Lessons From Sweden’s Revolutionary Blood SMS – Strategy With RS

As a person handling business / brand you know how difficult it is to get your customers to emotionally engage with your business / brand? You may erroneously lay the blame at the doorsteps of your customers surmising that they are ‘cash rich’ but ‘time & attention’ poor.

So, let me share with you a service that causes ‘pain’ to their customers but has successfully managed to ‘actively – engage’ them.
Voluntary blood donation.

We all know how difficult it is to get donors to donate – because it is an ‘unpleasant & painful’ experience. If you were in-charge of voluntary blood donation & tasked with getting more people to donate & that too without any marketing budget then what will your strategy be? And I put a further clause that not only should donors happily donate blood but also create buzz in the social media. In short you have to get the donors to be not merely ‘passively-involved’ but ‘actively-immersed’ in the entire donation process. Sounds difficult?

Let me take you to Sweden where they are enlisting technology to help them deliver on this objective. The process followed by them goes as follows.

People who donate blood receive a ‘thank you’ text on there smart phone – (referenced below). And when their blood is consumed they get another text message informing then their blood has helped a fellow citizen. This service gives the donors positive feedback about how they’ve helped their fellow citizens – which encourages them to donate again.

Now to get the community involved in the process, local blood service organisation shares a live chart on there web page of how much blood is left in the blood bank (referenced below).The thinking is that people will respond if they know there is a problem. When ordinary donors notice stocks are running low they raise the alarm in the social media.

This new process has also been a hit on social media and has got people talking about blood donation amongst their friends. This programme was started in Stockholm & is gradually being rolled out by other local areas across the country after a positive reception.

Business lesson for us:
1) Use technology to actively ‘engage – immerse’ your customers in your brand activities
2) Provide feedback to them in real time.
3) Close the loop – when a customers participates in a brand activity – for example in giving feedback, then do get back to them how their feedback has been used.
4) Be transparent with your customers
5) Use Brand Advocacy to drive business results
6) Harness the power of social media
7) Integrate ‘Crowd sourcing’ into your business model to energise your business / brand.

Are there any business lesson you learnt form this case let? Can it be applied to commercial business?