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BestBuy CSR Wisdom = Social Media

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I am so glad I was made aware of this video today!

What BestBuy has achieved is what majority of brands are struggling to understand and probably not brave enough to embrace. It’s what I call openness:

  • give a chance to everyone in your company to speak up,
  • make everyone within your company a stakeholder,
  • everyone should be involved,
  • let your employees feel they have a high level of impact into your business development

I have posted a link to the video below this paragraph for all of you to go and watch. It’s 30 minutes long, but if you have a bit of time it’s an incredible insight into how brands should adapt their business models to open up to their employees, with the ultimate objective to retain them for as long as possible, make the business a better place for  your customers to come back to, and last but not least, for your own company to constantly develop thanks to the people who make it such a good place…. It’s not rocket science, BUT STILL, I have no idea why only merely few companies have got it right so far!

Best Buy CEO Brad Anderson in conversation with Peter Hirshberg at Google Zeitgeist from peter hirshberg on Vimeo.

I am not anywhere close to being a business consultant, however I humbly reckon it’s part of an overall ‘Corporate Social Responsability’ vision which has a strong potential to let your business stand out from the others.

The only reason why I am giving the spotlight to BestBuy is because what they are doing is exactly what brands should also be doing with their customers!

BestBuy has launched an internal social network for their over 3000 employees across the US by the name of BlueShirtNation, an internal WIKI, a TradeTrending tool and a Product Development Forum. Within these spaces, employees are constantly coming up with new ideas, talking directly to the managers, getting funded by the company to take interesting concepts one step further, connect with each other from different stores etc… allowing a fully personal experience where they can feel meaningful to the company

That is exactly what customers want!

  • They want to feel listened
  • They want to get involved
  • They want to be meaningful to the eyes of your brand

I would be extremely surprised if BestBuy doesnt open such tools to their customers. People could add even more ideas to what BestBuy employees have, it could actually generate even more conversations between employees and consumers to drive better service and more product development.

Also, at the moment they are talking about a mobile device which would allow customers to review their products right there at the moment of consideration/purchase. A custom software would allow reading a product barcode and let you retrieve all the reviews from the BestBuy online community website straight onto your mobile screen.

The ultimate point is : how would your customer feel through such an awesome shopping experience?

I could only say – satisfied? clear about his choice? glad about listening to what other people like him have to say about the product? More willing to buy?

As a brand, if you start engaging with your existing and potential users online, through building and maintaining open and meaningful conversations you might get the same results! Am I right?

Answers on a postcard please!?

E

PS

The slideshare below explains in more details their strategy

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When Brands Listen

shapeimage_3-5Following a great blog-entry by Jamie yesterday, I decided to give my voice on this subject


It’s been quite a while now that the blogosphere has been rather influential in understanding trends, efficient in creating discussions between users and interesting enough to generate reactions. I am sure we can all think about campaigns or brands’ activities online which have generated such things and created a massive buzz…


However, only recently brands have started to become truly aware that what before was a ‘niche audience’ is now a ‘mainstream voice’ to hardly ignore.


We had so many examples in the past few weeks on how brands have started listening to their consumers online, giving a special attention to us bloggers out there, setting remarkable examples on how brands should really behave towards us consumers.


It is fairly basic knowledge that through listening to the consumer companies learn what product and/or service aspects drive purchasing decisions.


Online marketing gained greater effectiveness thanks to the lack of interactivity that display offline media used to offer, which to certain extent still does today!


We initially started to record click-through-rates and conversions; then we got to measure interaction rates within the elements of a rich media ad; now, we can easily read what our consumers think about us and our products in real time… as simple as that!


Brands nowadays need to understand that users find so much easier leaving short comments on forums and blogs than spending hours of their time to go through customer service or write an angry email which never gets replied.


As mentioned in Jamie’s blog-entry, brands do need to engage their users into a two-way communication. Now I wonder, what is better than monitoring the influential blogosphere for your brand, listen to what people are saying about it and behave with them accordingly?


It doesn’t take much does it?

Today I was reading a brilliant post by Jonathan Hopkins where he’s writing about his experience with Vodafone. The blog post is called “Vodafone is Listening” which is definitely worth checking out. Jonathan had written a very long and angry post about the recent crappy experience he’d had with Vodafone concerning using mobile broadbrand abroad.

The post included 10 fairly-direct accusations to Vodafone from Jonathan who was obviously disappointed by the whole experience after receiving a bill of nearly US $3,000

Astonishingly, after 4 days from the complaint, a certain Gemma from Vodafone replied to his blog entry through the comments’ space (and also emailing him directly) with one of the longest replies I’ve ever seen on a blog … sorting out all the issues for Mr. Hopkins

This is what Jonathan then replied – “I really appreciate the fact that you (Gemma) have responded  to my post and as such feel a lot warmer to Vodafone now. You’ve put a human face on things and made me feel like my whinge was just a little bit worthwhile.”


That’s exactly what every brand should be doing and create those ever-lasting relationships with their consumers, retaining their loyalty and constantly let them feel part of the brand

Companies like Vodafone, as in this case, together with EA and Becks mentioned in Jamie’s entry, are definitely some of the ones who get my respect for simply ‘listenting’ the way it should be done…

Who is next?

E./

 
2 Comments

Posted by on October 15, 2008 in Thought Piece

 

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