Emojis: The trendy marketing weapon

In recent years, customer behaviour has changed. People have spent their time on the Internet, so many brands use social media such as Facebook and Twitter as communication channels to approach consumers. Communication on social media have to make content interesting in order to attract customers who may help brands to share their content. Hence, many brands have started to use emojis for conveying messages to their own customers and it’s becoming the latest communication trend.

Blog6_Pic1Fig 1: Emojis (Chaey, 2013)

What are emojis?
The Guardian (2015) have described that “Emojis are images you can incorporate into text, email, twitter, Facebook and chat applications to convey a message or an emotion. It is a shorthand way to communicate.”

Why do brands use emojis?
Many brands want to reach Millennials Generation who were borned on 1977-1997. They are essential targets that brands would like them to be their customers. This generation can be a brand representative because they always share interesting contents which they have seen. Using emojis in message may help brands communicate with customers easily because it can provide hilarious messages that can engage with their customers. Moreover, it may enhance brands’ content outstanding as well.

Which brands use emojis?
Since the beginning of this year, there are many brands that have used emojis for communicating with customers. I’ll raise two examples of brands that use emojis as below;

Coca-Cola: They have created #ShareaCoke Campaign for motivating people to share their breeziness. On Twitter, when customers tweeted #ShareaCoke, it will show clinking of two Coca-Cola bottles.

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Fig 2: Share a Coke (Coca-Cola,n.d.)

Taco Bell: This brand has created #TacoEmojiEngine. When customers have tweeted taco emoji and any emoji and mention @Tacobell, they’ll send back a combination of these two emoji which can be seen in figure 4.

Blog6_Pic3Fig 3: Taco Bell (TacoBell, 2015)

Blog6_Pic4Fig 4: TacoEmoji (TacoBell, 2015)

Although, emojis may be fashionable, it can be one of the communication methods which can be engaged with customers. This maybe because it is a simple language which customers can easily understand and enjoy it. However, using emojis are not only inventive but also comprehensive in order to get customers completely understand completely messages that is sent by brands.

Reference List:

Brenner, M. (2015) The rise of the emoji for brand marketing. Available from: http://www.theguardian.com/media-network/2015/jan/26/rise-emoji-brand-marketing [Accessed 13 November 2015].

Chaey, C. (2013) Are Emoji Racist? Available from: http://www.fastcompany.com/3016256/fast-feed/are-emojis-racist [Accessed 14 November 2015].

Coca-Cola (n.d.) Share a Coke. Available from: https://twitter.com/cocacola/status/644930252821520384 [Accessed 14 November 2015].

TacoBell (2015) The Taco Emoji Happened. Available from: https://www.tacobell.com/feed/tacoemoji [Accessed 15 November 2015].

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MOOCs: What’s it? Why’s it?

Have you ever heard about MOOCs? Do you know what MOOCs is?

If this is the first time that you hear, I’ll briefly introduce it.

Blog5_Pic1
Fig 1: SOTON MOOCs (University of Southampton, n.d.)

According to Southampton (n.d.), “A massive open online course (MOOC) is a free study programme designed to be studied online by large numbers of students.” Actually, I’ve known MOOCs before I attended the first class of Marketing in the 21st Century. I’ve known it from course detail website. First time that I’ve seen it, I felt this online course is quite interesting because there are various courses from many different universities, especially it’s free. I have signed up immediately because of the fact that I would like to join it in order to increase my knowledge which may be useful for my career in the future. However, when I’ve known that learning on MOOCs is a part of Marketing in the 21st Century and I have to participate on MOOCs by posting a minimum 10 comments, 500 words, per week, I feel like I was forced to do it. Checking attendances have many ways to do besides comment posting. Although, I’ve known that it can encourage us to share experiences, it should depend on each student who really willing to do it.

By the way, after three weeks of spending time with MOOCs, I feel that this online course is really valuable but some points have to be revised. They can be divided into two perspectives as below;

 

Blog5_Pic2Fig 2: MOOCs (Eduzones, n.d.)

Benefits of MOOCs

Contents:
I admit that the contents of digital marketing on MOOCs are useful for anyone who is interested in. They use both video and reading material as course materials which I think it’s attract students to learn more than use only one platform. Moreover, in this course, there are many specialists from different fields as content providers. For me, it brings me to the digital marketing world that I have less knowledge on it.

Comments:
People who subscribe to this course come from different countries and occupations. They have different experiences which can share in comments and, in turn, encourage us to share various ideas. I’ve learnt a lot of new things from reading other comments which has led me to the larger world.

