Intuit Small Business Blog, by Brenda Barron on February 14, 2014
Perhaps you’ve read the story of how Australia’s national science agency turned a 7-year-old’s earnest request to “make a dragon for me” into a global public relations coup? In a nutshell, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization’s response last month to a letter from a girl named Sophie — a potential future scientist — cleverly apologized for its insufficient R&D in the field.
Its lighthearted yet realistic approach demonstrates how any organization, including a U.S. small business, can use public interest to expand its audience, increase customer engagement, and build brand loyalty.
Expanding Your Audience
The Australian researchers at CSIRO could have easily ignored Sophie’s letter. They could have dismissed her request as childish, but instead they took it (and her) seriously. They seized the opportunity to educate the public about what the CSIRO does and doesn’t do. And, by responding publicly, the national organization garnered international attention: Stories about the little girl and her desire for a dragon appeared in TIME, The Independent, The Huffington Post, Yahoo Shine, and elsewhere.
Similarly, you can use customer inquiries and feedback to increase your brand’s visibility.
With social media taking such a prominent position in the online marketing world, real human interaction really resonates with people.
Think of all the times a customer has commented and received a personal note via social media from a company that went beyond corporate rhetoric. Providing a funny or thoughtful reply can gain a lot more traction than a standard canned response. <READ MORE>