What does GE get out of social media?

According to an article in Direct Marketing News (5/12, p. 12), General Electric has more than 200,000 Facebook friends and more than 50,000 Twitter followers.

What does GE post on the social networks? Photos, questions, and jokes.

What do they get out of all this activity? Hundreds of “likes,” comments, and mentions.

Getting Facebook “likes” doesn’t seem like an impressive achievement to  me, but apparently GE thinks it a worthy expenditure of time and money.

Do you?

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855 thoughts on “What does GE get out of social media?

  • My take: Why wouldn’t they do it? Seems like a small investment in time and money, with no downside. If they did not do it, they as a company would be failing to explore something that might, possibly, be a worthwhile marketing and branding channel — and they would be failing, as a company, to to learn how to use those channels. And I guess it gives them another inexpensive way to release information, monitor comments, and so on. Agree that getting Facebook likes doesn’t seem like an impressive achievement, but I doubt that’s their end game here (I would hope not!).

  • I don’t see how this benefits GE either. To me, this is right up there with the generic commercials they run. GE is so big the brand doesn’t really mean anything anymore, so I don’t even know what it means to “Like” GE in the year 2012.

  • There was a story recently that said you can pay for ‘likes’ – $75 for 1000, I believe. GE could have lots of likes.

  • Facebook ads are experimental, at best, and ineffective according to GM. I can’t see the ads ever being proven effective, so the company’s best hope is that it remains one of those things that businesses continue to do without knowing why…like meetings and progress reports.

    I think pinterest, on the other hand, has a chance of helping companies to market their products. If they can come up with cool pictures to “pin”, they will be seen as innovative and informative. Whereas with facebook they are usually just seen as lame and desperate.

  • they get brand equity in a measurable way. the metrics they can monitor on how people interact with their brand, what people interact wih their brand, where people interact with their brand; are invaluable.

    Commercials are often to build brand awareness and are a comparatively expensive channel with much fewer analytics to show.

    But don’t make the mistake of thinking social media is inexpensive, even if it’s done in-house and grown organically, it is a significant investment in time and resources (read:money).

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