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
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