If you visit your local newspaper, TV station, or radio station, I think it’s safe to say that you will find someone tuned into a police radio scanner. Why would these media outlets engage in such an activity? I think it’s obvious,
for starters they are looking for stories. Why are stories so important? Because stories are the platform by which they interact with their readers/viewers.
I have to believe that the really good media outlets scan the radio waves and have designated staff trained to listen for specific words, phrases, or codes. Maybe part of their training is reading over a list of code numbers like 10-78 (Send ambulance), 10-79 (Send wrecker), 11-80 (Traffic Accident – Serious Injury), or 11-82 (Traffic Accident – No Injury). Knowing the law enforcement language is essential to understanding what’s being communicated. Otherwise, it may sound like random numbers being shouted out.
Now, take that analogy and think of it in ways to leverage social media. On the surface what may seem like random status updates, can be categorized into useful information. Knowing how to categorize and isolate keywords is the combination to unlocking the social media vault.
One of the emerging tools for analyzing social media content is Tweetdeck. Tweetdeck can be downloaded for free using your Twitter user name and password. It runs in the background, while you work on other assignments or projects. You can have up to five keyword searches being performed at any given time. Anytime a tweet or status update that contains your specific keyword is entered, it is categorized by subject, date, and time and displayed in its designated search results column.
Let’s apply this to your specific area of service or product line. If I were a local Customer Service Manager for Best Buy, I would have a search for Best Buy Tallahassee, HH Gregg Tallahassee, and Wal-Mart Tallahassee. Analyzing the search results for people who had a good or bad experience at any of those retail stores, I would then use that information to train my customer service representatives on how to handle a given scenario. If the status or tweet was directly about my store, I would contact that individual directly and thank them for their business and ask for the opportunity to learn how to provide better service for their next visit.
Click Here to read another real world example of a large hotel chain that went over the top to provide a WOW experience for one of their guests by using Twitter. This is not a fad. Social Media will not go away. If anything, it will evolve into something more social and more interactive. Look at EBay and Amazon; the reason why they are so successful is because at the core they are driven by user created content (information and reviews about the products).
There are many benefits and insights to be gained by reading and analyzing the content on all social media platforms. Zappos.com, a clothing retailer, has over 300 customer service reps utilizing Twitter in addition to the traditional lines of communication in order to exceed their customer’s expectation. If your Tallahassee business isn’t embracing emerging technology to move your business forward right now, you are missing out. If you listen carefully, you can hear the sirens.
Want to learn more about leveraging Social Media for your Business? Visit Social850.com for a free “Lunch and Learn” seminar coming up May 19th!