During my dozen years of working with online retailers, I have always been perplexed by one thing: Why is there so little direct feedback being solicited from each company’s customer base? A simple source code investigation of any Internet Retailer Top 500 organization will uncover dozens of tracking tags to measure clickstream behavior. Any vendor evaluation eventually focuses on the analytics which are offered, and most online marketing studies rely on data gathered by inference.
How often are you directly asking your customers what they think? Crowdsourcing of ideas is certainly not a new concept. Dell launched Ideastorm.com in February of 2007 in order to provide their customers with the ability to provide direct feedback and to augment or diminish the popularity of their peers’ submitted ideas. Starbucks did something similar in 2008 with MyStarbucksIdea.com, which generated 70,000 ideas during its first year. Both are great case studies in the solicitation of feedback from consumers in an organized format.
As you build your video program, are you doing the same thing? You don’t have to have millions of customers and a beautiful website to get some feedback, though. Today, it’s as easy as leveraging your social media. Consider this simple poll which Utrecht Art Supplies posted for their 15,000+ Facebook fans in May:
Then, a few days later, they followed up with this Facebook post:
Beautiful execution. Simple feedback solicitation which engages customers in the development of the video program without adding a penny to Utrecht’s costs. Of course, a small investment can be made to inspire your customers to continue responding to questions. For example, on Performance Bike’s Facebook page, Freebie Friday is celebrated every week. There, they ask their 14,000+ fans a question and respondents are entered into a weekly drawing for a $20 gift card to Performance Bike. Freebie Friday can be more easily accessed via a tab on their Facebook page. If a free survey doesn’t yield the traction you were hoping for, an inexpensive gift card certainly will.
Of course, any analytics expert will tell you that you need a combination of aggregate data compilation/analysis and direct feedback via surveys. I would certainly suggest the same. However, for projects like a video program launch where you would like some quick, anecdotal evidence while building some excitement amongst your customer base, your social media channels could be the perfect way to jumpstart your project.