This post is from the CollabNet VersionOne blog and has not been updated since the original publish date.
The Long Lost Art of Listening
My how things have changed! Just a few years ago companies and
organizations could buy multi-million dollar television ads and make a
mediocre product successful. People trusted companies to produce great
products and would rush out to buy the latest and greatest gizmo
because they knew it was going to work as promised. Unfortunately,
most companies violated that trust by producing crappy products or
products that didn't solve user needs. Fortunately for us this is
changing thanks to inventive companies that are taking advantage of
social media and it's ability to let them talk directly to the
customer. Companies that talk directly to their user communities and
produce products using more customer focused agile methodologies are
finding success through LISTENING. What a novel concept, talk to your customer and incorporate their feedback in everything you do.
21st century marketing is about connecting people together around
your product and creating Fans. In this new era of connectedness
companies that understand this are going to be successful… very
successful. It's not about making a company's products look good in
some contrived tv or radio advertisement. It's about making your customers look remarkable. Customers that look remarkable become Fans
and fans will carry your message into their networks, not because
you've made a great product but because you've made them successful.
This should be everyone's goal in today's connected world.
Today companies and organizations of all types need to ask themselves a simple question…
"How can I make my customers look remarkable?"
The customer role can take many forms based on the type of
organization you're in but the essence of the question is the same regardless. What are you going to do today to help someone
else be successful? The only way to effectively answer this question
is by opening up an ongoing dialog with your organization's users and
constantly asking for input. This is where organizations that
understand community and social media will have a HUGE advantage over
even the largest of companies. Now go find someone to talk to