Member Meeting 11
August 11-12, 2010

Focus on: Finding your social media voice

Thanks to our host: McDonald’s


We were thrilled that long-time Red Council member McDonald’s hosted our Member Meetings at their Hamburger University headquarters in Oak Brook, IL.

Special thanks to Joe Curry, George Hradecky, Heather Oldani, Jessica Thompson, Rick Wion, and the entire McDonald’s team who helped make this meeting possible.

Featuring pre-conference case studies from:


Joe Curry, Manager of Global Web Communications

Learn how McDonald’s is using social media to inspire employees and the public about their commitment to their people.


Joe LaMuraglia, Manager of Social Media Communications

Learn how General Motors used social media to keep a misunderstanding from blowing out of proportion.

Kraft Foods

Beth Reilly, Digital and Social Marketing Lead

Learn how Oreo has built relationships and strategy on Facebook, and how the love is now spreading to other social media channels.


Robert Raines, Manager of Corporate Interactive Communications

Learn how Chevron is taking social media monitoring to the next level to build awareness of energy issues.


Brian Snyder, Senior Manager of Interactive Communications, and Scott Spiegel, Senior Manager of Consumer Care

Learn how Whirlpool Corporation collaborates across departments and functions to provide a consistent brand experience.

CME Group

Allan Schoenberg, Director of Corporate Communications

Learn how CME Group’s social media strategy has done a remarkable job of spreading the word.

Alberto Culver

Stephen Strong, Global Director of Interactive Marketing, and Brandy Ruff, Director of Integrated Marketing Communication

Learn how Alberto Culver is making the most out of Facebook to maximize brand awareness.

What the meeting was like

In our biggest gathering of the community to date, more than 60 members from 40+ companies came to our event at McDonald’s in Chicago — so many attendees, in fact, we held two simultaneous meetings to keep the conversations intimate and manageable.

In the morning, we focused on “finding your social media voice,” discussing best practices for how companies interact and engage online. We dove deep into topics like creating guidelines for tone, who should actually do the talking, how those people get trained, and establishing differences between a personal brand and a corporate brand.

After lunch at the McDonald’s corporate headquarters, we broke into small groups for unconference sessions on a wide variety of topics, including covering an event with social media, making social media work in BtoB, and what’s on the horizon as “the next big thing.”

We ended the day with a private conversation with Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason… who we saw on the cover of Forbes magazine the next day.

Our guest speaker: Andrew Mason

Groupon founder and CEO Andrew Mason joined us to talk about the online phenomenon that simply offers “one ridiculously huge coupon each day” to a city.

Just one year ago, Groupon was established in half a dozen cities across the U.S., staking its turf by offering a substantial coupon for a local product or service. But the coupon only works if enough people wish to buy it — until a tipping point is reached in group sales, the deal isn’t valid.

Groupon’s success has come from making the deals too good to refuse: a combination of unique and awesome products for sale, plus discounts that are at least half-off standard prices. The offers show up in emailboxes each day with clever prose and a coolness factor you don’t often see. In true word of mouth form, friends tell friends about the amazing offer, and Groupons usually ‘tip.’

In the past year, Groupon has exploded: You’ll now find it in more than 170 cities in 22 countries. Groupon has leveraged what the power of group action can do — both for consumers and for businesses. Andrew Mason talked with us about how Groupon came to be, and shared thoughts on online marketing, group buying, and engaging customers.