Twitter Usage – The Eircome Case Study (KPIs)

In this weeks class we talked about Twitter usage for companies and used Eircom as an example as one of their marketing strategies KPI.

Companies are relying more often on the use of Twitter as a customer services tool, it is used to connect with their customers, beneficial for branding and brand loyalty, easier and more common to get feedback from customers about their product or services, it is a free marketing tool and help increase sales. It is also good for sharing company news with your customers and share promotions and offers. Tweets might go viral, therefore creating awareness and is an easy way to spy on competitors.

Background: Eircom is Ireland’s largest telecommunications company controlling over 60% of the fixed line telephony market and 47.5% of the country’s 1.66m broadband subscriptions. Its subsidiaries Meteor and eMobile are both significant players in the mobile communications market.”

Eircom wants to show customers that they listen and respond to them promptly and personally, helping the firm to understand their needs. Their Twitter presence is part of the social media strategy within the organisation. Eircom has integrated their social channels into its marketing and content calendars. Eircom has assigned staff members to monitor social networking sites such as Twitter in order to track and address negative comments and queries made about and to the company.  The social media customer care team consists of four full-time agents, who monitor and respond  in social conversations across all their platforms (Twitter, Facebook, on a daily basis.

Eircom’s team that are in charge of monitoring social media, are generally working  for queries from 9:00 to 20:00 Monday to Friday, these opening times were arranged based on feedback and demand but are very flexible towards this as Twitter is always on. The social media customer care team have various KPIs to measure their impact, progress and also ensuring a constistent customer service.

The firm has created a self-help centre for their customers and are also working on Youtube videos with tutorials. If a customer is unable to get the response they required  through their self-help centre, then they are put into a new category and will be looked after by their tech support team.  The agents in charge of their Twitter account must address to all responses within 20-30 minutes for each query received. They have realised that 70% of customers who have had interaction with them in the digital world have not contacted their call centres.

  • The @eircom’s team deals with approximately 75 queries and escalations per week through around 320 tweets and direct messages.
  • They use and track all their shortened links for the self-help tutorials and FAQs generate an average of 250 click-thrus to their support forum and website on a weekly basis.
  • They receive an average of 1,200 visits per week on their forums.
  • And a  further 150 queries get resolved on, also on a weekly basis.

Online Media Monitoring

We received a visit from Stephen O’Leary, founder of O’Leary Analytics, this is an online media monitoring and analysis company, so if businesses want to know what is being said about their company, themselves, an event and competitors in the online media this is the place to go!

Stephen first explained to us what his previous work was and how he ended up founding O’Leary Analytics. He was first working for a company that sold software and he provided training for the clients, these clients tended to forget part of their training, lacked enough time to monitor their own media or found it too complicated. They requested that Stephen would look after this for them.

Stephen mentioned the process behind monitoring and explained the importance of keeping track on what’s happening on  blogs, forums, news sites and, of course, all major social networks. He explained how companies can make a difference when they listen to what their customer say and not only provide answers but also realise the improvements they can make. The objective is to find a way to change the negative comments by some  into a positive. Stephen emphasised that companies need to be actively responsive to criticism.

Brian McFadden superquinn sausagesAfter talking about collecting data, he also talked about what is the best data to analyse, how to find out who is a companies biggest influencer  and how wide their reach is. An example for this was about Superquinn sausages and how Brian McFadden generated a lot of buzz in a day by saying that the Irish community in Australia need their sausages. This message was re tweeted 91 times and the amount of people talking about it peaked greatly.

In addition to this, Stephen mentioned that almost everything can be measured, even sentiment analysis can be generated, but in Ireland this can be difficult as people tend to be a bit cynical when making comments online.

Stephen recommended a series of websites that can facilitate online media monitoring:

Measuring Social Media

In this weeks class we covered social media measurement, this can be difficult to look at without having clear objectives for the business.  These measurements are done through analysing the following:

  • Reach: Page views,  followers, likes and subscribers on social media.
  • Actions: Likes, shares and retweets.
  • Level of interaction: Engagement (comments).

A lot of brands do not use any form of social media metrics, as shown below:

It is important to consider the platforms that you are using and measure the relevant information. For example, how many people come to your website through a social media channel like Twitter or Facebook? This can be seen using Google Analytics.

Measure of influence is another important piece of information that you can obtain through measurement: Who is the person that drives the most attention? whose posts are shared or liked the most? These are people who know about a certain topic, and share relevant information, they don’t waste time with irrelevant posts or messages. Tip: Search for these people on Linkedin and find out more about their industry.

Measuring engagement is possible, it is easy enough knowing how many likes, shares, retweets and replies a business profile or page gets, but it is also easy to see how many new likes or follows businesses gain. Facebook insights allow you to view these easily, for Twitter there are other available tools (7 top tools to measure performance and influence on Twitter). Another way to find out how much influence a person has on Twitter would be by the obvious, the amount of followers they have but also in how many lists they have been added to by others (this last one is not the best metric because not everybody uses Twitter Lists).

Gender and age are another important metric, as businesses sometimes need to know who is their target market and this can be seen through Facebook insights and it looks as shown below:

These sort of insights are also available through Youtube Insights Tool.

Another way to measure is by monitoring, doing so will allow you find out what others are saying about the brand and addressing these can have a positive impact. There are many tools that allow you to monitor your brand: 20 Free Social Media Monitoring Tools You Should be Using

Generating PR for yourself using Earned Media


Having coverage in the newspapers is good, but after the day is finished the publication is gone, therefore it is important that this coverage is available online too. By listening and researching online conversations and spotting key influencers, creating interesting content and interacting with customers and other relevant people in the online world, a company can effectively enhance their business though online PR and achieve growth. Measuring these activities is possible and as a consequence businesses can benefit from Earned Media.

Press Release, the story about your product and service:

  • Include keywords.
  • Send to a media list such as
  • Use RSS buttons as it helps distribute the word.
  • Use Photos: this is very important to include in your Press Release.

How to generating Online PR:

  • Look at blogs and reviews, find out what bloggers can benefit your business if they talk about your product or service. People trust those blogs they follow and they trust reviews from previous costumers, send a product as a tool for a review that benefits readers. Knowing what is said about you is important as this will strongly influence future leads. Blog posts are a great way to generate awareness and improve SEO. Tip: Identify Bloggers using
  • Attending a press event that’s of relevance to blogger’s audience is a good way to contact new people.
  • Creating Digital Media Kits, make sure it includes all the basic information about your company, mission statement, products and services, samples, statistics relevant to your products and industry, etc. Tip: using Dropbox to share documents and photos for free can make it cost effective.
  • Having a websites and make sure that all earned media as well as paid media will link back to your owned media. It is important that people link back to your own content and having a website where people can find out more  is expected.
  • Social media releases: Whether you are writing a press release for traditional or social media, if your audience doesn’t find the content informative, useful or helpful, it will most likely fail.
  • Flickr is a social media networking tool for PR, because it is always visual it is good for branding. You can share photos but also posters, charts etc.
  • Developing relationships (Tweetup and Meetups): A tweetup is an event where people who Twitter come together to meet in person,  like finally putting a name to a face, these events are a great opportunity to connect with the people in your network and share more than just 140 characters at a time. A Meetup Group is a local community of people in which a group hosts meetups and are face to face meetings that happen in real life between members.
  • SlideShare presentations and e-books, companies try to get publicity and earned media via writing an e-books by getting people to sign up to newsletter.
  • Like other media: Liking posts and pages, sharing content, subscribing to blogs, following others, joining groups are great ways to contact other people. Engagement is key in this, get as involved as possible.
  • Flashmobs, some consider it a “dead strategy,” I don’t know about that but for sure it has been overused.
  • Online contests: Social Media contests have gained popularity and can be a powerful tool for spreading a brand’s message. Digital marketers are finding that social media is great for holding online contests that increase awareness and engagement for consumer brands.
  • Using podcasts, this involves recording a digital file that can be distributed online.
  • And finally, use IAB measurement guidelines.

Earned Media

This week’s class covered earned media, also refered to as free media. This consists in publicity gained through non-advertising promotional efforts through things like press releases, PR agencies, contacting journalists and placing stories with news outlets.

It is considered free media for some because it also consists on worth of mouth as customers become the advertising channel. Third party recommendations from friends and contacts are more credible and transparent than paid opportunities.

How to gain “Earned Media”?

  • When a business creates interesting content (owned media) on their blog, those blog posts are much more likely to be shared by your readers, becoming earned media.
  • Same thing applies when messages are used on social media channels such as Twitter (with retweets) and Facebook (share button).
  • This is a great tool for SEO. While the search engines love fresh content but more than that it is much more efficient when the content is being shared constantly, so the more times your owned media is shared, Liked, retweeted and posted the more valuable it becomes. Without owned media becoming earned media, the content created is not as valuable for SEO as it could be.
  • Generating “PR” or “getting coverage,” people still trust what it gets broadcast or published by traditional media.
  • Contacting high profile bloggers to write about the brand, service, product, etc.

