This week, our event on social media and how it is affecting customer service takes place at the Berkeley hotel in London. If you hurry there still might just be a chance to get a place – there have been a lot of registrations for it!
PA Consulting, Virgin Media, ECOMDigital, and Teleperformance will all be there exploring the question of just how much social media is changing the way companies interact with customers through social media. The technology blogger Mark Hillary will be chairing a Q&A session and he has a new book on Twitter coming out in the New Year so hopefully he will have a few comments of his own.
I have often written on this blog about social networks and media in general. The two-way flow of information between brands and consumers is now changing the rules of the games.
Companies are proactively contacting customers when they complain online – even if those complaints were never directly officially at the company. Individuals are using recommendation sites like Tripadvisor to not only find out information on local services, but also to publish their own experiences.
I stayed at a small hotel recently – I had found their details recommended on Tripadvisor. I asked the hotel owner how he gets most of his business and he said over 90% of it was just the same as me. This demonstrates the immense power of recommendation websites when a hotel is getting almost all their business because consumers are telling others that it is a place worth staying.
So customer service can begin even before a sale, with a recommendation or advice. It’s going to be an interesting morning tomorrow, because we aim to explore all these areas of how customer and brand behaviour is changing to embrace social media.