In a month-long pursuit of insights for the soon to be released Social Media Fitness Study, I interviewed a number of social media professionals including Jennifer Lashua of Intel. As a high-tech company with a broad customer base, it is not surprising that Intel is ahead of the curve in social media, having established a center of excellence, developed a disaster plan, conducted a social media audit, set up a real-time dashboard, streamlined its social channels and crafted a consistent customer experience across all their channels. Here’s the thinking behind all of this activity. Thanks Jennifer!
DN: How have you dealt with customer service related issues with social media governed by the marketing department?
While our Social Media Center of Excellence is within the Marketing organization, we are highly matrixed with teams across the company and around the world. Our extended team includes PR, product teams, HR, recruiting, and many others. It’s these relationships that allow us to be effective both proactively and reactively (when needed) on our social media networks.
DN: Can you talk about Intel’s social media disaster plan?
Intel has a process in place for constant monitoring of social media conversations about our brand. This team is located around the world, so we have the ability to monitor and moderate 24×7 and in multiple languages. We use monitoring tools to identify and escalate issues when needed; and we respond directly when needed. We have well-defined processes for crisis management, should this be necessary. Thankfully we haven’t had to put these processes in place often, but they have been tested once or twice over the past few years.
DN: Can you speak to the benefits of having a real-time dashboard?
We launched the Intel Social Cockpit this year at CES and it’s now a key part of our social media program, enabling us to understand what’s performing well, what’s trending, and how much share of voice Intel is receiving in social conversations. At CES, we used the Social Cockpit to see what keywords were trending on top, specifically which announcements from our CEO’s keynote were getting the most attention through social networks. We then honed in on those topics and created new content (videos and photos from our booth) aligning to these. We were able to do all of this within a matter of an hour or two, which enabled us to continue fueling the dialogue with highly relevant, timely content.
DN: Why did you decide to streamline Intel’s social media accounts?
The great part about social media is that anyone can participate. This is wonderful from an adoption perspective, but can be tricky from a message consistency, engagement, and risk perspective. A few years ago, we had hundreds of Facebook pages and Twitter handles, but we were finding that only a percent of these had high levels of engagement and large numbers of fans/followers. By streamlining (we now have just 45 Facebook pages), we are able to maximize reach and engagement by aggregating audiences together. We also used data and insights to re-architect our Twitter structure in 2011. The @Intel handle is our signature handle and is the center point for much of what Intel does on Twitter. The @Intel handle together with a set of 10 strategic handles and 40 country allows us to effectively cover a range of topics and grow our follow base while effectively managing each handle and engaging our followers.
DN: How have you been able to create a consistent customer experience across all social channels?
It’s a priority for us to both offer a consistent look and feel across our social networks as well as take advantage of the unique features each offers. For example, our Facebook page and our Google+ page currently feature similar campaign imagery; however we have optimized our Google+ page to take advantage of the Circles feature, whereas Facebook is centered around tabs. Google+ circles provide a really unique way to segment your audience. We know that a software developer wants to hear about different things than a journalist, for example, so we’re asking our followers to ‘opt-in’ to circles which represent topical areas of interest to them. Then, we communicate with that circle about those specific topics of interest. We have also developed a set of global assets which local teams integrate into their Twitter profiles. If you look at our primary handle, @Intel, as well as a country handle, @IntelBrasil for example, you’ll see that we’ve aligned the design to be consistent across both.