Social Media Week NY started today with a phenomenal presentation from Scott Monty Head of Ford Social at Bloomberg. Ford's strategy is simple and brilliant paid, earned and social media all worked together to drive traffic to their site. Content was generated by users during the whole campaign. Ford tailored social media to fit it's brand strategy and tailored social networks to work for them. On Facebook Ford changed the like button to link to a product page instead. Ford dominated twitter with user generated content and ads equally. Scott made the big announcement that for the Fiesta brand they would drive engagement again through content generated by average people via video, social or anything creative online and would chose a few ambassadors to represent the Fiesta brand.
Ford will rely on Twitter ads a bit more this time around as advertising on that platform is coming into it's own. Better consistent metrics and measurement was also stressed by Scott, as he feels they want to get passed the "like" to drive people to go from looking to buying. Scott's personal theory on social comes from blogging for over 10 years as well as using established and alternative social media networks such as Path and Vine. He believes all brands now have the best in class and applies the Woody Allen theory to social of showing up as the most import objective in any campaign. Scott also stressed the service model for social rather than sales techniques and that will help differentiate Ford in an industry where the perception of the used car salesman still exists.
Another great afternoon panel was on Online Education and Gamification at Social Media HQ at the Met Pavilion. Anya Kamenets from Fast Company and Gabe Zicherman of Gamification Co spoke about the topics respectively What excited me the most about this space was Anya stated the biggest population for online college level courses are single mothers' in their early 20's who have never been to college and work a full time job, were getting higher degrees. I truly hope that phenomena continues and grows with the addition of modular classes and putting content for education first as the chances are higher for children of educated parents to themselves seek higher education and vocations. Gabe talked about fluid intelligence and how scores on games are a better predictor of performance. Gamification allows people to feel good about playing a game instead of being stressed out about taking a narrowly structured test. My son will try and explain this to his teachers tomorrow in his 7th grade classes as he sat in on this panel with me:)