As a multinational banking and financial services corporation, Citigroup, better known as Citi has a large social media presence along with Pfizer. Paul Michaud of Citi and Brenna Robinson from Pfizer shared some of their social media strategy during the New York IABC panel, “The Future of Social Media in Business Communications.”
Paul Michaud of Citigroup uses social media to listen and engage in community with Citi customers. One service, Citi Private Pass which is a “web-based entertainment access program for eligible Citi credit cardmembers offering access to some of the best entertainment events and experiences. Citi cardmembers can purchase presale tickets, preferred tickets, and VIP packages to concerts and shows, as well as access to dining, golf, nightclubs, shopping and family entertainment.” For the social component there is @CitiprivatePass on Twitte to have conversations and build a following. For Citi Paul has the following guidelines: Twitter (@Citi) is news, Pinterest is shopping. He suggests to think about each social network’s purpose and how it would fit into your company’s strategy.
The questions your company or department should ask:
Who will manage it?
What is the message?
Do you have a budget?
How will you manage negative feedback and any negative comments?
Paul advised that social networks can be used as the content publishing aspect of the marketing funnel and if consumers are interested in your brand they will use your products and services. Ideally you want to get influencers to talk about your products. Other social media channels may have challenges. Paul spoke about another Citibank program Thank You on Pinterest and the challenge is that Citibank cannot use the names products that may be offered in promotions as Citi holds no rights to use them. In dealing with crisis management on social media Citibank may use stall tweets that enable customer service to research an issue and get back to the customer with information or a resolution to the problem.
Brenna Robinson from Pfizer advises your company/organization to start with researching the target customer and what eventually would be the goals for various social media channels.
Is there a certain quantity or quality of followers?
Where does your company/organization want to engage those followers?
If you are going to have a blog you may need at least ten topics to get started and keep it going since that coolness/new thing starts to wears off. You may be a big Pinterest fan but think about what your company/organization will have on there for new content. The main ingredient is great content since you cannot buy eyeballs and interest. You may also want to consider if things take off successfully on a particular social media channel and your budget suddenly grows as you now need a professional photographer to up your game and maintain higher standards. One challenge with Pfizer is that even as they are in a heavily regulated industry that should not be a barrier for a great social experience with customers. Brenna spoke about Pfizer’s Get Old campaign that enables having conversations with everyone. In addressing crisis management and social media Brenna feels that there are no excuses for delays and your organization must address them immediately.