical plan to execute social media is the next step. Hard to have any effective execution without connecting the dots to a strategy that advances the business case. - Nancy Chorpenning CSuiteAdvisors @CSuiteAdvisors

4. For most brands it is mainly a tactic that needs to be integrated into a larger marketing plans BUT, several smaller businesses are utilizing it as a full-blown strategy because of the cost barrier being perceived as being low.- Anon

5. Social is breaking down the walls in the market allowing buyers to engage in a collaborative buying process in peer to peer networks for decision support. Buyers are building a strategic business case to justify their recommended approach to solving business problems while building consensus to the decision with their teams.

If we are buyer-centric in our commitment to helping our buyers make better decisions then we need to find where strategic and tactical intersect. Tactical engagement in support of strategic relationships for business impact. – Judy Mod @JudyMod @SocialCouncil

6. Mmm.that's challenging because a Strategy (in marketing parlance) really should be an idea of how to execute a goal...like "nuke the enemy to achieve world dominance." And the tactic would be the tools you use to do this. So technically Social Media is a tactic, but surely there is some way to define social media as a strategy? Am I waffling here? – Anon

7. Social media may be a strategic marketing approach. The actual way you use SM is tactical.A marketing strategy might be to use SM to launch a new product. Actually posting your campaign on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, etc. is a tactical exercise. - Maggie Buerger @getfamousfast

Neither A Strategy Nor A Tactic

1. Corporate culture, state of mind. For social media to be effective for a brand, it requires both the brand and its constituents to be willing to connect and engage. A brand that uses the tools just to promote misses the point of social.

On the flipside, brands that are willing to tell its story, listen to feedback, make the necessary changes AND defend certain key aspects of their 'personality' will eventually build trust and collaboration with their constituents which is the ultimate goal for any brand. - Jacqui Chew

2. Social media is a platform to communicate from one to many. Social media can be qualified as a medium for strategy or a tactic supporting a strategy if there is an objective for the platform. Without the two it is simply a Techology for publishing or consuming information. Peter Fasano @pfasano

3. Social media is a set of communication tools. Social media - media in which conversations can take place - is a set of tools in the communications toolbox. – Anon

4. It's a supporting arm of your marketing and communications goals. Not a strategy alone, but a strategic element that is comprised of many tactics. - Anon

Toss of a pink boa to everyone who shared their thoughtful insights!

My thanks to  Candace McCaffery for her post that inspired this Just One Question post.

Here's my comment on her post (add me to the Both list):

I believe that social media demands a strategy of its own .. not unlike pr or marketing or customer care or (fill in the blank).

Assuming that social media touches all aspects of an organization, it's critical develoip an over arching direction that integrates with all BU/departments/employees who are impacted by its intrusion (I use intrusion not as a negative). Without that high level focus how can the brand promise or values be consistently represented internally and externally? How can we use social media to support business goals and objectives? How can we incorporate it into campaigns and use it as a digital conversation tool that becomes an asset unto itself?

Social media has evolved into more than just a channel, communication outreach or customer service vehicle. I would suggest that the "tools" of social media e.g. social networks, blogs, podcasts, blogger relations, etc. are the tactics under the umbrella of social media strategy.

Social media has evolved to command the same respect as other marketing/communication disciplines to be consider a 'strategy."

Update: Thanks Damica Kombol for your contribution.

What are your thoughts? Do you consider social media to be a strategy, a tactic, both or something else?

Enhanced by Zemanta

Grapic credi: tungphoto / FreeDigitalPhotos.net