Whiskas, Facebook and the Oscars: Social objects for engagement strategy

Posted on: February 6, 2012

A great way to provoke interest and participation on a Facebook page or other social media is to draw upon a social object to inspire a post or question. Of most value, where possible, is when this ‘social object’ directly relates to your brand. In this way we may consider the social object as a valuable bridge between a brand and the consumer.

Social objects and brands for content diagram

A social object is a subject or passion point that people talk about – as Jyri Engeström once described it, something that mediates the ties between people.

Social objects and brands for content diagram - Whiskas example

For example, on the Whiskas (cat food brand) Facebook page ‘The Cat’s Whiskas‘ a recent wall post asked users to give their opinion on a couple of feline-related Oscar nominations. The question skilfully drew upon a topical news item (the Oscars) and cat related social objects – the two films Puss In Boots and A Cat In Paris. The finishing touch is the inclusion of eye-catching images (stats show people are most likely to interact with Facebook posts which combine images and text):

The post above received 55 likes and 22 comments. As a whole the Whiskas Facebook engagement strategy appears very open, allowing Facebook fans to post directly to the page, whereupon they are responded to enthusiastically by admins.

By combining relevant and well-timed posts with this open policy Whiskas have built up a highly engaged fan base – their current IPM score is 4.59 (source: Conversocial) on a fan page with 61,237 likes.

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