Thursday, 30 July 2009

Seth on Social Networking - 2 minutes of realism in hours of hype

As always, Seth brings it back to basics; it's not about numbers (volume) it's about the value exchange, which paradoxically means it actually is about the numbers (dollar value earned though relationships built on value exchange).

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

My name is Robin and I am a shopaholic

My name is Robin and I am a shopaholic.
I have a weakness for Thomas Pink shirts; this is a company built on a great product and customer service.

In fact it's hard to walk past any of their airport outlets without finding a reason to add something stripy in a 17.5" collar to my hand-baggage.

The real test of a company comes when there's a problem; I recently ordered black'n pink number in the sale that (unusually) happened to be in my size.

One week later into the inbox pops an 'oops' email saying that they did not in fact have this item. Slightly annoyed to see it still advertised in their online store I called Pink to mention this (yes they gave me a name and a number).

The result? They tracked down a shirt an even offered to amend the sleeve length FOC.

Advocacy result? I would have forgiven them anyway however I'm even more of a Thomas Pink advocate thanks to Natasha D'Aranjo in their customer service/web team.

My name is Robin and I'm a shopaholic, it's been one week since my last shirt purchase...

Wednesday, 15 July 2009

Use power wisely, young Skywalker

I am a big fan of Steven Fry and his tweets, so are 655280 others making him one of the true twitterati. Imagine my shock when a few days ago I found myself confronted by a negative tweet from Steven concerning one of our clients.

We decided that our client should know so a colleague passed the information to the relevant team and we were pleased to see they immediately swung into action to see if there was anything they could to to help out what was a clearly disgruntled customer.

Less than an hour later Steven came back with the tweet 'Oh the power of Twitter. Moan about a product & their "communications" people are in touch offering to help. Feel like a big bully now.'

Followed by 'Yes deeply aware I'm in privileged position: a tweet for or against something, with so many followers... Use power wisely, young Skywalker'

This was a really interesting experience; the blogosphere is full of advocates and detractors; in the consumer space it's an easy and obvious customer reference linkage; also fairly intuitive for SMB.

Enterprise is embracing the 'Buzz' (brand and vanity - lots of cool charts and maps) yet not yet clearly associating social media with 'Business' i.e hard numbers worth investing in.

When so much of Enterprise social media is viewed as just another 'push' opportunity, or a reactive damage control exercise, it's no wonder that 'social media monitoring' seems set to be one of the top occupations for this year's batch of university interns.

I think it has a place, clearly online social networks will influence, key recognised influencers create consideration but it's still peers, family and colleagues that drive preference and the decision to purchase.