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Boutique Call 2.0: iNDELIBLE

Taking a cue from our  Boutique Calls from back in the day, we decided to take a look at some of the shops that may be flying under the radar, and get a little background as well as their input on relevant industry topics. And since social media chatter is inescapable these days, we decided to pick the brain of the folks at Indelible (or iNDELIBLE as they like to spell it), an 11-year-old, NYC-based digital shop that calls itself an “experience commerce company.” Speaking of “experience commerce,” Indelible was nominated for a Webby last year in the Best E-Commerce Site category for its Rich & Skinny Jeans destination.  Seeing as they’ve launched  several social media campaigns  as of late spanning from cosmetics to film, we decided to take a look at Indelible and get the self-proclaimed “web video pioneer”‘s take on the much-discussed medium.

How does your agency define social media activation?

Social media activation is the process whereby consumer insight is leveraged to ignite enthusiasm and dialogue with a brand. At Indelible, we break consumers into two groups:

1. Existing Customer Base: This consists of engaging a brand’s current customers through owned media including but not limited to; email Database, loyalty Programs, in-store signage, current Facebook fans and current Twitter, to name a few. These consumers require different strategies to be activated as they already consumer and know the brand and thus don’t need to be sold. Activation of this group means exciting the base, sparking a two‐way dialogue.

2. New Customers: These are consumers who are not currently a part of a brand’s owned media, however, determined by research, to be the most likely to purchase products or services in the category. Activation of this group requires tapping into their passions while creating brand awareness. The ultimate goal is to use social to usher them through the conversion funnel.

Read on after the jump…

How is social media changing the “brandscape”?

Social media allows brands and consumers to share the mutual benefits of friendship:

1. The consumer has always been [a muted] king. The days of consumers having to air their opinions, misgivings, bad experiences and applaud for companies has long evolved from writing letters and calling customers service lines. Now feedback is real time and occurring in a public forum. While many companies might see this as a threat, we encourage companies to view the feedback as an opportunity. Social media gives the brand a voice as well and if spoken properly, almost all threats can be turned into wins. It’s often as simple as letting the consumer know you’re listening to them.

2. Social media explicitly means a dialogue. Until social media (or web 2.0 as it was called circa 2008), brands talked at consumers. The traditional media environment meant that brands needed carefully crafted copy in carefully crafted campaigns revolving around themselves. Times have changed. Brands have to become a part of the community and that means lots of little conversations ‐ much of the time unplanned and off the cuff. It’s the little conversations that win the trust and hearts of consumers and allow advertisers to truly transcend the :30 TV spot.

3. Consumers will reciprocate the friendship. They will keep brands top of mind, purchase their products, advocate to their friends, defend the brand in bad times and most important, they will be loyal.

Why is it important to include social media in any brand strategy?

‐ Owned Media Value: With a relatively low upfront investment compared to traditional advertising campaigns, brands can build a fan base that becomes an owned media outlet. We figure if a brand has one million Facebook fans that equals over $10 million in free media per year based on Facebook’s measurements of impressions, status updates and social amplification. The cost to maintain communications and the community is relatively low considering the media value.

‐ Lifetime value of a fan: The more active your fans are within your community, the higher their lifetime value is to the brand. If you sell one $50 product to a fan per year for 30 years, their lifetime value equals $1,500. If you have a million fans that means $1.5 billion. What better reason does a brand need to invest in and actively engage their community?

What are the core elements essential in a social media campaign?

Understanding your consumers, their passion points and how to provide them value in timely and engaging ways.

What makes Indelible unique when it comes to social media campaigns?

Our solution is turn-key. We handle 100% of the operation in-house insuring impeccable delivery in addition to strategic and creative excellence. Indelible assigns a dedicated social media team to each brand, no matter how big or small the budget.

How do you measure the effectiveness and success of a social media campaign?

Accurately measuring efficacy starts with clearly defined key performance indicators (KPIs). This can be number of fans/followers, impressions, sales, perceptions and awareness. Generally it is a mix. Once this is determined, we create the appropriate tracking strategy including tagging links, sentiment measurement, sales, etc.

So, the obvious final question, what does the future hold for social media?

The twists and turns of social media will always be tied to innovative ways of connecting brands with technology to conversations: anywhere, anytime, anything.

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