A recent post on the Advertising Age blog caught my eye: "Marketers Struggle to Get a Firm Grip on Social Media".
As a marketer and someone who helps others market themselves and their business, this piqued my interest. And who among us isn't overwhelemed (at least partially) by all the social networking choices and options.
The article is about a panelist discussion at the Ad Age Digital Marketing Conference. The panel topic was Making Social Media & Marketing Work, and I found one paragraph/section particularly insightful, and several lessons that pretty much any business could learn from.
One of the panelists named David Armano talked about a marketing experience he had with Southwest Airlines on his way to the conference.
"It took me two touches on the kiosk to get my boarding pass on Southwest on my way here," he said.
It was a very basic interaction that didn't even include people. He interacted with a kiosk. It was quick and efficient, and in this case, a kiosk was obiously the right way to make him happy as a customer in that particular situation.
In fact, Mr. Armano was so happy with the quick service, that he broadcasted his feelings on Twitter. I don't know what he said in the message, but it was noticed by someone at Southwest Airlines.
Within three hours Southwest had responded back with a quick message -
"Glad to hear you a good experience."
Now that's personal marketing.
Several things have happened here, and in terms of marketing dollars, it hasn't cost Southwest a dime. Except for the kiosks, and I'd guess they're expensive - but this isn't a viral campaign dreamed up by an agency.
It's great customer service being promoted by someone without strings attached. So it's even more trusted. David Armano is happy (he was to begin with) and now he's a little happier from the personal response. And it was worthy enough of an experience that he went beyond his original Twitter message and it became part of a panel discussion. Which got reported in a blog.
Which got shared in this post.
And we don't even have Southwest in Canada so I have no stake other than I think it's a great story. It's got customer service, media monitoring, Twitter, blogs - everything.
The main lessons I've taken away:
1. Give your customers and clients a great service / product / experience, and they will tell others
2. Watch what's being said out there about you, your agency, industry - and learn from it, respond to it (good or bad) and become better because of it
Have a great weekend!
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