Today's inforgraphic is courtesy of Demand Force.
Today's blog post may be of particular interest to organisations or individuals involved in direct sales.
Picture the scene: you've managed to sweet talk a potential customer over several phone calls and emails to finally meet you. You have your presentation slides, brochures, pitch and your slick responses to any objections they may raise.
Back at your company's head office is a printed memo from your sales director demanding that you hit the monthly target...or else!
Time is of the essence and you need to close this deal.
If you're an experienced sales person, you might work out relatively quickly - in a face-to-face situation - whether the customer is 'good to go' and likely to make a purchase.
But some customers are a little more difficult to read and may be perfectly happy to have a chat over a few hours and several cups of tea (and perhaps a few biscuits), while you ramble on enthusiastically about the features and benefits of your product or service.
You're feeling good and feel the tension ease from your shoulders as you've snatched victory from the jaws of defeat (pardon the pun!), and you're within striking distance of hitting your target.
Then the meeting takes a different turn. The would-be client starts gathering their papers and looks pointedly at their watch. They have used up their allocation of 'meeting time' and need to get on with the rest of their day.
Your hand freezes on the pen you have at the ready to sign on the dotted line. You conjure up a fake smile through gritted teeth, while the definitely-not-interested-prospect bids you a cheery goodbye without an order in sight.
You've wasted a lot of time and are furious. Your boss is not going to greet the news with a smiley face and a pat on the back, so your shoulders tense up again in preparation for the ear chewing that's likely to follow.
To cap it all, your job is even more on the line.
If you're lucky, you might get a 'second-second' chance. You vow that you will never get caught again, so need to learn how to read microexpressions to help separate the 'real' potential customers from the 'fakes'.
Here's a useful guide from American Express Open Forum that provides a basic understanding of facial cues. The infographic design is by Little Badger.
The modern customer wants - demands - instant satisfaction when it comes to getting a response to a question for more product or service information, or for a problem to be solved.
If companies don't get back to them quickly, customers are likely to vent their feelings among people in their networks who may in turn (depending on the issue), pass it on to their contacts.
To ignore or dismiss a legitimate customer concern is to put a retailer's reputation at serious risk of being forever tarnished.
People can easily access hundreds of alternatives on the internet.
'Power' and control is gradually slipping from the hands of even powerful retailers, to their customers who now have the means - and the will - to hold them to account when they fall short of expected standards.
There was a time when people were forced to wait day - even weeks - for a company to respond to a complaint by email or letter.
With 'social customer service', those days are long gone, and companies who want to maintain a good reputation and increasing sales, have to be transparent, open, honest and actively customer-focused in a way they were never expected - or wanted - to be.
Because of its immediacy and occasional relentless intensity, social customer service may be seen as a headache by some companies.
To ease some of the pain, I've included an infographic from referral automation service providers, Ambassador.
I'm having a particularly lazy day today - well, not exactly lazy, more distracted,
as I've been working behind the scenes on a new service launch aimed at the
small business market.
I thought readers of this blog might enjoy quick reference guides - aka 'Cheat
Sheets' on how to present themselves in style on Twitter and Facebook.
I could do with updating my own profiles but, as usual, life and other stuff is
getting in the way. :)
Thanks to Online Circle Digital for two fantastic infographics.
If you like your profile and would like to share it, get in touch with me and
I'll feature it on The Reputation Manager blog.
Have a trouble-free weekend!
It's now an established part of our lives and has been responsible for making
(and often 'breaking') reputations - social media is here to stay.
But, it doesn't work for everybody, which is why I'm focusing today's post on
a useful overview and guide from Digital Information World which features
ten tips to boost your social media presence.
Since the first blogs went online in the 1990s, billions of words have been written
by everyone from ordinary individuals to industrialists to inform, engage, educate
and entertain hundreds of millions of people around the world.
Despite the prominence of social media tools like Facebook and Twitter in recent
years, blogs are arguably still the best way to increase your profile, build a good
reputation and attract (and keep) visitors.
As today's infographic from Guest Crew shows, you don't just need your blog to
connect with new communities.
The humble logo, "a graphic mark or emblem commonly used by commercial enterprises,
organizations and even individuals to aid and promote instant public recognition", according
to Wikipedia, has become an essential part of any branding strategy.
A logo can inspire trust and goodwill, which ultimately contribute to reputation and
the bottom line.
Some can cost anything from absolutely nothing to literally hundreds of millions,
especially when a company decides to change its name.
But what makes the 'perfect' logo?
Design firm 123Print has come up with a visually stimulating answer.
Millions are spent each year on securing global celebrity endorsements
for everything from sunglasses to high end properties.
Advertisers obviously believe in it and are willing to pay eye watering sums
to get a famous person to pose with a product or give their seal of approval
to a service. The same applies for experts, ranging from academics to doctors
and entrepreneurs to scientists.
It doesn't always work out, with some big name celebrity deals ending in
tears. However, despite these 'hiccups', big payouts are set to continue.
Celebrities have a powerful hold on their army of fans who want to emulate
or have some type of association with them.
But, there's clear evidence of an 'under-acknowledged', but more powerful
influence than 'star power' in people's decision making process: friends.
I've never been tempted to buy a compact, mobile phone or any other item
after seeing a well-known person grinning at the camera while posing with
a product I suspect they would never use normally.
I have, however, given a friend's suggestion serious thought and have often
gone on to try - and occasionally buy - something.
Today's infographic from Friendize reveals some interesting figures on who we
turn to for advice before we buy a product or service.
Have a happy weekend!
People of a sceptical persuasion might see the headline for this blog as
They'd be partly right; after all, this is The Reputation Manager's blog!
That said, on a serious note, everyone who is involved in any online activity,
whether professionally or personally, needs to adopt a 'defensive' strategy
when it comes to managing their reputation. There's no faster arena in which
someone could go from 'hero to zero' than online, so we all have to keep an
eye out for false, hostile or malicious comments!
Thankfully, there's a lot of information on how to 'do it yourself' on the web
and on this website, in addition to expertise from paid-for online reputation
management services catering to the needs or individuals and organisations.
Internet use is growing globally at a speedy rate (see the graph below from the
International Telecommunication Union, the United Nations specialized agency
for information and communication technologies), as is the threat to reputations.
Here's a quick blog post - and a huge infographic - to start off the week from the
people at Pronto Marketing.
See you online - in the best possible way!
Thoughts on customer service, communication and, of course, reputation management.