Before I went on vacation, I asked you to provide me with raw, real feedback about this blog. 88 of you did, and I learned a lot, the highlights include:
High Level Summary
Overall, the readers of this blog are above satisfied with the blog, with the content and insights provided. Many readers are in the marketing services industry, at small companies and in the United States. There is room for improvement to add more case studies, and provide how to guides, and to improve grammar, and publish more succinctly.
Read the rest of the results (only for the data geeks) there are tons of graphs, data, and qualitative feedback.
How sophisticated readers are with social media
How they consume this blog
How often do they read
Does this blog help them with their job
How big their companies are
What titles they have
What industries they are from
Do I write too often?
I’m reading each response, and will use this to improve, be better, and continue to help build the community. Thank you again!
Jennifer Joseph of Forrester Research has posted her findings from all FOUR Forrester blogs, read her analysis, and see her slides.
I’m having lunch with the CEO of Compete Scott Ernst, after speaking at his client event, we’re kidding each other about who’s blog is better, in fact there’s been two rankings about it, Ad age and we’re at a photo finish over at technobabble, . Many of you may be familiar with compete.com, but they do more than that.
In his presentation I learned a lot more about what they do, but over lunch, I just told him that awareness is very low: “Until today, I had no idea these other services you provide”. He agreed, and I suggested we do a market test to ask people what they think
I know from my recent survey that most of my readers are the people he also wants to reach (see graph), so lemme ask you
Leave a comment below, what do you think Compete does?
Scott, who blogs on the Compete team blog, is interested to hear what you have to say, I hope he responds from his blog, and I’ll update this post.
Left: Results from a survey: “How do you consume the content on Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang?”
Well, that’s an understatement really. The readers of this blog are collectively smarter than any author, and I recognize that.
If you’ve been reading me for a while, I ask questions, as I want to know what people think. I read every single comment, and often respond to comments , questions and followups.
I recently ran a survey to find out how people are using my blog, and most are reading this blog via RSS in a feedreader, they’re not even visiting the site. While feedreaders are great for getting content when you want, where you want, and in the format you want, you’ll miss out on the wisdom being generated in the comments.
For example, last week’s post on Six Career tips generated dozens and dozens of juicy tips that can help you in your career, but if you’re reading that only in the feedreader, you’re really missing out.
So I encourage you to once in a while come back and visit to see what’s happening in the discussions, that’s where the real value is.
Update, a few hours later: A few people in the comments requested a summary. Ok here’s a comment summary: A few people requested a comment summary. This is the last time I’ll be doing a comment summary, ha!
Related: Shoemoney, a master at search marketing doesn’t take his commenters that seriously, I know many of those who have commented, I have a high degree of trust for my commenters.
Embrace your Customers
At Forrester, we use the term Embracing as a social strategy where customers and employees work together using social tools to build next-generation products. Quite a change for the strong headed product manager, who now has to set the roadmap, while in collaboration with customers.
Popular Examples: Dell and Starbucks
We’re all familiar with the popular Dell “Idea Storm” website that let customers vote for which features and products they wanted to be bore to the marketplace. In Dell’s case, the linux community asked for a UBUNTU box, which was created and launched and sold. I wish I was a fly on the wall when Dell’s strategic partners at Microsoft found out about this.
Recently, Starbucks has launched My Starbucks Ideas, where customers are voting for improved services or products in each of the stores. Looking at the site, the request for free wireless or ‘punchcards’ for frequent customers is under consideration or has been improved.
Both powered by SalesForce
Both of these sites are powered by Salesforce’s product, Ideas. Move on over, there’s a new player in town called UserVoice that offers the same features right on their site.
UserVoice, a new kid on the block
I’ve played around with UserVoice and even created a version for my own Web Strategy blog, the simple features made it easy to setup and let others submit ideas. I’ve not stress tested this service to see if it can withstand enterprise activity like SalesForce can, but it’s a nod to a common feature (voting) that we should start to expect to see in white label social networks. (in fact, I know of a few that are going to launch this)
Reporting, Query features, and easy to setup
Other UserVoice features to include Google Analytics, and the ability to collect demographic information and let owners know of suggestions. Owners of voting sites can also segment their customers by different purchasing sizes, in order to help prioritize. Also, polling features will help to put color around suggestions from users, and other conduits to improve the connectivity between employees and customers.
