A huge part of building your company involves listening to the customer’s concerns and comments. Without getting the feedback from your users, you won’t have a good compass to point yourself in a lucrative direction. The old days saw companies using long, annoying surveys that begged for ratings and were rarely viewed as a positive experience by the customer. These surveys were not very effective in providing mass feedback, because who wants to use their spare time filling out forms? Customers were not able to see any direct result, and companies were not able to get the information they needed.

Luckily, things have seen a drastic change as of late.

Getting the proper feedback from your customer, these days, is all about listening. Every web-based social media has become a platform for the public opinion, and as a company, you really get to cash in on all that knowledge. The great thing about it is that customers don’t just use it to complain, either. People will post literally anything online, from the very best experience to the very worst. A good strategy to glean this intel is to use different applications to track when and where your company is being talked about – setting Google Alerts for your company’s name and related buzzwords is a great start. There are a wealth of apps you can buy or download for Twitter, too, which will show you all kinds of metrics for the way your product is being viewed. You’ll be able to see trending topics, location-based information, and what kinds of issues may be cropping up for your customers. The way that social media has progressed has created an environment in which the casual buyer, one who would have never bothered to share their opinion in the past, feels comfortable putting their experience out there, because it feels like he or she is just chatting among friends. So all you have to do is keep your eyes and ears open, and you’ll get all kinds of advice from your buyers.

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This post was written by Hallie Dunn

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