Millennial: it's the buzz word of the decade. Every brand wants to connect with millennials, and the big question mark has been, how? Specific to FedEx, how does a brand in the transportation and logistics industry reach and relate to millennials?
In May of 2017 we decided to meet our intended audience where they already were—on Snapchat. We did this in hopes of building relevance and trust in FedEx as a brand. Snapchat gave us another channel to tell our stories and show users a more personal side of FedEx that they had not yet been exposed to.
The purpose of launching the FedEx Snapchat community was to drive awareness and affinity for the brand by humanizing it in new ways via real-time communications. We wanted a channel where we could host exclusive content designed for a millennial audience that showcased FedEx in an authentic tone.
Our overarching objective for launching the FedEx Snapchat channel was to cultivate love and brand preference, while supporting business objectives by developing educational, inspirational and fun snaps to encourage new followers and engagement.
Before we could sell the idea to launch a Snapchat channel and gain internal buy-in, we needed a channel-specific strategy. Behind-the-scenes was not a content category that we had absolutely tapped into for other channels yet, and Snapchat was the perfect opportunity to do so. As a traditionally risk-averse, conservative company, selling a behind-the-scenes strategy certainly came with its challenges.
We wanted to show users an angle of FedEx they had never seen before, and what better place to produce our first behind-the-scenes content exclusively for Snapchat than the FedEx Hub in Memphis, TN? We sought out different locations that would expose followers to things like the inside of a 777, the main "Matrix," where packages are sorted, our global operations command center, our weather center, the green hub, and beyond.
Overlaying text on each frame of these Snapchat stories with fun facts that users had likely never been exposed to, such as the height of a 777-loading door, the number of planes rotating through The Hub on a daily basis, how many pounds one of our tugs can pull, and more became a large part of our strategy.
Tapping into the unknown really kept users interested. We also made sure to have a clear call-to-action letting followers know to stay tuned for more behind-the-scenes content.
Pre-launch, only one this was missing: followers. Before we posted content, we needed to ensure a large enough follower base to get some eyeballs on our stories. We needed a way to socialize our new presence on the channel. In order to gain followers and spread awareness of our new presence on Snapchat, we cross-promoted our Snapchat stories on the channels where FedEx already had an established presence. We let users know the benefits of following us on Snapchat by sharing previews of the Snapchat stories on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, both organically and with paid. Users knew that by following us, they'd get a behind the scenes look at our Memphis Hub.
By targeting #AviationGeeks and FedEx enthusiasts, we began gaining followers that would truly value the content we had to share on Snapchat. We personalize the Snapchat experience for our followers by following every FedEx Snapchat follower back. We respond to messages and always let users know how we love our fellow team members/customers/photographers, etc., depending on the audience of the original message.
In under four weeks of our Snapchat launch campaign, we had gained ~5,000 followers on Snapchat, and our Snapchat stories were achieving 95% completion rates, on average.
The cross-channel paid campaign supporting the launch served 10 million impressions, reached over 4 million users, and drove an Estimated Ad Recall Lift Rate of 9.78%. This was all with a budget of $31,000.
Through our behind-the-scenes strategy, we have fostered an engaged following that is building affinity, trust, and relevancy for the FedEx brand. Arguably the most important result of the FedEx Snapchat channel is the humanization of the brand among millennials. We have not only been able to reach the audience we wanted to reach, but have created a personal experience for each of our followers.
We have deepened our relationships with this audience by being proactive and starting two-way conversations. We had unforeseen feedback from users asking when the next story would be posted. Followers remained engaged and consistently snapped us back giving us positive feedback about our stories, telling us about fun connections they had to the brand (many were team members themselves), and sending us images of FedEx showing up in their day-to-day lives.
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