The power of the social graph

The power of the social graph…Lidl got a reality check this week with their “#luxevooriedereen” tweet action.  When you use social media, you are using the social graph which you cannot control, only understand!

I’m sharing my digital marketing class presentation from thursday 13/12/2012 in which I talked about the social graph and it’s power. As Nokia experienced the social graph can be very powerful, within 24h the social graph claimed the Nokia Pure View Hoax pressing Nokia to publically apologize and add a disclaimer to their Pure View commercials.  This shows how today’s interactions are based on an equal dialogue instead of the classical monologue giving everybody the power to produce news and share this within their network. In each network you will find (1-to-1-to many)n relations which gives each message/social object shared the potential power to reach 1000’s of people within seconds/hours!

Off course fact whether a message/social object becomes viral depends on the share value which is always in the hands of influencers….connecting with those influencers will get your message across, like Lidl has experienced in 24h time.


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Posted in Flat Business
39 comments on “The power of the social graph
  1. adilkdg says:

    Last thursday was a great digital culture course!
    I was really in shock when you showed us about Nokia’s commercial, the way they wanted to trick people with that camera, but they eventually failed! it was funny when people found out and the way they responded to it and got busted a second time!. im glad i have not bought the Lumia,
    (there was actually a moment that i wanted to buy it)

  2. In the Nokia Pureview example it’s amazing how big companies still think they can “lie” to the customer’s whilst using the oldschool marketing model. I hope this has been a lesson for Nokia to start using a dialogue and start to communicate with their customers to find out what they actually want and to collaborate with them.

    And yes it’s still scary to think about privacy especially on Facebook for example and how our Data might be (ab)used by big companies. But i believe the less you think about all that the happier you live your life 🙂

  3. Mª Teresa Poyo says:

    Understanging the social graph has to do not only with the companies but also with ourselves. If we make distinctions about what we want to share of our lifes and with whom, why dont do the same with our online life (facebook, twitter and so on)? It is really neccesary to understand our social graph -who are our strong, weak and temporary ties- the content we want to share with each of them. Although the important thing is always keep our strong ties, having temporary ties can also be very useful. Last week, I need some help with one assignment, I posted a comment on facebook and a friend of one of my friends saw it and actually provided me with very useful sources of information!

    So the thing is, we really need to understand our social graph and “make it profitable” (networking, better privacy…)

  4. Magalie Descamps says:

    I knew that the “Lidl case” would be a good topic for us. I think it is a good lesson for Lidl and other companies to see the impact of social media. They now know what to do differently in the future. A limit or instead of 5 packages per tweet, only one package would be a good idea.

    Everything start with a good product, that seems to be a problem for Nokia. It’s never a good idea to lie. Just make the most of what you got, don’t take something totally different and pretend nothing’s wrong.

  5. Stefaan Tiepermann says:

    Power to the people! Nokia gets busted two times after. That’s quite painful. And they were slacking in the recent past. Struggling actually to get their own smartphone one the market and compete the big boys – Apple and Samsung. I’m pretty sure this affects/will affect the company’s reputation and the Lumia sales.

  6. Didier Van Hove says:

    What Nokia did wasn’t that big of a surprise to be fair, every company tries to make it products look better than they really are. I know from a few years ago, when Photoshop CS5 came out, the new functions of content awareness looked amazing and where a great option for fast editing. But when I tried the use it, the results always where very poor and when you saw the preview video, it supposed to look like it never was there. But it’s not because it doesn’t end up with your expectations of it, that it’s something bad. You can still do pretty amazing things with it, but when used manually only and not with the automated functions. The best example in this case is when you look at the McDonalds, Quick’s, …, burger pictures, and then look at that ‘thing’ you find in the box, you really ask yourself the question: ‘What the f*ck is this shit?’. And in the end, you just eat it and enjoy it, even when it doesn’t look like on the commercial.

  7. Kevin Velghe says:

    The Nokia case is awkward because there are so many ways they could’ve promoted their camera by using conversation. It’s not that big of a surprise that they tried to hype it up, but you’d expect a company like Nokia to know that the truth always comes out. I don’t think this should affect their product though, I doubt they’d pull off this commercial if their phone’s camera wasn’t half as good.

