“I love Brand X!”
If you were the CMO at Brand X, wouldn’t you love to see a steady stream of that exact sentiment being shared by your customers online?
Unfortunately, that’s probably not going to happen.
Not that people don’t say good things about brands and products online. Often, they do — and maybe they even say them about your brand — but they don’t usually say it like that. Instead, you’re more likely to see good (and bad) observations like this. And this. And this.
Getting customer feedback through social media networks can be a key component of your inbound marketing and customer relations strategy. And knowing what they’re saying about you — and how they’re saying it — is imperative for keeping up with the conversation.
But what do you wish your customers were saying about you? Here’s a tip for deconstructing your customer’s opinions and figuring out what they really want, so you can give it to them.
Better Tweeting with Michael Jordan
When Michael Jordan was playing in the NBA and changing the world’s idea of what a basketball player could be, he had a lot of tools at his disposal: talent, fearlessness, drive, athleticism, determination. But he also had the ability to visualize his own success by picturing himself playing well, which gave him a mental blueprint of how he should be performing on the court.
Go ahead – try it. Picture a stream of positive sentiments from your customers. What do they look like? What are your customers saying about you — and what is inspiring them to take that action?
“Brand X has the best customer service I’ve ever seen, because they ___!”
“Car X is the only car I’ll ever buy, because ___.”
“Whenever my friends are in town, I make sure we go to Restaurant X because ___.”
“I always donate to Non-Profit X because ___.”
Once you know what your ideal positive sentiments look like, you can start to understand what experiences your customers would need to have with your brand in order to want to say those things about you, and share those opinions with their friends (and strangers) online.
Use Customer Rants to Your Advantage
If there’s no such thing as bad publicity, then there’s also no such thing as bad customer sentiment. Sure, you’d rather not see mentions like “Brand X is the worst company I’ve ever dealt with!” or “Beer X tastes like cat vomit,” but they happen, and your natural response is to want to make those mentions disappear.
But you can’t wish them away. They’ll only disappear when the reason for their existence ceases to exist.
“Rental Company X never has the cars I want!”
“Cereal X goes from dry to soggy before I even put the milk away!”
“I would rather watch at home than see a Sports Team X game in person because ___.”
When your customers are complaining, they’re clearly telling you what they want from you. In this case, you have a tangible blueprint for improving their experience and their long-term sentiment about your company. And while you may not always be able to win back customers you’ve lost, you can act on their suggestions to ensure that future customers don’t feel the same way.
Next time you’re monitoring what your customers are saying about you online, make sure you do more than just measure their love (or hate) for your brand. By understanding why they feel that way, you can make them feel better — and if they already feel great, maybe it’s because you engineered their experience that way on purpose.
As Stephen R. Covey wrote in his best seller, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood.”
Need help steering the ship of public sentiment? We do that, and more. Give us a call.