The goal was to see who responded, how quickly, and what kind of message was used. In other words, were these companies actually engaging customers in dialogue?
MediaPost summarized the agency's experiment, and the white paper is available from IQ's site.
But if you want to know who the winners were, read on:
HP, UPS, Wells Fargo and GM.
HP, like many multinationals, has a number of Twitter accounts, one for the press, one for internal use only, one for its PC products, and so forth. The PC account has nearly 23,000 followers and is a very active account.
UPS also has an active Twitter presence and more than 4,000 followers. The day I visited, a good number of tweets were in response to customer inquiries about deliveries.
Wells Fargo, well known for its tweeting customer service, has nearly 8,000 followers. Interestingly, it posts the hours that the Twitter account is monitored and refers reporters to a special e-mail address for media info.
GM has a few Twitter accounts. Its GMblogs account has nearly 24,000 followers and a group of four (photos included) responding to tweets (and RTs).
The bottom line, for these companies, is that engaging customers via social media makes bottom-line sense. Marketers, are you using social media to spark dialogue and respond to customers' inquiries, complaints, and comments?