Event notes: #smcmelb with Telstra and Sensis

Pizza photo by Flickr's wEnDaLicious

Pizza photo by Flickr's wEnDaLicious

A few notes from last night’s Social Media Club Melbourne discussion or #smcmelb as it’s known to the cool cats on Twitter!

The event was a panel discussion with Kristen Boschma, Telstra’s Head of Online Communications and Social Media, and Stephen Ronchi, the 
Strategic Communications Manager, Local Search at Sensis.

Three things I think we can all learn from the discussion:

  • Killer content is essential – bad content will kill your site
  • Think of social networks as an eco-system and remember you need to give back
  • Social media and traditional above/below the line campaigns can co-exist and support each other

Kristen used the Telstra Desire social review campaign to talk about the importance of giving back to the social media ‘eco-system’. Stephen talked about using the content created by social media networks during the Hidden Pizza campaign in their follow-up above/below the line campaigns.

Just quickly, a little bit about Telstra’s Desire campaign. In May 2010, Telstra recruited 25 social reviewers to test drive their new HTC Desire and review it online. The search attracted more than 2,200 entries and the reviewers generated significant online content, which has left a lasting library for anyone searching for a new phone.

The only rule Telstra had in place was around transparency. Everyone involved had to include a note about receiving a new phone in their social media profiles and also be honest with their reviews! Transparency is definitely critical!

Now onto pizza. In April, Yellow Pages launched a clever unbranded marketing campaign which gave people the chance to get a free pizza if they found the Hidden Pizza restaurant. The aim was to show how many people turn to Yellow Pages content to find small businesses. Not only did they give away thousands of pizzas, they also generated significant social media coverage and secured content for a variety of other marketing sources.

While we were keen to hear about what was involved with the campaign, we were particularly keen to hear Stephen’s take on responding to negative social media coverage. The main reason for the interest was Lachy Wharton’s article about the campaign which painted Sensis as archaic – not good news for a company trying to raise awareness of its digital offering.

Lachy  who also helped generate huge social media interest in Hidden Pizza with his article (oh you have to love social media!) was was their to hear Stephen talk about the process of preparing the reply to the article and I’m sure would have had a fun conversation afterwards!

Finally, huge congratulations to Yvonne Adele from Ideas Culture for a terrific job as facilitator.

Cheers to all,

the c word

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