Innocent Drinks the most social brand

It comes as no surprise that Innocent topped the poll; the company has been brilliant at fan engagement ever since it launched in 1999. Innocent started off selling smoothies at a festival when the founders Richard Reed, Adam Balon and Jon Wright asked customers to throw their empty bottles in one of two bins. One was labelled, 'Yes, you should make this a full time business', the other, 'No, you shouldn't'. At the end of the day the 'yes' bin was overflowing.

Since then the trio has continued to speak to customers by covering their packaging with conversational phrases, in an attempt to engage with customers. They also invite customers to call them on the office 'banana phone' or pop into their head office at 'Fruit Towers' to chat to staff and find out more about the brand - and they mean it.

"We've always wanted to build relationships with our drinkers," said Joe McEwan, communities manager at Innocent. "It started with talking to people on our packaging and meeting them at events we put on. It naturally extended into digital and social media as the channels evolved."

Currently, Innocent has 64,345 followers on Twitter, not as many as some brands, but the engagement from the followers is phenomenal. It seems the team replies to customer messages as quick and often as it can, even the negative ones. Innocent also post light-hearted pictures and jokes to create a friendly atmosphere around its brand on Twitter. This friendliness is carried over onto their packaging. If you turn one of the juice cartons, at the bottom you'll find quirky messages like, "Stop looking at my bottom". They also use fun games that can affect the colour of your tongue or a jokey diagram such a the pros and cons of having a tree growing inside your body.

Creating this engagement around your brand helps you to build a fanbase. By impacting on customers' day in a positive way people will not only like your product, but support the values of your brand. The success and popularity of Innocent prove this - businesses that put the customer at the heart of its services and engage with them in every way possible are more liked and therefore, sell more products.

To read five business lessons from Richard Reed, click here.

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