A social media case study…

“Most products are like tampons”. Nice quote. Unfortunately it’s not mine. It’s Josh Bernoff’s, author of the bestselling book “Groundswell – Winning in a world transformed by social technologies”. Josh is also Sr. VP Idea Development at Forrester.

In July of this year Josh gave the keynote speech at IAB Marketplace (see video above), where he talked about a social media strategy deployed by Proctor & Gamble, which significantly increased tampon sales.

Brand loyalty for health and hyeniene products can already start at a very young age. But you don’t really want to be talking about tampons to a 13 year old girl. So instead, P&G launched ‘Being Girl’, an online community about the problems of a 13 year old girl.

On Being Girl, there’s talk about music, parents, how to look after your skin, puberty health problems and you can even ask questions to a child psychologist.

So why are most products like tampons? People don’t care about your product. People care about the solutions you have to their problems. Talking about their problems will give you the opportunity to talk about your products.

Talking about your customers problems enables you to end your conversation with a little subtle branding message. “Good luck for BeingGirl is brought to you by Tampax, Always & Alldays”.

Does this work?

Well, according to Proctor & Gamble, this is 4 times as effective per dollar spend as advertising. They have now taken this and duplicated it 21 different countries, including Saudia Arabia!

So yes, it really does appear that engaging in conversation with your consumers can drive sampling (leads) and generate sales.

What about your business? What are the broader problems your product or service solves? Are there associated issues that influence your customers’ purchase decisions? Above all, how can you help them? How can you build their trust?

How are your products like tampons?

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