Blog

Getting started

… with a starting point

I ask myself: What would be interesting to know more about? What’s going on out there that I would want to know, but don’t know yet?

And so it all begins.

Social media

Let’s start with social media. I would like to know more about the social media landscape globally. I would like to get to the bottom of this phenomenon.

First, is it a phenomenon, or is it just a name for the way digital medias are organised today, i.e. user-centric? How does the social media landscape look globally? What does it mean for our lives? And what does it truly mean in terms of the way we communicate with each other? What kind of implications does it have for companies? And where are we heading?

Based on that, it would be far easier to grasp the current state of the social media phenomenon. And to come to terms with the future developments.

That being said, the digital landscapes are characterized by their ever-changing nature. New ideas and developments happen at such a high speed that we all need to filter them in order to make some sort of sense of it.

And that’s a theme by itself: Transformation. The speed of life has increased dramatically during the past decade.

Storytelling

Eternal acceleration is of course not a universal truth. Take the area of storytelling, for example. Here, the good old discipline of telling a story that’s engaging, beautiful, erotic, humorous, exciting, scary, surprising, empathetic etc. is as promising and necessary as ever. Even though the possibilities and premises for telling a story has changed with the availability of new digital medias, techniques, equipment and ways of communicating.

So there’s still plenty to explore within the storyteller’s field.

For example: What is the key to successful online storytelling? What can we hope to achieve by telling a story? Has the anatomy of storytelling changed? Is it changing all the time, or will “the good story” remain forever young?

The answer to some of the latter questions might seem obvious, to some. And to me, I think.

But closure is a thing of the past. Today, we need to re-open all the thoughts and notions we have on a specific topic. It must change. And it does.

Maybe that’s one of the biggest achievements of the digital world. That it has emphasized the fact that nothing is dead.

We inhabit a world full of both opportunity and risk. It’s wide open.

Maybe Heidegger was right after all?

Research. Insights. Reflections. Ideas.

About “The Digital Blueprint”

This site is meant as a place where I can accumulate and keep track of my work with communications in the digital age.

It’s a well-known fact that we need to filter, process, reflect and not least articulate in order to make the most of what we experience. Or as David Bowie states in the song “Fantastic Voyage” from his album Lodger (1979): “I got to write it down, but I’m still being educated.” I would re-phrase that and say “because we’re being educated every day.”

So what, more specifically, is it that I’m writing down on this site?

Broadly speaking, it’s research, insights, reflections and ideas regarding the ever-changing digital landscapes that most of us are somehow trying to manoeuvre our way through on a daily basis.

For me, it’s also an integral part of my daily job as chief copywriter on a medium-sized digital agency in Copenhagen, Denmark. A job that’s basically about providing strategy, concept and content (copy, film) for the various digital communication channels, e.g. social media, websites and apps.

To see my LinkedIn profile, click here.

Jonathan Wichmann, August 2011

Measuring ‘fame’: The simple method used for my list of Top 10 most famous Danes

The “Top 10: Most Famous Danes in 2015” list published has been created using the following method:

1. I asked my Facebook friends to name who they think should be on the list.
2. I took this shortlist (a pretty long list) of names to Google Trends and started analysing them and benchmarking them against each other.

Screen Shot 2015-06-08 at 15.43.31
A screen shot of what the Google Trends analysis tool looks like. Here’s an all-time (since 2004) comparison of Lars von Trier, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Susanne Bier and Helle Thorning-Schmidt. Note that Helle Thorning-Schmidt has received more searches than Susanne Bier – but that’s only if we include searches from Denmark. Once we remove those the result is the opposite.

Is it a valid method?

The method is not perfect (no method is).

First and foremost, since the scores on Google Trends is based on how many searches related to that person has been made it will be more about “interest” in the person than about his or her “fame”. But it will reflect how much these people are on other people’s minds.

Having used this tool for many, many hours I’m convinced it’s a very valid way of judging the current fame of the shortlisted people.

