The Social Consumer – An Interview WIth Mike Krigsman and Vala Afshar at the NMX Conference

I had the opportunity to interview Mike Krigsman and Vala Afshar at the NMX Conference about their views on the intersection of the social consumer and businesses. What do businesses need to understand about the social consumer? What mistakes are they making? And what does it look like when business do a great job of interacting with the social consumer. These two experts share their insights with me.

About the interviewees:
Vala is the Chief Customer Officer and CMO at Enterasys which is a Siemens Enterprise company. A critical component of Siemens Enterprise Communications, Enterasys answers the challenge, bringing a new level of intelligence to IT, with solutions that include wired and wireless network infrastructure, advanced security, and network management. He is also an author, Inventor, Blogger and his posts can be see at: huffingtonpost.com/vala-afshar/

Vala can be found on twitter at: @ValaAfshar

Mike Krigsman provides strategy consulting, writes about CIO issues and the cloud for ZDNet and contributes to the Wall Street Journal.
Mike can be found on Twitter at @mkrigsman

At Social Business Builders,
we work with brands & software companies to deliver increased revenue and decreased costs.
Our Motto? Learn. Share. Grow!

@DrNatalie L. Petouhoff
310-919-8467

Want to see how to get an ROI from Social Media? Check out these fun videos:
Video 1: Building the Business Case for Social Media
Video 2: How to Measure the ROI of Social Media
Video 3: How Social Media Benefits the Whole Company

Here’s My book on How Businesses can Drive Sales on Facebook: Like My Stuff: How To Monetize Your Facebook Fans

Want to get more info on the business use of social media? Connect with me here:
Twitter:
 @drnatalie
LinkedIn: DrNataliePetouhoff
G+ : Google Plus posts
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/natalie.petouhoff

Enhanced by Zemanta
Share

Lithium Technologies Positioned in the “Leaders” Quadrant of the Magic Quadrant for Social CRM

Lithium was recognized by Gartner, Inc. in the Leaders Quadrant of the Social CRM Magic Quadrant. Here’s the links to the press release: Lithium Press Release. The Gartner Social CRM Magic is an annual report tracks trends in the Social CRM market and analyzes key market qualities. Lithium’s inclusion in the Magic Quadrant is based on Gartner’s evaluation of the company’s ability to execute on social strategy and overarching vision. Lithium is the only non-public company among the leaders and contenders in this space. 

Rob Tarkoff, CEO of Lithium Technologies said, “We believe Lithium’s recognition in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Social CRM is exemplary of the exciting company momentum seen through providing competitive solutions for our clients and globally expanding our customer base. We consider the acknowledgment reflective of our leading commitment to make brands successful with the social customer experience to optimize Social CRM strategy and exceed business goals.”

Image representing Lithium Technologies as dep...

Image via CrunchBase

In addition, the Wall Street Journal named its third annual ranking of the top 50 start-ups in the U.S. backed by venture capitalists. http://on.wsj.com/ScG7ij Lithium was named part of the Next Big Thing.

In looking at the Gartner Magic Quadrant, I wonder how easy it is to use it to choose software to build a social enterprise. Having been an analyst, I know how difficult it is to keep track of all the regular vendors- for instance, I covered CRM – Marketing, Sales and Service software and then added social media software as applied to those disciplines. Covering 100 or more vendors is nearly impossible for any human being. On the other hand, I wonder how useful it is to have a report that has many software types that are not apples to apples comparisons.

The Gartner Social CRM Magic Quadrant has received criticism. My colleague, said it very well on his blog, “I have the highest respect for the authors and contributors to the recently released Gartner Magic Quadrant for Social CRM. I am disagreeing with the ideas and concepts, not people. I am more troubled that what was published is so off the mark, as it leads to further confusion in an already confused space. This is not to say that the companies included in various locations are right or wrong either, it is simply the apples to oranges comparison of ‘things’.

I don’t mean to say that Lithium’s placement in the Social CRM Magic Quadrant isn’t well deserved. It is.

For me, what I am wondering about and pondering questions around – is how to make sense of all the content and information- sometimes misinformation about software, especially when it comes to social software. Maybe one strategy is to write a software analysis document that is not very clear or one that does not completely covers the whole landscape (which is not possible) or one that doesn’t have apples to apples comparisons – with respect to building a social enterprise– so that people need to call you and get help? Could that be part of the reasoning?

