JDA Software uses social media to promote user conference

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JDA Software, a supply chain management software company, ramped up its social media efforts this year to raise awareness of Focus 2012, its annual user conference, held April 29-May 2 in Las Vegas. “Last year was a little difficult because social media was not at the maturity stage,” said Cindy Kim, director of marketing and social media at JDA. “We did promotions on the [conference] content. We had a Twitter contest, and we did onsite video postings; but we didn't have the visibility at the time to see the impact social media could make at the conference.” This year was a different story. Kim worked with JDA's marketing team to develop a comprehensive social media plan around the conference, including a pre-event Twitter contest; a “30 Days of Focus” photo campaign on JDA's Facebook page; pre- and post-conference blog posts by JDA executives and guest bloggers; and video interviews with company executives and customers at the conference, which were posted to YouTube and other social media channels in real time. “We had a lot of preplanning meetings with the marketing team as well as our [social media] ambassadors to develop a pre-Focus social media plan; and we communicated that to the entire marketing and leadership teams,” Kim said. “Then we developed an onsite social media plan, which included onsite blogging strategy, plans and communication.” JDA's social media agency, Lois Paul and Partners, conducted social profiling of attendees, journalists and analysts prior to the event to provide more targeted messages in event communications. “For the blog, we identified our key bloggers and customers, and came up with key topics. We helped tailor the topics to make [the blog] newsworthy and leveraged the [it] to promote onsite content at the start of the conference, during and after,” Kim said. The social media effort paid off in terms of raising awareness of Focus 2012 and generating user activity at the conference. Social content drove more than 4,000 users to JDA's Focus-related websites; Focus videos received over 2,500 views on YouTube; and the conference received more than 1,000 tweets, reaching approximately 1.5 million users.
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