Brand Review Across Multiple Platforms: Ben & Jerry’s

My assignment this week is to review 3 brands that each have a Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google+ account, with at least one more, in addition.

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Ben & Jerry’s, an ice-cream company out of Vermont, is known first, and foremost, for their quirky ice cream flavors, but also the political initiatives they support and promote.

Because of their strong beliefs in promoting their favorite causes, Ben & Jerry’s ice cream products share the stage in their three-part mission: Product Mission (only the best ingredients for their ice cream), Economic Mission (sustainable financial growth), and Social Mission (using their company to make the world a better place).

As a result of this, Ben & Jerry’s uses their various marketing platforms in ways other than promoting a new ice cream flavor. Some may argue that it is considered “taboo” to bring politics into a company’s brand identity… what is Ben & Jerry’s response? They probably wouldn’t have one: they’re too busy promoting the efforts to get GMO labeling on the ballots in Vermont and creating the next creamy Core ice cream flavor. Their IMC approach involves all of these things: what they are passionate about. It easily connects and tells their consistent story across all platforms.

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Ben & Jerry’s maintained consistency across all social media platforms and in their newsletter to promote their new Saturday Night Live flavors: Lazy Sunday and Gilly’s Catastrophic Crunch:

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Because Ben & Jerry’s has strayed from traditional media, such as TV commercials and drastically reduced their amount print advertisements, they have started including commercials on Pandora stations and participating in Instagram ads, where they will post fully promotional advertisement images, similar to a magazine ad:

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Ben & Jerry’s posts content regularly on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. Like other companies, Ben & Jerry’s spends the most time where their audience is. Therefore, they do not utilize Google+ as heavily, and mainly use YouTube to promote new product launches or informational videos about current events they might be participating in.

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Ben & Jerry’s works to increase their followers in various ways: They increase their Twitter following by posting images that include their Twitter handle on other social media platforms,

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Ben & Jerry’s uses hashtags minimally, only including one or two per Instagram, Google +, or Twitter post. However, they incorporate widely used hashtags, such as #FromWhereIStand or #TBT (Throwback Thursday) on occasion, which could help them reach active Twitter and Instagram users who may not follow them.

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Overall, Ben & Jerry’s has a solid social media presence. I noticed in my research for this assignment that Ben & Jerry’s has much more personal customer reaction to posts than any other brand I have researched, thus far. Customers mainly wanted to know when the company was going completely GMO-free (planned for the end of 2014), and what happened to their favorite flavor “_____”. Ben & Jerry’s seemed to have made a conscious effort to respond to all of these questions promptly.

To end the post with a “sweet treat”, after all this talk about ice-cream, check it out: (These were my favorite posts and video)

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