Yesterday at Blog World we participated in a social media case study panel where businesses presented how they are using social media, which channels and what success they have seen from their efforts. The panel was hosted by Jason Falls, a social media expert and the founder of Social Media Explorer.
MALL OF AMERICA
The case studies kicked off with Lisa Grimm, digital public relations specialist for the Mall of America. Lisa shared the success of one particular campaign which was sheer genius. The most difficult time to park at the mall is during Christmas week, so to increase their social media following, the Mall of America team decided to auction off the parking spaces in the front row of the mall’s lot to their social media followers only. Simply by using the parking event’s hashtag on Twitter you were entered into the auction and could win a front row parking space to do your holiday shopping. This social media campaign increased the Mall of America’s Twitter following by 11%. Additionally, the social media event received media coverage in ClickZ and Forbes. You can follow the Mall of America on Twitter @MallofAmerica.
BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD
Next up on the panel was Shannon Paul, social media manager for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. Prior to this position, Shannon worked on social media strategy for the Detroit Red Wings. She spoke to the audience about Blue Cross Blue Shield’s online community called AHealthierMichigan.org. She shared that “80% of internet users look up health information online.” With that in mind, AHleahtierMichigan.org is the focus of her work. She spoke about the importance of contributed content, about a content calendar, and how to utilize members of the company outside of the communications department. Interestingly, her team uses Facebook and Twitter primarily to drive traffic back to their website.
The final seat on the panel belonged to our very own director of public relations and social media, Matt Gentile! You can follow Matt on Twitter, @MattGentile. Matt spoke about the Smarter, Bolder, Faster marketing campaign and our entrance into social media which began with Facebook. He shared how we are actively building communities on Facebook and Twitter, including 8-10 updates per day on Twitter. Matt also spoke about the launch of this very blog and the importance of sharing useful content with our community. He also highlighted that we were the first company to buy real estate in ngmoco’s mobile game, We City. When asked by an audience member why get into mobile, Matt answered, “Our CMO Bev Thorne likes a quote from Wayne Gretzky that says, you have to skate in the direction of where the puck is going. That is what we’re doing.”
When asked by a different audience member, “What’s next for Century 21 in social?” Matt provided a truly exciting update which is that soon QR codes will be available on Century 21 signs. If you aren’t familiar with QR codes, they are custom bar codes that can be scanned on a smartphone that will direct you to specific information, such as a real estate listing.
If you’re interested in viewing more conversation from the case study panel we will be posting the video from the session!