Drawback of MOOCs

Notification System:
I think a notification system on MOOCs is the weakness. Even though, the system sends email to notify users when they have got a new comment, there’re no alert on the website. It may cause users to miss a discussion that is a MOOCs’ objective to encourage students to exchange their ideas.

Finally, in my point of view, MOOCs are online courses which are suitable to people who do not stop to increase knowledge. If I have enough time, I will be back to study on MOOCs again, absolutely.

Reference List:

Eduzones (n.d.) “MOOCs”…แหล่งเรียนรู้ในศตวรรษที่ 21 Available from: https://blog.eduzones.com/Globalacademycenter/144747 [Accessed 13 November 2015].

University of Southampton (n.d.) University of Southampton MOOCs Available from: http://www.southampton.ac.uk/courses/free-online-learning.page#moocs [Accessed 13 November 2015].

Blog: The space for sharing

Blog4_Pic1
Fig 1: Blogging (Harris, 2015)

According to my first blog, “To be a blogger has never been in my mind”, that I’ve told you I’ve never ever thought about it. Blogging is quite far from my lifestyle, I thought being a blogger should be good at describing things but I’m not. However, when I’ve tried blogging (although, it’s an assignment), I’ve found that blogging has more advantages than disadvantages.

As a digital marketing student, blogging motivates me to find interesting marketing news, read and analyze more and more for using them as a source in order to write each blog. Finding interesting news leads me to the wider world. It has made me know many marketing movements that make me dote on revolution of marketing. I really enjoy it and try to think, if I was a marketer, how I can deal with these campaigns. The contents on my blog come from my real attention that I would like to share and exchange idea with my followers. In my opinion, although, I spent too much time to do it, blogging is a good method which can motivate me to self-study.

As a marketer, blog is a free online space in which anyone can use it to share knowledge, ideas and even favourite things. It’s a good marketing tool that not only bloggers but readers can also share their ideas. Moreover, blogs are useful for people who would like to enhance their personal brands. You may wonder how important a personal brand is. Brogan (2008) has said that, “a personal brand gives you the ability to stand out in a sea of similar products. In essence, you’re marketing yourself as something different than the rest of the pack.” Therefore, bloggers who have good personal brands can be outstanding and get more opportunities. This may be adapted to branding by using it as a communication channel. They may use blogs in order to inform customers to brand personality and even brand essence. Furthermore, brands can use it for interacting with their consumer, so they can knows their customers’ opinion which is an essential factor that all brands want.

However, to start blogging may be hard because blogging have to spend much time to be familiar with people. Consequently, no matter which bloggers or brands, at first step, they have to work hard in order to build credibility that can attract people to get involve with their blogs. Then, their blogs will be successful.

This is blog in my opinion that is come from two aspects, a student and a marketer, so what’s your blog in your mind? Do you agree with me?

Blog4_Pic2Fig 2: To blog or not (Under30ceo, n.d.)

Reference List:

Brogan, C. (2008) Develop a Strong Personal Brand Online Part 1. Available from: http://chrisbrogan.com/develop-a-strong-personal-brand-online-1/ [Accessed 10 November 2015].

Harris, C. (2015) Do These 3 Simple Tweaks to Your WordPress Site. Available from: http://www.themelab.com/blog/ [Accessed 12 November 2015].

Under30ceo (n.d.) Mocha-dad-shakespeare-blog-cartoon. Available from: http://under30ceo.com/top-ten-reasons-why-start-up-companies-need-to-blog/mocha-dad-shakespeare-blog-cartoon/ [Accessed 11 November 2015].

Website VS Social Media

Blog3_Pic1Fig 1: Battle (Clipartsheep, n.d.)

On this September, there is significant changing in digital marketing of one of the world’s big brand, Nescafé. It has moved its corporate website to Tumblr which is a social media platform. This change has led Nescafé to be the first global brand that uses social media instead of its own official website. Nescafé’s objective of website transformation is to respond customers’ behaviour which has changed. According to Bennett (2015), in 2014, people spent time on social network approximately 2 hours per day and this trend is continuously increasing. Therefore, using social media may approach more consumers and could build new customer experience which lead to a stronger relationship with customers.

Blog3_Pic2
Fig 2: Nescafé Tumblr (Nestlé, 2015)

Although, online websites have been one of the marketing communication tools that many brands use for informing their customers of corporate’s information, this is the 21st century when progressive technology has led to multiple communication channels, especially, social media which are channels that can reach to a large number of customers. This change brings about question that “Is official website necessarily for branding?

