Posted on February 20th, 2012
Katie Payne in her book Measure What Matters, discusses the integrated world of Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relations. Not only does she talk about how they influence each other in a variety of ways in Chapter 5, but she mainly focuses on how all of these play a huge role in today’s social media. Utilizing social media as a communication channel is key when trying to reach a target consumer niche virtually within minutes. How fast a consumer can be reached has become a main goal for many companies. The sooner they are able to reach their consumer niche, the higher return on investment they’ll receive in the end. If social networks are a large part of the way a company brands themselves via social media, then that is something that has to be monitored the closest. For example, Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches just took away one of their most important ingredients that comes on a number of sandwiches…alfalfa sprouts. People love them to the point where it seems to be some sort of subculture. They were pulled for the reason being the company’s produce suppliers were becoming very inconsistent. So the company will no longer be serving them permanently. This has left a lot of people disgusted beyond reason because of how much they love the sprouts. When notified of the sprouts being taken off of the menu, customers will simply stare at you and walk out of the restaurant. If there aren’t any sprouts on their favorite sandwich, then why bother buying one at all? With this going on, CEO Jimmy John Liautaud has to keep up with the press, angry customers as well as trying to find a new ingredient that will live up to the alfalfa sprout’s standards. Keeping up with the company’s Facebook page is imperative during this time. Customers will have many questions, complaints and concerns as to why this has happened. Jimmy directly monitors the page along with a specified person who keeps up with the comments and the Jimmy John’s Facebook email, where customers can connect promptly with the corporate office about their concerns. This type of situation should be handled in a timely manner, because a downside to social networks is that information goes viral…sometimes at a pace we aren’t able to keep up with. So if they are responding quickly to customer complaints the company will receive better feedback in most situations about the overall brand. Jimmy John’s focuses largely on building customer relationships. Payne states that retaining relationships between the customer and company/brand is very critical when building positive feedback and increasing successful social media usage for your company.
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