March 16, 2006

News & Opinion: Your customers are talking about you and you're not listening?

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 6:48 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

Are you insane? Don't you want to know what they're saying about you?
Knowing could be very valuable if something is great, you've got strengths to play on.
They love your tropical flavored dingalings? Hmmm, maybe you should add more tropical flavors or offer a tropical flavored variety pack. Maybe you should send your non-tropical flavor dingaling eaters a coupon so they can try them and fall in love with them too!
If something is wrong, the faster you find out the better. Better than finding out via decreasing sales or maybe on the 6PM news or Sixty Minutes!
Your three handled family gradunzas are often arriving damaged and getting returned to dealers? Maybe your new packing, or new shipping arrangements, aren't up to snuff. It's better to know immediately, than several weeks down the road when your dealers start returning them to you.
The blogosphere can contain information that is hard to get anywhere else, especially about your customers, products, industry, and even competitors. Sure, some of this information can be obtained in other ways, for example customer feedback via surveys and focus groups, but this information is so fast, easy, and cheap to gather via the blogosphere, how can you justify NOT looking at this info?
Companies that use blogs are gaining a competitive advantage, whether they blog or not. Companies that are ignoring the blogosphere are missing out on a critical source of business intelligence.

About Dylan Schleicher

Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.