A 'novel' experience for Facebook Messenger
A recent study looked at the state of enterprise-sized branded communities across 15
different industries – from consumer products and technology, to the highly regulated pharmaceutical industry. Not surprisingly, the findings showed that there’s plenty of work to be done when it comes to tapping in to the power of their customer communities, save for a few select standouts. But one finding in particular caught my attention – and could also explain why there is so much progress yet to be made. Of the 92 communities researched, just 52% had a dedicated community manager in place to build awareness, engagement and advocacy within the existing communities. That’s just barely a majority – and while this number is higher than adoption rates in previous years, it’s somewhat surprising that so many large organizations are still missing the boat on arguably one of the most important roles for this digital age.
The customer is more powerful and more vocal than ever. Take into consideration the following:
- On average, brands have 1,813,000 people in their social network (source).
- 62% of consumers are already using social media for customer service issues (source).
- 38% of bloggers discuss brands they love or hate (source).
- 82% of the world’s online population is reached by social networking sites, representing 1.2 billion users around the world (source).
Now, ask yourself the following questions:
- Does my brand have customer relationships to be managed?
- Do I care about humanizing my brand and making it more relatable and accessible to its audiences?
- Do I want my brand to stay relevant as the digital age speeds up and attention spans shrink?
- Does my brand factor customer feedback and experiences into the development or evolution of its products and services?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the above questions – your organization, regardless of size, can likely benefit from bringing a community manager onboard. It’s this individual who will bridge the gap between your brand and its customers by working across departments within your organization to build and nurture relationships with your customer communities to the benefit of your company’s bottom line. It’s more than just managing your social media channels – it’s knowing how to identify what gets your customers talking (both online and off) and how to tap in to that knowledge base to identify actionable insights for the organization.
The stats don’t lie – consumers are out there voicing their opinion about your industries, brands and products – and they want to be heard. Organizations that aren’t ready to give up some control in order to empower their customer base are quickly going to be left in the dust for more engaged and relevant competitors.
Image via Eloqua’s “Grande Guide to Community Management.”