Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 2 - 15

social media

as it happens during industry-wide
seasonal windows, like the holidays,
for example. Beyond that, you're creating massive brand love to leverage
in between promotions.

Monitor Campaigns in
Real-Time
All ad campaigns live or die at the
whims of social users, so you've got to
pay close attention to what's happening in the moment. Nothing's better
than immediate, real-time feedback
on whether your latest great idea actually is great, or needs some course
correction to bring the desired results.
McDonald's saw this when they
launched their all day breakfast -
which luckily was a big hit, gaining
a 23 percent boost in Net Sentiment
(brand love). Monitoring in real-time
tells you in the moment whether
you're on or off track with a current
campaign, but it's also something you
can apply to research in test markets,
and to operational issues, like product
shortages in a particular franchise.
And knowing something doesn't
work in real-time means you'll never waste money again on a "wait and
see" approach.

Find Influencers and
Give Them Something
to Talk About
It doesn't hurt to have a rap mogul as
a franchise owner, but that's not the
only reason Wingstop has attracted
the likes of the Chicago Bulls and
Ultimate Fighting Championship as
influencers. Social media intelligence
tells the brand diners love the occa-

sional "extra" wings in their order -
and Rick Ross loves the lemon pepper wings so much he bought his own
Wingstop franchise.
When you have a great product,
people will talk about it - even celebrities. You have to know they're
talking, and make the most of that
conversation so their fans can become your fans. The more influencers on your side, the more fans will
flock to you because they love and
trust them.
But influencers don't have to be
celebrities. You're looking for people with more than 500 followers
who share positive chatter about
your brand. If they're famous that's
just a bonus.

Spot Potential Crises
Early Enough to Protect
Brand Health
There are also caveats on social
media, but social monitoring helps
you avoid the worst of brand pitfalls.
And every moment counts in a crisis,
something drive-thru chain Checkers
learned the hard way.
They suffered a serious drop in
sentiment when a video made the
rounds featuring an employee wiping
a burger bun on the floor and serving it to a customer. The brand wasn't
able to respond before the video went
viral, and had to scramble to repair
the damage. If they'd had social alerts
in place they could have responded
immediately to keep the video from
gaining such exposure.
You can't be over-prepared when
it comes to social crisis management.

Real-time awareness is crucial to
avoid your brand being in the spotlight for the wrong reasons. Have a
plan in case the worst happens, and
be sure your team - from PR, to customer service, to legal - all know
what to do.

Identify Trends as
They Emerge
Short of a crystal ball, there's nothing
better than social listening to spot
upcoming trends and acquire feedback, both in advance and upon testing of new products, services, logos,
etc. You can use real-time data at
every step to learn whether embracing a trend is the right move for your
brand. This is what Chipotle did. The
Mexican chain identified delivery as
a trend in their category and used
social to track sentiment when they
tested it for their restaurants - using
a local delivery company.
The "always available focus
group" nature of social media might
be its biggest advantage.
But if you're going to benefit from
all social media intelligence offers,
you have to know how to use it properly. The competition among restaurant
brands at all service levels is steep
and no one can take diner loyalty
for granted. Applying the strategies
above can work for any brand willing
to focus on what diners want first and
follow through. Do that and your fans
will always be hungry for more.
Paige Leidig is the chief marketing officer of
NetBase, a social analytics company. He can be
reached at pleidig@netbase.com.

food & drink international * winter 2016 volume 2 * www.fooddrink-magazine.com

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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 2

Contents
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Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 2 - Cover3
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