Ten years ago forums gave us a glimpse of the next generation customer engagement tools. Today with social networks customers are more powerful than ever.
The Local Consumer Review Survey suggested that 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations. And when it comes to sales where typical conversion rates can idle between 5% - 30% those kind of trust metrics are invaluable.
Your customer relationship
A good friend who has excelled in the field of sales once told me “people buy from people”. He’s not computer savvy, nor does he run social media accounts or advanced analytics. But that’s because he truly knows and understands his customers, their challenges and businesses.
Technology engagement should aim to produce the same results. The true power of engagement is not in the exposure, product endorsement or improved search engine results. It’s the human connection that is established when people communicate and understand each other.
Case in point. Consider the modern success stories in Microsoft, Google and Apple. These companies are corporate mammoths but they have all skilfully connected at a personal level with their clientele.
Negative versus Positive reviews
It’s all good to write that social media is ‘powerful’ in an article, but what does that really mean? Ultimately, how do you convert information to results? And what role does customer engagement play?
The internet is somewhat faceless and as a result people are less likely to moderate their feedback. The result is that good feedback is often over the top positive and bad feedback is over the top negative.
Interestingly, it is the negative comments that often provide the most value. A disparaging comment about a feature set, cynical comparison to competitor’s products and complaints about unmet expectations provide valuable information for service delivery and product development.
Similarly, every engagement provides an opportunity to better understand the client’s perspective. Much like my friend, the star salesman, knowledge of your market touches on everything from marketing strategy, to sales pitch to product development.
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