The International Language of Brand Love — with Claire Angus at Molson Coors
For organisations operating over multiple regions, to be seen as “truly local” is a complex challenge. Managing brands’ social media strategies across International regions can mean understanding and sourcing localised trends, customised content and managing real-time engagement with consumers.
However, while this can be viewed as a challenge for an organisation, it is also an opportunity to get closer to their audience. “The International Language of (Brand) Love” was discussed in-depth at our recent Smart Social London event. We caught up with Claire Angus, Digital & Social Media Manager at Molson Coors, to discover how the global beverage corporation is tapping into consumer insights to establish meaningful connections and conversations with their audiences.
Retaining local content within a global company
With a history stretching back to 1774, Molson Coors is the parent company of both global & local brands such as Coors Light, Staropramen & Carling, as well as the more recently acquired single-site Suffolk operation, Aspall Cyder. With a presence in communities all over the world, it’s important for the organisation to capture “the local flavour and spirit of each region—and share that with our drinkers."
With premium & craft drinks, for example, their histories and provenance are of particular interest to consumers, so its important the brands remain close to their roots, and “this goes for social too”, says Claire, “whether it be photo shoots for content at the brewery or live tweeting from a local event."
Identifying the moments that matter to consumers
Keeping abreast of the relevant trends and news in your industry is, of course, important, but often consumers perceive brands as “piggybacking” stories for the sake of it, and therefore losing authenticity in their message.
“Don’t risk jumping on the bandwagon if it’s not related to your brand. If you jump on a topic that doesn’t resonate with your audience and reflect your brand values, then it’s meaningless,” Claire advises. “Carling is about bringing communities closer together, and one way we do that is with football, which we know is our audience’s passion point. This means our team feel comfortable engaging in conversations with fans about the football games or news. We’ll only align with a topic if there’s a real connection to the brand and the moments matter to our audience.”
These moments—those found in sports being a prime example—are an excellent way to foster conversation on social channels with your audience in a way that resonates with them whilst delivering a brand message.
Fostering brand love through conversation
In such a competitive market, it is more important than ever to provide audiences with the best possible brand experiences.
“Our audiences expect to feel heard and understood," Claire explains. “With this in mind, it’s so important for Molson Coors to foster brand love—to create advocates of those who are already engaging with us. People tend to listen to their friend’s opinions and drink what they drink, so establishing meaningful, trusting connections with our advocates is essential to spread positive word of mouth about the brands.”
Addressing emotional needs to drive brand loyalty
Developing brand love also means fostering a deeper connection with your audience.
“Consumer insights allow us to really understand what our audiences want at a specific time. Our portfolio of brands meet different needs, whether that be a functional need like taste profile, or something emotional. It’s with these insights, that we can truly understand our consumers and create both experiences and content to connect with them.”
“It is only when someone feels connected to your brand that you will drive resonance and loyalty with them."
Establishing an ongoing dialogue with your audience, understanding the moments that matter to them, and delivering this on a local level, will go a long way to achieving brand love with your audience.
Graham Forsyth, Spredfast’s Director of Marketing for Europe, recognises this opportunity for brands to go beyond the expected customer experience. “Brand love is an idea, for many organisations, that is difficult to embrace. The assumption is often that brands can’t create this level of engagement with their audience if the business is more service led, or transactional. However, for all brands, taking a look at your strategy and devising ways to surprise and delight your audience on a consistent basis, especially at a local and regional level, will go a long way to creating an emotional connection with your audience that eclipses typical customer expectations. Maybe even creating a sense of brand love!”