I’ve been listening a lot to Tom Rosenthal recently, and in particular his song ‘Take your guess‘. In the song he writes:

‘I didn’t dance how I wanted to dance, I did a bit of prance and that’s fine’

And for me, that’s a bit like social customer care. It doesn’t matter whether you prance, jive, tango, sway, do ‘old man’ dancing… it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that you dance. What matters is that you get on to the dance floor. There will be those who laugh at the way you move, there will be those who are critical of a wrong step, you may even trip over… but you will learn along the way, and the learning will give you the confidence over time to be the next @KLM, to be the next @MaxisListens or the next @HPSupport. Without trying different ways of prancing, you won’t know what type of dancer you want to be or can be.

Start dancing today…

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I was having a look at Conversocial’s Social Maturity Index. It was only a matter of time before a 2×2 eventually made its way to social customer care. Whether you agree with their axes of ‘investment’ and ‘innovation’ is a moot point. It’s simply one way of looking at the world and how you navigate through it. It could just as easily be effort, satisfaction, empathy…

These sorts of things are always useful, both as a realistic measure as well as an aspirational goal that brings people together: we are united together behind a specific objective. We like to be able to understand where we are, so that by knowing where I am today, I can track my progress for the future. It also helps me understand where other companies or competitors might be as well.

My natural inclination is to aspire towards being a ‘SocialFirst’ company, regardless of where I am today. My journey may start as an Observer, then perhaps move into the Conservative quadrant, and as I build up more of an understanding naturally progress to becoming a Contender. I gain a sense of comfort from the knowledge that what I am doing is part of a known journey. Others have been, where I go now. I’m not on my own.

While I see value in these maturity indexes, I’d also like to see them acknowledging the existence of the customer, and not be so organisation-centric. Your social customer care operations can’t be viewed in isolation. You might be in the ‘SocialFirst’ quadrant, but how does this translate to having delighted or even satisfied customers? Do your agents have a frictionless experience in providing that service? Responding to a customer in less than a minute on Twitter is meaningless if the experience is disjointed and results in that customer being escalated to multiple channels and agents.

Like many things with social customer care, it’s a journey…

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I’m thinking a lot about content at the moment. Content within a customer service context: knowledge articles, tips, resolutions, ratings & reviews, product specifications, warranties. FAQs, community content etc.

  • What happens if we start to think about content as we might in a marketing context?
  • What happens if we start thinking about newsrooms and content hubs?
  • What happens if we were to start posting resolutions and other types of service content on Pinterest?
  • What happens if you applied the principle of Snapchat to your content or knowledge? What if your content was not permanent? How would it impact your decisions about content?
  • What patterns would organisations uncover if they started to analyse the content?
  • Would analysis enable you to match content to customer journeys and deliver it automatically before it was needed?
  • Would analysis of your customer’s demographics and behaviour help you understand how best to package up that content and which channel to deliver it on?
  • How well do you understand the different types of content: text, image, video? How well do you understand how your customers interact with each one?
  • How much have you thought about how your agents interact with the different types of content?

Or do you simply make assumptions and churn out the same old content in the same old tired format?

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