Study shows brands improving on social engagement

CHICAGO: A new report from ComBlu shows brands have improved over the past year in the area of social engagement.

CHICAGO: A new report from ComBlu shows brands have improved over the past year in the area of social engagement.

The report found 33% of brands studied have a cohesive social engagement strategy up from last year's report of 20%.

“Last year there were very few brands that exhibited evidence of cohesive social engagement. There were a lot of experimental modes of engagement. Now we're seeing a more centered approach to engage over time,” said Kathy Baughman, a principal at ComBlu.

The study used trained reviewers to join and rate 241 online communities from 78 corporations to come up with the findings for the report.

This year, Baughman said ComBlu also saw a tighter integration between all modes of social engagement, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and a brand's sponsored community site.

“If you're not streaming your Facebook and Twitter pages on your website or community site you're missing the boat,” she added.

Brands are still lacking in having a human face to represent it in social engagement efforts, Baughman said, only 50% of corporations studied do so. Another area brands are struggling with is having an integrated rewards and recognition strategy, but Baughman said she sees this as the next area of improvement.

The top 10 performing brands found in the study were: American Express, EA, Discovery Channel, Hewlett-Packard, Sears, Verizon, Activision, Kimberly-Clark, AT&T, and Sony.

Baughman said Verizon and Hewlett-Packard jumped up the list to the top after being among the lowest scored last year.

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