When Reebok set out to consolidate their social presence, a brand audit found that the company had no less than 225 Facebook pages, 100 YouTube channels and 30 Twitter accounts. At SocialMedia.org’s BlogWell conference in Chicago, Reebok’s Tyler Bahl and Angela Scibelli shared tips on how to avoid fragmentation in the social sphere and establish a consistent brand voice – and better analytics – while still allowing for geo-targeted content to reach specific audiences across the globe.
Reebok’s new long-term strategy to build the brand on social tools focused on two main goals: to create a “singular, consistent brand voice on all platforms” and to be “globally owned and locally supported” – meaning that each market would be able post and contribute content from the central platform.
Bahl and Scibelli started by auditing the brand’s social presence themselves, rather than hiring an agency to manage the process. According to them, “doing it yourself helps you truly understand how your brand is represented online worldwide, and the process develops important internal knowledge for the company.” (SmartBlog on Social Media)
Strategies for Each Major Platform
On Facebook, the brand rolled up local pages into three consumer-led brand pages: Reebok (with over 1.2 million likes, Reebok Women (over 420,000 likes) and Reebok Classics (over 142,000 likes). How would specific markets address their local following without their own page? “All of our markets can post to these pages by simply geo-targeting their market,” said Scibelli. However, exceptions were also allowed: Reebok is a huge brand in India, and the Reebok India Facebook page has over 1.7 million likes (even more than the Reebok’s “main” global page). Rather than attempting to fold this significant market into the consolidation effort, the brand allowed the Indian team to continue managing their separate page.
Reebok consolidated its Twitter presence to two global accounts, @Reebok (with over 80,000 followers) and @ReebokClassics (over 57,000 followers.) A women’s account is also in the works. Scibelli noted that rolling up existing Twitter accounts isn’t currently possible on the platform, and as a result Reebok asked individual markets to “refrain from media investments within Twitter” until their accounts could be joined to the new global accounts.
On YouTube, the brand sought to create one global channel for all brand videos, and to consolidate views by having global campaign videos. “There’s a snowball effect when it comes to video views,” said Scibelli. The main channel has tabs for Womens, Classics and Crossfit content, and each tab can be geo-targeted.
To ease the transition, Reebok also provided trials of the new system for teams that were hesitant. Reebok’s Hong Kong team tried out geo-targeted postings on the corporate page (with a much higher fan base) and “the response amazed the team.” Once teams were sold on the consolidated brand pages, they were trained on how to use the new publishing tool and geo-target their markets.
One Voice, More Followers
The results of this massive consolidation effort? Fans, followers and view counts increased for the brand on social platforms. Twitter followers increased 17% in the last three months. Video views have increased “immensely” – having one video on a single channel has helped to aggregate views.
Reebok now has better brand oversight on social media platforms, and can easily approve that content follows brand guidelines. Centralized reporting makes it easier to pull analytics and look at the brand’s performance globally or by market – and, in turn, to make better recommendations to each market. Reebok also created a customized, branded link shortener (that generates QR codes as well) for sharing content across platforms. Finally, Reebok’s team can see which markets aren’t posting, and give support where it’s needed.
What do you think about Reebok’s massive overhaul of their social strategy? Have you come across any big brands with a better balance of global and local efforts on social platforms?
See slides from the presentation here, or watch the video: