Article

Jennifer Trenery
Jennifer Trenery 19 November 2014

Making the Most of Social Coverage - Harvester & The X Factor

What we can learn from the X-Factor about social coverage.

 

Social media can be fun. It can be annoying. It can be a great source of news. And it can also be an extremely valuable business asset – but only when handled well.

Brands should take the quality of their social-media management very seriously, making sure it’s as relevant, agile and responsive as it can possibly be.


A recent example of this approach bore fruit for casual dining operator Harvester, following a favourable mention from famed music producer Simon Cowell on ITV programme The X Factor.

Thanks to an agile social monitoring set up, the brand maximised tweets, video views and media coverage, driving more traffic to Harvester’s website and motivating a surge in voucher use at the brand’s nationwide restaurants.

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So, what’s the full digital story?

Saturday 25 October

  • On a live broadcast of The X Factor, contestant Stevi Ritchie offered to give Simon Cowell a tour of his home town of Colchester. Cowell responded: “Can we go to a Harvester? I’d like that.”
  • Harvester began trending on Twitter in the UK at around 10pm.

The same night…

  • On Harvester’s behalf, our social team directed tweets to Simon Cowell, Stevi Ritchie and Louis Tomlinson (of X Factor boyband One Direction) – and uploaded a video of Simon’s comment.
  • Twitter coverage intensified and the video quickly received over 27,000 views (and 600 likes).

Monday 27 October

  • Simon Cowell met Stevi Ritchie for dinner at the Royal Harvester in London.
  • On Monday and Tuesday, national media and social coverage included mentions by the following (with audience numbers):

°         We Are Free Radio (55.7k)

°         Yahoo Celebrity UK (84.8k)

°         Metro Entertainment (20.1k)

°         Digital Spy (143k)

°         Daily Star (97.1k)

°         Radio Times (48.8k)

°         ITV2 (575k)

°         Simon Cowell (10.7m) – 1.7k retweets and 5.9k ‘favourites’

°         David Walliams (1.4m)

Social media management – The X Factor and Harvester

In the following week…

  • After learning that Cowell and Ritchie’s Harvester visit would be broadcast on Saturday 1 November, CE formulated special social monitoring and posting strategies to deal with the inevitably busy traffic.
  • We also made sure that a Harvester £5-off voucher offer, already due to launch, would be available to an increased number of diners. This included the temporary relocation of the Harvester website to a cloud system, to cope with increased website traffic as people claimed their vouchers.


Saturday 1 November

  • Cowell and Ritchie’s Harvester visit was broadcast as part of The X Factor, as scheduled.
  • During broadcast, CE sent an email to Harvester email database recipients who fit The X Factor audience demographic, promoting the £5-off voucher offer. The rest of the database had received the email earlier in the day.
  • We rolled out our schedule of tweets and Facebook posts and responded to a large volume of comments, as well as maximising any additional opportunities which arose.

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INITIAL RESULTS

As well as the huge amount of activity on Twitter and Facebook, we were delighted to see a massive response to the £5-off voucher offer:

  • 56,405 vouchers were issued, as a result of email responses
  • 3,956 vouchers have so far been redeemed at Harvester restaurants

 

So, there you have it. Be prepared, be vigilant and make sure your social strategy is always ready for the next big thing.

Original article posted here

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