Tag Archives: Social network

Will social media soon become an indispensable retail channel?

Social Media Outposts
Social Media (Photo credit: the tartanpodcast)

The use of social media sites like Facebook has exploded in recent years – the site recently hit one billion users. But while people are checking out social media sites daily, how many of them actually shop?

A recent study showed that seven out of ten online shoppers who took the survey say they never shop this way. That should also remain the status quo for the immediate future, as only about 5% say they’ll shop more via social media in the next 12 months.

But still, what are online shoppers doing on social media? Essentially they’re commenting on companies and products they know and discovering new ones. However, there are differences in motivation among these social media users, divided into three groups based on their behavior: “brand lovers,” “deal hunters” and “social addicts”.

Out of those brand lovers who say they interact with brands via social media, 53% go shopping in a physical store daily or weekly, compared to 45% of the overall sample, and 58% buy something in a physical store at least once a week. The deal hunters say they’ll click through to a specific online store if offered a good sale or an attractive special offer. Appealing to deal hunters looking for good offers and contests can be a great way to drive traffic to the provider’s website. Noone can afford to ignore the social addicts – they use social media to talk about their  experiences with brands, learn what their friends like and recommend, find customer service answers, and submit ideas and product feedback to companies. Getting the message out to social addicts can support the brand, while ignoring them carries significant reputational risk, as these very active online users tend to have huge social media networks and wield an outsized influence among them.

So, will social media be an indispensable sales channel? Not likely but there’s good reason for retailers to continue focusing on social media investment.  Campalyst analysed the world’s 250 biggest internet retailers and found that 97% of them are already on Facebook, 96% have a presence on Twitter, and 90% use YouTube. The social media traffic generated in many cases is impressive; 43 of the 250 can claim more than one million followers on Facebook.

More details here: http://pwc.to/Xfl6r0


Knowledgeheimer’s treatment: unlocking value and productivity through social technologies

I remember how eight years ago I was explaining to one of my clients the benefits of having an online platform that could be easily updated by his sales force, used by both client facing and back office and act also as a sales platform for anyone accessing the internet. It was an innovative idea, custom made but the word “social” had nothing to do with it. Technologies have come a long way and we often hear the word “social” sticked to some other ones such as “knowledge sharing” or “business benefits”. Nowadays, by not reaching the full potential of the existing knowledge sharing system, companies begin to suffer the same effects that the Alzheimer disease has on human brain, as we’ll see shortly.

According to McKinsey’s “Social economy” report, the social technologies today look like this:

  • over 1.5 billion networking users globally;
  • 80% of online users interact with social networks regularly;
  • 70% of companies are using social technologies; 90% of them report business benefits from such technologies;
  • knowledge workers spend 28 hours per week writing, searching and collaborating inside the company.

However, their potential is somewhere here:

  • between USD 1 billion and USD 1.3 trillion could be unlocked by social technologies in four sectors;
  • twice potential value from better enterprise communication and collaboration;
  • 20-25% potential improvement in knowledge worker productivity.

About Knowledgeheimer

During the last few years, I understood that knowledge management comes in fact to maintain the organization’s brain, to keep it active, to develop it so the organization is able to work and innovate. I observed that organizations with dysfunctional knowledge management begin to suffer the same effects that the Alzheimer disease has on human brain: intellectual abilities are lost, even reach inability to think abstractly, the coordination is limited, and they have trouble performing daily activities. Since the evolution is similar to an organization’s brain, I named this disease Knowledgeheimerclick here for details on this concept.

How do we treat these symptoms?

McKinsey’s report shows that two-thirds of this potential value lies in improving collaboration and communication within and across enterprises. The average interaction worker spends an estimated 28% of the work week managing e-mail and nearly 20% looking for internal information or tracking down colleagues who can help with specific tasks. But when companies use social media internally, messages become content; a searchable record of knowledge can reduce, by as much as 35%, the time employees spend searching for company information. Additional value can be realized through faster, more efficient, more effective collaboration, both within and between enterprises.

The amount of value individual companies can capture from social technologies varies widely by industry, as do the sources of value. Companies that have a high proportion of interaction workers can realize tremendous productivity improvements through faster internal communication and smoother collaboration. Companies that depend very heavily on influencing consumers can derive considerable value by interacting with them in social media and by monitoring the conversations to gain a richer perspective on product requirements or brand image – for much less than what traditional research methods would cost.

To reap the full benefit of social technologies, organizations must transform their structures, processes, and cultures: they will need to become more open and non-hierarchical and to create a culture of trust. Ultimately, the power of social technologies hinges on the full and enthusiastic participation of employees who are not afraid to share their thoughts and trust that their contributions will be respected. Creating these conditions will be far more challenging than implementing the technologies themselves.