Blog

All Things WOMM
Going Where the Customers Want Us - @REI #giftpicks

In person, passion and enthusiasm is judged by voice, tone, excitement, actions, and facial expressions. Online, demonstrating all five can be difficult to say the least. REI decided to change that with their recent @REI #giftpicks campaign.

To put it lightly, REI loves the outdoors and should you walk into any store nationwide, this sentiment would be well represented. This past holiday season, they wanted to bring their deep knowledge and enthusiasm about the outdoors to the online medium. As a result, they created the #giftpicks project.

Over the course of one week, the REI social and video teams answered 90 questions from their avid fans and created individualized YouTube videos for each user. In other words, they went and targeted over 90 videos in one week.

Angela LoSasso, director of customer acquisition and advertising at REI, said her team had many goals for the project, but one insight stood out.

“Social Media Manager Lulu Gephart and her team did a great job of embracing the tools and the platforms that our customers are using,” LoSasso said. “We want to engage where our customers want to engage. This helps us demonstrate our commitment to provide the friendly service and expertise that they expect and love from REI – regardless of whether that’s online or in stores.”

As many community managers will tell you, when customer feedback and inquiries come in, it can be difficult to respond to each one. In other words, it can be hard to generate a human-type response for each issue.

Not only did REI respond to each one, they processed it, tapped their retail team to create a thoughtful response (with humor), put a script together, filmed it, edited it, and published it through multiple outlets to the individual who asked the question. Rinse and repeat that process 90 times in less than a week.

Jason Sutherland, brand creative team manager at REI, said the project not only had a resounding effect on their fans and website traffic, but teams inside the company found the effort rewarding.

“We realized that something like this is possible,” Sutherland said. “All production was done in house. The effect is worth the effort. Do not be paralyzed if you don’t have it all figured out at the start, but use the opportunity to collaborate and be creative. Take some risk and see what happens. Surprise your customers.”

And indeed they did surprise their customers. So much so that referred traffic to www.rei.com from their social channels doubled in the week the project ran.

The team is already working on additional opportunities to integrate this humoristic and energetic side to the online medium. Given the results of @REI #giftpicks, who can blame them?

“We were able to really connect with people who share the same passions we do,” Sutherland said. “We showed off our employees and our excitement. In the process, we focused on putting the customer at the center of the experience, just as we do in our retail stores.”

Read more about the @REI #giftpicks campaign with WOMMA BOD member Ekaterina Walter or watch some of the videos here.

