If you read @gregjass’s last post you know that sometimes we have a love-hate relationship with Google. Today I want to talk about the love part, but not just for Google. There are two things on the Internet this week that I love: Giraffe Bread and Pinterest. I’ll go ahead and assume that you do not live under a rock and that you are aware of Pinterest, so let’s start with Giraffe Bread.
Formerly Known as Tiger Bread
Sainsbury is a London-based retailer that sells diverse products including everything from groceries to appliances to financial services. They received a letter from 3 ½ year-old Lily Robinson last summer asking why “Tiger Bread” is called “Tiger Bread” when it clearly looks like a giraffe. She received a response from 27 1/3 year-old Customer Manager Chris King explaining that the first baker to make the famous “Tiger Bread” christened it as such and the name stuck. King agreed that the bread looked more giraffe-ish, thanked Lilly for her letter and send a gift card so she could by some Tiger/Giraffe Bread.
Since the story made its way online, the picture showing both letters has more than 155,000 “Likes” on Facebook and has circulated through image sharing sites like Imgur and Reddit. Google searches for “Tiger Bread” have skyrocketed and Sainsbury recently announced that would, in fact, rename the product “Giraffe Bread” and have given Lily all the credit. Although much of this took place offline, we’re still counting it as a reason I love the Internet because of the way it’s circulating the Internet now, okay?
The story is cute and makes everyone go “awww.” But then you stop and think about what has just happened. This is a brilliant display of the two-way communication we should see every day online. Granted, we see much more response to user feedback via social networking sites than traditional media, but not as much as we could. This demonstrates the incredible moves companies can make when they listen to their consumers. In this instance, Sainsbury quietly responded to Lily’s letter and gave her a few pounds to spend. Months later, Sainsbury has receive outrageous amounts of free, positive press and earned a reputation for killer customer service. Kids say the darndest things.
Still assuming you don’t live under a rock, I’ll spare you the same old explanation of Pinterest’s image sharing platform that is turning out to be the little social network that could. I do want to talk about its incredible potential in online marketing, however. Blog posts and articles are popping up everything that explain how each pin has the potential for three links and how exposure grows exponentially each time someone else pins something to a board.
This is cool stuff, because it’s a great way to build links socially and naturally. Brands can pin their own ideas for using their products and see how consumers add to those ideas. More importantly, users can add their thoughts without becoming too involved and without too much effort. When Pinterest users explore pins they can quickly and easily take that idea, add their own comment and create additional exposure for the brand. It’s viral by its very nature. It’s also ideal for referral traffic; people see a Pin they like, click through to the source and VOILA, you have more visitors. Visitors who made their way to your site naturally by browsing though their interests. Good stuff, people. The reason I love it this week is because we’re exploring how to maximize Pinterest for our clients and I’m excited to start seeing some results. And because I love a good infographic, I’ll leave you with this one.