What I do know is that there are so many vendors in social media software that my clients have a very tough time sorting through vendors – their features, functions and benefits and then making a short list and then choosing and implementing software — AND to then use the software to reach business results…

What’s your thoughts on figuring out the social media software landscape?

About Lithium

Lithium helps companies unlock the passion of their customers. Lithium software powers amazing Social Customer Experiences for more than 400 iconic brands including AT&T, BT, Best Buy, Sephora, Skype and Telstra.  Lithium helps companies grow brand advocacy, drive sales, reduce costs and accelerate innovation to create a brand nation that redefines the customer experience. For more information, visit lithium.com, or connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and our own brand nation–the Lithosphere. Lithium is privately held with corporate headquarters in Emeryville, Calif. and offices in Europe, Asia and Australia.

Download Complimentary Copy
A complimentary copy of the Magic Quadrant report here.

The “Magic Quadrant for Social CRM” was written by Adam Sarner, Ed Thompson, Jenny Sussin, Nikos Drakos, Michael Maoz, Jim Davies, Jeffrey Mann — September 27, 2012.

Learn. Share. Grow!
@DrNatalie L. Petouhoff

For more info on my work:
Ebook
:Social Media ROI

Social Media ROI YouTube Videos:
Video 1: Building the Business Case for Social Media
Video 2: How to Measure the ROI of Social Media

Video 3: How Social Media Benefits the Whole Company

Book on Monetizing Facebook: Like My Stuff: How To Monetize Your Facebook Fans

Let’s Connect here:
Twitter:
@drnatalie
LinkedIn: DrNataliePetouhoff
G+ : Google Plus posts

Enhanced by Zemanta
Share

Could Social Media Monitoring Have Saved Netflix & Blockbuster from Themselves?

Word Cloud On Netflix from Social Media Monitoring

I teamed up with my friend Jennifer Tyler, @JenHowell4, at Sysomos and we did a little social media monitoring on the Netflix situation. One of the goals of this blog post is to show that data can be used to tell a story. When you tell a story, the audience listens.

A Cause for Pause I hope that this case study gives every CEO, CMO… a cause for pause — to consider social media as well as social media monitoring –to give it a real, hard consideration. Not just because you want to avoid risk, but because you can begin to see that there is mission critical, real-time data that you can use in your business. And so now to our story, aided by the social media monitoring data.

Blockbuster’s Customers Didn’t Like the Delivery System Because It Involved Late Fees If we examine what was being said about Blockbuster in social media prior to bankruptcy, the negative conversation was around late fees. Clearly there was something not working about the delivery of movies. Customers had to come in, rent the DVD and remember to return them on time. Or else the “evil” late fees would consume their positivity around the brand.

But was Blockbuster listening? It doesn’t appear that they were “hearing” the feedback, at least not enough to shift their business model. Here’s a word cloud that can be generated via social media monitoring. It tells you what was being said about Blockbuster in social media. You can clearly see- in the word cloud- that the main jist of the conversation was about late fees. (In word clouds, the larger the words, the more times they are mentioned in social media.)

Social Media Monitoring Word Cloud on Blockbuster

If Blockbuster was using social media monitoring, they could have seen that their customer sentiment was not positive. They could have clicked on the red part of the pie chart to understand what customer’s were upset about. By clicking on the graph they could choose to look at tweets, at blog posts, etc… that pertain to that negative sentiment.

Blockbuster Sentiment Chart in 2010

But Blockbuster didn’t listen — or at least they didn’t hear and shift their business and had to file bankruptcy on Sept 23, 2010. You can see in the word cloud about Blockbuster’s bankruptcy, that Netflix is showing up in the conversation. Clearly something to pay attention to — when the word cloud is supposed to be about your business and your competitor is showing up in the same cloud! YIKES!

Blockbuster Word Cloud Sept 23 1010 Bankruptcy

Social media monitoring can show you what is being said about your company. Below are clips that represent blog posts in social media about Blockbuster’s bankruptcy.

