Charlotte is director of Retail and Shopper at leading independent full-service marketing agency Haygarth. Charlotte has over 10 years of experience working across pure retail clients as well as...
Social media has exploded into the retail environment, as it has almost everywhere, and Twitter remains one of the most popular social media sites for retailers. The reason for this is simple, the costs are low, risks are manageable and retail consumers are already using the platform.
In-store and online are now linked like never before and getting it right on Twitter has never been more important. The key thing to remember when executing a Twitter campaign is to keep consumers engaged by ensuring they remain entertained, informed and rewarded.
Last month supermarket chain Waitrose caused a bit of a stir with its #WaitroseReasons, challenging shoppers to "finish the sentence: 'I shop at Waitrose because ...' While some submitted genuine reasons, others pounced on the opportunity to mock the brand's posh image. While Waitrose didn't get that many responses those that were tweeted included; "I also shop at Waitrose because I was once in the Holloway Road branch and heard a dad say 'Put the papaya down Orlando!" The campaign went viral and it was soon picked up by the mainstream media. While it was debateable if this caused Waitrose any damage, and to their credit they took the tweets in good humour, the campaign didn’t quite go as planned.
Retailers and high street brands who effectively use Twitter as a marketing platform can improve customer service, communicate better with customers, increase traffic to offline stores or websites, follow trends and competitors closely and of course connect with their consumers.
Two recent successful retail Twitter campaigns which have kept consumers entertained, informed and rewarded are Domino’s #letsdolunch and Uniqlo’s Lucky Tweet.
This was a very well executed and effective Twitter campaign from Domino's Pizza to get more customers in the door for lunchtime. From 9am-11am on the set day, every time one of Domino's customers tweeted with the hashtag #letsdolunch, the price of their Pepperoni Passion pizza would be knocked down by 0.01p. At 11am, they stopped counting tweets and offered the pizza to all their consumers at the reduced price until 3pm that day. The price of the pizza ended up dropping from the original price of £15.99 to £7.74 in the two short hours. That's 85,000 tweets with the hashtag #letsdolunch in the space of two hours.
A great example of a successful Twitter campaign that managed to trend on Twitter is from Japanese high street fashion brand Uniqlo, who held a special Twitter campaign to celebrate their 26th birthday. With every 26th tweeter winning a lucky coupon, over 60,000 Twitter fans queued up in Uniqlo's Lucky Line via Tweeter. If your first entry didn't win, you could queue up again by sending another tweet. Lucky Tweet kept Uniqlo trending on the social media site for two consecutive days, a pretty impressive achievement for a retail brand.
Both of the above are great but very different examples of how retail brands have launched and run successful social media campaigns via Twitter. Both were simple, yet very effective. What retailers need to bear in mind when running an interactive Twitter campaign is the social aspect. The retail environment is an interactive one by its very nature; consumers want interactions with retail brands where they spend their money, which makes it the perfect opportunity for brands to target and interact with their customers. People enjoy being entertained, informed and rewarded and retailers who take this into consideration should see some positive gains from their Twitter campaigns.
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