From the Field: Lithium Technologies and Microsoft Dynamics Partner To Create A Total Community Digital Strategy

Is social CRM dead? Depends on what you consider social CRM to be. With the partnering of Lithium Technologies and Microsoft Dynamics, we will see yet a new and more extensive version of intelligent customer engagements. The partnership includes Microsoft Dynamics and Lithium’s community data, social customer intelligence and analytics.

The expectation of the value of an online community is often associated with cost savings – just as call deflections can reduce the costs of customer service. While many cost savings are possible, there also are six major areas that my research has found through which an online community can contribute to a company’s revenue, profits and margins. The six areas are: increased revenue through new products and services; enhanced communications, marketing and public relations; improved employee engagement; better business cost efficiencies; expanded business value in customer service; and heightened senior leadership and board member business guidance. With this paper, leaders can create a basic blueprint to embark on a discussion about whether to create an online community, the value the community can provide, and how best to lead this key strategic initiative in their organization.

Back to the conference, @jasonlsilva gave a wonderful talk on perception, change and our ability to redefine the meaning of a billionaire to one that helps a billion people. That I think is quite different than most of the start-up wanna-be billionaire’s who are in tech to become the next billionaire. You can see more of the videos from Jason’s show BrainGames on youtube called Shots of Awe. He talked about how the smart phone is the most powerful tool to get people out of poverty. And that it’s important to step back and understand where we are in time with respect to technology. 100 years ago we were electrifying the world – today we are cognifying the world via technology. In cognitive psychology, after a signal reaches the brain, the instant when we are aware of a change in our environment, but it is before the brain is able to identify and codify what the change is. The key is to not only not be afraid of change, but to embrace it with a positive mindset. The book Mindset was recommended by Lithium’s CEO Rob Tarkoff @rtarkoff by Carol Dweck. And lucky me – got a selfie with @jasonlsilva – @jasonlsilva and @drnatalie

Speaking of great customer service, I got this note from Claudia Kardzair & Nena Gadingan who are Guest Care Managers at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis:

Screen Shot 2016-06-09 at 11.11.04 AM

The days of loyalty driven by customer care are here. Some analysts think companies will be competing on customer experience in the future. I believe they always have been. It may not have been as measured as it is now, it may not have been as obvious as now — but customers have been making mental note of their experiences. If it is bad, they will take themselves out of your marketing funnel, regardless of the number of emails, tweets or other communications a brand sends. It is the era of customer experience being the number one metric all CEOs and CFOs need to pay attention to.

And at the conference we got to hear about the wonderful total community results from customers like @USAA and Renee Horne and Mark Nichols from Skype.

Skype Community Results Renee Horne USAA Results

 

 

 

 

 

The keynote on the future of CRM and intelligent customer engagement by Jujhar Singh, General Manager of Microsoft Dynamics CRM, provided a deeper understanding of what the partnership means to customers.  He shared key insights into how businesses can maximize customer data to create more personalized brand experiences. The combination of online communities and the power of CRM is an amazing capability. Rob Tarkoff, president and CEO of Lithium Technologies, explained that with the partnership Lithium will be able to expand what they now offer, the power of Total Community across Microsoft’s intelligence and data infrastructures.

Microsoft Dynamics Integration with Lithium Technologies

By working closely with Microsoft, they together bring a much broader solution to their our customers. The strategic alliance will allow the integration of Lithium social interactions and community data into Microsoft Dynamics CRM. Microsoft Dynamics customers now have a community platform that offers businesses greater insights from the wealth of customer signals embedded in communities.

What does the future of CRM hold? Perhaps it will finally go from it’s former capabilities – a customer contact management system to actually become the more aspirational customer RELATIONSHIP engagement system that enrolls a brand’s customers and never looses sight of what is important to THEM and is always there when their customers need them with the things that are important to them. When companies do this they become truly customer-centric.

@drnatalie petouhoff, VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research

Covering customer-facing applications

 

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JIVE DELIVERS ENRICHED INTERACTIVE INTRANET AND CUSTOMER ADVOCATE SOLUTIONS ACROSS DEVICES

Jive Software, Inc. announced the latest release of its industry-leading internal and external community solutions, including a bold and beautiful redesign of its entire product portfolio. Additional features like peer-to-peer recognition, enhanced SEO, global translation capabilities and updates to Jive’s purpose-driven apps deliver a complete, engaging experience that drives brand affinity for external communities and employee engagement for its interactive intranet offering.

Ofer Ben-David, executive vice president of engineering at Jive, said, “A great user experience is critical in driving adoption, enabling productivity, and providing the ultimate work experience, whether for employees, customers or partners. And just as important, these experiences have to be just as vibrant from a mobile standpoint as from a laptop. Jive is where our customers get their work done, day in and day out. With our latest releases, we are delivering an exceptional experience across every device.”

