Social media part of Best Buy CRM strategy, but traditional tactics remain

Electronics retailer Best Buy is using an arsenal of social media tools to interact with consumers, but it is not turning away from newspaper inserts and other traditional marketing tactics, Barry Judge, the big box retailer’s EVP and CMO, said June 8.

Judge told attendees of Merkle’s CRM Executive Summit in Miami that one of his company’s most effective social media tools is its “Twelpforce,” a group of Twitter-using employees who respond to customer questions and complaints. The company uses the program to interact with consumers and spread goodwill, he said, declining to specify a financial return on investment.

“We say that we should make it as easy as possible for people to complain,” he said.

Best Buy is also using Facebook interaction, online forums, crowd sourcing, location-based social networks and mobile technologies to interact with consumers online, said Judge.

“To me, this is a great example of blurring the lines between marketing and service,” he said.

Judge added that Best Buy continues to use periodical inserts as a major part of its marketing strategy, even as it allocates more attention to social media. The company has added codes to its inserts, which consumers can text to get more information about products and special offers. It is also using barcodes that give consumers additional content via mobile phone.

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