Top Strategies From The Force Behind Innocent's Social Media Campaigns | A Q&A with Helena Langdon

5 October 2018

Ever wondered who started #DogsAtPollingStations hashtag? Or why a stapler went on a worldwide tour which went viral? Perhaps you see social media but are wary of dipping your toe into the water.

Well, the first two were creations born from the inner sanctum of Innocent's digital team, where  Helena Langdon  was given free reign to engage consumers with a smoothie brand.

Helena paid Speakers Corner a visit back in the summer, when a cold drink was most welcome. She talked us through her vast social media experience, including the highs and lows, delivering lots of laughter as well as a few tips which the marketing team eagerly hoovered up.

We spent a little more time asking Helena some quick fire questions to help us all do social better!

Helena, thanks so much for coming into see us. The first question on our lips is why are boardrooms starting to pay more attention to their social media departments?

There are a few reasons, but the most obvious is it’s where their customers are. Social media is undeniably a big part of people’s everyday lives, so if brands aren’t there, they’re missing a big opportunity. It’s also the first place people now go to complain if something isn’t up to scratch, so it’s crucial for companies to provide great customer service on their digital platforms.

Senior marketers have also realised that social media gives brands a brilliant opportunity to have a real-time dialogue with the people who buy their stuff, helping them talk directly to their customers and build love for their brand from the ground up.

So how can brands deliver memorable experiences across social media?

The first thing to do is establish why you’re using your social media channels. Is it to build love for your brand? Is it so more people know you exist? Is to do great customer service? Once you have the answer to that, you should be clearer on how you use your platforms to achieve your aim.

It’s going to sound a bit boring, but a lot of delivering memorable experiences on social is getting the basics right. Make sure somebody is monitoring your channels regularly. When somebody gets in touch, get back to them – and when you do, make sure your responses are great and leave your customers feeling positive about your company. Making people laugh by writing a funny tweet feels satisfying in the moment, but your customers are far more likely to remember good (or bad) customer service for far longer.

For businessess who know they need to use social media but have limited resource or expertise, what would be your advice?

It’s tricky, but if you don’t have the resources to hire a digital expert, my advice is always to find the best writer or content creator you have in the building, and allow them the freedom to experiment and work out the best ways to use your platforms. If you have somebody talented who understands your tone of voice and your company, they will guide your social in the right direction. Your social will only be as good as the people behind it, so make it somebody’s priority to develop your online presence.

During your visit to Speakers Corner HQ you mentioned the 70% rule. Perhaps you could let our audience know a little insight into what this is and why you talk about in your presentations?

innocent has a rule – “If you’re 70% sure, go for it.” It gives us all the license to run with ideas that we instinctively think are good, but we’re not 100% sure they’re going to work. It allows us to be brave, and it stop us from getting fired if we make mistakes (which is always a bonus)

It’s especially valuable for our digital team, because the internet can be a scary place for brands and there’s always potential to miss the mark with your content. We use the 70% rule as a mantra and it has allowed us to create some bold but successful content over the years.

Finally, if there was one key takeaway or learning experience that you would want your audience to leave with, what would it be?

During my presentation I talk about a few things I’ve done right over the years, but I make it really clear that I’ve also made a lot of mistakes, and done things that haven’t been successful. Getting good at social media involves trying a lot of stuff out and seeing what works. My advice to people is to be brave, experiment with your platforms and work out how to do great social for your brand. It might not work straight away, but if you’re persistent you should see results.

Helena, thanks so much for coming in. You can follow Helena on Twitter  @helenalangdon For further information or to book a speaker, call us on +44 (0)20 7607 7070  or email .

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