Objectives are one of the steps in the POST process as was previous stated. This step involves figuring out the end goal of using the groundswell and why you are going to use the groundswell to get there. One of the techniques that can be used for this step is talking; this step involves spreading the companies’ message to the consumers. Bernoff and LI suggest that there is a difference between marketing and talking to the consumers, the difference is that talking involves engaging with the customers almost one on one through social media where marketing involves talking to the mass market through such things like television commercials. A great example of this is the “Will it blend” video series that was created to raise awareness about the new blenders created by Blendtec. These videos have been extremely successful and are still being made. Below is a “Will it blend?” video on the Ipad which was created three years ago and has over 16 million views.
Bernoff and Li also suggest that there are four popular ways to get talking with the groundswell and they are; post a viral video, engage in social networks, join the blogosphere, create a community. We well look at them in greater detail below.
- Post a viral video: This involves posting a viral video online and allowing people to share it (Bernoff & Li, 2011). Brewsters Brewing Company can easily do this with their craft beer line. They can take weekly or monthly videos explaining the new beer creation and even put real peoples reviews on the beer in the video. This will drive curiosity to the company and get the customers more engaged with what is going on within the restaurant.
- Engage in social networks and user generated content sites: Create a personality within social network sites such as Myspace, than turning it into a conversation (Bernoff & Li, 2011). Brewsters could create a Facebook page that they need to be constantly active on. They could use this to get reviews from customers on what they like about the restaurants and what they don’t like. They need to listen and than talk back to what the consumers are saying to generate a good conversation.
- Join the blogosphere: Empower executives or staff to write blogs, while also responding to others blogs (Bernoff & Li, 2011). By having staff write blogs that are available to find through the company website will help the consumer to relate and feel more around the staff when they need to interact face to face. Brewsters should have the executives writing blogs that are tailored to having customers getting to know all about what the company philosophy is and why they do the things they do as a company. This is going to help people have a better understanding of why prices are set and how the company comes up with its ideas for beer or food flavors.
- Create a community: This is one of the hardest things to do because it involves being able to speak to and listen to the consumers without ever shouting at them through means such as television (Bernoff & Li, 2011). Proctor and Gamble was able to do this by creating a site that was about more than just tampons, it was about all things that young girls needed to know but felt uncomfortable to ask, and all things that they wanted to talk about but had no one to listen (Bernoff & Li, 2011). Brewsters could expand their website to include links to blogs and websites that could relate to other things like different foods or other craft breweries. Being able to talk to and promote things other than just your own product is going to help to create that sense of community among people.
Li, C. & Bernoff, J. (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing