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Posts Tagged ‘twitter’

Learnings from the BA Sachin ‘drama’

November 15, 2015 2 comments

So, a few days ago there was a huge hullabaloo over Sachin Tendulkar’s tweets around his disappointment with British Airways.British-Airways-Aircraft--001

In case, by some remote chance, you missed it here are his tweets.

_86665131_3025b3f7-bf0f-4801-bd3d-f1bd637768ef_86665133_23ba61d1-9a17-4088-babe-0597151a8dc0And here is BA’s response..

_86664484_5e8df018-d9ec-43ab-a4f4-b3c2b4cee7a5This seemingly concerned tweet from BA had Sachin’s followers in arms. How can BA ask for Sachin’s details. After all who doesn’t know Sachin.

The whole saga has been well covered by my friend @Saritharai here. http://www.forbes.com/sites/saritharai/2015/11/13/how-a-standard-twitter-response-has-makings-of-a-pr-disaster-for-british-airways-in-india/.

Then there were the saner bunch of people who asked questions around ‘whose baggage was lost? Sachin or his family’s?’ ‘How can BA be expected to know Sachin’s exact passport name’ etc.

Many fingers pointed out to the templated response from large corporations. Some expected that poor fellow, from BA, who tweeted to be fired. Maybe he, or she was as well.

As a marketer I have 3 lessons to share

  1. Response: BA got this right. Within 15 minutes of the original Sachin tweet, there was a response. Now I don’t know about you, but my experience with customer service on-line is patchy. Staying with the airlines industry I have tweeted twice. Once to Qatar and once to Emirates. Qatar was prompt and we had a proper twitterversation. Emirates did not bother to respond. I think the fact that BA responded and that they did in 15 minutes gets them full marks on that score. But that’s where it stops.
  2. Handling complaints: I was in a restaurant last month. And the guy next to me was unhappy about something and started shouting at the waiter. Within minutes the manager showed up. Started talking to the angry customer and placated him and all of us could continue with our meal in peace. Someone tweeting is akin to shouting. Sachin shouted out to his 8.4 mn followers that he was unhappy with BA. And BA shouted right back ‘Hey tell me what’s the problem’. Completely wrong. Take complaints private immediately. You can then apologise, give freebies etc and satisfy the customer. You don’t negotiate in public.
  3. Know your customers: With data available in plenty, data storage being cheap and adequate technology solutions out there every marketer should have a database of their most valued customers and prospects. Complete with their twitter handles, instagram accounts, facebook profiles etc. Cover every aspect of the social media channels and set them up in the ‘social media control room’. The moment someone in that list makes a complaint that should initiate a protocol that involves a high touch program. A call, an email whatever it takes. In some industries this list is static. In the services business this is a bit more dynamic. eg: All first class bookings MUST be in that list. This may be different from the high value customer list. I don’t expect this master ‘watch list’ to be more than a few thousand. If BA had this set up, the moment @sachin_rt tweeted with the words ‘Angry’, ‘Disappointed’, ‘Frustrated’ the flag would have gone up. An account manager would have tracked him down and called him. It’s not so hard. At the risk of a plug, IBM has the knowledge, skills and technology to make this happen today.

So that is what I learnt from this drama.

BA responded and promptly, but wrongly. And their CRM system needs to be set up appropriately to include social media footprints of their valued customers and prospects.

This episode again shows that non issues can threaten a brand in a relatively short time. Having proper mechanisms to deal with it is critical. Large companies need it more than the small ones. And large companies like IBM can help (another plug;-))

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Brands as media

Came upon this great post by Brian Solis where he talks about Brands as Media.

He says, and I paraphrase..

Once brands react to events in the media through activities on various vehicles like FB, Twitter etc brands need to view their communications through the prism of a conversation calendar.

To this end media can be segmented into the following types

Owned media is essentially that brands. If they design it the content is theirs and they can manage what they publish within it Examples here would be web sites, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts. Brands need to create such presences where their target audiences already spend their time. Actively go out and play a role in their lives.

Paid media is that bought by the media. Tends to be conventional media. And this still has a role to play in brand communications going forward. A great advantage of Paid Media is immediacy.

Earned media is the outcome of activities in Owned and Paid media. This is reflected in the blog posts, tweets etc of ones customers and prospects. Of course the great issue here is that brands have absolutely no control on this media.

Viewed in this way, brands need distinctive strategies to address each. Old models of structures and communications don’t work so well in this new context.

A good strategy earns the brand influence, just as media channels do in the ‘paid media’ world. This influence can work to the brand’s strength as it gives it control over media that historically it was subject to. And that is Nirvana for a brand where it is not dependent on what intermediaries think and communicate about them.

..end of paraphrase..

I thought it was a good article that neatly captured all the various scraps around social media, new media, old media and the ilk.

Is anyone watching you?

Remember the old story where a couple get an all expenses paid holiday for having won a lucky draw or something? They return to find their house ransacked.

There was an updated version I saw recently on a program called ‘Hustle’ where the couple got a free show and dinner invite complete with limo service. They were out for 4 hours and come back to an emptied out house.

The moral of the story is ‘If something’s too good to be true, it probably is’.

In the words of marketers this is called ‘cold calling your prospect’. You invite them to something not knowing if they would be interested or not. If they are, you strike.

But what about a world where the prospect says ‘Come strike me’.

Or rather ‘Come rob me’.

This post mentions what seems like a real life incident linked to this site called foursquare.

I am not a user of foursquare, but apparently, it is an application whereby you check in to a location. And you broadcast it to the world. So if you have signed up, you can say. I checked into the Starbucks@Esplanade or Harrys@boat quay or whatever. The outlet concerned has the option of giving away freebies/promotions to people who check in frequently etc.

The flip side of this of course is that people know your location. (assuming you tell the truth. If you are not then the whole four square is pointless to you any way). This could be an invitation to be robbed.

In this post the author talks about getting a call from a stranger at the coffee shop, as he said that he’d checked in there. And proceeded to inform him of a break in at his house.

While the internet opens the doors to free communications, one needs to also be aware of who is watching.

On the one hand there are the brands that are trying to tempt the tweeters or facebookers with targeted offerings, while on the other side are unscrupulous elements out to cheat.

Brands have the tough task of not being lumped with the latter category and need to walk the fine line of erring on the side of privacy.

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How to Tweet

A bit late in the day but here’s a very comprehensive article/book on using Twitter effectively.

From setting up an account to building an image to using hashtags and Twitter applications to automate following etc.

Good article that covers all that you need to know and beyond!!

Enjoy.

pdf here

Read on-line here

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The State of the Twittersphere : 2010

For those ‘watching’ the amazing growth and use of Twitter here are some really interesting facts.

  • Twitter growth peaked at 13.5% in March 2009 and dropped to 3.5% in October 2009
  • The average user is following more people; about 160 up from about 40, 6 months ago
  • The average user has more followers too. About 300, up from 60, 6 months ago
  • 82% of Twitter users maintain a network of less than 100 followers
  • 91% of Twitter users follow less than 100 people
  • Thursday and Friday are the most active days for Twitter
  • 10pm – 11 pm is the busiest time in the day
  • And…leave space at the end of your tweet for someone to add a user name and maybe a comment, to increase chance of RT.

Many many more bits of data on Twitter right here.

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USD 100k from Twitter

February 25, 2010 Leave a comment

Here’s a post from someone who made 100K from Twitter.

No it was not a lucky draw nor a sudden great idea.

Persistent hard work was at the core of it.

What the author did comprised 8 steps.

  1. Followed prospects
  2. Started conversing with them
  3. Informed them of his business
  4. If they were interested they talked business
  5. He sent proposals
  6. Won some work
  7. Delivered
  8. Repeat

So rather than look for that killer app that is going to bring in millions here’s a simple story of a person who used Twitter as a targeted acquisition tool.

Big step up from cold calling. Wonder how many businesses are doing similar programs.

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