  8. Patricia Padrón says:

    New Nokia Lumia 800:
    First of all, the design is very nice and shows a enviable strength. It is tough and sturdy so it gives a sense of reliability.
    Admittedly, the Windows Phone operating system is relatively young and has some flaws (ex: You cannot turn off the phone while it’s charging or the alarm does not sound if the off), but who says it’s bad is because they do not tested.
    I also think that Microsoft and Nokia should work together to enhance applications because it has less that the competition.
    But the striking improvement of the old devices shows the interest of the companies to remain competitive. It’s a great start for the “new era” of Nokia.

  9. yaboydennis says:

    Nokia isn’t the first company to do something like this but definetly the first one to be busted twice in a row with it.
    Offcourse this is unacceptable and they will feel this in their sale numbers but the pureview is still an amazing camera. I’ve seen it in live action and it was a lot better then some smartphones with their 8mp camera’s. It only makes it that much sadder when you know they could have done it the honest way.
    I hope they’ve learned their lesson and will look in other marketing methods.

  10. Yolanda Van Mechelen says:

    It’s a perfect example that shows us how even big companies like Lidl still don’t know how social media works. They wanted to restrict the action only to celebrities but that’s not how social media works and it shows us how little thought they gave it. Before you can use a medium to advertise, you have to know how it works and how you can use it in your advantage.

    Social media connects everyone with everyone, it’s not only available to celebrities. I guess Lidl underestimated the power of social media and the power of world of mouth, we’re all connected. You can’t restrict an action to only one group of people. Let it be a lesson for other companies!

  11. Mats Blankers says:

    Companies have to think better when they launch something on social media. They do have to study some things first. I think a lot of companies want to go with the flow and start campaigns on social media but they don’t have appropriately trained staff. Like Lidl, they underestimated the impact of Twitter. You should invest in survey and use of social media, but you should be aware that it should render.

  12. Hubinon Alicia says:

    Personally after all the courses that we got during our two weeks I thought that social networks were quite scary but I am happy to see that this side of the social network is finally beneficial to consumers. How many times brands have not played their reputation for making nasty shots to consumers?
    Today, all this becomes increasingly difficult as explained with your Nokia example. If a brand makes a mistake it is not going to annoy/touch only one person but maybe milions of them (1 to 1 to many)^n .
    During my researches to understand better the weak and strong ties I have learned that apparently it is much more helpful to have weak ties than strong ones. They were saying that the more weak ties you have the more connected to the world we are and are more likely to receive important information. Poor brands, they will have to pay even more attention than in the past or just be fair..!

  13. Jassin Uddin says:

    Seeing this Nokia commercial with the camera failure was not a big shock for me, although I found it quite hilarious to see how amateuristic Nokia filmed the spot. It is a public secret that companies often make their products look better in advertising, but it is up to us to separate real from fake. I do understand the fact that there are also vulnerable people for these kind of advertising tricks, but in the last years there are lots of companies who do refunds on products that are not quite like the products they really wanted. The best thing you can do before buying such expensive devices, is to read reviews from independent authors and they will tell you everything you need to know. That’s something you can’t achieve by watching simple advertising spots.

  14. Shahin Koobasi says:

    What Nokia did is what almost all companies do. Making their product look better than it is. Unfortunately they use all kind of techniques like photoshop,.. But this really feels like cheating to us consumers, they want us to believe this is the phones quality which in fact is not.

  15. This was one of my favorite lessons, I like the way the slides are up to date and that we got to discuss the lidl case.
    My personal opinion about this is that the people of Lidl who started the campaign should have thoughed about it more, 20 euros per tweet is A LOT ! If you can help people by a single click, almost everybody would do this. On the other hand, it could be that Lidl played it smart, there action made it to the news and the radio, everybody heared of it! Something that may not have happend if they launched another campaign.
    The other part about understanding your social graph is very important too, as I learned through making my own social graph. If you understand it, you can really benefit from it. Getting the information you want through your ties.

  16. Matti Verhaegen says:

    The example of the Nokia Lumia PureView commercial is very painful for the reputation and the name for Nokia. Off course, it isn’t the first advertisement that we see, where the company wants to give us the wrong idea or wants to cheat on the customers. It is very painful that they were busted once, but it gets awkward when they got busted for the second time in a short period. That proves that Nokia does not listen to what the costumers have to say about the new product and the whole situation. The news and online messages about the Nokia failure can spread very fast and can go global because Nokia is a very famous company.

