The Social Customer – Complete Control or A Level of Control?


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I’m not going to quote it directly, because even 140 characters seems long-winded these days, but I believe Paul Greenberg’s tweetable definition of Social CRM has been blown way out of proportion. So much so, that I actually feel that I need to build a bridge. Can you believe it? The iconoclast is building a bridge!

I’ve read and heard many people since the time this came out talk about the customer controls the conversation. And then this morning, I read a Tweet by Graham Hill, I’m sure completely out of context – but I read it anyway, who said the customer doesn’t control the conversion. I realize he wrote “conversion” and not “conversation”, but it’s the control thing I zeroed in on. Let’s talk about this for a minute.

Did Paul G. suggest that the customer completely controls the conversation? Or did he imply that the level of response by the company is relative to the level of control of the conversation by the customer. I think we can all agree that megaphones are cheap these days. Also, we have more options to buy, and the path of least resistance is hard to fight. But, the customer has always had some level of control. They’ve always had some level of choice and they’ve always had venues for voicing their displeasure. While not complete control, they certainly had some level of control – conversation or otherwise.

Doesn’t the same hold true today? Is anyone suggesting the customer has complete control? I’d love to hear opinions because this is going to be a short post. Did you interpret control to mean complete control or just a level of control? If the latter, ask yourself how many times you’ve referenced “control of the conversation” without qualifying it.

Republished with author's permission from original post.


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