Spotlight on Craig Hepburn, Global Director, Digital & Social Media at Nokia

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We talk a lot about our sponsors and partners taking an active role and being industry leaders. None are leading by example more than our global headline sponsor, Nokia. Returning for the second year, we admire their incorporation of social and company focus on social engagement and listening. Not only are we excited for what they can share with all SMW12 attendees, but also for what we learn from them through our partnership. We took some time to talk more with Craig Hepburn, Global Director, Digital & Social Media at Nokia.

Craig, why did Nokia get involved with Social Media Week & how does this partnership fit with Nokia’s identity and strategy for the future?
The impact of social media, especially via the mobile is becoming an increasingly important aspect of today’s society, regardless of where you’re from. Social Media Week is now the world’s largest simultaneous multi-city conference, reaching a global audience, and providing easy access to conversations around emerging trends, thought leadership and innovations in the social and mobile media spaces. We want to encourage the open sharing of knowledge in this space to learn what others are thinking and doing.

Nokia is doing some very interesting things with social and digital media. Can you let us know more about the philosophy behind Nokia’s approach?

Social media has had a huge impact on the way companies interact with their consumers. The social media space is where an increasing number of our consumers spend their time, engaging with friends, family, colleagues and their favourite brands. It is no longer acceptable for companies and brands to only focus on broadcasting messages and advertising to consumers through traditional media, but absolutely essential that brands develop social engagement strategies that enable interactive conversations with consumers. Nokia have an amazing global fan base and brand advocates, and we put a huge focus on by developing programs that enable our business to interact with them through listening, community engagement and social advocacy.

Our ambition is to “Socialize Everything” at Nokia and to become one of the most socially engaged brands by building authentic, interactive and human relationships between our employees and consumers. We feel we are well on our way in that journey and have recently shown through our recent Lumia campaign launch and social media strategy that Nokia are one of the most socially engaged brands in the world.

He’s not exaggerating. Nokia is one of the top 50 branded Facebook pages and was ranked among the top 4 brands in social engagement.


What is Nokia doing internally with staff to demonstrate its increased investment and focus on being more social?

Nokia has embraced the use of social media internally over the past 5 years. It started with an internal wiki and blogging platform and has evolved to include internal crowdsourcing and microblogging platforms. The turning point however, was when our new CEO Stephen Elop joined the company and set the example for the use of social media internally and externally. This has led to other internal projects to raise the visibility of the work we’re doing in social and enable our employees to better connect with each other and our consumers.

We are putting a major emphasis on social business not just as a marketing opportunity but across the company as way to help us transform and adapt our business. We believe it provides us an opportunity to be more agile, open, and transparent and enables the whole organisation from HR to IT and sales through to marketing to engage with employees and consumers using the latest social platforms and technologies. During Social Media Week, we’ll also be organising fun social media challenges for our employees at our corporate headquarters in Finland.

We love the concept & execution of Agora, your social monitoring platform. Can you talk a bit about what it is and why it works?

Our original Agora concept was a physical installation of six plasma screens visualizing interesting conversations and content from the social web. The screens are split among three main categories:

1) User generated content and conversations
2) Nokia generated content and conversations
3) high-level view of share of voice and sentiment.

The goal of Agora is to inspire Nokia employees with some of the amazing content that is created by our consumers and share some of the great work done by our teams. We want to remind our employees that our consumers are one click away if we want to gauge their reactions to a product or campaign, or simply see what they’re saying. We have also launched a desktop and mobile version of Agora so that it is accessible to any Nokia employee, anywhere, anytime.

Want to see Agora in action? It’ll be on display at SMWNYC’s Global Society Hub at Big Fuel. And so far here at Social Media Week, we’re impressed.

Nokia will be launching Socializer with SMW. Can you tell us more about this initiative? 
The Socializer is one of our internal initiatives to emphasize the importance of social media. We built the Socializer to be a social action framework. After working with some of our local digital marketing managers, they saw a gap between the social media listening reports they receive and the ‘action’ – what do they do with that information?  The Socializer runs a light social analytics layer on top of data pulled in from our global listening tool. The Socializer is able to identify spikes or dips in levels of conversation around a specific set of key words, in real time. When this happens, the Socializer will send a notification in e-mail or SMS to notify the appropriate person that something requires attention. This individual can then invite anyone from across the company to work with them to solve the problem or take advantage of an opportunity, all completely transparent.
Nokia will be taking an active role in Hong Kong, Singapore, New York, San Francisco, and London. What are Nokia’s most significant markets for 2012/3 and why?
All markets are very important for Nokia. We take pride in the fact that although we have such a strong global brand, we are sensitive to local needs and cultures. That philosophy is also reflected in our product offering which ranges from state-of-the-art smartphones to durable feature phones.

With the announcement of Nokia Lumia 900 at Consumer Electronics Show 2012 in Las Vegas, there is clearly a new found interest towards Nokia in North America. With that in mind, we are especially excited to be in New York and San Francisco around Social Media Week, talking to people on the ground and taking an active role in SMW events.

Craig is a regular feature during SMW- and if you’ve never heard him share his perspective, once you do, you’ll know why. He’ll be debating at JWT on Monday in State Your Case: Research vs. Social Analytics, then at Big Fuel on Wednesday for The Future of Sharing, judging for the COMMON Pitch NYC event Wednesday night, ending at JWT on Thursday for Brands as Publishers: Writing and Publishing Content at Scale. You don’t want to miss him.

Nicky Yates

Director of Communications, Social Media Week

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