Many brands have their own official website which much information is putted such as company’s profile and products’ detail. However, at this time, most of customers surf the Internet on their smartphone that cannot displays complete website similar to be on computer. As a result, official websites turn into boring websites that chase customers away to find information from other sources. Although, brands have adjusted their websites to a responsive design in order to be user friendly, it may not be able to utterly respond to every customers’ need. Customer behaviour is changing, at this moment, they don’t want only information which is forcefully pushed from brands but they would like to interact with brands. Therefore, official websites may be not enough, and brands have to modify their communication channels in order to respond to their customers.

If brands do not want to close official website like Nescafé,
what should they do?

Blog3_Pic3
Fig 3: Coca-Cola Website (Coca-Cola, 2015)

This is one of good examples of transforming a corporate website, Coca-Cola. In 2012, Coca-Cola declared that “Content is King, and the Corporate Website is Dead” (Brown, 2013), so it has re-launched its own official website under “The Coca-Cola Journey” theme. A new website is driven by “Unbottled” blog which share interesting content instead of old-fashioned way of giving information that can conceal weakness of old website. It also provided brand storytelling and space that can be interactive with customers. Thus, Coca-Cola website is not only corporate website but it is a social media where customers can engage with.

That you’ve seen, although, these two brands use different methods to revamp their official websites, they change in a similar way, using social network platform. This may be because of the fact that brands need to build their community where they can approach their own customers and also their customers can share experience with other customers. However, whatever methods that brands choose for modifying their official websites, the most important thing to keep websites alive is content. It should be interesting and up-to-date in order to attract customers.

What do you think about this? Should brand have an official website or using social media?

Reference List:

Bennett, S. (2015) 28% of Time Spent Online is Social Networking. Available from: http://www.adweek.com/socialtimes/time-spent-online/613474 [Accessed 5 November 2015].

Brenner, M. (2014) Is The Corporate Website Dead? Available from: http://marketinginsidergroup.com/content-marketing/corporate-website-dead/ [Accessed 5 November 2015].

Brown, A. (2013) Every Day is Election Day. Available from: http://www.coca-colacompany.com/coca-cola-unbottled/every-day-is-election-day/ [Accessed 6 November 2015].

Clipartsheep (n.d.) Boxing Gloves Clipart Images. Available from: http://www.clipartsheep.com/boxing-gloves-clipart/ [Accessed 6 November 2015].

Coca-Cola (2015) Coca-Cola Journey. Available from: http://www.coca-colacompany.com/ [Accessed 7 November 2015].

Nestlé (2015) Nescafé first global brand to move from traditional websites to Tumblr. Available from: http://www.nestle.com/media/news/nescafe-moves-to-tumblr [Accessed 5 November 2015].

Is Line marketing appropriate to all brands?

Blog2_Pic
Fig 1: Line application (Brightverge, 2014)

In the globalization era, instant messaging applications are becoming more common than SMS and even voice mail. Many people who are used to using smart phones (I believe more than half of the population of my home country of Thailand) use instant messaging apps for talking to co-workers, family and also keeping in touch with long-lost friends.

For people who are not familiar with Line, I’ll briefly introduce it. Line is an Instant messaging application which originated in Japan. It allows a user to contact other users via messages and free calls both nationally and internationally. Line has many features such as text/voice chat, photo/video and location sharing and voice/video call. The most popular feature, and one that attracts users is “Stickers” which is different from other chat applications. Moreover, Line has another feature called Line Official Account which provides marketing opportunities for brands because it can be a communication channel between brand and consumers. Additionally, Line Official Account is used for promoting products, special events and even public relations. Customers who are subscribers will get daily messaged via Line Official Account similar to friends’ messages. You may wonder how customers can be invited or added to Official Account. As I’ve told you, Line has stickers which uses this point to attract users. If Line users would like to download brand stickers, they have to add Official Account first.

Blog2_Pic2
Fig 2: Line Sticker (Thumbsup, 2013)

In Thailand, Line was launched in 2011. In only four years, Line has gained nearly 33 million users in Thailand. This number of users is ranked second in the world. Chaiwong (2014) published a study showing that Thai people engaged with Line 81.7 minutes per day, which lagged behind only to Facebook Messenger (although, by a large margin). Line is now available in 193 countries and has 300 million users around the world.

With this Line’s feature, many Thai brands have created their own Official Account in order to directly contact their subscribers. These brands are in different categories that can be divided in a pie chart, below.

