Challenge: Many companies are bothering customers with irrelevant content, rather than “conversing” with them through personalized interactions. Conversing with customers should now encompass key points of engagement starting with what you name products and services, as well as how you structure ongoing conversations based on the customer’s point of view. This requires a whole new way of thinking, but generates significant results.
According to the Maritz Report on Customer Preferences, “consumers overwhelmingly expect their voices to be heard by companies via the web. Not only do they expect companies to be listening, but the study also reveals that 85 percent of consumers are very happy when businesses respond to their public comments in online forums and social media venues.”
Listening and conversing with customers is one of the most important aspects of a successful marketing initiative. According to learnings from ERDM VoC research, it’s marketer’s responsibility to listen to customers and understand their true needs;
IBM has developed a new approach for listening and conversing with companies. It is championed by Denise M. Beckmann, IBM Worldwide, Senior Digital Marketing Lead who had this to share regarding their strategy, “Outside-In is our name for centralizing around the conversations customers are having. It is the starting point for naming products and services to be recognizable and the initial scope for web site information architecture (navigation paths) and content strategy.
The company launched a new cloud web experience, and per Beckmann, “Day one of the launch was tied to social media launches in Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter and “ThoughtsOnCloud” SME blog.
“We feel strongly that access to our experts in social forums is critical to engaging in conversations. Delivering cloud content based upon the existing conversations while simultaneously allowing for questions in forums like LinkedIin and Facebook was key. Quality content immediately brought additional social referrals connecting us to the “Right People,” in a way database marketing never could.”
For more insights on social marketing and the most effective ways of connecting with your audience be sure to check out our exclusive Top 10 Marketing Automation Software report as well as our marketing software resource page.