Businesses of all sizes have the same challenge: How to get more people talk about their brand, products, or events. No this is not really new. What is new though, is the fact that today approximately 80% of all purchase decisions are based on mentions and recommendations. Also roughly 80% of event attendees join any given event based on mentions and recommendations. And there is no difference between B2B or B2C. Growing mentions and recommendations are now becoming strategic objectives for today’s marketing engagement.
Case Study OpenStack Conference
Cloud computing with open source technology isn’t exactly a consumer topic and it isn’t really sexy either. The job was to stimulate discussions and outbuzz everybody. Easier said than done because there are industry heavyweights like HP and Rackspace competing for attention and mind share as well. And a competing event, organized by 800 pound gorilla Amazon was already introduces as “Cloud War” by the tech press. The Redhat team however was equipped with the new S3 Buzz Technology that was created to stimulate massive engagement in a way that was not possible before. The new technology allows its users to disseminate short tweet size text blocks to business friends, partners and customers with the goal to share those and stimulate conversations. Friends of friends of friends can obviously respond, comment and share it further with others. Everything with a push of a button and a robust management system with analytics to manage the progress of the campaign in real time. With a very agile partner organization that has already
been motivated to engage online, mentions and reach grew instantly
and rapidly. On the second conference day the discussions reached the „Top News“ status on Twitter and conventional media reported „Redhat steals the show at OpenStack Summit…“.
What exactly happened?
Within only three days we created over 100 pieces of content based on known presentations, known speaker and topics and formed them to 140 character long information snippets, ready to communicate. The content was entered into the S3 Buzz System. Every partner and friend of the company as well as speakers and sponsors had access to the Buzz page and could share the content easily with their network, with a single click. The mostly highly interesting content was quickly picked up by others and re-shared. While the conference was in full swing, we communicated live by introducing the current speakers, what they present and also reactions from the audience. The short and fast content distribution was easy to read and easy to follow. Business partners and buzz teams where in stand by for new content and actually provided a never ending information stream throughout the day. Intrigued IT professionals from around the world picked up the news stream on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+ and began to ask questions, provided comments and shared the info with their network. In just a few hours over 5,000 people outside the conference were involved in topics and conversations. Obviously, partner and buzz team was busy to engage, respond or re-rout questions to the respective experts all in real time.
The conference made history. Not only with the participating parties, but it was a proof of concept for the effectiveness of Buzz campaigns and its ability to reach markets like no other media. After day 2 the conference had a reach of nearly 30 Million.
Buzz campaigns evolve to a strategic marketing tool that is capable of improving sales productivity by allowing sales teams to point to the customer voice instead of bluntly promoting the product themselves. Brand reputation is taking an all new height when a market is no longer discussing only problems but sharing exciting news and participating in conversations around the world. Compared to conventional awareness creation marketing, Buzz creates real customer engagement with a positive long term effect to brand sentiments and brand reputation. More details are presented at the upcoming webinar Nov 19.