Which, if any, of the three social media plans should Foley pursue? Why? Based on the information contained within the case study, I believe Foley should pursue the Zwinktopia social media plan. I believe this is her best choice for a number of reasons. First, Zwinktopia users fit the target demographic for the UnME Jeans brand. Its users span the age range she is marketing to—teenage girls.
The Forrester Research Study of Interest in Marketer Profiles on Social Networking Sites reported the following: •68% of young adults, age 18-21, visit social networking sites once per day or more; •28% of teens and young adults, ages 12-21, showed interest in the profiles of marketers, retailers, and service providers on social networking sites; •Nearly half of the adults over the age of 18 polled were shown to be interested in the social networking sites of their favorite retailer, marketer, or service provider; •By 2006, 61% of teens and 80% of young adults were using social networking sites.
Second, another poll showed that apparel comprised the largest percentage of purchases made in the Second Life metaverse. Since UnME would be marketing their apparel to users in a similar environment, a safe assumption would be that its users would follow this trend, as well. Lastly, I believe Zwinktopia would better convey the message that Foley wants send to consumers. This platform would allow users to design the jeans they use to outfit their avatars, giving users a sense of individuality—the very message the company seeks to convey.
By users being able to share their creations with fellow Zwinktopians, they are also creating a viral effect with the brand. Their friends will become interested in the brand and want to purchase their own jeans. What benefits would Foley gain from each of the three social media plans? What risks does each entail? How can Foley better reap the benefits and mitigate the risks of each of the programs? Foley would greatly benefit from Zwinktopia’s marketing plan because it would speak to her target audience.
It better conveys the message of individuality, also. It pairs the brand with issues that are important to teenage girls and gives them a way to attach a personal identity to the jeans. With characters representing users wearing the jeans, Zwinktopia is able to offer a personalized experience that Facebook and YouTube cannot. Also, the message could be lost with platforms like Facebook and YouTube, as their audiences span a large range of consumer age groups. Consumers on YouTube have to make a conscious decision to watch he video commercials; Facebook users would have to read about the product and install widgets in order to provide the viral effect. With Zwinktopia, the message and the brand are integrated into the experience. Foley would benefit the most from Zwinktopia by periodically changing the styles of apparel offered to its users. The risk here would be that of competitors offering similar experiences. Users could grow tired of their UnME jeans and wish to outfit their avatars in a competitor’s apparel offerings.
With Facebook, she runs the risk of users simply “hiding” the UnME feed over time. Once hidden, the users must consciously decide to visit the company’s profile page. With YouTube, consumers are invited to submit their own videos to the site. This could produce a viral effect, yes, but it could also inhibit the younger audience she is trying to reach. Producing and uploading videos could be challenging for younger teenage girls. How should Foley measure the results of her social media plans?
Which media metrics are best and least suited for a Web 2. 0 world? Foley could measure the success of the Zwinktopia media plan with the usage metrics available from the site itself. Zwinktopia should have data on the number of jeans purchased and created from the site. They should also have statistics on how long active users outfit their avatars with UnME jeans, how often they change up the avatar’s outfits, and how many friends they’ve shared the apparel with.
With Facebook, the viral effect may be more difficult to measure, as the number of friends UnME has at any given time could be skewed by the number of those users that have hidden the page from their news feed. YouTube offers a concrete statistic on the number of video views, but it would hard to ascertain whether that message truly made an impact—just because someone watched their commercials does not necessarily mean they purchased a pair of their jeans.