The Retail Social Juice Index Spotlight: Weight Watchers, Hobby Lobby, Blue Nile and Timberland

When Jan. 1 comes, we all recommit to healthy lifestyles, targeting extra weight as enemy No. 1. It’s no coincidence then that on New Year’s Day Weight Watchers leapt above the 200 mark on Media Logic’s Retail Social Juice Index (RSJI), setting it apart from all but the index’s top 10 or 15 most engaging brands.

Even a weight loss brand with 1.1 million fans can’t take engagement for granted — not even during resolution prime time. So what did Weight Watchers do to encourage interaction and remain at the top of the RSJI? It didn’t wait until the last minute to give fans and followers reasons to turn to its Facebook Timeline looking for support and encouragement. Throughout December, Weight Watchers published the final links to its 2012 365 reasons to believe Tumblr and later in the month helped fans recap their 2012 as well as set goals for 2013 via its pic your amazing Facebook app.

In January, with the full attention of re-energized dieters, Weight Watchers has been focusing on the tagline of its newest program: When a weight loss program is built for human nature, you can expect amazing. Weight Watchers is aggregating customer resolutions across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram onto a Pinterest-like board via the #ExpectAmazing hashtag. The user-generated content on the “tagboard” isn’t only conveniently interactive for visitors, but it’s also a truly branded representation of the hard work and aspirations of its fans and followers.

The resulting collection fits well with popular content published by Weight Watchers on its Facebook Timeline, including inspirational quotes and affirmations (one from Oprah Winfrey on Jan. 1 earned over 5,300 shares and 35,000 likes); customer success stories;

company history; and healthy, tempting recipes. For example, Weight Watchers boldly shared its lower-calorie cheesecake recipe on Jan. 3, just a couple days after so many pledged to stick to their diets, showing great confidence in the quality of its recipes and affirming to customers that they won’t feel deprived.

Another high scorer on the RSJI is rallying fans in a dramatically different — and controversial — way. For Hobby Lobby, a battle over health care, religious beliefs and women’s issues is playing out on its wall and comments section, keeping its score over 200.

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