What are your Customers Telling You?

David Olsen, Head of Social Media and Online, Appliances Online

“Consumers now have a voice, a very powerful voice that they didn’t have before” says David Olsen, Head of Social Media at Appliances Online, the multi-million dollar online retailer that started in 2004.

The retail industry has been hit hard by the global financial crisis and, by the change in customers’ behaviours and needs. It has become a necessity for retailers to make sure they understand what their clients are looking for and deliver a prompt service.

Online retailers such as Appliances Online have come to the conclusion that what keeps businesses ahead of the competition is “the ability to deliver a better customer experience. If you aren’t continually refining your service by listening to your customers, you will stagnate while your competitors do” Olsen affirms.

Through simple and effective online strategies, retailers can improve the customer experience and online return. There’s a growing world of opportunity but the secret is to constantly look for ways to improve and innovate. Olsen explains that “as a business, we study the needs of our customers by listening to what they tell us. Customers can provide feedback via phone (our locally-based call centre is open 16 hours a day, 7 days a week and calls are answered within 11 seconds), email (response time is less than 8 hours), Facebook, Twitter, Kampyle.com and Feefo.com. Customer feedback is encouraged and rewarded with an actual response from our team of customer experience specialists who then feed those valuable insights back into the business to improve our service.”

Integrating social media into online strategies has become vital for improving relationship marketing and managing customers in a socially connected world. Olsen notes that “if you foster great relationships with your customers (and potential customers) through social media, these relationships will matter when they are making their next purchase decision, giving you the chance to close the sale on essentially a qualified lead”.

The challenge associated with social media still consists in measuring its return on investment. However, the secret for successful measurement involves using this tool as a customer services platform. As Olsen explains, “revenue is still a great ROI metric for social media, but if you are using a last click attribution model, expect this metric to significantly undervalue the performance of social media. However, if you are using social media as a customer service platform, the metrics you use to measure your existing customer service teams can usually be retrofitted to the unique quirks of social media.”
To hear David Olsen, Head of Social Media at Appliances Online present on “managing relationships in an online socially connected world” register for ADMA Forum 2012.


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