A couple of years ago, a LSE study called advocacy drives growth showed that a 1% reduction in negative word of mouth resulted in £24.8 million additional revenues. Also, a 2% reduction in negative word of mouth correlated with just under 1% growth of the company.
With all this talk about Social Media Marketing, I wonder if actually Social Media is best used for Customer Service (as Dell have been doing well after their previous hell – that’s a lot of rhymes) rather than blogger outreach of the PR kind. Just because it is called Media doesn’t mean it is an advertising channel.
Most of the time advertising agencies just want to use Social Media as a channel to promote the microsite that they are building. Instead, the opportunity is really in getting to customers when they are just beginning to get frustrated and engaging with them in an open social way in their spaces before they have really felt the need to complain. Even better is energizing existing customers to become an army of volunteers who will answer questions for behalf of the company.
And then when it comes to marketing communications, a thorough understanding of the actual consumer issues should help identify what needs to be communicated. People are discussing brands online, so this should be the bedrock on which any advertising is based. Most of the time it is not, and instead we are treated to rather random insights which have no connection to creative which makes for ineffective advertising. Great advertising should be rooted in known consumer wants and needs, should have KUDOS and should be made with propogation in mind.
But at the very least, I wonder how many calls to customer service centres are for similar problems that could have been solved pro-actively?