social media is like pinball wizardry Heineken social media head says

This was the second panel at the useful social media conference and it was devoted to customer interaction. This is the report for part 1 in the panel with Lennart Boorsma who works for Heineken (Global Brand Team). The moderator was Mike McGrail from the SocialPenguinBlog

Heineken presentation

It was entitled “igniting conversations” preferably over a beer, Lennart said as part of his introduction.  Heineken believe that it is  social since 1873! Beer is social by definition (as long as you don’t have too much of it though). The idea is to turn digital into a true marketing tool and Lennart sees “social as a means to create engagement and deepen connections with the audience”. Heineken mainly started its social activity 2 years ago with the merger of the most important facebook page and decided to “have more stuff in place” which meant Youtube, Twitter and a few others like Pinterest and Iinstagram. “Nobody is interested in the back-office tools for managing social media” Lennart added. “If you say you implemented a new CMS for Facebook no one is going to be thrilled”. Yet, without it, nothing is possible he said. Nowadays, social has to be embedded in the brief from the start Lennart Boorsma went on.

“Old media used to be like a bowling alley and now it’s like pinball” Lennart said. Your messages are changed and bounce around. Likewise, content has to change and has to be fun and tell a story. It’s theory but it is hard and it takes a lot of time and requires luck too! The goal is to generate more engagement and conversations about the brand. Today a TV commercial isn’t sufficient, one has to provide a real-life experience.

This is why Heineken launched their star player dual screen app to enable football fans to score points as they answer questions wile watching football matches on their TV. It was launched on April 26th and was hugely successful. Yet there are challenges such as latency in the distribution of TV programmes, namely over cable, DSL or satellite, for users must be given a fair chance to answer all the questions in a reasonable timeframe.

Lennart also showed us a new experience around an enhanced TV commercial whereby real customers could “serenade their dates” and it provided more experience than just a classic commercial. 8 hours worth of streaming were delivered, people from 160 countries played, and 4.3 billion hits were achieved. Lennart concluded by saying that they are only at the beginning and that the work is paying off nicely with over 7 million fans now, up from above 2 millions 2 years ago and “one of the fastest growing pages worldwide”. When asked about cost, Lennart added that “when you have a great shareable idea, you don’t need to spend a lot of money”. I couldn’t agree more with that statement.

learn from the savviest European social media practitioners … and save £ 100 on ticket price

I will be taking part in the oncoming Social Media B2C Marketing Summit due to take place in London, on June 25th and 26th and as I am preparing for the event, I took a few moments to dig my teeth into the programme and I realised it’s not a conference but the conference on European Social Media … absolutely packed with extremely high profile social media managers from some of the most prominent European brands. It was high time something was done to catch up with the likes of Blogwell in the USA, and here it is, right at our door, so it’s an event you shouldn’t miss.

the pitch

The Social Media Marketing Summit (25-26 June, London UK)
Social media represents a growing marketing opportunity for business to directly engage with their consumers. The phenomenal growth of social media activity has meant consumers are now interacting with their favourite brands and regularly checking for the latest updates online.

Orange, Heineken, Unilever and KLM are a selection of brands which have embedded social media throughout their marketing campaigns. Join these leading brands on the 25-26th June at the 2012 Social Media Marketing Summit, London.

Learn how to deliver engaging and interactive marketing tactics to entice your consumers to engage with your brand. O2, Honda, Tom Tom, Barclaycard and many more will share exclusive case studies, their everyday experiences and best practice, so you can improve your social media marketing efforts.

£100 off ticket price

Quote YG12 and save an £100 you register at

about my presentation at the summit

Orange has been very active in the Social Media space since early 2008 and now has an online fanbase of over 3 million fans. With a presence on Twitter,
Google+ and Dailymotion – in which Orange has a stake – Orange has experience in using multiple networks – and insight on which networks are best for different kinds of marketing. Hear how this telecoms giant chooses different social platforms to engage with their community and meet marketing goals.

  • how to decide which tools work for you : hear how Orange decides which social network works best for them and how you can decide depending on your organisations goals.
  • learn which social platforms are most effective to market your brand and build brand awareness:  Orange will share which worked best for them and why
  • hear why Orange doesn’t just rely on Facebook and Twitter: discover which other social networks you should be using and how these can help your online marketing.