Customers Rock!

A blog about customers, their experiences, and how businesses can make sure their customer experiences rock!

Social Media and Customer Retention

Posted by Becky Carroll on February 12, 2008

ducks.jpg There is a lot of conversation going on about social media.  Companies are asking questions – should I create a corporate blog?  What can I do to get more people to our MySpace/Facebook page?  What works, and what doesn’t?

Matt Dickman has a great post on how to use social media in customer service using Twitter.   I met someone from Twitter at the Customer Service is the New Marketing conference last week, and many companies are starting to use it in their customer service.  Here is the overview of Matt’s take on it for anyone considering the use of this tool:

“Twitter is the ultimate customer service tool. It’s live, instantaneous, community driven, open, two-way and multi-way, unfiltered and predictive. This is, however, only for the most advanced, customer-forward companies to attempt to use. You definitely need a black belt in customer service ninja techniques to do this well.”

Should companies use social media as a marketing tool for customers?  Greg Verdino, in his blog post called “Is your brand a social media loozr?”, shares an insightful quote from Seana Mulcahy

“Social media marketing is not just throwing up a page on MySpace, Facebook or any other social media site for that matter. You’ve seen some of the biggest U.S. agencies do that for their clients over the past year or so. These folks have patted themselves on the back for being trailblazers.

Newsflash: That is not trailblazing, that is ignorant.”

Like Greg, I have also long stated that social media should be one more way in which a company reaches out to engage with its customers.  It should not necessarily replace current communication channels, but it should be incorporated into them based on how your customers like to respond.  If they are online a lot, social media might be a good way to interact with them, especially if they are already using it in their personal lives.  How do you know?  Ask them! 

Have Any Good Examples?

Along those lines, I am asking you, my readers, for some input.  I am preparing a talk (unpaid) for my local chapter of the DMA, and I am looking for some examples of companies who have successfully used social media/marketing techniques to keep customers engaged.  I would like to know the name of the company, whether it’s customers are businesses or consumers, a link or screenshot of the social media used, and how it is helping customer retention.  If you are a customer of a company who does a great job with this, or a company that is seeing good results, please either email me, becky at petraconsultinggroup.com, or leave me a comment on this post.

Thanks – I will report back what I find out to all of you!

(Photo credit: duck to duck to duck… originally uploaded by A Different Perspective)

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4 Responses to “Social Media and Customer Retention”

  1. Becky — I’m glad you liked the post, thank you for linking over. I really do think that Twitter (and Micromedia in general) have a lot of untapped potential. It’s up to us to align it with the strategy and the audience to make it take hold and provide 2-way value.

  2. Matt, you are welcome! Taking advantage of new technology to connect with our customers helps us not only to do some really cool things, but it can also force us to re-think our customer strategy and audience. More two-way, less preaching!

  3. How interesting! Twitter for customer service. Huh. Love to see the case study on that one.

    I’ve been trying to figure out how to incorporate twitter here at our company. I just recently launched our (Its very bare bones right now) new social news room (http://news.paloalto.com/ and http://social.paloalto.com/) and thought putting twitter on the sidebar for product updates would be a good use of that platform.

    There are so many tools out there, the trick is finding the ones that will make the most sense with your customer and your message.

  4. Chelle,

    Using Twitter for product or service updates is definitely a great way to serve up info for tech-friendly customers. Just ask them if they would be interested in using it, and if the answer is YES, go for it! Let us know how it works out.

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