DiGiorno Tweets: Tips for Twitter Campaigns

Ad age reported today that Kraft/Digiorno Pizza and Weber Shandwick PR have teamed on the launch of Digiorno's new Flatbread Pizzas. Digiorno will deliver free pizzas to tweetups in LA, New York and Chicago. The Twitter component is part of a national launch involving print and television. The announcement highlights the brand's plans to reach out to "influential" tweeters.

Okay - I think this is a GREAT idea. Tweeters are vocal, fiercely loyal and when you get us together, it's even better. Get a great idea out - make us love your product and we'll push the good news up the flagpole. We love brands that love us, and nothing says love like schwag, food and conversation! Yay!

The thing is, there seem to be quite a few challenges with execution here that are worth highlighting. To ensure success, here's some Live Path advice for any brand planning a campaign with a Twitter-driven social media component like DiGiorno:
  1. Define "influence" in advance. The Digiorno There's no definition of what "influence" is. I find it hard to believe they'll be launching this without that definition in place. The article eludes to number of followers - but any veteran on twitter will attest to the sheisters out there who have numbers but LITTLE dialog or influence. Brands should look at followers against the backdrop of other elements, like overall voice (on Twitter and other social networks), reach (comments, re-tweets, links in), affiliations (e.g. social media club, DMA, others) and activity (travel, conferences, speaking where word may be spread).
  2. Establish Your Angle(s). Beyond influence and geography, it's important to think about specialization/demographic. Social Media makes it easy to target individuals with specific areas of influence. Walmart and 800-FLOWERS are just two brands that have actively targeted Mommy Bloggers. I'm friends with a few of the Walmart 11 moms - and a few have frugal living columns. SXSW featured a panel with Chris Brogan and others called "Dad is the New Mom." I have a fun cadre of foodies in my Tweetdeck group. It's important to define the angle you're going to "shoot from" for "focused tweets." For example, for Digiorno, I would ask the following: Is your angle economics, making mom or dad's life easier, or great tasting pizza... or all of the above. Choose a mix that matters most to generate the best word-of-mouth!
  3. Challenge Geographical Constraints. Don't assume you'll find the best and most influential tweeters for your brand will be found in LA, New York and Chicago - there are plenty of active, chatty hubs in other areas of the country, as well. If your product is aces for middle-american housewives - go get 'em! Targeting is not dead -- in fact it's even easier with social media.
  4. Make it Easy to Get Involved. The article on Ad Age provides no way for people to engage with Digiorno. There's no page on the website - no available URL that details the new program. What happens if an influential tweeter reads this and says "I have an influential tweetup this week! I want Pizza!!" How do they make their case to Kraft? At a minimum, brands should offer a web page with details and criteria. Better yet -they're wise to add some comment functionality to the announcement page, allowing people to nominate themselves or their events in a visible way to others.
  5. Tweet Unto Others. There's not one Twitter profile listed in the Kraft/Weber article on Ad Age. Furthermore, after some searching on Twitter, it seems Kraft is relatively unprepared to meet people from a brand perspective on Twitter. (Administering slap to PR agency hand!) This should have been handled before the release is sent out. When I looked on Twitter @kraft pulled up a person's profile with a link to an article about dead man's sperm. Nice! When I looked up @digiorno two accounts were listed -- without any followers, branded icons OR tweets. That's a shame because it's not hard to lay this groundwork. Put up a clever, branded icon. Seed your accounts with some tweets and information- engage some people in dialog on Twitter to create a tweet history in advance of any press releases. Oh - and while I'm on the subject - follow Twitter best practices. Do not use Twitter to BROADCAST your brand message. Simply tell people about the promotion, ask them what they think and create an open line of communication with the twitterverse. Finally, remember that once you are finished with your campaign - you're not finished on Twitter. Develop a plan for how your brand will continue on Twitter after your campaign is over.
  6. Consolidate #Results. Do you want to demonstrate participation and make it easier to track word of mouth and discussion regarding your campaign? Why not create a hashtag to track buzz and centralize dialog about your promotion? It would be relatively easy to give something away for free with a simple request like this: "Participants will merely be asked to include "#digiorno in their tweet updates during the event".
  7. Focus Beyond Tweets. Just because the campaign component is Twitter focused, your scope should not be limited to Twitter alone. You'll want to look at follow-up posts (like this one) and articles on popular sites and blogs - and you should be sure to comment on posts, and respond to tweets, as well. Recognize that everything starts the minute the press release goes out ... and promotion continues as campaigns ensue. "Shout out" the quick wins and results on the fly (e.g. Announced yesterday and 1000 people signed up!) to encourage follow up posts and mentions. Reward the people who volunteer but don't get selected with consolation prizes, like coupons or schwag. Take a page from Dell or Zappos and celebrate success publicly. Publish a post or rich media case study to highlight lessons learned and celebrate success. You don't have to tell all -- just tell enough to communicate success or how you have learned.
  8. Immerse Yourself. Brands that want to foster dialog through campaigns like this should be careful not to miss the boat by acting like an old school marketer in a new media culture. The old models are dead on new media. Social Media Marketing is about , authenticity, relationship and dialog. It's not enough to just send free food or schwag! You must be present. While you can't be everywhere, you can target a few larger events and send a "brand agent"to listen and engage with your influentials. Make sure they fit in with the culture/bias of the group that is meeting. Make sure the agent asks attendees about themselves and what they think. Listen and respond positively. Be authentic, reflect the social media culture (and be sure to tweet remarks from the event yourself!)
I"m sure there's more to say on this topic, but I'm attempting to be brief here. Feel free to add your comments about how to create success with programs like these. Thanks for listening!

