Consumers have a wide range of media channels where they can come in contact with a brand. For brands to be successful they need to utilize each platform based on one strategy called integrated marketing communication. The American Marketing Association stresses that to build brand equity consumers need to be delivered the right message at the right time in the right place. The IMC plan must have consistent messaging across all channels. Follow along as I take a look at three different brands and see if they are utilizing IMC and social media in an effective way.
KIA MOTORS AMERICA
Kia Motors America can be found in all the primary social media spaces. They are certainly putting an integrated marketing communications plan into action through advertising, emails, trade shows, social media etc. These are the social platforms I looked at for Kia: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest. They use consistent imagery on all the platforms. The messaging is also consistent but it is tailored to the specific channel as well. The biggest difference I saw with Kia was their Google+ page didn’t utilize their red color scheme. I don’t know the limitations of Google+ to know if changing the color isn’t possible.
Kia does a great job updating content. Posts are published at least once a day on most channels. There weren’t many days that they missed and they kept the content to a minimum to not overload their followers. There’s not a hard rule about how often to post but it is important for each brand to figure out how much content their followers will tolerate. Socialbakers.com suggests that brands only post once a day on Facebook and shows that most top brands stick to that on average.
Kia is very good at incorporating hashtags across all of the social media platforms. Most of the hashtags pertain to specific content. The only consistent hashtags that I could find dealt with their specific car brands. I didn’t find that Kia linked its social channels to each other very well. On Facebook they had a tab for Instagram and Pinterest and that was all I could find.
CHILI’S GRILL & BAR
Chili’s Grill & Bar is a very popular chain restaurant. While I found them in all the main social media spaces, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest, I’m not sure they understand how to utilize a fully integrated marketing communications plan. They lack the consistent messaging and imagery. Colors schemes and logos are consistent but different posts are happening in different places at different times. I wouldn’t say that their tactic is fatal but they should look at being more consistent and building a plan to talks about their brand in the same way.
Chili’s spends a lot of time focusing on Facebook and Twitter and doesn’t put a lot of time and effort into Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest. Posts on those last three channels weren’t made consistently. I’m not sure they’ve figured out the right kind of content for Instagram, Google+ or Pinterest. Their imaginative ideas are lacking. Hashtags are only used on their Twitter and Instagram posts and they aren’t being used for tracking purposes. The hashtags I saw were for entertainment instead of a measurement purpose. The only social platform that connected their followers to the other social media channels was Facebook. It had a tab for Twitter. Chili’s has a long way go in harnessing social media in the right way.
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARSThe Jacksonville Jaguars might not be having a great season but they are fully utilizing the benefits an IMC plan. They have a strong presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+ and Pinterest. I was disappointed to see that they had only switched two of their social media channels to show their pink Breast Cancer Awareness Month logo and the others still were utilizing their normal branding. Besides that all the messaging and imagery are consistent. I was pleasantly surprised by their level of strategy.
The Jaguars do a great job of keeping all of their social media channels up to date and you’ll see a few posts a day on each. Almost all of the posts coordinate so that their follows see a consistency no matter where they are consuming the information. Hashtags are used frequently and in the right ways. I find their content to be very creative and engaging.
Out of all three companies I researched, the Jaguars did the best at connecting their social channels. On Facebook they had a tab for Instagram as well as a Social League tab that held a social feed. Their Twitter background was utilized effectively by listing out their social channels.
If I had to assign a grade to each company Kia would be rated the highest at an A+ but the Jaguars aren’t far behind with a solid A. Unfortunately Chili’s did not impress me and they will get a C for their effort.