What Does Jive-in Deliver for Employees? Jive-n interactive intranet release unites, engages and delights employees for better business outcomes. New features optimize work processes by more deeply engaging a company’s most valuable resource – its people.

  • Visually appealing core content: Newly redesigned blog posts delight and draw-in the user at first glance, while ideas and polls make the most popular items pop. In addition, users can now have group images thematically so as to tell a visual story. Aside from content, Jive has also redesigned some of the interaction elements focusing on more effective and thoughtful information rendering
  • Improved calendars: Employees can quickly distinguish between different event types, and see an at-a-glance view as they browse various events in their calendar.
  • The entire intranet in your pocket:With Jive Daily, the flagship mobile app for Jive-n cloud, the entire workforce can create, edit, comment, share, browse, search and vote – all while on-the-go. In addition, Jive’s other purpose-driven mobile apps have also received new updates, including a new user interface for Jive Circle and a new group chat feature for Jive Chime.

“The rapidly changing nature of work has deeply impacted just about every aspect of business – especially when it comes to engaging employees,” said Tim Wike, vice president of communications platforms at Thomson Reuters. “By utilizing Jive to create our own ‘Hub’, we are enabling employees to connect, collaborate and work better together.”

What Does Jive-x Deliver for Customers? Jive-x release transforms prospects into customers and customers into advocates. Jive-x provides a connected digital hub that delivers the right conversations in a fully branded experience.

  • Seamless support ticketing experiences: Jive-x support centers now integrate with ServiceNow’s ticket management system, allowing community members to interact with a support person, edit their ticket, and mark it, all from within the Jive experience. This builds on Jive’s broad portfolio of deeply integrated applications including Zendesk.
  • Enhanced SEO for more reach and engagement: Jive-x customers report that 80% of their traffic comes from organic search, Jive-x community’s communities are even easier to find on Google search with auto-populated Google site link and video sitemap codes.
  • Helpful translation services: Jive-x now enables users to consume and read content in whatever language they choose. With one click, community members can translate content and comments using popular translation services like Google Translate, Microsoft Translator and Lionbridge.

In addition to this release of its internal and external community solutions, Jive also announced WorkHub and new, tailored packages for businesses and vertical industries:

As brands are considering communities, they need to really look at the business results they want to achieve. Communities provide so much more than what has been written about, i.e., Customer Service enhancements. You can find more in the research I recently conducted where you will find details on what else you can begin to expect from online communities.Screen Shot 2016-01-29 at 12.08.35 PM

If you have set up a community, love to hear more about what your experiences are with respect to business results.

@drnatalie Petouhoff, VP and Principal Analyst

Covering software that enhances better customer and employee customers and while enhancing a business’s results.

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Verint® Acquires Telligent® to Extend Online Community Customer Experience

As you might recall, Telligent®, acquired Zimbra, whose purpose was to help organizations enhance support, drive digital transformation and to ensure brand consistency. Today, Verint acquired Telligent®.

The reason for the acquisition? Verint wants to extended its customer engagement optimization portfolio with the addition of a market-leading, enterprise-class community solution. As a result, organizations can uniquely provide actionable intelligence across customers’ omnichannel experiences to include voice, chat, email, web self-service, and now customer and employee communities.

Was This Acquisition a Good Move For Verint? MY POV: This seems like a very good move for Verint, as having a community offering is key to customer care. Communities are a critical part of customer service as well as customer engagement. With the combination of Verint and Telligent, customers will be uniquely positioned to use the actionable intelligence that flows through their communities to help achieve important strategic objectives, including the ability to gain a holistic view of customer service effectiveness, integrate social experiences on the web and support digital transformation initiatives.

How Is Having An Option for Online Communities Useful To Brands? By integrating communities into their customer support and marketing strategies, organizations can lower their service costs, redirecting routine customer queries to their communities for quick answers to frequently asked questions. Through powerful analytics, they also can gain critical insights into buying trends and patterns; evaluate marketing content and campaign effectiveness; enhance social selling; take action on voice of the customer feedback about products, services and overall experiences; and heighten loyalty.

How Do Communities Play a Role In OmniChannel Customer Engagement? As consumers continue to self-serve and seek insights and perspectives from peers, the importance of social communities has grown. With increasing demand for more real-time engagement and personalized service, communities are becoming sought-after and valued sources for customer support. Likewise, marketers are turning to social communities to infuse new digital content, advance social experiences in their online properties, and take action by tracking and analyzing buyer behavior and site activity. There’s not one department that can’t benefit from an online community. And, while that is true, not all departments know the business case. There are huge business reasons for every single department  – customer facing or employee facing – that can benefit from an online community.

Does Your Brand Have a Community?  If not why? What are you waiting for? Want the ROI of online communities beyond customer service? I’m your ROI gal!

