Sense and nonsense of image and personal marketing campaigns: example Deutsche Bahn in the reality check

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Do you have to do everything in personnel marketing because it's in? We mean “no” - and give an anti-example.

Sense and Nonsense of Image and Personal Marketing Campaigns: Example of Deutsche Bahn in the Reality Check Sense and Nonsense of Image and Personal Marketing Campaigns: Example of Deutsche Bahn in the Reality Check

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Simone Janson Simone JansonSimone Janson is publisher, German Top20 blogger and Consultant for HR communication.


DB as an anti-example

Tobias Kärcher wrote a nice post on Wollmilchsau about the current Facebook campaign “Die Welt der DB”. In it he primarily asks about their target group and the benefits. I go one step further and ask: How useful are image and personnel marketing campaigns when there are small details elsewhere?

Marketeers, agencies, Company, PR and, of course, social media departments love social media campaigns - or what they think: viral videos are being spread or competitions are being advertised that have it all. Everything is so great.

Crowdsourcing and social media - because it's so nice “in”

And especially “in” is crowdsourcing, actions in which users can participate. The Deutsche Bahn has now come up with something like this - apparently to show the diversity of the Deutsche Bahn group and employer:

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Via Facebook App users can start 15.8. Submit stories that they have experienced with the DB. These can be commented on and evaluated. At the end, a jury headed by DB board member Grube selects those who are replicated in the Berlin miniature world LOXX.

Only for railway nerds?

Details can be read directly on Wollmilchsau, where Tobias Kärcher rightly criticized that the somewhat old-fashioned miniature train action addresses especially railroad nerds, but does not activate a new target group. So he writes:

“The Deutsche Bahn is somehow more than a normal company: It is a quasi-monopolist in the German rail transport system… Basically, the DB is a highly complex German institution - and that is one of its main problems in public relations work… Even if it is in filmed model worlds I can't really imagine telling nice stories that you can pick up people who are not yet interested in the topic. A video> of a model> of a story> of a railroad fan> that the DB jury liked ... Crowdsourcing is 'totally social' - only if there is no crowd from which you can source it will quickly become 'socially awkward'. ”

Apart from the fact that the jury from the outset ensures that the action does not look like the thing with the Chefticket 2010 (bad tongues would call the censorship and which is not liked in internet circles as is well - liked) and in the end stories of horrenden train delays or have to be retrofitted:

Marketing more efficiently

There are those places where companies could do much better and more efficiently with their marketing efforts without costly campaigns. When it comes to customer service - and last but not least, last week I found a very trivial example: the lost property office!

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When I had recently left something on the train, I was pointed out by several places. On the appropriate Page on a happy smiling customer is taking a friendly umbrella from a friendly smiling employee. As far as marketing!

Sense and nonsense of image and personal marketing campaigns: Example Deutsche Bahn in the reality check db-fundbuero

Marketing in reality check

The reality looks different: Umbrellas and similar small items are probably synonymous a large part of the 250.000 items, which are lost annually at German stations.

Although you can enter your loss free of charge and then look in a database then, but after filling out the search mask also immediately pointed out that many found items are only entered after entering the search order there (!!!).

Inquiring is too expensive

But that was it with free of charge: You can call the lost property hotline for 59 ct / min from the German landline. Or "Just place a research order", at least by eMail, The corresponding form will then show the following:

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The railway is researching ... for items that were lost on rail or trains (within Germany) and have an estimated time value of at least € 15,00. Items of intangible value, such as B. books with dedication, photo albums u. However, they do not fall under this limit. In case of finding the pickup at the site is free. The repatriation by post costs 20, - € including shipping and packaging costs, in case of dispatch from the central lost property office 35, - €.

0 Bock on customer service?

Or to put it another way: one has no desire to take care of all the lost umbrellas and similar trinkets. And even if she finds things again, the horrendous shipping costs may deter many customers - as well as me.

Even the pick-up from the Central Lost Property Office will result in 15,30 Euro. The costs in detail are listed here. By the way, it does not matter what the train does with all the lost and unrecovered objects: it is auctioned off!

The Deutsche Bahn would like Finderlohn

By the way, the railway also refers to §§ 978 ff. BGB (Civil Code) and at the same time also claims to Finderlohn.

Let's be honest: every airline offers a free return and home delivery service. And thus comes into direct competition with the Deutsche Bahn.

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Marketing: Above hui, down pooh?

But I even have some understanding that you do not want to worry about every umbrella. But I do not quite understand why there is a lost property at all, whose marketing involves very different things.

And even less I understand, why then expensive money for a Facebook campaign is invested, to convey a better image of the Deutsche Bahn, when I am already in such banal little things as a lost property office:

  • In terms of image and marketing: We are not interested in the interests of our customers
  • With regard to personnel marketing: We save employees all over the place and do not have enough people to take care of our customers

Satisfied customers = Real social media marketing

If the interest in the customer or new employees is so low, then what is the money spent on advertising, which acts as a peeling make-up, the low wrinkles only insufficiently covered?

And if the money was not better invested here - satisfied customers are simply the best brand ambassadors there is: And then even real social media marketing!

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  1. Gesine

    Deutsche Bahn is such a crap entrepreneur, you can not say that often enough. BTW: Something does not work with the comments, I had to start several times over.

  2. Pingback: Recruiting Panel Social Media Week | REQUIRED by Simone Janson

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