This interesting article I found on Brandweek from Brian Morrissey – Adweek
Have a look at the part on where Erin Nelson CMO of Dell talks about social media:
“AW: How is digital and social becoming an important part of how you build the brand?
EN: Customer connectivity and the ability to have conversations that drive our brand are the most important things. Digital and social are tools to allow that to happen. We’re investing a lot more in Dell.com. An important part of that is investing in our social capabilities. A lot of that is in social commerce. We’re building a lot more human capability in our organization to be able to reach out in the digital space. We’re launching a social media university within Dell. We’re trying to make sure it’s not a department. Whether you’re in customer relations, product development, it doesn’t matter where you come from, we want you to have the ability to provide outreach and conversation. It’s important to scale it. We’re focused on training 1,000 [employees] in the next six months. What we don’t want is to have a lot of people with really good intent out there in the marketplace engaging but with no purpose. It’s not like setting up people with a Twitter handle and letting them go.
AW: Can social media scale and be measurable?
EN: I think it can and has to. We have 2 billion conversations online a year. If I can’t scale to the requirements, I can’t continue to be a thriving business because that’s increasingly how customers are shopping and engaging. It’s not even an option not to scale, but it’s to figure out how to do it around the customer. We’re less focused right now on attributing ROI to everything we’re doing. We’re focused on “does it enhance the customer experience?” Does it look like revenue and profit are following? I’m less interested in measuring cost per contact. I know engagement with a fan on Facebook is a really good thing. I don’t measure if that shortens the sales cycles. The things I can measure I feel great about. Those I can’t I’m not losing sleep about.
AW: What’s the biggest pain point?
EN: Making sure everyone understands how they can add most value. It’s getting everyone focused on the customer and giving them the tools so they can engage. It seems easy, but when you talk about thousands of people, there’s a lot around curriculum development, governance approach and the principles we develop. You don’t want to say everyone go run loose. Building that structure is the biggest challenge. It would be easy to say everyone get a Twitter handle, go search for Dell. That could be a recipe for disaster.
AW: Dell went through some social media tribulations with the “Dell Hell” episode. Looking back, was that a good thing?
EN: It’s been a real blessing for us. It forced us to jump in with both feet. I see a lot of brands talking about experimentation. I think you’re either in or you’re not. When you’re in, you better dive in all the way. We weren’t overly analytical or conservative about how we engaged in the space. We said we have a brand problem and we need to fix it and make it better. We did what it took to do that. I think it was helpful. It would have been more studied and analytic. The only reason “Dell Hell” existed was because customers weren’t happy. Putting the customer at the center is what it taught us.”
Read the whole article on Brandweek