The first strong organization that I chose to consider was Shoppers Drug Mart. Their more traditional advertising and promotion is well done and the stores have a vibrant feel and I expected the same from their social media platforms. Not surprisingly, I was not disappointed. I found their website, Facebook and Twitter accounts reflected their overall marketing theme and were as bright and colourful as their stores. While it is not uncommon for companies to recycle social media content, I was a bit disappointed in SDM because there was excessive duplication. I did see that they had a number of helpful hints and health advice on subjects such as diabetes and it was not overly pushing on sales. Overall, it was quite well done. While I mentioned that the website, Facebook and Twitter were very similar I did note that they focused almost exclusively on cosmetics on YouTube. Most of their videos were 30 – 40 seconds long and they appear to offer more helpful hints and not overt sales. Facebook noted that they usually responded to comments within a few hours which is not too bad for a company of that size.
The second strong organization comes form one of my favourite restaurant chains, okay, my actual favourite. The Keg does a great job on social media. The sites are rich and colourful and quite interactive. I was pleased that they included their menu and current features but left prominent places for people to provide feedback. I was a little disappointed with their Facebook response to one complaint that was clearly canned. The customer complained about a meal that he had at their Moncton, New Brunswick location and was very specific about his issues with the meal. The response was slightly personalized with the complainant’s first name and said that they regretted that he had a bad experience. They then went on to ask for the specific location and details on the problem which Brad had already laid out in detail. Other than that, everything was good including the pictures. It made me want to head to the Keg for dinner tonight. One thing that really impressed me was their Twitter feed. It was very engaging and one person talked about how the Keg made the best Bloody Caesar’s and they wish they had the recipe. The Keg came right back and offered to give it to them! Nicely done.
So then I had to find an under performer and it didn’t take me long to hit ground zero. The retailer that seems to be knocking on death’s doorstep is Sears Canada. Their stores are in need of upgrades, are poorly lit, not well maintained and largely out of touch. A news article just the other day reported that Sears senior management saw no way for the retailer to survive in the long term. With that I went to the Sears website and I found it to be as dreary as their stores. Even their fonts mashed together to be unreadable in places. See under “From Dawn to Dusk” and “Celebrate Summer” at http://www.sears.ca/en/home?gclid=CNDAlo7CyNQCFQYcaQodsJcMVQ&gclsrc=aw.ds&dclid=CP-eso7CyNQCFUNKXgodYFwBpg.
Next I went to their Facebook page and was shocked to see that they had a location map that only showed three store locations. One was in Thornhill, ON, a second in Brampton and the third was in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. They must be dying faster than I realized! I suspect that they must have one social media person and he/she is likely out on stress leave or has been laid off , already. How sad that a once great Canadian institution has come to this.