One of the challenged of Earned Media is that once the content is available for the audience, businesses are no longer in complete control of their content. Much like social networking, earned media places the power of your brand in the hands of your consumers.

Monitoring Earned Media:

  • Using TweetDeck allows you to monitor Twitter activity and follow up on any mentions and interactions related to the business.
  • Google Alerts are email updates of the latest relevant Google results (web, news, etc.) based on your queries.
  • O’Leary Analytics they focused on monitoring brands mentions in online publications, quantify and qualify the results of your PR efforts, nationally and internationally.
  • Blog Statt. Blogger and WordPress provide a measuring tool as well.

Email Marketing & Newsletters

GetResponse Email Marketing and Social Media

Email marketing can help businesses increase sales and it generates an excellent return on the investment, it is a very powerful marketing tool. This form of direct marketing is focused on the delivery of information about services or products directly into the persons inbox.

Email marketing is widely used in Ireland because sending email is cheaper than most other forms of communication and marketing as well as being easy to measure it’s efficiency. It lets you deliver a message to your customers and it has proven to be very successful when it’s done right. Advertisers can reach a substantial number of customers who already gave their consent to receive such emails and are interested in the services or products that are advertised. More than half of Internet users access their email accounts to either check or send mail on an average day, it’s the best direct-marketing channel and brings in much better results than direct-marketing material that is printed.

You can send mass newsletters or target specific users. Email marketing leads to sales conversions and allows website owners to market at internet speed. A disadvantage of e-marketing is that many companies send unsolicited emails, in other words, spam, making it harder for people to trust what they receive and very often e-mails are left unopened.

Newsletters or Ezines are also popular and cover other needs. These keep customers informed about all news and updates about your business. Creating them is easy and cost effective, requires little technology and pages like Mailchimp are great tools to generate newsletters.

Mailchimp is not only a free tool but it also offers many different email templates for newsletters, offers and much more. It also lets you create your own templates from scratch with a very easy drag and drop tool (new) and it offers editable blank templates. It also offers very detailed campaign reports, letting you know who has opened your email, what browser they used, what country they are in, etc. This tool can be integrated to other social media channels.

In addition to this, using RSS feeds and blogs (Blogspot or WordPress) are other great ways to get subscribers and share your email campaigns online easily.

Key Performance Indicators (KPI)

KPI CartoonKey Performance Indicators (KPI), also known as Key Success Indicators (KSI), help businesses define and measure progress toward their goals. These must be quantifiable measurements in which results define the success of the business strategy (based on the business priorities).

KPI’s are useful because they reduce the number of decisions that are based solely on instinct or gut feel and make decisions based on objectivity and facts. These quantify the achievement of goals by setting, monitoring and measuring against a target. As businesses grow, it becomes harder to stick to the important achievements that are requered. KPI’s also allow brands to focus on facts when things get out of control.


One of the problems with KPI’s is that instead of identifying the information that’s needed and subsequently design the most appropriate indicators to assess performance, people often use the ‘ICE’ approach: Identify everything that is easy to measure and count, Collect and report the data on everything that is easy to measure and count and finally End up scratching your head thinking “What the heck are we going to do with all this performance data stuff.

It is recommended to focus on three or four measures that are essential to the business reaching its goals. It is important to keep the number of KPI’s small to prevent distraction. A common mistake is to measure everything when the goal is to measure just one thing that will lead to achieving the successful goal.

To sum up, KPI’s are achievable through the following steps:

  • Be specific: pertaining to the goal of the brand.
  • Make it measurable: for the brand to analise its progress.
  • Make the goals achievable and realistic.
  • Be relevant when directly linking the business and metrics.
  • Consider Time Frame: placing goal achievement in a certain time frame.

Measuring Success on Facebook Ads

Facebook tries to show you the ads that you will be interested in. The ads that target you are chosen based on the things you do with Facebook such as liking a page, and the info Facebook receives from you and other sources. If you are not interested in an ad you can close it on the X button and Facebook will know you are not interested in that type of ads. There are two types of ads on Facebook:

1. Adverts: A business creates an advert and pays Facebook to deliver it to the people who are most likely to find it useful. For example, you might see an advert for a local gym if you live nearby, you are a certain age and like weights. If a user is not connected to a brand, ads will appear on the right-hand side of their  homepage.

Facebook Ads

2. Sponsored Stories: A sponsored story is different from an advert because it’s a story you can already see about activity from people you are connected to, pages you like or apps you use. People tend to be more trusting and comfortable as they do not consider this a form of advertising because it shows what their friends like. For fans and friends of fans, ads will appear as a sponsored story on the right-hand side, and it can also appear in news feed.

