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September 01, 2010


Andrew Foote

Insightful stuff as always, John. To your point about the importance of building a foundation, I was thinking your campaign vs. engagement spend percentages might look something more like this...

Year One - 20% campaign, 80% strategy/engagement: Marcom team and agencies integrate, form center of excellence to drive social strategy and SOPs. Company establishes digital footprint for engaging consumers and various stakeholders, delivering value/utility, sharing news/insights, managing issues, building relationships with influencers, supporting marketing campaigns, etc. This foundational phase = skill-building, testing, establishing credibility, and gathering insights to inform strategy.

-Year Two - 40% campaign, 60% engagement: Once the company has established its platform, it is now ready to overlay more robust and consistent campaign efforts on top of the always-on engagement.

-Year Three - 50% campaign, 50%: Listening and iteration continues. Dedicated team resources and budgets grow (both paid and earned). Engagement level stays consistent with increased focus on campaign efforts.

I realize the above is probably not a realistic scenario for many companies - especially CPGs - that are looking to demonstrate an immediate return. Most marcom execs don't have the time or patience. But I feel that before a brand can run off an execute back to back SM campaigns, it first needs to concentrate on walking and establishing a foundation for long-term success.

I know you believe the same, but your percentages threw me off! Help me understand your thoughts on year 1 - 3. Thanks!


I had the same thought as Andrew—in the first year a big campaign may bring in fans, but if there's little manpower to talk to them or content strategy to keep them engaged, they won't stick around.

Just the general everyday content development needed to be worth liking/following takes big resources.

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