Conversations on the web about Blockbuster's Bankruptcy

And here’s customer sentiment around Blockbuster’s bankruptcy in tweets:

Blockbuster Twitter Conversations About the Bankruptcy

July 12, 2011 Flash Forward to July 12, 2011. Was Netflix listening to their customers? If you look at the graph at the top left hand side, you see a yellow-ish curve. It is pretty much the same height until July 12, 2011.

What you can do in social media monitoring is to click on the peak and then see what that is attributed to. In the upper, right hand corner, you can see the blog post by Netflix’s CEO Reed Hastings is what gave rise to the spike in social media and online conversations. The screenshot is of the Facebook post with a link to the CEO’s blog post. There are 81,789 comments. Out of those comments, there are 1,429 Likes. That’s about 1.7% positive responses.

If we do a word cloud on the same peak, we can see what the main topics are. That’s the group of words to the lower right. The key words are: Netflix, price, hike, streaming, dear…. It’s clear what the crowd is upset about. If we look at the lower left screen grab, you can see a buzz graph. The buzz graph tells you what words are being used in association with other words and the thicker the line, the more prominent is the use of the word. Those words are: increase, stream and redbox…

Social Media Monitoring Data on Netflix July 12 2011 Price Hike/ Change

Here’s the actual blog post by Hastings— note that he ends the post with telling customers that they can cancel their services at any time.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings Blog Post July 12 2011, With Invitation To Cancel Customer Subscriptions

Here’s some of the thousands of comments to the CEO’s posts, most all negative, about the changes to the Netflix services:

Customers Reaction to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings Blog Post July 12 2011

Despite the >23,000 negative comments on the blog on July 12, 2011, Netflix sent out a notice on the price hike on Sept 19th, 2011. What happens when you don’t listen or hear & you act without considering what customers think, feel and know? Customers were outraged… and the press picked up the coverage… If for no other reason than the press looks to social media for stories, companies MUST start taking social media seriously.

Press That Covered Netflix Price Change and Splitting Up the Company

And here’s some of the titles of the articles below. Companies work very hard to get coverage like this. Unfortunately, it wasn’t positive coverage.

Titles of Articles About Netflix

Here’s a sample of the tweets about Qwikster (Netflix’s new offering) – Sept 19th, 2011.

Sample of Tweets About Netflix Qwikster

And the three top words in the Buzz Graph?

Reed
• Hastings
• Apologize
 

Buzz Graph on Netflix CEO Reed Hastings

Here’s Doug Gross’s article, from CNN Tech and The Daily Dog’s Report on Netflix:

 

Daily Dog's Story on Reed Hastings and Netflix

And Tom Loftus’s Wall Street Journal story on Netflix and Reed Hastings:

 

Wall Street Journal's Story on Netflix's CEO Reed Hastings

 

And more stories from some great journalists:  

, Mashable: Netflix’s @Qwikster Problem: Twitter Account Controlled by Weed-Smoking Elmo  

Ben Fritz, LATimes: Netflix CEO admits ‘arrogance,’ renames disc business Qwikster  NPR: Netflix’ News: Signal Of DVD’s Demise?

Scott Cleland, Forbes: Netflix Crushes Its Own Momentum

Matt Burns, TechCrunch: Netflix Stock Erases 12 Months Of Massive Growth, Crashes Through 52 Week Low

Mike Issac, WIRED: Meet Qwikster: Netflix Spins Off Discs-By-Mail from Streaming Video

Austin Carr, FastCompany: Netflix: What We’ve Got Here Is A Failure To Communicate

What was interesting is that I checked Blockbuster’s twitter handle… and guess what I saw? Blockbuster is NOW listening! They are offering 1 year subscription to the people who provide the best reason for leaving NetFlix:

 

 

Blockbuster is listening now!!!

What makes this whole situation even worse, like Stan at Mashable said… Netflix didn’t even check the twitter handle– @Qwikster. Someone else has it. Here is one of his typical tweets. It’s not “on brand” with Netflix and Netflix doesn’t own the twitter handle. (Note to companies- before you pick the name of a new company, go to Twitter and check to see if the name is available!!)

 

Qwikster Tweets

Deming On Steroids Maybe its good to listen to your customers. Deming said it years ago. Listen to your customers and employees. Take the feedback and integrate it into your company. What we have in social media is Deming on steroids. We have feedback that is honest, genuine, and transparent. What’s worse is that, like cave paintings, it is something that will last forever for whomever is searching to find it.

