Caterpillar Brings Social Media to Blue-Collar Business

Caterpillar taps dealers and customers for design insights.

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Eventually, Caterpillar's plan is to have a social media expert embedded within each product group. "If we're trying to market globally from a central point of view in Peoria, Illinois, it won't be successful," Espinosa said.

Social media must be synchronized with other marketing channels, he says. "You want to integrate it with other efforts. Make sure there's a long-term plan around each product group. We need to know the region and the language they communicate in," he says.

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The firm's social-media communications including Facebook and Twitter posts will eventually be syndicated to all dealers. "They can accept those posts or not, or modify them to their liking. We syndicate our content now through the website. We're going to do the same thing through social media," he says.