Walmart taps social media to spice up its annual gathering

Seeking a way to position itself as innovative, Walmart teamed with social media agency Converseon to create a plan to build buzz and awareness of its annual shareholders meeting via the use of social media and mobile communications.

Client: Walmart
PR agency: Converseon <> Campaign: Walmart Annual Shareholder Meeting
Duration: May-June 2011

Seeking a way to position itself as innovative, Walmart teamed with social media agency Converseon to create a plan to build buzz and awareness of its annual shareholders meeting via the use of social media and mobile communications.

Strategy
The team set out to build on the excitement and energy typically generated at Walmart's annual shareholders meeting by encouraging staff to participate in the social media efforts and share content with their friends to keep the buzz going.

Tactics
In addition to creating a microsite to livestream the meeting so shareholders who were not present could witness the event, the company encouraged employees to use meeting-related hash tags on social media channels such as Twitter, Facebook, Foursquare, Flickr, and YouTube for all events during the week surrounding the meeting.

Additionally, during the actual meeting on June 3, Walmart broadcast a stream of meeting-related tweets and texts to a "zipper" that ran around the room.

Results
Efforts resulted in 6,000-plus tweets, 49,000 views of Flickr photos, 17,000 YouTube video views, and 200,000-plus views of the livestreamed webcast.

Walmart was impressed by the analytics associated with this year's meeting, particularly that it became "something people went home and shared with their families and friends," says Amy Lamparske, director of digital communications at Walmart.

Future
Due to the 2011 meeting's success, Lamparske says Walmart will continue its social media efforts for the 2012 gathering, likely in an even bigger way.

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