For example, I created this own Web Strategy UserVoice page where you can go and make suggestions on how I can improve this website.
If you’re a small company or individual blogger, or run a niche product, I encourage you to try out UserVoice, test to see how it scales, and come back and leave comments on your experience on this post. If you’re from a large company that has thousands or millions of customers, start with SalesForce and also trial UserVoice. Anyone that wants a fully custom user experience should start with SalesForce.
Update: I’ve received some tweets and comments also suggesting IdeaScale (which I think is the same as this product of the same name), I’ve not looked at it, please leave a comment if you’ve a review. Also, passionate CEO Matt from BrightIdea left a comment about his enterprise class competitor to SalesForce, I look forward to a formal Forrester briefing from him, let’s take a closer look at this growing segment.
What to Expect
UserVoice would make for a good partner for any of those white label social networks, and could even be an acquisition target for a vendor that’s not up to speed in this emerging feature set.
Expect other White Label Social Networking vendors to offer this feature, soon it will be on the ‘checklist’, of features. Customer voting? “Yup we got that.”
They aren’t the only ones to watch, Get Satisfaction, a support site for any product, anywhere, (no reason to go to that irrelvant corporate website) has launched, and customers are self-supporting each other, and some savvy companies have their employees there participating. Without surprise, I’m there representing Forrester, although there’s been no activity. Satisfaction is still very startup focused, I hope to see some Fortune 1000 companies appear on their site.
Lastly, UserVoice itself is, “eating their own dog food” so to speak, using their own service to improve their product, there’s already a small flurry of votes happening.
Apparently, Sam is sending me back to school.
Sam Lawrence, CMO of Jive Software is one of our customers, and he’s reviewed the service that he’s received from Forrester and another analyst firm. One of scored a “C-”, and the other scored a “B”, read his report card to find out who scored what and why.
Customers in every industry (even the Analyst industry) are being empowered by social media tools, they can directly talk to each other, share experiences, and make decisions –often without the marketer or sales person present. I’ve been preaching this on my blog and in presentations and at my former employers for nearly 4 years.
Is this a disruption? Absolutely.
I advise my clients that the key is for the company to be an active part of the conversation in their marketplace, this is where customers, prospects, and partners will be. I was in a NY taxi when I saw this on Twitter, but pointed to it instantly (Carter says that was the right move), and wasn’t able to respond in the comments, but tweeted it, and I think my colleagues quickly saw it, two of them commented before I was able to get online, and Rob, who was with me at the event also commented.
More important that being part of the conversation, companies need to listen and when appropriate, act on the feedback. So now I need to go back to school (a “B” isn’t good enough), study up and find out what it’s going to take me to get an “A” from Jive and other customers.
Aiming for the honor roll, we’ll keep at it ‘till we do.
I’m very conscious about listening to my community, it’s one of the practices I suggest to my clients, so I’d better eat my own dogfood.
A few days ago, I asked you what you thought about my Twitter usage. Here’s the results, I took some time to count up the 89 comments that came in (some were not relevant) and tried to put them into buckets. I’m pretty anal, so being a researcher is really a good fit.
At SXSW I met someone who works at a PR agency, most of the account managers are following my tweets, and some of them complained to him about my high frequency, ironic.
Here’s what you said (please note some were subjective, I had to force them into buckets, although there’s clearly a trend)
What you told me about my Twitter Usage:
1) How are my tweets doing for you?
A) Too little 4
B) Just right 43
C) Too many 8
2) How is the content?
40 respondents said it was positive
4 said it was mixed or varied
2 said it wasn’t relevant
14 people told me that I shouldn’t care about what anyone says, and just do what I want, since Twitter is opt in.
Well it’s no surprise that I’ve not changed my behaviors at all, and this feedback has reinforced that.
I’ve indicated how I use Twitter, most of the time, I point to things that I think are interesting, and it sends about 50 clicks (and up to 200) clicks from an active opt-in engaged audience of early early adopters.