Did Blockbuster cross the chasm of it’s time? No. It’s customers were saying, “We want a different delivery system where we don’t get dinged for late fees.” It didn’t shift with the changes in the marketplace. Did Netflix take their spot. You bet. Did Netflix get arrogant? One would think that after >87,000 comments or 24,000 comments, that if the customer’s weren’t good with what was being proposed, and Netflix went ahead anyways, yes, it appears so.

What could Netflix have done better? Ask the customers what they think before making a declaration. Explain that to keep the company profitable and to keep delivering the streaming services, that there might need to be some changes. Ask, don’t tell is the VERY FIRST things good leaders learn in and out of business school. Asking vs telling would be a paradigm shift for most CEOs.

Netflix announced the deal with Facebook and Michael Drobac, director of Government Relations at Netflix is asking customers to help bring Facebook Sharing to the US. Has Hastings done so much damage that fans and customers will not rise to help? Did the apologies and explanations by Hastings help or hurt the company? Do you think Hastings understands what he did wrong?  Todd Wasserman of Mashable.com reported rumors of Blockbuster to launch a Netflix rival. Is it too late for Netflix?

A Social Media Teaching Moment What can we learn from this? Call it a “teaching moment.” We can conclude that’s its important to listen to our customers. It’s important that executives listen to customers and use that feedback to make good decisions. The information about a company that is contained in social media is real-time and real relevant. It’s your customers, your advocates, your influencers, your ambassadors, the press and your nay-sayers giving you their point of view. And it lives forever, it can go viral and change not only what customer’s think but also what investors think, as well as stock prices. Social media is clearly a medium, that if you don’t understand it, it can get you!

So where is your company in the adoption of social media? If it’s stuck, then perhaps consider social media monitoring. It will give you:

  • A benchmark on where your sentiment and share of voice is- especially compared to your competitors
  • Assurances that what you are doing is working; fair warning when it isn’t
  • Mission critical data to adjust your products and service
  • Data to help create a business case for the decisions you are making
  • And give you data that can be used to calculate social media ROI.

Where is Social Media Going? Many people are asking me what’s the next phase in social media? They’ve got their Facebook and Twitter handle and they are posting. They have somewhat of a content strategy and interaction plan. And they are trying to drive customers through a marketing funnel and help customers with their customer service issues.

The Third WAVE of Social Media Adoption The next phase, and maybe it should be one of the first phases, is to do social media monitoring. Why? A good case study in this is re: Netflix and Blockbuster situation. Where we are in the social media lifecycle is the Third Wave. Wave One was lead by the Innnovators. Wave Two was championed by the Early Adopters.

The Social Media Adoption Curve by Dr Natalie Petouhoff

For social media to become the business-changing paradigm shift that it can be, it must win over the Early Majority. If that happens, then the business world would be entering WAVE Three, in the Social Media Adoption Curve. (I adopted Geoffrey Moore’s and Roger’s Diffusion Theory thought leadership around this concept.)

So what will it take to get the majority of the business world to buy into social media? The Early Majority are pragmatists. They want assurances that what they are going to do, is gonna work. They want business cases and they’d love to see ROI. One of the ways to show companies that social media matters is all of the above. And one of the best ways to create a business case is to do a little social media monitoring. At least that’s my take!

Don't do the Ostrich

Take your head out of the sand and cross the chasm

What’s your take on where business is in the social media adoption process?
Does this type of social media monitoring data make it easier to understand why someone should invest in social media? Love to hear your thoughts!

The Social Media Adoption Chasm - Don't Fall Into The Gap

@drnatalie Learn. Share. Grow!

Here’s more information to that might help you:
A link to the powerpoint presentation on slideshare: http://www.slideshare.net/doctornatalie/social-media-breakfast-club-and-sysomos-presentation-sept-22-drnatalie

Link to my Social Media ROI videos: http://www.drnatalienews.com/blog/did-u-see-the-videos-on-the-roi-of-social-media

Link to my white papers on the ROI of Social Media: http://www.drnatalienews.com/blog/roi-of-social-media-white-papers-by-dr-natalie-petouhoff

 


 

 

 

Share