    The Lidl-case is another very good example of the impact of social graph. The campaign was, I think, a very good idea of Lidl, but it ended badly. The idea of doing something for the charity always touches the people. Okay, they didn’t estimate the power of the social graph very good but … These two or three days the campaign was going on, the company Lidl was on the news program, in the newspaper and active on all the social platforms. They helped the people and got more brand awareness. So I think they accomplished their objective.

  17. Max Heylen-Buelens says:

    This is not the first and definitelly not the last example of a company underhestimating the power and the impact of social media. I think that companies can only survive if they manage to use it right. Lidl got lucky that this was just a charity action, so they also gained a lot of sympathy. This case is the evidence that Twitter and Facebook, can make your brand, or break your brand.

  18. Carla Moya says:

    I think it is very important to understand our social graph, we have to notice that what we publish on social networks is not 1 to 1 anymore. So we have to think about what we publish and who can read it.
    My father says, “be aware of the things you put on Facebook, because you will find them back when you are 40 and maybe then you don’t like them”.
    It’s not about not using Facebook anymore (which I can’t imagine) but we have to be able to control as much as we can.

  19. Geoff Hendrickx says:

    I think that Nokia and Lidl are the perfect example of big companies who don’t know how to work with Social Media. Lidl is for me the perfect example of a company who wants to follow the rest of the companies but they really don’t know how to use it. Especially Nokia has to start to communicating with the customers to find out what the costumers want.

  20. Gabriela Dos Santos says:

    This was by far one of my favorite lessons, maybe because Social Graph interests me so much.

    What happened to Lidl was an example that sometimes companies are clueless about the power of social media. On my opinion this was a great example of “how not to do”. The campaign started with charity, great for their imago, but ended up terrible.

    The incident with Nokia is more usual than we think, almost all companies does that. I’m pretty sure that if you go search on Google you’ll find quickly things like that.

  21. I think these days it has become normal that companies lie in their campaigns. They want to make it look better than it is. This will certainly not be the first time it happend!!

  22. Jasmien Hendrickx says:

    In my opinion, this was the best lesson. Because it was shocking and that’s why I remembered it. And that’s what will people do too. It takes 5 seconds to ruin a reputation of a company. Two snapshots taken with a SmartPhone and the whole world will know your mistakes and it will escalate quickly. This is the problem of most companies: they underestimate the power of social media.

  23. Ernest Nwanu says:

    A very interesting topic for our course in particular. The power of social media was heavily underestimated by Lidl. I think it was strange they made such an offer in the first place. Even to somebody that doesn’t use Twitter, it just doesn’t sound realistic.

  24. Manon says:

    I was shocked to see the lying that nokia has done to promote his new smartphone. I do not think we could do even today a misleading advertising like this one. Despite the apologizes that the brand has been able to do I think they have fallen in the esteem of consumers, and in mine in the same time.

  25. Everyone of them lies, ones are better, other are good but just not that good enough and the rest simply sucks…

  26. Andreea Bucur says:

    I was amazed when I saw the announcement of Nokia. How so a large company can have an oversight so unforgivable? One thing is to deceive us and us not realize it, but we were fooled and they made a mistake, and then they wanted to fix it putting an excuse …This makes them less credible and customers will not take them seriously as a company and brand.
    As for the social graph, I find it very interesting. I never thought how would my social graph look like. My strong ties, weak and temporary. I think that each tie has its importance and gives us something useful at some point. For example, while I am studying like an exchange student in this country I saw as my temporary ties began to be weak. And several times even as a temporary tie we have helped between us by comments on Facebook about schoolwork.

  27. Vince Campforts says:

    Lidl did a nice gesture with the food packets, it is to bad that they didn’t do enough research on the topic. Since it’s one of their first twitter campaings it’s understandable that they didn’t know the know-how. I’m sure they won’t make the same mistake twice!

  28. It is Bossche says:

    It’s just so funny to see that such a big company like Nokia is making such mistakes.
    In the world where we live in nowedays, where everyone has a portable camera, you just can’t afford those errors.

  29. Christophe Van Opstal says:

    Very interesting, people don’t want to be shouted at each other anymore, The traditional marketing view of sender -> message -> receiver is history. And I’m glad with it. We are on the way of becoming a more honest civilization with the ban on traditional marketing.

