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Two Faces of Social Media: Brand Communication and Brand Research

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Ralf Beuker, Professor, Design Management, University of Applied Sciences, Münster, Germany; Erik Roscam Abbing, Founder, Zilver, Rotterdam, The Netherlands


The social web is not just a place where you can communicate about your brand; it's actually also a good place to facilitate brand research. Erik Roscam Abbing is the founder of Zilver, a Rotterdam-based design management consultancy. His German colleague, Ralf Beuker, is a consultant for design and strategic management (and formerly a research fellow at DMI). Abbing and Beuker here offer some insights into building a digital brand strategy and explain how they did it for Mexx, an international fashion brand. One of their key recommendations is to keep in mind a framework they call POST (people, objectives, strategy, technology), which helps prioritize the process. Note that putting the P first suggests that the highest priority is the target audience and ""determining what kind of relationship you want to build with them, based on what they want and need in the context of social media."" The authors end with a speculation on the future of social networks, and how companies might prepare for it.




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Social Media, Branding, Case Studies in Design, Brand Design

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