BlogWell: How Big Brands Use Social Media is an amazing series of events presented by that features 8 great case studies in corporate social media. To learn more, visit

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In her BlogWell Chicago presentation, FedEx‘s Director of Digital & Social Media Engagement, Renee Horne, discusses how they're making social media work for business, culture, and reputation.

Renee shares four case studies that covers how they're using video content to engage customers and shareholders, how they're connecting with small business owners, how they handle a social media crisis, and more.

Below is live coverage from the event:

-- Renee Horne began the FedEx session with four case studies for attendees to carry back with them to their own companies.

-- First, recognize social media is not just a channel or fad. The company believed in setting up a Center of Excellence, which addresses brand, reputation, and culture.

-- The key strategic pillars she outlines are governance, conversation platform, tools of technology, voice of customer (employee, consumer, stakeholder); and knowledge management. Knowledge management is key in driving adoption, Renee said.

-- Social Business as a practice: Building the foundation or 'Social Courage'

-- She calls her team "digital storytellers," citing change management as the leader in this initiative. It's good to get members to feel good about being in a community, so in building social courage, the team took the time to create then execute their playbook.

-- Included in the playbook were processes and creating a chain of command, always bearing in mind that it would be the actual community participants who would "own" the social end of social media.

-- Renee said a certification was created, which included several months involvement in courses with some electives.

-- In establishing FedEx's presence within the marketplace through social media, a lot of their content was about sports or other items they knew would be well-received by communities.

-- Case Study 1: Enchanted Forest

3D animated video provided to engage consumers and stakeholders.

-- Case Study 2: Pandas

Several division heads traveled to Paris where a couple of famous pandas were to produce an advertisement.

-- Case Study 3: Small Business Saturday

FedEx provided gift cards to some small business owners. Nice gesture, sure enough, but some small business owners rose up out of a sense of entitlement. Oddly enough, it was the small business owners who didn't receive a gift card who went online instead of those who did. Renee said that it's best for the brand to remove itself from such scenarios, though FedEx appreciated the sentiment of the the community members who didn't receive a gift card.

-- Case Study 4: The Holiday Package Incident

Everyone by now has surely seen the viral video of the rogue FedEx delivery guy who chucks a huge piece of technology over the gate of its waiting owner.

Renee said it was best, and the right thing to do, to swiftly own the incident as well as to act swiftly in remedying it.


Q: How did Renee's team work with management in handling the rogue delivery guy?

A: Senior management worked closely in deliberating a game plan well within a half hour. U.S. Operations were all on camera within a matter of hours. You don't expect things like this to happen. Social media was by no means the enemy, but the forum in which it happened.

Q: How do you get senior management on board in final decision-making?

A: We're very fortunate, as our management is very trusting. The most important thing is they support us and they believe in investing in social media and technology.

Q: Was the eLearning Curriculum in-house or did a third-party come in to implement?

A: Both. We brough together some of the brightest minds in the prior shown lesson plans and other individuals who specialize in subject matter; along with HR and Legal departments. (Hybrid).

Q: How are social media teams formed at FedEx? How much manpower on the inside is used vs. external hires for such roles?

A: Decentralize as much as possible. We look for people who understand and have a great respect for social media, but still have to have the business acumen.

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