How often have you heard the phrase “social media is the world’s largest focus group?”
You may have heard this phrase too many times to count, but how serious have you taken it? Maybe it’s about time that you did.
Social intelligence can help companies discover what people are saying about them and their products currently, but it can also help to shape where you should be going with your products in the future.
Social intelligence is all about making sure the right people in your company are getting the right information from your social data to make better business decisions. While the folks on your product teams may not be the most social (no offence product people) that doesn’t mean that they can’t benefit from social intelligence.
Make sure they see all of the right information
Product people likely spend most of their day with their heads down trying to constantly tweak and improve your products. They may not have time to sift through your company’s social media to see what people are actually saying about the products they work on. But that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be seeing all of these conversations.
If your company has someone on the front lines for social media, you can have them collect all of the conversations happening around your product and send them over to your product team as they come in or in a daily or weekly report. If you’re a Sysomos Heartbeat client you can even set up email alerts based around product related keywords to be sent over to your product team automatically on one of the reporting schedules just mentioned. This way the product team can still focus on their work on the actual product, but receive consistent updates on what your customers think of the product and where they think it could benefit from an upgrade.
Discover what to work on easily
It’s one thing to start handing over all of the social conversations that are related to your product over to your product team so that they can see what people are saying. But how can they know what is most important to focus on? Determining which improvements are most important to your customers will help to know where to start your focus.
Text analytics can be a quick and easy way to surface which developments will make your customers happy and either keep them using your product or wanting to buy your next and better product. Running all of the social conversations that have been collected around your product though a word cloud or buzzgraph can help to surface the words that are being used the most when people are talking about your product.
You could even look at these text analytics through different lenses to help steer you. Looking at just the negative sentiment mentions can help determine what people are having the most issues with in your product. But if you look at the positive mentions the same way, you might also discover what people love the most about your product and you may want to put some time into making that part of the product even better.
Learn from your competitors
The great thing about the processes mentioned above is that you just don’t have to get the social intelligence you need to make better products from what people are saying about you specifically. Chances are that you have some form of competition with a similar offering to yours. Well, there’s also a great chance that their audience is talking about what they like and dislike about their products too.
You can recreate the process of collecting what people are saying about your competitors products in the social media space as well. From there, you can also use text analytics to surface what people like the best about their offering, or what they really hate about it. Again, your product team can use these learnings to find new ideas to try on your own product by taking what the competition’s fans hate about their product and making it better in your own or adding something that people love that you don’t offer yet.
Better yet, if you’re a Sysomos user you can even set up tags so that you can always keep an eye on what people are saying about your competitors in real time. For example, let’s you’re Green Mountain Coffee and your main competition is Starbucks. You might want to keep a constant eye on people who don’t like Starbucks’s coffee to find out why so you can improve yours and win new customers. All you need to do is set your tags and filters so that you can monitor for mentions of “Starbucks” and coffee with negative sentiment. You can even save the filter set so that it’s easy for you to come back to time and time again.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
Once the product team has decided on what they want to focus on, they can go back through all of those collected social posts and find out who was talking about what feature. You can then start asking questions to get deeper into what the customers would like to see, or how they would improve on something they don’t like.
@harrisja give it a shot and let us know what you think!
— Foursquare Support (@4sqSupport) May 5, 2015
I’ll never forget when a product I use religiously everyday made a big change and forced all their users into this new upgrade. For me, it just wasn’t the same product anymore and I took to Twitter to let the world know. To my surprise, the next day their lead developer contacted me and asked me what I didn’t like about the update. We then went back and forth on Twitter for about an hour as he asked my questions and I told him my opinions. The best part was that in their next update I could see that he had actually taken some of my suggestions and built them into (or returned some of them) to the product. This not only made me like the product again, but also kept me loyal to them as I knew they cared about what I said.
There’s a lot that your product team can learn from social intelligence to make your products better regardless of if they’re active social media participants or not. The information is all there, you just need to know how to access it all.
Want to know more about how to get the right social intelligenece to the right people in your organization? Contact us and we can help.