This article forms part of a study on social media usage amongst FTSE 100 companies.
Each company in the FTSE 100 index was reviewed on its usage of such social media tools as RSS feeds*, blogs, online video, podcasts and social media platforms like Flickr and Facebook on its main website and on occasion, on websites of well-known subsidiary companies.
*RSS feeds are a simple way of delivering fresh versions of a website’s content to online readers automatically.
According to the Guardian.co.uk Business Glossary:
“The FTSE 100 index comprises the 100 most highly capitalised blue chip companies on the London Stock Exchange, representing approximately 81% of the UK market.”
Here’s how the Gold producer, African Barrick Gold (ABG.L) stacked up.
|FTSE 100 Company||RSS||Podcast||Blog||Online Video||Audio||Facebook, Flickr, etc|
|African Barrick Gold||No||No||No||No||No||No|
Online Video/Webcasts: No
Usage of Social Media platforms: No
(Flickr, Facebook, YouTube, del.icio.us, Twitter, Digg etc
According to Google Finance
“African Barrick Gold plc (ABG) is a UK based company, with operations including exploration and development to mine construction and operation. It has four gold producing mines all based in northwest Tanzania, along with several principal exploration prospects at various stages of development. As of December 31, 2009, ABG has produced approximately 4.3 million ounces of gold.”
My pre-evaluation expectation of how the company will fare:
Due to the nature of the business, there is probably little content to engage the average consumer. I’m expecting a corporate site with a section that delivers the usual investor information and news.
African Barrick Gold opens up as a plain site, with four images looping through in a AJAX-powered slide show. Nothing particularly stands out on this site. Its predominantly black text on a white background with a few accents of gold.
There is no attempt to use social media or multimedia platforms to deliver and distribute information. Under the Investors tab which is the last tab in the right on the main site, it was surprising not to find a real time share price update, a minimum to expect when comparing to other FTSE 100 sites.
A Downloads section is offered, but only contains written documents in a pdf format. There is no RSS feed or even a direct emailing service to subscribe to. I’m sure investors would appreciate this service to keep up to date with news and financial reports from ABG.
When it comes to delivering corporate information to investors ABG could be doing a lot more!
- Provide RSS Feeds - to deliver news, press releases and financial information. This would be an instant improvement on current practice.
- Use Flash Video - there is a multitude of information about ABG in text form on the website. A corporate video giving background information and showing the mining sites would give you a real feel and understanding of the business.
What do you think?
Are you a customer, employee, shareholder or stakeholder of African Barrick Gold? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this review. What would you like to see African Barrick Gold doing more of in terms of social media? More online video? A CEO blog, perhaps?
Share your thoughts in the comments!
Need any help?
Do you work for African Barrick Gold and want some insight into some of the ideas published here?
Or perhaps you look after marketing for African Barrick Gold and would like a quick chat about putting some of those recommendations into practice. Contact us.
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