15 comments:

Connie Reece said...

Excellent advice, Leigh. I'm bookmarking this for future reference. Sure hope Kraft/DiGiorno/Weber are listening. If they had this going on in Austin, I'd be all over it.

Ann Handley said...

Great advice here, Leigh. Great points.. and I found myself nodding in agreement the whole way through.

pwhiteatANPI said...

Amen! Amen! Amen! thank you for laying out the "holes" in this plan. proof you can't just add "social media marketing" to your corporate letterhead - and not get called out on it. should serve as notice to agencies and marketers that don't respect/understand the difference between social media and traditional marketing/pr efforts.

Charles Neville said...

Great advice there and Kraft or whoever is carrying out the program for them. The fact that they've made that many schoolboy errors would suggest to me that the PR agency person really wasn't paying attention any further than 'hey we'll do something with twitter because it's cool'. Maybe brands should crowdsource their social media plays!

David Zeitman said...

Seems DiGiorno was so interested in making a social media splash, that they forgot about a major marketing basic – strategy.

The brand's long-time campaign tagline is, 'It's not delivery, it's DiGiorno.' Delivering pizzas to tweetups appears to be a serious strategic breach.

Will this social media stunt lead to broader brand damage? Better keep the Pepto-Bismol handy, just in case...

GeekMommy said...

Agreeing with Connie here... this one goes in my "link it rather than rewrite it" file.

Great advice not just for Kraft/DiGiorno/Weber - but for anyone planning on incorporating Twitter as a regular part of their marketing strategy!

Paul Merrill said...

I'm hungry... too bad I'm not in NY, LA or Chicago.

LivePath said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
LivePath said...

Two days after this post, I got a tweet from @DiGiornoPizza. Thanked me for the advice, said they are listening. Profile has logo, tag line and they are tweeting! Great response... upbeat and positive. Just wanted to put a quick update in here. ;-)

LivePath said...

ALL -- Posted a FOLLOW UP to this at marketing profs - 10 Tips for Twitter UnMarketing ...

Takes a non DiGiorno stab at prepping companies for Twitter Marketing.

http://www.mpdailyfix.com/2009/04/10_tips_for_twitter_unmarketin.html#comments

Margherita said...

I totally agree with your comment about seeding a twitter account with some tweets before launching a promo like this. Nothing sader than having something great to share and shouting it into an empty forest.

Tom Collins said...

Great advice and it's encouraging to see @DiGiornoPizza seems to be listening.

As I tweeted to @TobyDiva's Social Media Marketing GPS #smgps book discussion on how to engage in effective "blogger relations":

Three words: First, be one.

Same goes for other social media, including Twitter. The contrast with Dominoes is striking. To paraphrase the old saw:

"Dig your (social media) well BEFORE you need the (social capital) water!"

Al Doyle said...

Sometimes a pizza is just a pizza. And failure is a great teaching tool. I'm glad these marketing and pr wizards gave you this opportunity to share some very sane tweeting basics!

Brian said...

Great, great post. I especially liked: "...be careful not to miss the boat by acting like an old school marketer in a new media culture. The old models are dead on new media. Social Media Marketing is about , authenticity, relationship and dialog." Most marketers, by and large, do not understand that yet and want a campaign to turn on and off once the "spend" is gone. While I get that there aren't too many best practices out there yet for the social web, some governing fundamentals are rising to the top. Thanks.

AnnaB said...

Leigh, this is a great example of non-integrated marketing. The pieces were all there but not working together. I wonder if this is the case with a lot of the larger corporations with decentralized marketing teams. The "throwing SM to the wall to see if it sticks" didn't work for old school, especially won't work for social media marketing! Someone has to actually pay attention and WORK relationships. This time investment is still something that turns off a lot of companies regarding SM.

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LEIGH DURST

LEIGH DURST
I’m Leigh Durst, a 20 year veteran in business, operations, customer strategy, ecommerce, digital & social media and marketing. Simply put, I’m a strategist that helps companies (start-up to blue chip) achieve business shift, create more compelling online and offline experiences. I also write, speak and teach about experience design and next-generation business. I’m a futurist, visionary, strategist, doer and connector with a passion for people and helping others. When I’m not on the road, you’ll find me in the San Francisco bay area, working, beaching it and hanging out with my family and dog.

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