Pie Chart
Fig 3: A portion of Line official account which is compiled from Veedvil (2015)

It can clearly be seen that Line Official Account is used as a communication channel by many brands; especially the food and beverage industry. The reason why these brands use this application is that they can get more than one million subscribers in one week. However, the amount of subscribers is not necessarily a successful indicator because customers can block Official Account after they download stickers. Two reasons why people may block OA is they aren’t authentic customers or information from that brand isn’t useful for them. Therefore, the important factor which can build customer engagement is content. Some brand broadcast messages which emphasize only their products, but nothing special, can annoy customers with frequent spam, eventually causing customers to block that account.

One Line Official Account which has a good marketing strategy is Barbecue Plaza, a Thai restaurant. This brand uses Line as a channel for offering monthly special promotions such as 50% discount for a set menu and a set menu for only 1 baht. These special deals are only available for Official Account subscribers, thus, Barbeque Plaza has more than five million subscriber accounts.

Blog2_Pic3
Fig 4: Barbecue Plaza Line official (Marketingoops, 2015)

Therefore, if a brand would like to have Line Official Account, it should have a creative marketing communication plan in order to build new customer experiences and prevent getting blocked from subscribers. Moreover, Line Official Accounts are like one-way communication, so the brand should attach links for connecting to other social media in order to build better customer experiences and keep a database of customer information.

Do you agree with me? Do you have any sample of Line marketing?

Reference List:

Brightverge (2014) Messaging App Line Takes Its Mobile Payments Service Global. Available from: http://www.brightverge.com/messaging-app-line-takes-its-mobile-payments-service-global/ [Accessed 29 October 2015].

Chaiwong, N. (2014) LINE Marketing in Thailand. Available from: http://www.slideshare.net/norasathc/line-marketing-in-thailand [Accessed 27 October 2015].

Clifford, C. (2013) Top 10 Apps for Instant Messaging (Infographic). Available from: http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/230335 [Accessed 27 October 2015].

Marketingoops (2015) บาร์บีคิวพลาซ่าทุ่มเงิน 30 ล้าน ต่อยอดคาแรกเตอร์ มาร์เก็ตติ้ง ปลุกบาร์บีกอนมีชีวิตผ่าน LINE OA. Available from: https://www.marketingoops.com/news/brand-marketing/brand-move/bar-b-q-plaza-line-barbgon/ [Accessed 29 October 2015].

Thumbsup (2013) Mobile Operator ในอินโดนีเซียเปิดให้ส่งสติ๊กเกอร์ Line ผ่าน MMS. Available from: http://thumbsup.in.th/2013/11/indonesia-feature-phones-line-stickers-sms/ [Accessed 29 October 2015].

Veedvil (2015) LINE Stickers ของแบรนด์ต่างๆในประเทศไทยตลอด 3 ปี (2012-2015). Available from: http://www.veedvil.com/news/thailand-line-stickers/ [Accessed 28 October 2015].

Veedvil (2015) LINE Stickers ของแบรนด์ต่างๆในประเทศไทย 2012-2015 (ตอนที่ 2). Available from: http://www.veedvil.com/news/thailand-line-stickers-ep2/ [Accessed 28 October 2015].

To be a BLOGGER has never been in my mind

I’m a person who is not social network addicted.
Although I’ve a Facebook and Instagram account, I used them as channels to see
my friends’ or someone else’s activities. Yes, I’ve just “seen” those photos and status
which were posted, but I don’t want to click “Like” if I didn’t really like the post.
I’ve had a few activities on my social media, in one year, there’re less than 5 status on
my Facebook Timeline and my latest photo on Instagram was updated on last 73 weeks.
It maybe because I’m a better listener than speaker, and this is the reason that I’ve told you
“To be a BLOGGER has never been in my mind”.

However, I’ve decided to study MSc Digital Marketing at University of Southampton because
I know that digital marketing is becoming an important factor of business around the world. Before I came to study here, I’ve had 4-year experience in marketing at a mobile network operator in Thailand. Four years ago, nobody mentioned about online marketing campaign, but last 2 years, all staffs were assigned to launch campaign through an online marketing tool. Thus, I who is an inactive social media user have to pay more attention to online society for observing customer behaviour and also competitor activities; what the current customer need is? and how they have talked about my product? These make me gradually interested in the power of digital marketing and I would like to study it deeply.

Starting my new journey with being a blogger makes me stress, but I’m excited to try a new thing that I’ve never ever thought about it. I know that blog is a good space that I can introduce myself to the digital world and it can enhance my personal brand that I think it will be useful for my future career. Even though, writing a blog isn’t my favourite activity, it’s a new thing that comes into my life. I’ll try my best, and, someday, blogging may become a part of me.

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