The first company that popped into mind as an excellent example of engaging their audience via social media is Starbucks. True that I am an avid Starbucks fan, so a tad biased, but in my B2C world, this is the business that sticks out. To begin with, they have a lovely app for my phone which happens to be an Android although I’m sure equally lovely on an iOS. It simplifies my life as a coffee consumer. Paying is as easy as showing my app from which Starbucks tracks my purchases. This is important because as a frequent purchaser, I have achieved gold level status. Why is this important to me? Well, there are perks including free refills in-store, ‘member’ promotions that are also tracked on my app so that I don’t have to deal with any silliness of printing coupons or even remember the promotion. I can also choose to upload the balance automatically or upon reaching a particular amount.
Their app is enhanced by email. Again, it is used to notify me of my current customer status and offers that apply. Thankfully, it’s not necessary to print any of their offers since they can easily be found through the app, in store when I need them. Their Facebook page has over 35 million likes. It features lovely photographs of their products and lots of comments by customers about feature products and flavours. They have also recently run a ‘white cup’ contest that seems to have had lots of feedback and again offered the opportunity for customer submitted photographs and comments. The ‘white cup’ contest has been carried through on Instagram as well, showcasing additional customer submitted photographs.
All in all, I think they make excellent use of imagery in a rather boring product category. (We are talking about coffee after all). They remain consistent with their high end brand look in all their social media outreach programs, lots of imagery and repetition and they’ve used a promotional campaign that fits nicely into this with enhanced visuals submitted by their customers no less.
I invite you to read more about the social media habits of Starbucks: