Viewing posts by Erik Bovee.

I had a strange epiphany the other day when I was discussing Web design and feedback tools with a friend who just happens to be an excellent designer and has run his own agency for years. I had always thought I knew what he did for a living, but when we began to walk through the design process, and how he spent his day, I realized I knew next to nothing. The discussion started off with some verbiage about Web governance, requirements analysis, blah blah blah, and then I asked, point blank:

‘No, I really just want to know what you do all day. Really, minute-by-minute, what does your job look like?’

Customer Communities for Dummies by Wendy LeaProbably the most sensible way to leverage screenshot functionality is in building customer communities. Social media best practice is moving toward proactively managed enterprise communities that benefit from many of the features of traditional, consumer social media (and also enjoy many enhancements). Consumers appreciate your Facebook page, and might be willing to hit ‘like’ every now and then, but they don’t always appreciate discussions from their brand of dish soap popping up on their private wall.

Managed customer communities are proven to lower customer support costs. Customers develop a large repository of FAQ and support material that is easily managed and analyzed through a platform such as Get Satisfaction. An excellent primer in customer community building was written by Get Satisfaction’s CEO, Wendy Lea, who has been a great advocate for the evolution of enterprise social media away from the fuzzy metrics of the FB page, and toward active, managed communities with a measurable impact on ROI.

It’s taken a while for enterprises to realize how best to use social media. Sales metrics, return on marketing investment and ROI don’t often synchronize well with the vocabulary of the early 2010’s social media expert, whose ‘share of voice’, ‘engagement’, and ‘nurturing advocacy’ make smoke come out of the ears of 90% of CFOs.

social media and customer service costs

Here is an example of where things can get weird. My good friend Media Czar (coincidentally also one of the greatest social media and marketing minds of his generation) sums it up nicely in his blog ‘The Magic Bean Lab’. Media Czar points out that most of the metrics and ideas used to describe the effectiveness of social media don’t mean anything. But there are two important measures that don’t often feature prominently enough in any enterprise social media conversation: reducing costs, and increasing sales.

I’m going to focus on reducing costs, because that’s what I know most about.