Social Media ROI: An Interview with Olivier Blanchard – Part 2

Photo from ELTMAN via Flickr

This post is is the first in a 5 part series based on an interview with Olivier Blanchard, author of Social Media ROI.

Weaving Social Media into Strategy

My second question I asked Olivier was, “how do you go about weaving social into business strategy to accomplish objectives?”

Olivier advises that to be successful with social media, you cannot simply focus on developing a standalone social media strategy.  You need to build a solid business strategy and weave social media into it.  When you put social media before the business objectives, you simply end up with a channel or reach strategy.

One of the goals of social media, Olivier suggests, it to change a behavior or overcome obstacles.

In his book, Olivier presents the F.R.Y. concept. F.R.Y. stands for frequency, reach and yield.  He first came across this concept while developing SMB reseller communities with Microsoft.  Applying the F.R.Y concept to social media is an effective way to achieve business objectives.

You can develop effective social media campaigns by asking one of these questions:

  • How do I increase my customer base? [Reach]
  • How do I get customers to buy more often? [Frequency]
  • How do I get customers to spend more per transaction? [Yield]

The business objectives tied to these questions are different and so the social media campaigns should be separate.

Using Social Media to Increase Buy Rate

Olivier attended a conference in New York and a discussion occurred about the ‘Old Spice Guy’ campaign.  Most focus of these companies is on increasing reach and yield because the assumption is that people won’t buy deodorant sticks more often.

Olivier suggested a great frequency strategy.

In Olivier’s example, he suggested that people would buy a deodorant stick once a month, even though your deorderant stick may run out every 27 days.  Most guys will wait until they go to the store next and use the deodorant stick right to the very end and end up scraping your armpits with plastic (I know I have).

Olivier suggested the concept of a social media campaign that would encourage consumers to stop scraping their armpit with plastic.  It would build awareness and suggest they buy before they run out.  The end result would increase the buy rate and increase sales by 10%.

Using Social Media to Solve a Problem

Olivier shared the story about Comcast.  Historically Comcast has had terrible customer service.  A few years ago, Frank Eliason decided to start using Twitter to interact with customers.  This garnered a lot of attention from media and the business world.  They dramatically changed the public perception of the company by responding to more customers in less time.

In both these examples (one theoretical, one real) social media was used to solve a problem. It was tied to business objectives.

  • Ramon B. Nuez Jr.

    Honestly great information. I am actually reading Oliver’s book — Social Media ROI. This is a must have social media handbook to have in your toolbox.

  • Ozio Media

    The information you shared can be very beneficial when applied. Before taking the time to set up profiles and make a business presence on social media, it is extremely important to define your objectives, strategy and goals. If you don’t, how can you possibly expect to measure results and implement a successful strategy?