@drNatalie VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research

Don’t forget to submit your case study to the Super Nova Awards!!!! NOW!! 

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How Rackspace Creates the Next-Generation Customer Experience

Rackspace chose to implement a global online community powered by Zimbra to provide its customers with a central place to share questions, discuss challenges, rate content and provide feedback about Rackspace’s products. This community focuses on scalable delivery of Rackspace’s signature customer service, educating core customers, increasing customer engagement, and sharing Racker knowledge.

This case study examines Ian White’s implementation and deployment of Zimbra. Ian White won the 2014 SuperNova Award in Next Generation Customer Experience for his leadership of this project.

For more information on the paper, you can find it here.

@drnatalie

VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research, Covering Customer Service and Online Communities

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Why Top Marketers Create Branded Social Networks for Customer Engagement

This report is about Marketers can create social networks to deliver better engagement and business results with branded, owned online communities. n the business environment that dominated the past few decades, successful marketers helped drive business value by demonstrating proficiency in customer acquisition and lead conversion.

In the digital era, however, top marketers help their brands reap the business value of using branded social networks to drive enhanced customer engagement/experience. The business value of branded social networks comes from the simple idea that forward-looking brands should reimagine their businesses as social networks of customers, fans, partners and many stakeholders who share an enthusiasm for the brand and thus provide the essential elements of a top-performing, revenue-generating brand.

This report explores how smart marketers can apply investments in social networks to drive business results. Constellation provides key criteria for marketing leaders to evaluate when selecting a brand-owned social network technology. In addition, Constellation shares six best practices for successful deployment of brand-owned social networks.

For more information about this report, you con find it here.

@drnatalie

VP and Principle Analyst, Covering Social Networking and Online Communities

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Facebook Social Commerce For Small Businesses: Case Study Ettitude

Social Commerce isn’t just for big brands. Facebook commerce or f-commerce can help any size business sell more and monetize their fan based. And big companies can learn from what smaller brands are doing. Ettitude is using Facebook commerce to provide a range of premium and unique eco-friendly products in a quick, convenient, online shopping environment. Because they have such a compelling store, it is a natural for people wanting to share this among their social graph.

Who heads up this great strategy? Green Entrepreneur, Chief Ettitude Officer and Social Media for Positive Social Change Enthusiast, Phoebe Yu

Ettitude is an Australia-based company that sells environmentally friendly products made from bamboo and organic cotton. Ettitude was founded on the simple idea that everyday products, such as clothing, bed linen, towels and stationery, could be made much more responsibly, and contribute to making the world a better place and at the same time, look good and are affordable. Their goal is to give people who care about their family and the earth the ability to easily adopt a greener, more socially responsible lifestyle.

When I was on the Ettitude website to do some research for this book, I was impressed with their use of their traditional website as a “Facebook sharing moment.” Here’s how this works: I was on the About Us page, Figure 1, and I went to highlight some words on the site and a widget popped up and enabled me to share what I highlighted with my Facebook connections.

Ettitude Option to Share Valuable Connect With Fan's Social Networks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 1

This is a brilliant word of mouth strategy to create awareness for the brand and because their marketing message is something people can get behind, i.e., being more socially responsible, the ability to share that website information may even translate into shopping cart dollars.

When you click on the Facebook icon, to share your highlighted information, it asks the customer to allow permission to connect to Facebook and post the share on my Facebook page.

Ettitude's Click to Connect To Facbook To Post the Content

Fans Sharing On Facebook About What They Liked On Ettitude's Website

The ability to allow your customers to find things they like about your company and post to their friends can be a very good PR and Marketing awareness tool. Especially for a company like Ettitude, that has a very share-able brand story around social and personal responsibility.

Phoebe was able to combine exciting content, promotions and contests has helped her online retail store Ettitude create a shopping domino effect that leverages peer–to–peer influence and drives home 10% Facebook purchases every month. She’s done this via:
• Making use of Facebook APIs to enhance the e–commerce offering
• Structuring the Facebook store and installing plug–ins to improve user
experience
• Mirroring traditional e–commerce sites for ease and security
• Combining social campaigns with F–commerce to extract the maximum benefit

Here’s Ettitude’s Facebook Storefront:

You can find more examples like this in Dr. Natalie’s Book: Like My Stuff: How To Monetize Your Facebook Fans With a Facebook Store and learn how to use social commerce for your business!

Dr. Natalie Petouhoff is a social media business and ROI business adviser. You can find her here:

New Book on Facebook: Like My Stuff – How to Monetize Your Facebook Fans With Social Commerce & A Facebook Store
Twitter: @drnatalie
LinkedIn: DrNataliePetouhoff
website/blog: www.drnatalienews.com/blog
YouTube Videos: On ROI of Social Media
G+ : Google Plus posts
White Papers: Social Media ROI

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