The company has been on social media for a few years on LinkedIn and YouTube and it has two blogs: blog.sidel.com and knowledgeshare.com.
The latter is a neutral platform for the beverage industry to discuss where the market is heading and how it will handle forthcoming challenges and opportunities.
A recent post, for example, was about building the production line of the future.
Fabienne Nielsen, online communication manager, Sidel, told FoodProductionDaily it started to communicate on LinkedIn two years ago and had a lot of success, growing its audience to more than 10,000 followers.
“We saw an increasing amount of discussions taking place on other social media that we wanted to be part of, engage with and drive where appropriate, share our liquid packaging experience,” she said.
“We realised there is a significant online interest in what we do and the value we can create for beverage producers. The time was right to expand our social media presence into other networks.”
Fluctuating energy prices
Nielsen added the industry faces many challenges including fluctuating energy prices, raw resource restrictions, changing consumer tastes and lifestyles and radically changing technologies which can provide fantastic opportunities.
“The main challenges in this industry are being able to anticipate the trends that will affect our businesses in both the short and long-term, reacting quickly in what is a fast changing market,” she said.
“Social media can help us to do this, providing us with valuable information regarding the issues our industry is facing and offering an interactive way of engaging with each other to overcome them.”
“Our customers will get much greater and more regular insights into Sidel, our opinions on the beverage industry, and PET packaging and its value for them across the supply chain.”
Nielsen said its Facebook page has over 1,000 fans since starting the page three weeks’ ago and over time it wants to organise events, such as live ‘Tweet Ups’.
“When we were researching our social media expansion we found many discussions taking place on LinkedIn and Twitter about beverage production, packaging design and other topics,” she added.
“Simply being part of those discussions brings an immediate benefit. We also want to take a more proactive approach, by posting interesting case studies or research highlighting how value can be created for beverage producers and illustrating the benefits of Sidel’s PET packaging.
“At the moment we are focused on creating dialogue through our social media networks by posting interesting and valuable content, and engaging in the discussions that follow. Over time we are definitely interested in expanding that approach with potential social media events and other innovations that we have seen successfully done by other members of the beverage industry.
“Our Sidel blog is more focused on anything and everything related to beverages in PET, from bottle designs, trends in popular drinks, inspiring ways to recycle PET and ways that our own bottling products support our customers. A recent post was about the collection and use of recycled PET.”
As online communication manager, Nielsen, who is based in Switzerland, is responsible for managing the output, curating content and managing infrastructure supported by her Sidel colleagues.
All the channels are interactive, with the opportunity to comment, share, and give opinions and feedback.
“Social media is not a channel that is looked after by one person. There are platforms that are looked after by everyone in each community,” she said.
“In that sense, all of our employees are responsible for Sidel’s social media presence, and so too our partners who choose to engage with us in those communities, including our customers.
“The end goal is to create a thriving community that engages with itself and ultimately creates its own content.”