Monday, February 22, 2010

#blogchat 2-21 recap: Corp Blogging with Dell's Chief Blogger Lionel Menchaca!

Last nite was our biggest and most active #blogchat ever, with Dell's Chief Blogger Lionel Menchaca joining us to discuss corporate blogging, and more specifically, how Dell uses blogging to connect with its customers.

I do want to do a recap of some of the MANY takeaways from last nite's #blogchat, but first I wanted to touch on a big reason why Dell is using social media so effectively. As Shannon Paul would say, they show up. I asked Lionel to join #blogchat mostly because he's one of the best corporate bloggers on the planet, but also because I knew he would 'show up'. I told Lionel beforehand that if he needed to leave #blogchat after an hour or so to let me know, but he stayed for over 2 hours. And guys he was being absolutely HAMMERED with questions. Seriously when #blogchat first started he was getting 5-10 new questions a minute thrown at him. And there were even a few people taking swipes at Dell and how they use social media, and he handled it all with grace and ease. I'm sure it was a bit overwhelming at times, but he answered as many questions as possible, the funniest thing where people were asking him questions like 'Top 5 examples of...' or 'Your Ten Best reasons to blog', and other questions that were impossible to answer in one tweet, he would just peck out the answer in 3-4 tweets ;)

And this is a big reason why companies like Dell and Radian6 and Marketing Profs are using social media so well. Because they are connecting to us as PEOPLE. A big reason why my future laptop and desktop purchases will be Dells? Because I have connected with several Dell employees via social media. If I have an issue or concern, all I have to do is jump on Twitter and tweet them, and a personalized response is likely coming within 5 minutes. I can't get that from Apple or Compaq or any of Dell's direct or indirect competitors. The same thing goes for companies like Radian6 and Marketing Profs. They both have excellent products and services, but they are also using social media to put human faces to their companies.

That's a big advantage of using social media, and its one that very few companies have tapped into.

But that's another post for another day. Let's get back to my recap of last nite's #blogchat.

First, check out Lionel's tweets from #blogchat.

Here are some of my favorite takeaways:

  • Initially, all comments on Dell's blogs were moderated. Now they go live, and are then screened.
  • Making it easy for customers to comment on your blog is key to driving engagement there
  • Dell got into social media in 2006 because customers were telling them they needed to improve their customer service, plus they realized that all these conversations were happening online that they had no say in.
  • Social media won't help improve perception of a crappy product, it will amplify perceptions, good and bad.
  • 3 bottom line goals for a corp blog: Know your scope and objective, know the audience you want to connect with, and be ready for criticism because it IS coming!
  • Dell monitors blogs with tools such as Radian6 to discover support issues BEFORE customers come to them.
  • It's great to have a strategy driving your social media efforts, but there's no substitute for action.
  • Dell crafts its content to be product-specific, because they have learned from studying traffic to their blogs that this is the content Dell's customers want more of. But they also have content that's focused on the customers as well.
  • Lionel sees Dell's blogs and forums being more integrated in the future
This is just some of the amazing nuggets from Lionel. Seriously I said on Twitter earlier that his #blogchat tweets alone last nite were like a corporate blogging encyclopedia! If you aren't already, make SURE you are following @lionelatdell! Thanks again for joining us Lionel, you are indeed The Man!

BTW remember that our next #blogchat is this Sunday nite the 28th at 8pm Central and is OPEN MIC! That means YOU pick the blogging topic you want to cover, and we all go from there! And you can also join #blogchat's Facebook fan page, which is now over 100 fans! Thanks guys, see you Sunday!

Flickr pic via @DavidAlston


Paisano said...

Agree that Dell has a good social media presence but what I love about choosing Dell as a standard for all my desktops/laptops/servers/printers and monitors is because of their customer service and tech support.
When I have questions about a project and need to establish the budget, my Dell sales team jumps on a conference call with me to discuss it...this can include different specialists such as the storage expert or security guru and so on.
As for support, time is critical and I love that I can get answers if not the solution from a Dell technician in minutes by jumping on their live chat service. Just enter the service tag number and you're immediately communicating with someone. I've timed it and it's much faster doing tech support via chat than by the traditional phone method.

Anyway...Dell gets business because they get it.


Katie said...

Hey, Mack! Thanks for the Radian6 shout-out(s)!! I've been a big fan of how Dell has used social media over the last few years and paid close attention to them, even before working at Radian6 :).

#blogchat just keeps getting better and better each week - congrats on building such a quality Tweet Chat!

Katie Morse
Community Manager

Takarito_Budapest said...

Dell is a very good company. But the other company which is still better. What are the technical parameters of the dell stuff?