In my business, we look for champions. When we set out on social channels, where we discuss the issues affecting our clients and attempt to rally a community around them, we are looking for the person who will do more than just click the “like” button. We’re looking for the person who will click the like button, and then visit our advocacy website, and then post about it on their blog, and then write a letter to their legislator, and then tell ten friends that they should too.
One of the ways we attempt to achieve this goal is through building strong communities. Providing those who are most interested in and concerned about the issues affecting our clients a platform and opportunity to discuss and advocate. The same concept can be applied to any of the other disciplines that utilize social media strategies—marketing, public relations, advertising, etc.
I found Jason Falls’ case study of a company examining the strength of their customer relationships truly interesting for this reason—is social media the go-to platform for finding champions? Read on.
The Value of Social Customers is Different – Jason Falls – This is a really interesting case study about the power of fostering relationships with customers reaching your brand through social channels. I also appreciate that Jason is quick to point out that you shouldn’t single out social customers at the expense of your others. “Social media customers aren’t more valuable. Every customer is. The company investing the time to connect and nurture those relationships is what’s more valuable. The point of this exercise was not to say that CareOne should allow the social media team to keep doing what they do because they have higher conversion rates while the rest of the company just churns out sausages as usual. The point is that when your company fosters a relationship with customers, then each customer … every single one of them … has the potential to become more valuable in dollar figures and relationship metrics to your company.”
Social Media Breakups – Mitch Joel – What do brands and companies really mean when they say they want to form “relationships” with their customers? And can they drive customers away with oversaturation on social channels just as quickly as the relationship is formed? Mitch has some good insight from new studies showing Facebook users may break up with brands that are too clingy. “If another human being shows interest in you, the last thing you should do – if you’re really trying to build a long-term relationship with them – is to smother them (physically, emotionally and verbally). The best of relationships take time (slow and steady)… and that’s the major challenge: brands (and Marketers) just can’t help themselves. The moment they see something working, they see it like a stuffed sack of potatoes that they just can’t help but keep stuffing until it bursts.”
Change Innovation – Valeria Maltoni – Taking inspiration from Bill Taylor’s ChangeThis manifesto, Valeria offers up some good advice on standing out in the crowd when everyone is focused on, in Bill’s words, “me too thinking”. One area she highlights is particularly important, in that no company should try to jump on something shiny and new without first perfecting their older way of thinking. “Importing off-the-shelf strategies devised by outside experts consumed with what’s new misses the core of what’s right. Instead, I do believe that reinforcing good habits and adopting new habits that build on those, yet still take into account the realities of the business and its ecosystem, is the way to go.”
Diary of a Telecommuter – Doug Haslam – I am not a telecommuter, and actually am not sure how I’d fare if given the opportunity to turn up to work in my pajamas each day. I think I might devolve somehow, turning rapidly into a complete hobo with each passing day. Yet I still envy those who work from home, and if I ever had a professional opportunity that involved it, I might just try it out. Doug’s thoughts after a year of telecommuiting, highlight the importance of social media for missed in-office discussions. “At an office, getting up and gathering at the “water cooler” (whether or not it is actually a water cooler) is not (just) a waste of time, it’s a vital socialization component that helps productivity by fostering workplace relationships, informal brainstorming, and simply clearing minds. At home? I do find yelling at my printer sometimes yields (imaginary) results. However, tools like Facebook, Twitter and Yammer are good for trading information, questions and quips with company and industry colleagues. It’s not face-to-face, but it is social and intellectual stimulation.”