This is a great video from Jake McKee (formally LEGO’s Global Community Relations Specialist) discussing how LEGO found, supported and incubated their biggest fans from around the world to help pull the company out of a pretty dark time to be back on top of the world, lead in part, by a strong social media strategy.
A word of warning, this is a 30 minute video, from a conference late last year (so skip the first 30 secs) and is not exactly their strategy, but more a case study of success, however, it’s well worth the time, and probably something you won’t have time to watch at your desk today so just make sure you remember to watch it later!
Jake McKee makes three really strong, but incredibly simple (how often do we see simplicity works socially?!) points.
1. Look beyond your target customers 2. Support existing fans 3. Find what works and replicate
1. Look beyond your target customers Your target market isn’t always your biggest group of talkers. For years, LEGO was focused on kids — that is, until they realized adults had created their own community of enthusiasts. When LEGO started connecting these talkers, not only did they increase their word of mouth, they immediately helped their bottom line. Whereas kids were spending $20 a year on LEGOs, these adults were spending around $1,000.
2. Support existing fans Without LEGO’s knowledge, adult fans had already created an online LEGO community and marketplace. LEGO approached this group by offering support and resources in the form of an ambassador program. By offering to support what these fans were already doing so well -instead of demanding ownership and control -LEGO was welcomed into the community.
3. Find what works and replicate The enthusiasm of the adult fans helped teach LEGO how to gain more participation from their other fans- including kids. Jake says that when you find something that works with one fan group, try applying it to other groups of talkers. Because the fundamentals of great communities are the same, strategies behind one fan community can often generate similar success for another community. (viaIgor on Viral Blog)