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World Cement Interview: Loesche - part two

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World Cement,

What are the main challenges that Loesche has faced in curating its online presence?

In the beginning, deciding what to share on each platform was not an easy task. There was a lot of content available to choose from: photos, technical brochures, presentations, videos, news, press releases, career opportunities. We focused on assigning the content to each specific platform according to the type of format that they supported. We began by trying different approaches, combining content and cross promoting until we were able to learn what worked and what didn’t for the communities on each social platform. Day after day we found out what they were actually interested in.

Social media wants, likes and needs have changed and evolved in the last years, which makes keeping up with the kind of content and formats that the audiences are looking for a priority in our content development and social media management strategies. As a result, creating a solid image on social networking platforms has been a reality over the years made possible through the constancy and dedication that we keep putting in every piece of content shared each and every day.

Where do you see Loesche’s social media projects going in the future? What are your plans and how will you implement them?

Having established the solid basis of the Loesche brand online, we are now ready to take on new challenges and approaches, working towards leading new areas and markets. Combining the terrific work of the Corporate Marketing department with the huge broadcasting possibilities that online platforms offer at all levels, and our extensive experience in online branding for industrial profiles, we believe that what is next to come will be even bigger, providing more impact for every move that is made in terms of brand awareness and advocacy, communication channels, engagement and products and services promotion.

Knowing that, nowadays, more people turn to social media channels for feedback, insight and customer support, in order to make better decisions based on product and service knowledge, it is important to focus on keeping the flow of information open to make it easier for audiences to know where to find a brand and what they can expect from them.

In terms of product promotion, the possibility of reaching new audiences during the launching process of a new project through social networks has shown amazing results, both in terms of reach and reaction. For instance, the promotion of the new CCG plant, a compact cement production concept developed by Loesche’s engineers to open a new scope for small but growing markets, has been well received by the Group’s online communities. The promotion on social media channels was first launched in Summer 2016, and today ‘CCG Plant’ is a term that clearly identifies the Loesche brand, and has helped boost the brand’s awareness even more by showing up on the first page results of the main search engines.

In the last few years, Loesche has expanded its global reach by opening new subsidiaries to be closer to their clients on both current and new, emerging markets, offering an improved customer service experience through geographical proximity, bringing the support service closer to where it’s required. This, combined with the social media aspect described above, is a great example of combining offline and online efforts to build new relationships and strengthen the current ones.

In your opinion, what makes a successful social media campaign?

I believe that the success of any social media campaign lies in the fundamental marketing principles. To make sure that the message is effectively delivered, we need to focus first on the groundwork to define the ‘who’, the ‘what’, the ‘where’ and the ‘how’; the objective in terms of demography, interest, location, format and content.

Once the target audience and the message are identified, we focus on the reach. Today, broadcasting efforts can be intensified substantially compared to the traditional marketing and advertising schemes, and they can also be tracked and quantified in real time, so it needs to be done well. The power of having access to data analysis to study the performance and progress of a specific campaign, gives invaluable information to marketers and brands about the audiences’ behaviours and feelings towards the brand and, more specifically, allows for insights into how to improve either the communication approach or a product or service itself.

Thanks to the social media phenomenon, brands have easy access to real-time listening and firsthand learning of their customers’ needs and market trends, granting an invaluable opportunity to brands for offering better and enhanced user experiences with their products and services.

Finally, revisiting a question that was posed in our 2014 interview but which is still relevant two years on: have your attitude/expectations regarding the impact of social media changed over the time you have been using it?

Indeed my perception towards the impact of social media has significantly changed, and not only at a professional level but at a personal one as well. Seven years ago I saw the potential but I wasn’t entirely aware of its magnitude; two years later I understood that it was something big, it really worked and that it would shift towards even bigger things.

Those like me that in the past were just spectators waiting to see how everything would change and evolve on social media, and what it would mean for us as individuals, and later on for brands, now recognise the value of online branding for personal and professional purposes. For instance, the personal branding approach – a concept that continues growing fast and steady alongside brand social promotion – is levelling individuals with brands, making long-distance connections and remote professional partnerships and collaborations worldwide a reality.

With all the new communication technologies and tools available, we are more convinced today that B2B companies can benefit tremendously from online branding to increase brand exposure, enhance relationship building through knowledge exchange and customer support, and stay on top of market trends and consumer insights for product improvement and development.

This is part two of a two-part article written for World Cement’s December issue and abridged for the website. Subscribers can read the full December issue by signing in, and can also catch up on-the-go via our new app for Apple and Android. Non-subscribers can access a preview of the December 2016 issue here.

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