Social Done Right


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When it comes to delivering exceptional customer experiences via the social web, it’s time to get back to basics.  Sure the technologies and the networks are new, but the business fundamentals are not: companies need to understand what their customers want, solve their problems quickly, and interact with them one on one.  These are all critical customer relationship elements that often have been neglected in favor of internal efficiencies and cost savings.  Not anymore.  With the advent of social, today’s consumer is informed, connected, and vocal.  They won’t hesitate to leave if these customer experience elements aren’t there, and they’ll tell their friends (and the whole world) about it too.

This changing environment is exactly why we’re seeing such an enthusiastic response to RightNow Social Experience, which includes branded customer communities and cloud monitoring capabilities. Companies are realizing that social media now pervades the marketplace.  Not only is there no escaping it (customers demand it!), there is also business value in it.  And we’ve had an influx of new customers seizing the opportunity.  Some aim to deliver better customer support while reducing costs.  Others are looking for long-term competitive advantage by bringing customer ideas to their innovation processes.  Others simply want to build a loyal following, which yields its own benefits: greater lifetime customer value, amplified marketing campaigns, and word of mouth, to name a few.

The benefits of engaging customers via the social web are clear in many organizations.  In fact, Deloitte’s 2009 Tribalization of Business study found that 94 percent of its respondents (companies hosting an online community) plan to maintain or increase investment in their communities, even in the current economic climate.  To me, 94 percent represents a resounding yes to stronger, longer-lasting, and more authentic customer relationships.  It’s good news for consumers and companies alike.

A perfect example of a company that’s doing social right is Environmental Data Resources (EDR).  About a month ago, Forrester announced EDR as a Groundswell winner, citing that the community “helped increase EDR’s search ranking and contributed to 93% of its clients rating its service good or excellent.” As EDR’s community provider, we couldn’t be more excited for them as they lead their industry into greater use of social media.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

John Kembel
John joined RightNow in September 29 with the acquisition of HiveLive and now heads up social solutions as Vice President of RightNow Social. As CEO and founder of HiveLive, John has been a notable figure and thought leader in the social media space for several years, and continues to contribute to RightNow's social vision.


  1. Nice post. Brands must recognize the importance of conversations. Smart marketers will monitor the social cloud and focus their efforts on building a positive image and alleviating any negative sentiments as efficiently as possible.


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