Social media superstar Dell keeps getting better at it

Brian Solis, the Principal of Silicon Valley-based PR and New Media agency, FutureWorks, is always interesting to listen to and read. Here is his analysis of how one of social media's shining stars is performing.


How Tweet it is: @DellOutlet banks $2 million on Twitter

Good friend Richard Binhammer of Dell (@richardatdell) reached out to let me know that the company is releasing the latest financial figures for its @DellOutlet account on Twitter tonight.

Last December, the company generated over $1 million in revenue through @delloutlet by posting special offers and also nurturing customer relationships on Twitter. Today Dell reported over $2 million in sales through its popular @delloutlet presence. @delloutlet currently boasts close to 625,000 followers seeking exclusive deals available only on the micro community.

Read the rest of this excellent case study here.


Clare Werbeloff: the last word 2.0

Once you start covering a subject you have to finish it, I guess. So here's the latest. Tim Burrowes from mUmBRELLA ventured to Luna Park last night for a catwalk show to launch the new computer game 'The Sims 3'.

The event was run by The Project and he saw Werbeloff sitting in the front row, later to be asked up on stage for a catwalk. One of the questions from media insiders when all this broke was, "Was Werbeloff connected with The Projects?," and "Was she out there trying to create viral marketing pieces for The Projects?"

I'll let Tim from mUmBRELLA explain the rest of what he saw.


Google Australia head at FED

I was happy to be at the recent Fouth Estate Domain (FED) networking event for media and technology professionals. Karim Temsamani was 'on the couch', as they like to say - because the interviewee of honour sits on a lounge - and was interviewed by Martin Dalgleish.

The night was filled with excellent networking opportunities and was coordinated by Sally Mills and Harris Madden from LaVolta and Mike Walsh (who was out of town). Mike usually does the interviews, I believe, however, Dalgleish stood in as guest host to grill the Google boss in his absence.

During the interview Temsamani answered (or avoided) questions about: breaking down the Google balance sheet and P&L into more meaningful numbers; Google's reaction to new search engines, WolframAlpha and MS Bing; whether Google were going to use their significant cash store for an acquisition spree; why even Google felt the need to lay people off, given their strong performance; and many others.

Here is a link to the inteview with Temsamani.


Clare Werbeloff: the last word

It seems Clare Werbeloff is just a 19-year-old kid from the Northern Beaches of Sydney with a loud mouth who's watched too much Fat Pizza. She ran in front of a camera and mouthed off what she has copied from TV ethnic slang without thinking about the implications for others - such as the person who was shot and his family.

Here's Channel 9's response to the whole incident, explaining what their contract cameraman did and his experience and attitude to Werbeloff.

And here's the final ACA interview with Werbeloff, (direct to ACA site) where the implications of what has happened start to sink in for her. Talk back radio (like blogging commentary and twitter) can be an amazing measure of the zeitgeist of public opinion. You get a feeling that speaking to so many angry people had an impact on the previously oblivious young girl.

'Chk-chk boom' backlash
'Chk-chk boom' backlash

However, regardless of the specifics of this incident (it now seems clear none of this was related to a marketing campaign), what disturbs me is that most punters probably don't care whether they were duped or not. Werbeloff had many supporters and 'fans'. Has the average media viewer become so use to fake news stories through people 'punking the news' or the media itself creating hyperbole or artificial events, that (a) it has become a great game to guess what is real, or (b) no-one cares anymore - news IS entertainment.

For marketers and brand custodians, however, this bizarre, artificial media environment can only last for a short time historically and can only ever be a short-term marketing communications strategy for those that pursue it. Creating brand-value - establishing communication between users and giving them a reason to recommend your brand DOES NOT START WITH A LIE. Even one that goes massively viral super fast. Further, the more people get sick of being duped (and it's happening NOW) the more they will attached 'negative' value to any brand that involves themselves in any dubious, cloaked, faked viral or social media campaigns.

For a look at some of the excellent 'spoof' videos of Clare that are already out, mUmBRELLA has a selection here.

It now seems that the Kings Cross Bogan had nothing to do with a marketing stunt (so, congrats to Tooheys for investing in that OOH poster for the 6beers of separation campaign, who'd have known!!) - advertisers, however, will now be chasing that viral magic that saw Werbeloff and Susan Boyle go balistic over the past few weeks and try to create 'a story' that will take their campaigns to space.  Nothing wrong with great, honest, engaging stories, of course - so it will interesting to see what viral plays come out over the next few weeks as agencies push the envelope.


A Current Affair does Clare

Just to round this whole thing out and follow up on my last post, here is A Current Affair's interview with Clare Werbeloff from tonight.

mUmBRELLA reports that:

Kings Cross bogan Clare Werbeloff has already been discussed online more than 40,000 times, according to a calculation released today by social media monitoring company Buzz Numbers.
According to the company, since Werbeloff’s breathless retelling of a shooting that she didn't actually witness went viral last Monday, at least 41,186 conversations have occurred online on Australian websites.
Although many PR agencies no longer use an equivalent media value figure, BuzzNumbers says that if this metric is used, it would was worth $200,000 in equivalent advertising dollars on Australian websites and social media destinations alone.

The rest of the post is here.