According to Facebook, placements in the right-hand side have an average of 5 to 10 times more engagement than all other places on the site.

Facebook constantly works on ways for improve measurement standards that allow businesses to measure ‘success’ and allow for cross-platform comparison.

Facebook provides measurements on four areas:

Reach: Users share their real identities on Facebook and brands can have access to the demographic profiles of the audiences they reach on Facebook.

Brand Resonance: Facebook also allows brands to evaluate whether they are achieving the desired brand perceptions. An ongoing Facebook presence and asking fans questions can provide insights about a brand. Therefore telling you what content resonates the most with your fans.

Reaction: The most important success metrics to measure on Facebook are traffic, sales and other desired reactions.

Consumer Insights: One of the most immediate value marketers can see from building a comprehensive Facebook strategy are consumer insights generated. Advertisers are able to run polls to help identify and understand their target customers. They can also use these polls to learn about the differences between their fans, friends of fans and non-fans. For example,  asking a question through the Page provides insight about your fans and it’s and engaging form of content.

Not all of the research methodologies mentioned above would be suitable for every business. It is important to identify which measurement is valuable and which one isn’t.

Adwords Case Study: The Big Switch

Bord Gáis Big Switch was one of the most successful campaign in Ireland. They integrated advertising, marketing and PR campaigns for this project and their use of Google Adwords was noticeable which proved to be a key element to their success.

TheBigSwitch.ieBord Gáis objective was to get into Ireland’s residential electricity market and developed a site that would allow people who had already made the decision of switching making it a quick and as easy process, but also allowing people who didn’t have the time to switch or didn’t have the information needed to switch on hand, to schedule a reminder or call back, and finally, help people (who were as undecided) to find out more information on the offer and let them calculate their own potential savings.

They generated online traffic from extensive media coverage including TV, print, radio advertising, sales promotion and online marketing.

The Google AdWord campaign was aiming to capture all potential traffic during the launch period generated by the PR coverage. Google pay per click (PPC) campaign was very important because the website would not have an immediate presence in Google as organic. To ensure the effectiveness of their ad, they created a series of large-scale campaigns featuring hundreds of ad texts and thousands of keywords with a consistent message, a call to action and their URL.

On the day of launch the site had over 27,000 unique visits and over 4,000 online switch applications. On the following day the site had over 27,000 unique visits and over 5,000 online switch applications. Within 30 days of launch, Google AdWords advertising generated over 30,000 sign ups  and their online channels measurement showed a conversion of over 100,000 customers via the in just 4 months.

Big Switch campaignBord Gáis’s campaign effectiveness was also ensured by constantly analysing the traffic to the website. By doing so, they could see which keywords were most effective in attracting potential customers, what pages on the website were being viewed and what conversion rates were being achieved. They changed the keywords used to ensure that they achieved the maximum return on their advertising spend.

Their TV advertising had an immediate effect on search volumes and site traffic, indicating that more people are surfing the web while watching TV, due to this, customers are already searching for what the advertiser offer and they are more likely to engage with ads by reading and clicking on it.

Paid Media

In this weeks class we covered paid media (ads). Due to changes in consumer behaviour, marketeers are forced to use different techniques to sell their products or services. One of these techniques is paid media, they allocate spending in not only radio, television and print media but also in digital media in order to acquire impressions, views and clicks. There are three approaches that can be taken for this:

Fist we have Rich Media Ads: These ads consists of motion graphics, audio, video and the objective is that the user interacts with the ad. These ads cannot be intrusive or disturb the user, they must be the ones to decide whether or not they want to interact with your ad. On the bad side, these sort of ads are difficult to design and are not suitable for everybody.

Another form of advertising are Display Ads: Display ads are often referred to as banners. These graphical forms of advertising come in standardized sizes and can include text, pictures and rich media (interactive multimedia as mentioned above). They can be placed on websites, applications, newsletters, e-mails etc. Rich media is combination of text, audio, still images, animation, video, and it is made to allow users to interact and participate with the ad. Display advertising allows you to target your audience by selecting various options such as demographic, gender, age etc. You can track the performance of your campaign daily to measure metrics such as impressions, clicks and conversions to calculate your return on investment (ROI).

Text Ads (Google Adwords): These are the simplest version of a clickable message and they are composed of three parts: a headline, display URL, and a description. This is Google’s main product and it is a pay per click service. These ads are considered to be very effective, fast and easy as Google is the most popular search engine in the world with over a billion searches every day. More people using Google, means more of your target audience will see your ads. You can set up a daily budget and change it based on the results your campaign obtains. Here is a Guide for Google Adwords: The Google Guide to Search Advertising.