This week I have been researching business models and how social media has changed how business models are designed. There is a lot of discussion on how through social media customers can be more involved with company development, R&D, sales, etc.
Customers are commenting on company blogs, posting questions to Facebook, even “checking in” with their cell phones when they are on location. It is far easier for companies to be aware of perceptions and customer experiences. There is almost no excuse these days for not knowing your customer, and what they want. If you provide the outlets, actively update, and analyze customers thoughts, it’s easier to provide what the customer wants.
Social Networking has even changed distribution channels. Books are selling via “re-tweets,” and has brought a new meaning to word of mouth advertising.
There are many benefits to incorporating social media to our business models, but we have to remember how it can hurt businesses, and what policies are there to help prevent or respond to negative PR from the viral nature of customer complaints. What do you do when there are 15 different “I Hate Starbucks” Facebook pages??