30 May 2010

Content is still king

At a conference last week on transforming social media from a concept to a business case, a couple of obvious points emerged; that compelling content is still the most important and that customer service departments are all over social media these days.

After two days of presentations from a variety of companies, it became clear that everyone was still very much interested in good content. Good content is worth talking about, worth sharing, worth having a discussion about and given the nature of social media, creating a conversation is key.

The need to tell a story, tell it well and tell it credibly is still top of the agenda. Idre Fjäll has a very cool guy running their social media and websites. He creates conversations all the time. His presentation became one huge conversation with the entire audience. The guy is working around the clock posting bits and pieces but he also make sure to get the camera out after a good snowfall and get some video material available for the site because he knows that nice ski-ing pics is something that everyone wants to see.

But I couldn’t help thinking that if Idre Fjäll invested some time in a professional crew to shoot some really good material, it would, without a doubt, have an even greater effect. Shoot in high definition, get the angles right and prepare the shots and put a bit of time into editing and the material would almost certainly result in a higher share rate.

Take a look at this material. It was shot a few years ago but I can’t stop watching it. Like I said, make the material compelling and it will spread like crazy across communities.

The other clear trend is that the major business to consumer companies are all moving their customer service staff over to monitoring and responding to social media communities, blogs and forums. Telia has 10 people doing this for a few hours every day and it’s starting to have an effect. Telia used to get hammered in the ratings on Fair Shopping but now things have improved dramatically. Most people who get a response via Twitter or a blog no longer feel the need to ring customer support. The business case is clear.

SJ has experienced improvements too even though their tone and style has been criticized, not least by my colleague Pontus on this blog earlier.

We've reported examples in other countries also such as Domino's Pizza in Chicago and BT in the UK. Social media is new and there really are no experts in this area yet but several clear trends are emerging.

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Colm O'Callaghan is JG Communication’s Head of Operations so when he’s not blogging he’s looking after the day to day business at this wonderful communicaitons agency.
So, who’s JG Communication? We’re Sweden’s largest and, we think, ‘leading’ communications agency in Sweden. We help our clients have conversations with the people that matter most to them using the tools that matter most to us, words, sound and vision.

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