Super Social Bowl

Did you watch Super Bowl XLVI?  As a fan of the New York Giants, I was certainly glued to the television until the very last play.  The game set records not only for television viewership, but for social media activity as well.

Being in the marketing industry, I’ve always paid close attention to the advertising during the game.  As social media integration and proliferation continues to increase, it was interesting to see how it changed the advertising this year.  The biggest change I noticed was how many of the ads were “leaked” in advance.  This helped generate buzz and social media conversations ahead of, during, and after the game.  But, the big question is, did it work?

According to analysis reported in Advertising Age, here are the top 10 according to the quantity of social media comments generated:

Super Bowl XLVI Top Commercials by Social Media Comments

My personal observation is that most of the pre-event social media buzz on Super Bowl commercials centered around the Honda CRV Commercial featuring Matthew Broderick with references to his Ferris Bueller character.  Interestingly, that ad (which was leaked in advance) didn’t crack the top 10 in the Bluefin Labs analysis.

Since social media tends to have more of a long-term ROI, it may take quite some time to determine which strategy worked (leaked vs. not).  The immediate impact is that social media helped spread out the cost-per-impression, because it helped extend the reach beyond the televised spot.  While I “unplugged” from social media to concentrate on the game, many viewers did not as the 2012 Super Bowl set records for tweets per second and total social media comments generated.

As to my personal favorites, my top 5 were:

  1. Mars/M&Ms – “Just My Shell”
  2. Chrysler – “Halftime in America”
  3. Volkswagen – “The Dog Strikes Back”
  4. Anheuser Bush/Bud Light – “Rescue Dog”
  5. PepsiCo./Doritos – “Sling Baby”

Which were your favorite/most memorable commercials from this year’s Super Bowl?  Did you “unplug” from social media during the game as well, or were you actively engaged in social media?

How Well Do You Know Your Customer?

If I had $1 for every business owner who thought he/she knew their customers very well, I’d be wealthy and retired at this point.  The sad reality is, most businesses think they know their customer, but their perception is almost always inaccurate (and sometimes by quite a bit).

I once worked with an established retail business in Rochester, NY that sold men’s fine clothing.  They were convinced their clientele were, on average, “male, 50 years or older, from the eastern suburbs, wealthy and watched prestigious networks on television like CNN.”  While that seemed plausible, I still conducted market research analysis with two main goals.  The first was to verify their customers’ demographics and the second was to research the media consumption of the actual demographic.

When the data was tabulated, it showed their customer base to be much younger and less affluent than they thought.  As a result, different television networks were a better fit.  Imagine their shock when I demonstrated how their advertising would be more effective (and cost-effective) on MTV instead of CNN!

Since seeing is not always believing, the client wanted to stick with the media plan involving CNN.  I was able to convince them to incorporate MTV into the plan as a trial, and suggested they simply ask customers if and where they saw their television commercial and keep a manual tabulation next to the cash register.  At the end of one month, MTV had a 3x advantage over CNN.

Seeing that MTV was significantly less expensive than CNN at the time, by concentrating on the proper network for their customer base, they could cut their ad spend, double their advertising frequency and triple (at minimum) their impact.  Now that’s what I call bang for the advertiser’s buck!

If you own a business, how well do you think you know your customer? If you haven’t conducted market research recently, I’d suggest there are many things you could learn.

Klout Responds

In a previous post, I called-out Klout for having a lack of transparency with their formula for measuring digital influence.  I had several questions for Klout, which were asked in another blog’s comment section (that blog featured a Q&A with a Klout executive) as well as two emails sent through their website.  Frustrated by a lack of response, I took my concerns public by posting my own blog post on the subject.  In that post, I did promise that I’d share their response if there was one . . .

On October 22, 2010, I had sent them a message asking 9 specific questions about how Klout accesses your LinkedIn and Facebook accounts, how it accounts for your privacy settings, your connections’ privacy settings, and some of the additional features on those sites (groups, Q&A, likes, etc., some of which might also be private).

A response arrived a mere 75 days later (that’s only 10 weeks and 5 days) with an apology for the delay and this simplified answer: 

LinkedIn: Klout recognizes the total absolute number of LinkedIn connections that you have and the likes and comments on status updates. We do not recognized LinkedIn events or groups at this time but we will continue to build out our algorithms to encompass all the interactions on a network.

Facebook: Yes, if your Facebook is private and you have authorized Klout, then we will take into account the interactions you have with your friends even if you change your privacy settings to make certain content available to only certain users.

While I didn’t expect them to answer with great detail, I was pleasantly surprised the response went further than a simple “check our FAQ page” (although they did suggest that).  I was certainly disappointed it took so long for Klout to respond. 

Has it changed my opinion of Klout?  Not really.  I still believe it’s a good, initial “line in the sand” for measuring social media influence; it’s not perfect, but it’s a start.  I still feel Klout projects some level of arrogance when it comes to interacting with users.  Would you find a 75 day delay acceptable when interacting with a company, especially one involved with digital and social media?

What’s been your experience to date with Klout?  Has your opinion changed positively or negatively the more you’ve used it?