Your 2012 Strategy: Driving Brand Engagement

How are you going to engage your community in 2012?

First things first. 

Change your headset – it’s not an audience, it’s a community.

What does an audience do? It watches.

What does a community do? It communicates, engages, and acts.

Community. From Flickr user Tobyotter.
Who’s doing this? One example I came across was Heinz – in the U.K., where they are a big soup brand, they’re getting fans to send personalized soup cans with “get well” messages to one another for cold and flu season. The cost is low - just 1.99 pounds, and the engagement factor is high – people are taking pictures of the cans, tweeting and sharing with others. The bonus – many people who had never purchased anything from Facebook before are now buying from Heinz in a new way.

How can you start driving your community to engage with your brand?

Monitor conversations – evaluate what people are talking about and why. With this insight, you can understand what’s going on before you get involved – to avoid barging in.

Track – what, when, how much interest, and sentiment. What are people saying about you and how often? Is there a time of day or week when you get more attention? What are people interested in the most, and is that interest - sentiment - positive or negative?

Community of dogs. From Flickr user Beverly & Pack.
Identify key influencers and track their conversations so that you can engage with them in a relevant, authentic way.

Look at what competitors are doing – what kinds of campaigns and activities are generating a lot of comments and buzz? Is it positive or negative.

Also, mobile is key. A recent statistic from Motricity that’s been getting some attention? 64% of holiday mobile shoppers plan to shop with their mobile device more in 2012 – with mobile coupons, giftcards, and ratings getting the most attention.

How are you driving engagement this year? Drop me a line and let me know.

Related posts: 

My series on 2012 planning
Why you should care more about tablet users

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