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  • http://www.evolutionfiles.com Bear Files

    Another fantastic post, Jeff. Thanks for all these automotive industry social media case studies. Small businesses may not be able to dedicate 8 people to the effort, but this is a great reminder on how even smaller brands should be monitoring the conversations in their industry, and reaching out to their brand evangelists to kick start their social media channels. I study several website’s analytic data regularly and a boost in referral traffic is a super positive trend. Google traffic is hit and miss as far as qualified leads, so it’s nice to see that companies are succeeding in using social media to improve their website traffic and overall marketing goals. Ford in my opinion has more momentum in this arena, but it’ll be interesting to see if Toyota can use social media to reclaim their association with “quality”.

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  • http://www.automarketingblog.com Christopher Baccus

    It’s unfortunate you didn’t take a look at how the U.S. and U.K. Toyota PR teams have responded to the recall. The differences are drastic with the U.K. having a clear lead in my opinion of what to do especially in how they have used their YouTube channel early and often to help communicate the response. Also look at the two landing pages for Toyota and tell me which one is more effective (I think the choice is clear.)



    I particularly like the UK’s version with the Facts and Figures content.

    Where you lose me a bit with this article is bringing in the old 2008 iQ hypermiling event that was featured in a Forrester article last year. That’s a very different kind of social media outreach and while there is some good data there, it really is disconnected from the social media marketing efforts Toyota has been doing on Digg, Facebook, etc. to handle the recall situation.

  • http://bookingalong.blogspot.com/ jcrn

    It is possible that Toyota can reclaim prestige again. I have an older Toyota, never been on a recall list, drives without any problems, etc. I can recall the tons of calls we got when we sold one son’s Toyota before he left for college. Even used, we got a great price for it.

    Point being: people were loyal to Toyota. They can be loyal again. Social media could be a part of that.

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  • http://softcity.com SoftCity Richard

    An excellent break down of how to handle a huge PR bungle. The bottom line is Toyota figured out a way to consolidate all of its responses into one area and respond accordingly. The new SM model seems to be all about consolidation. Being a Social Media professional myself (I dislike the term “expert,” feels disingenuous) it is really tough to respond when messages are spread all over the net. An excellent case study indeed!

  • http://putnamcic.com/ Kris Putnam-Walkerly

    Hi Jeff,

    Thanks so much for taking the time to put this information together – very interesting!

    Kris Putnam-Walkerly
    Putnam Community Investment Consulting

  • Sharon Barry

    Thank you for such a thorough commentary. Another blog referred to Toyota’s “death by a thousand cuts”. Has Toyota done enough to recover it’s reputation? Time will tell.

  • http://www.marketersstudio.com David Berkowitz

    Great case study. One question: can you define “potential audience”? My comment is reaching a potential audience of 6.8 billion people.

    • http://greenleafim.com Andreas Kramers

      Yeah I’d like to see a little math on that too. Maybe it’s the combined traffic of these blogs, feeds and twitter following over the past months.
      Potential is a rather broad term, but don’t you think a potential of 6.8billion readers is a rather
      cocky statement? ;) Don’t forget all the babies and illiterate people out there….

  • http://www.augure.com pascaljappy

    Hi Jeff, thanks for the excellent analysis.

    One question, though: do you think Toyota is interested in addressing it’s reliability crisis through social media?

    As the AdAge article says, “Bad news doesn’t kill a good brand”. So do you think Toyota is cunningly focusing on raising awareness on new products and new topics of interest rather than trying to address the crisis online at the risk of prolonging it in people’s minds ?

    Thanks again,

    • http://www.eltalearning.com Jignesh

      I don’t think they are taking brand reliability crisis lightly..As far as competitive market is concern, each brand have to keep them strong and need constant improvement.

      You must be aware of “united breaks guitars” story !!! Brand loyalty is very important for any business.

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  • Scatteredmom

    “Toyota will also continue to benefit from the long term impact of the activity because links from influential blogs will remain and continue to deliver tail traffic to support natural search rankings.”

    Right. Then they release a commercial that says they don’t make cars for bloggers.

    I love my Toyota, but if a company is going to insinuate that I have no credibility because I choose to self publish online, I’m not going to use that space to promote them. In fact, I’ll call up their competitor and see what they have to offer.

  • Anonymous

    Toyota had a great market too. There are many reviewers and analyst who keep on studying Toyota’s production system.  It has a great quality of products. And I think Toyota use social media marketing in a proper way and continuously learning the tool for marketing advancement. This is a great topic to discuss. Thanks.


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  • Linda Graanoogst

    Prachtig voorbeeld hoe negatieve publiciteit om te bouwen is naar positieve.

  • http://twitter.com/Davgit David Gitonga

    Social media has indeed taken over online marketing. We are seeing a real revolution in,not just SEO or Social Media,but a combination of both, Social SEO which a lot of companies and brands are using to stay ahead of the curve. Thanks for the detailed article:

  • http://twitter.com/jazijasim Jasim Acurax

    Jeff you are always writing great post.. real value for the time we spend to read it..

  • Rashmi Jha

    Thanks for sharing the details of this interesting SMM campaign Jeff. Customer centric experiential marketing is the focus for brands across all segments. We are noticing a paradigm shift in terms of level of engagement and virality for a campaign, be it in the Auto, Hotel or Aviation industries. Keep up the great work!

  • http://twitter.com/himachhag hima chhag

    Hey jeff,

    Again the great article.

    A perfectly planned and a well executed campaign.
    Obviously, If the main plus point of social media campaign is their long term benefit. And Toyoto has taken care of all aspects.

    Great campaign.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • Steffy

    Hi Jeff, Great post again thanks:)
    Don’t you think  this ca-road-trip-social-media campaigns are getting a bit overused? It was firstly Ford that organized a trip with influential bloggers, GM does it as well with some challenges, Mini Cooper too and now Toyota. Is this really the only think car manifacturers can think of? I am getting a bit bored by all this campaigns:) What do you this guys?