  30. Sari says:

    How Nokia try to fool people by advertising the new OIS feature it’s just ridicilous. It is strange how can they do that kind of mistakes. And even twice. They should know better that nowadays you can’t hide anymore… In the past they were the pioneers on their field, but not anymore: Apple and Samsung has catch it and even pass it.

  31. Andreas Bodenmüller says:

    One rule that still seems to stay active is: “bad news are good news”. As mentioned in the post “you cannot control, only understand!”. Therefore, you require something of interest, something amazing, something emotional in order to ensure that your message is spread. Bad news seem to work very well, which is a high risk for companies like the example of Nokia shows. The thing they need to learn is to use the big attention they get from the bad rumors and turn them into something good. This could also be a strategy to do on purpose. The risk is loosing control of such a campaign.

  32. Nadina Ruedl says:

    I think nokia is a gread example for “the power of graph”. In the past, the company was very successful with their mobile phones. Nowadays, five years ago, the company has a bad image. The question is why? The pressure of the competition, the quality/functionality/… of the products, the dynamic of the market- nobody knows! But one key failure was the fact, that they missed to be honest!

  33. Sabrina R says:

    I really like the concept of the social graph and the share value of messages. Your lecture in January at FHV also included the Nokia example and the LIDL one. With them, the idea really came across!

    As you mention above – and Andreas is mentionng it as well – one can only understand this phenomenon but not control it. In my opinion, honesty and fast reactions are key for companies nowadays.

  34. Eva Zuggal says:

    I do also like the concept of social graphs, especially the rule of “1-to-1-to-many”…

    Every company should think of the “1-to-1-to many” effect before launching a social media campaign!! You never know what will happen you can just guess which campaign will reach more people which one does not…. but at the end one person can multiply your post in thousands of posts…

    In this case I think it is highly important, what you also said in class -> When social media campaigns are started they need to be finished the way they promissed to finish it – e.g. not stopping the campaign with a reason like “we are sorry because of high response we reached the target earlier as we thought”…. In this case I would only respond – “Did you really get the concept on social media? Maybe you should better shut down your social media acitivities in total?”

    -> Thus I would say – Be aware of the effect or leave it!

  35. Thomas Fedrigotti says:

    It’S definitively right the statement: you can’t control the social graph, only understand. But I will expand the statement: you can’t control it, only understand it, but influence it. Influencing by right actions/reactions and open, transparent communication and dialog.

  36. Daniela Proksch says:

    Besides only the 1-1-many-effect which shouldn’t be ignored also the intelligence of “the mass” should’t be underestimated! Companies like Lidl which use CSR or charity topics as a marketing tool and think no one would notice or Nokia which completely fooled the customer pretty nicely visualized how this can turn against you….or who doesn’t think “pretty stupid, Nokia/Lidl”, when seeing those videos?…even if 99% of your customers were dumb – the chance that there is at least 1 guy out of XXX million who is smarter as the clever marketing manager of these companies is pretty big – and as we know (1-1-many –> one guy would be enough)…key learning? –> be honest and authentic….or as Tom would say “do what you say and say what you do” 😉

  37. Alexander Ehret says:

    The Image is one of the most important factors, which is influencing the success of any company. This can also be transferred to the private field. Once the image has taken damage, it can be, especially in times of strong and unoverviewable connections, hard to rebuild it again.
    Never forget the connectivity, which is first of all provided by the internet and amplified by electrical devices like smartphones. News spread via social networks very fast.

  38. Nicolai Lindel says:

    One always needs to be aware about the fact that information, which is spread via social media might end up beeing uncontrollable. This can be a great chance to reach as many people as possible. But exactly this can also turn out to be a negative side effect. As social graphs are connected,information can jump from one graph to another within a very short time. In my opinion it is very important to be aware about the consequences of spreading information via social media.
    Nowadays social graphs seem to be the new backbone of modern information society.

  39. Maria Halasi says:

    It really was an intersting presentation how important social graph can be. I am not an active facebook user so I didn’t really experience this before myself. When I posted very rarely commercial messages I didn’t get much response, likes. However as you wrote if the influencers, what I am not clearly, post this kind of “scandals” how much attention they can achieve, really impressive. But this actually for me personally means that what I am doing is good, to not share too personal things on facebook, and not allowe my friends to do it either. It would be dreadful if not a product, but myself would be attacked this way. Of course in business we can’t really afford it to act this way, to stay away… (mostly, depends always of course)

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