Using Social Media to Keep Up with the Customer 2.0

    These days, reaching customers isn't about just mass advertising campaigns and preaching your virtues to consumers. It's about actively listening to and communicating with customers through social media. Customers now more than ever have the ability, and the desire, to share their experiences and interact with other like-minded people, and it is up to companies to be there to respond and keep the conversation going. Not only can we take actions to manage reputations, but more importantly we can connect with consumers and build meaningful, valuable relationships.

    B2B Companies Must Keep Pace with the Customer 2.0

    Social media has become the go-to resource for B2B customers – both to share feedback about companies they are doing business, with as well as to monitor discussions about products and services they are considering. The control of a B2B company’s brand is rapidly transitioning from corporate marketing departments to the customer-to-customer conversations taking place via social media. Just as shared positive experiences can drive new prospects to your business, unmanaged negative commentaries can spread like wildfire, incinerating your organization’s hard earned reputation. Not surprisingly, customers recognize their growing influence and realize the impact of their praise, or more importantly, their criticism.

    This is the era of Customer 2.0. Businesses of all sizes are learning the importance of listening, rather than preaching, in order to acquire and retain their customers. Customer 2.0 is not interested in vague and impersonalized advertising and sales pitches. They are socially savvy and active, know how to connect with one another to talk about your company (more than half of active US Twitter users follow at least one company, brand or product) and possess little desire to maintain loyalty for a company who does not care for and accommodate their needs.

    This new environment creates big challenges but also incredible opportunities for B2B sales. Sales professionals can no longer completely rely on traditional email and cold calling campaigns. The good news is social media is leveling the playing field for selling to Customer 2.0. Sales professionals can now gain timely and relevant insights about their customers as well as engage at a very deep and personal level – two huge boons to the B2B sales process. Thanks to social media monitoring and conversation, individuals within the organization have the ability (along with the responsibility!) of championing the identity of their corporate brand and uphold public reputations. The wall between the corporation and the end-user has been torn down; and sales professionals are on the front lines.

    via B2B Companies Must Keep Pace with the Customer 2.0 | Social Media B2B. Posted by Umberto Milleti.

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