Author:
Jacob Hurwith
Marketing and Social Media Coordinator
WOMMA


This entry was posted on February 4th, 2013
Tags: #giftpicks, Rei, YouTube


Our Contributors

Rod Brooks
Vice President & CMO, PEMCO Mutual Insurance
Dennis O’Malley
CEO, Ready Pulse
Frank Burns
VP of Solutions, FeedMagnet
Ekaterina Walter
Partner & CMO, BRANDERATI
Theresa Trevor
Marketing Director, Amplifinity
Steven Van Belleghem
Author of “The Conversation Company”, B-Conversational
Jordan Slabaugh
Director of Social Media, Spredfast
Geoffrey Colon
Vice President, Digital Strategy, Social@Ogilvy
Kendra Simpson
Vice President, Social Strategy, Social@Ogilvy
Stuart Tracte
Account Director, Digital Strategy, Social@Ogilvy
Brad Fay
Chief Operating Officer, Keller Fay Group
Kristen Zufan
Consultant, ComBlu
Gary De Jesus
Former Senior Vice President of Corporate Development, MKTG INC
Richard Beedon
Founder & CEO, Amplifinity
Andrew Rossi & Lauren Martiello
Creative Team, M Booth
Virginia Miracle
WOMMA Chairman and EVP of Services at Spredfast, Spredfast
Carri Bright
Senior Manager of Community & Support, Izea
Rick Murray
President of Edelman Chicago and WOMMA Board of Director, Edelman Chicago
Suzanne Fanning
President, WOMMA
Courtney Doman
Digital Marketing Manager, Spredfast
Ed Keller
CEO, Keller Fay Group
Anthony DiResta
Partner, Winston & Strawn LLP
Rose Reid
Digital Strategist, Account Executive, Social@Ogilvy
Blake Brysha
Freelance Digital Strategist & Social Advisor, Extole
Irina Kondrashova
Strategist, 360i
Rosanna Rago
Influencer Marketing, 360i
Megan Conley
Social Publicist, 360i
Emily Garvey
Senior Social Publicist, 360i
Danny Palestine
Social Publicist, 360i
Jose Martinez-Salmeron
Senior Vice President, Executive Creative Director, Social@Ogilvy
Martin Oetting
Partner/Head of Research, trnd
Chloe Mathieu-Phillips
Supervisor, 360i
Peter Claridge
Marketing Manager, Unmetric
Stefan Pollack
President, The Pollack PR Marketing Group
Kim Cohen
Community Manager, Hunter & Bard
Leigh Pankonien
Vice President, Social Distillery, Inc.
Ryan Garcia
Legal Director, Dell
Joel Windels
Lead Community Manager, Brandwatch
Jye Smith
Vice President - Digital, Asia Pacific, Weber Shandwick
Marcia W. DiStaso
Assistant Professor, College of Communications at Pennsylvania State University
Asit Gupta
Co-founder, Advocacy WOM
Maggie Walsh
Senior Strategist, 360i
Ben Straley
Vice President of Social Technologies, Rio SEO
Gemma Craven
Executive Vice President, NY Group Director, Social@Ogilvy
Jeff Bodzewski
President & Chief Rhino, Rhinotale
Tom Chernaik
CEO at CMP.LY, Co-Chair of WOMMA’s MEAP
Devra Prywes
VP Marketing & Insight, Unruly Media
Katie Creaser
Vice President, Affect
David Yeend
Senior Brand Strategist, 22squared
Mr. iStratbuzz
Blogger, iStrategy
David Krejci
Executive Vice President, Weber Shandwick
Thomas Kim
Product Manager, Social Technologies, Rio SEO
Judi Friedman
Sr. Vice President, Fizz
Jasper Snyder
Vice President, Converseon
Nando Rodriguez
Senior Social Media Recruiter, NA, Social@Ogilvy
Ashley Libby
Principal & Founder, The Anca Group
Bill Chamberlin
Principal Research Analyst and Consultant, IBM
Jane Collins
Research Director, BlogHer
Neil Beam
Director of Sales, MotiveQuest
David Blake
Freelancer, Money Crashers
Andy Levitt
Founding Partner, HealthTalker
Jennifer Voisard
Senior Consultant, ComBlu Inc.
Matt Heindl
Senior Director of Social Media Marketing , Razorfish
Karen Kuller
Director of Marketing, Hunter and Bard
Martin Daniel
Marketing Executive, Unmetric
Kristy Woolbright
Senior Social Media Associate, 22squared
Nick Cicero
Lead Social Strategist, Livefyre
Desiree Mejia
Intern, Social Distillery
Jeff Morrissey
Brand Specialist - Marketing and Innovation, BISSELL Business Ventures
Jeff Woelker
VP & Director of Digital, Zócalo Group
Kristen Matthews
Marketing & Community Manager, GroupHigh
Ryan Simmons
Creative Technologist, 22squared
David King
Founder & Resident Wikipedian, Ethical Wiki
Jeff Epstein
Founder, Ambassador
Ryan Johnston
Account Coordinator, Social Distillery
Rob Key
Founder & CEO, Converseon
Mauricio Godoy
Account Director, Social@Ogilvy
John Moore
Chief of Wahoo, Brains on Fire
Jeremy Katz
Worldwide Editorial Director, Ogilvy & Mather
Allison Jordan
Intern, Zócalo Group
Ranjani Raghupathi
Marketing Executive, Unmetric
Dan Martell
Founder & CEO, Clarity.fm
Deirdre Walsh
Sr. Social Strategist and Social Team Manager, Jive Software
Rachel Ullstrom
Account Director, Social Technologies, Rio SEO
Kyle Lebet
Associate Digital Media Director, 22squared
Rhena Wallace
Account Supervisor, Affect
Elissa Fontenot
Social Media Coordinator, Social Distillery
Danielle Johnsen Karr
Senior Community Manager, 360i
Mann Russ
Chief Executive Officer and Founder, Covario
Brook Jay
CMO, All Terrain
Ashley Futak
Senior Marketing Manager, Extole
Erich Marx
Director of Interactive & Social Media Marketing, Nissan North America, Inc.
Maureen Higgins
Digital Marketing Manager, BOHAN Advertising
Mary Green
Social Media Fuze
Ashley Walters
Director, Consumer Experience, Powerhouse Factories
Erin Rankin
Social Media Manager, Johnson Group
Iris Vermeren
Community Manager, Brandwatch
Sarah Eck-Thompson
COO, All Terrain
Monica Bhandarkar
VP, Social Media & Business Development, JSH&A
Adam Wexler
Founder and Chief Strategy Officer , Insightpool
Lisaann Dupont
Communications Manager, Ryman Auditorium
Betsy Smith
Senior Digital Strategist, Flightpath
Steven M. Weinberg
Partner, Holmes Weinberg PC
Anna Kassoway
CMO, Crowdtap
Brandon Evans
Founder and CEO, Crowdtap
Deborah Holland
Executive Vice President, Publishers Clearing House
Clay Sifford
Chairman and CEO, Ovation, Inc.
Ben Rosenfield
Founder, Freebie
Chris Duskin
VP of Marketing, Extole
Kelly Karcz
Account Executive, JSH&A
Bob Troia
Founder and CEO, Affinitive, a Project WorldWide agency
Eric Forst
Chief Marketing Officer, Synapsify
Holly Regan
Software Advice
Amanda Nagele
Senior Account Supervisor, JSH&A
David Witt
Leader, Mid-West Region, WCG; Group Director, Brand Strategy and Engagement, WCG, a W2O Company
Lauren Gould
Marketing Manager, Ready Pulse
Kristen Sussman
President and Founder, Social Distillery
Alicia Lawrence
Content Coordinator, WebpageFX
Noemi Pollack
CEO, The Pollack PR Marketing Group
Sam Ford
Director of Audience Engagement, Peppercomm
Vanessa Squires
Program Manager, Fizz
Marcos Martinez
Business Development Executive, GroupHigh
Sandra Fathi
President, Affect
Josh Anisfeld
Vice President of Digital Engagement, Zeno Group
Ginny Broker
Senior Account Supervisor, Zócalo Group
Rick Liebling
Head of Global Marketing, unmetric
Ran Shaul
Pursway
Katie Sotor
Crane USA
Mercer Moore