BASF : Simplifying social media integration

A microsite is abandoned in the name of clarity.

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The Site

BASF, the world’s largest diversified chemicals company, has replaced its Social Media Newsroom microsite with a dashboard. BASF introduced a Social Media Newsroom microsite in October 2010, accessible via a left-hand link in the News & Media Relations section of the main corporate site. The microsite contained feeds from the company’s various social media activities, as well as links to articles about BASF from online magazines and other third-party publications, and BASF’s own press releases. However, the Social Media Newsroom has been deleted and replaced by a Social Media sub-section of News & Media Relations. This retains the ‘dashboard’ of social media activities that was available in the old Social Media Newsroom – but not the press releases or links to third-party articles. The new sub-section does have a useful directory of links to BASF’s numerous Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other social media pages, feeds and channels.

The Takeaway

BASF’s Social Media Newsroom had two significant flaws with the potential to cause confusion. First, it contained content – such as articles from external publications – that were nothing to do with social media. Second, it contained material – in-house press releases – that was also available in another sub-section of News & Media Relations. Journalists were therefore likely to wonder ‘Where do I go for company news – the microsite or the main corporate site?’. By replacing the microsite with a simple dashboard and directory of its social media activity, BASF has eliminated duplication and mitigated the risk of confusion among media professionals and other visitors to News & Media Relations. In doing so it has issued a reminder to others that simplicity and clarity trump complex ‘bells and whistles’ when it comes to integrating the corporate website and social media content.
First published 17 May, 2012
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