In Google Trends, you’re also able to see where in the world the searches have been made, and so I’ve also taken into account and deducted the amount Danish searches. Because I’m only looking to judge the fame outside of Denmark. Some are “world famous in Denmark” – and those I don’t want on the list.

Maersk Line in social media (for #DIA13)

[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/59990482 w=460&h=259]

 
In less than one and a half year shipping giant Maersk Line has secured an astounding 780,000 fans on Facebook and a comprehensive presence on 11 other platforms. Including 40,000 followers on Twitter, 30,000 on LinkedIn, and 22,000 on Instagram.

At an extremely low cost the campaign has changed the face of Maersk Line – in a conservative B2B industry “where you think no one would be social”.

The background
After having been in a “listening phase” for a couple of years, Maersk Line – the world’s largest container shipping company – decided to in-source a social media specialist to its communications department to get the company started on social media.

In October 2011, after having been employed for a week, his strategy was approved by the CCO.

The strategy and the objectives
The strategy outlined “getting closer to our customers” as the key overall target while pointing to brand awareness, brand loyalty, employer branding, employee retention, customer insights and even co-creation as other positive outcomes.

The strategy also made clear that platform differentiation is the way to go: The company was advised to use different platforms for different purposes.

A story of success
From that point on it’s been one long story of success that has surprised many. Among the highlights are:

  • 780,000 fans on Facebook with record-high engagement level.
  • A purposeful presence on Twitter, incl. setting up a Twitter panel of select employees (incl. a captain, a graduate and a number of top executives).
  • A cool and elegant presence on Instagram which has started a #maersk spotting trend across the globe and has secured Maersk Line a place on Instagram’s elite list of ‘Suggested Users’.
  • The creation and maintenance of “The Shipping Circle”, a group on LinkedIn where shipping experts share their insightful thoughts and ideas with the company – valuable input that’s set to influence management decisions.
  • The company’s more than 150 country communication managers around the globe can now do local posts via the global Facebook page, thereby ensuring both simplicity, brand alignment and effective/relevant customer communication – and also ensuring that Maersk Line really do “get closer its customers”.

Better at social than the big B2C brands
In a mini-survey made in July 2012 in order to measure how good Maersk Line is at social compared to the 12 leading brands on Facebook, Maersk Line came in second with a score of 37.0.

In comparison, Lego scored 48.0, Disney 34.2, Shell 19.1, Red Bull 6.0, and Coca-Cola 2.2.

Attention from the media
The “Maersk Line in social media” story has already gotten its fair share of media attention, highlighted as setting a new standard for B2B companies in social media.

On more than one occasion top 5 social media experts have also displayed their enthusiasm, e.g. Jay Baer and Scott Stratten. And currently both M.I.T. and Harvard University are writing case studies about Maersk Line for their curriculum.

Done at almost no cost
However, the most remarkable thing about the campaign is the extremely low cost at which it has been run: Apart from occupying less than one FTE, it has only brought about around $ 100K in other external expenses, allowing Maersk Line not to look further into things such as ROI.

The next step: Unlocking the full potential
Nevertheless, Maersk Line conducted a comprehensive social media study in Q4 2012, in order to evaluate the efforts – and decide where to take social media the next 2-3 years.

The study revealed that the value creation so far has been far out of this world, with a ROI of more than 1500 %. The math actually showed a ROI of close to 5000 % – so 1500 % is a very conservative estimate.

The study was done as an open innovation process with both leading american consultants and key stakeholders within Maersk Line being interviewed in a series of Google Hangouts.

unlocking the full potential
The frontpage of Maersk Line’s comprehensive study. The Maersk star in the middle of the social ‘solar system’ refers to Maersk Line Social, a website dedicated to social media.

The outcome?
The outcome of the 75-pager was a tangible recommendation to the top management of expanding the scope of social media in Maersk Line to include both Customer Service and Sales – and to further develop the setup in the communications department. Also, internal collaboration was highlighted as the area with the most potential looking ahead.

The management approved the recommendation, and in 2013 Maersk Line is therefore focusing on implementing social media across the organisation – and on turning social engagement into direct bottom line value.