When I look around, I find many examples of Australian companies doing really great things in social media. Here’s an example.
Firstly though, one of the key points that both my colleague’s (like Tim Martin and Dan Toombs) and I always stress is the importance of doing the basics well in terms of search, digital marketing, brand representation, and social media.
With that in mind, I came across a really good example recently that I thought was worth sharing.
I was returning to Brisbane from Newcastle (Australia) having completed a workshop with a group of CEO’s who are smart enough to be part of Australia’s largest CEO and Leadership community – The Executive Connection.
As I was waiting at the airport, I was catching up on my To Do List, specifically an article I was writing for CoachLink magazine about the importance of LinkedIn for business and executive coaches. One of the key points I was stressing in the article was (funnily enough) the importance of doing the simple things well. As I was writing this, I was actually enjoying watching a group of RAAF trainee fighter pilots who were going through a long series of take-off/landing drills outside the terminal. Here was a group of (future) leaders going through what must have seemed a monotonous regime of the basics of flying – a.k.a. doing the basics well.
As I enjoyed the show I checked into FourSquare and commented that I was enjoying the show
After making this post, I was surprised to see later that I’d received back a response from Air Force HQ via their Twitter account. This intrigued me for obvious reasons…So I delved into the Twitter account and beyond.
Do The Social Media Basics Well
This is by no means a bible for what you might constitute to be the basics, but here’s what I liked about what they are doing:
1. Own your digital assets – your footprint
A couple of points here.
Firstly, from the homepage of the RAAF site they provide obvious links to where to connect with them – I see so many companies failing to do this it frustrates me.
Secondly, they have established a significant footprint across the social space – Google Buzz (?), Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. My only suggestion to the RAAF to expand on this would be to look to include blog content as well as using LinkedIn to help establish links into the business community.
The fundamental tenement of social – engage with your communities. The RAAF provide ample evidence across their core channels. Not long after I left my Twitter post (via Foursquare) I received back a Tweet from AirForceHQ.
My first thought was – The RAAF have their own link shortening tool – how cool is that…
3. Be Aware of New Channels
As I delved into the two links HQ shared with me a final point stood out. The team at RAAF have taken the time to be “in” new channels – specifically the geo-location social network service Foursquare. As you can see here – Newcastle airport is actually a RAAF base, with RAAF Williamstown allowing part of their base to be shared as a commercial airport.
Here’s the impressive bit. RAAF has claimed their base, but Newcastle Airport hasn’t claimed their part of the territory.
Again, it’s a simple thing to go and take ownership of your physical assets in the digital world – and don’t forget Google Places. The lesson here is that the RAAF are paying attention to emerging channels and moving quickly to ensure they own their digital footprint.
As an exercise if you’re interested – go to Foursquare and search for Australia’s Federal seat of Government? And now compare that to the US equivalent – US Capitol Hill.
It’s the simple things that will always add up to success.
One of our core defense agencies is providing a powerful example for Australian businesses about effective use of social media.
In the coming days, weeks and months, as I deliver social media workshops to TEC members I’ll be including the RAAF as an example of Australian best practice.
And for the RAAF’s next trick, I’d like to see them produce a YouTube video like this one…