Sunday, September 28, 2008

Are you STILL following me?

I can’t think of anything good about it.

On a personal level, it’s really annoyed me. First, I had to write an extra email that, had the @Bigpondteam not teased me with their tweet, I could have avoided. Second, after our brief tweet-a-tweet, I still had to send my request to them by snail mail. And last, but certainly not least, it hasn’t really helped me solve my Bigpond problem.

Tip #1: Understand your customers

Why didn’t they do any basic research before following and tweeting at me? Why didn’t they look at who I follow, and who’s following me?

I’m wondering how they just plain didn’t notice that the Tweetosphere is rife with savvy, and very articulate, social media observers just looking for a case study such as this…

It’s being played out to that effect. Analysis of Bigpond’s tweet effort has been tweeted and re-tweeted around the traps and has, of course, spread to the (echoing) boulevards of blogsville. The recurring theme seems to be about how brands should not conduct themselves on Twitter.

My question for Bigpond is simple: Why Twitter? What customer needs are you fulfilling? Think about it and get back to me. On Twitter please.

(More about this in an excellent post by Lid here) 


Mark Pollard said...

Yes, indeed. I think, so far, their Twitter escapade is more a case of 'just because you can, doesn't mean you should'.

Handcuffs in social media really mean Bigpond should redefine their role on Twitter - perhaps showing people cool stuff to download, good Bigpond tools, etc... rather than just another inept service channel, a feedback loop.

37 Signals do a good job of (at least) 2 Twitter accounts - one for their brand and one for service.

Katie Harris said...

Hi Mark

Absolutely and exactly!

It strikes me as such an odd choice of channel for the particular one-size-fits-all message they've been tweeting.

In contrast, I really like your idea of cool downloads and good BigPond tools. Of course, they'd have to make them pretty good for people to follow, but therein would lie the value!

Thanks for your comment.

Mark Pollard said...

Absolutely. Quite strange but I'm sure they'll work it out. Keen to see what iinet does on Twitter. Noticed they're on but not fully active yet.

If I was Bigpond, I'd use Twitter to test innovative, fast-expire offers, exclusive content downloads, tools + research + statistics for Marketing/Tech bloggers with the objective of garnering positive WOM and linkbacks.

Katie Harris said...


Great ideas! Huge value adds like these would really give the brand a fresh and helpful point of difference.

Lid said...

I too like Mark's ideas - I was thinking though - doesn't BigPond have a 'news' section on its site?

Wouldn't it be nice if they tweeted some of their tech news - or Australian news (Twitterland is missing a real Aussie presence) they could just make a go of it. Especially if they broke up their @ replies with links to neat content. If it's on their news site - surely it has already been OK'd by the legal/pr folk?

Just yet another thought...

Katie Harris said...

Hi Lid

: )

I agree: some useful tweeting would be great!

Julian Cole has posted some interesting thoughts on legality issues over at Adspace Pioneers:

Granleese said...

Good debate here.. Mark I think your ideas are spot on.

Another thought would be for BP to use Twitter as an aggregator for live updates from the myriad of their sporting, community and arts sponsorships.

I have no doubt there could be a fresh bit of content every couple hours (even a "working on..." or "next week we are supporting..." tweet).

The sad thing is that all this content is already on their various content channels where nobody sees it.

Zac Martin said...

I think you've started something really big here. Well done!

These legal issues could go beyond Twitter, into blogging, social networks, YouTube... and more! It will be interesting to see how this plays out I think.

Great little case study.

Katie Harris said...

Sam: Thanks for adding your thoughts: again, some really useful tips for BigPond. I think it's a great opportunity for them to think about the fit between their message and any particular channel.

And Zac: It is, indeed, a great little case study! Probably not quite what BigPond had in mind, but nevertheless… : P

alan jones said...

mmmyep, finding @bigpond on twitter is like your daggy uncle asking if he can please come to your awesome birthday party at the exclusive nightclub, or the Vatican running late-night infomercials - some venues just aren't appropriate for your brand.

nobody expects or wants bigpond to be a hip, happening and with-it brand outside the brand marketing team at bigpond. i think we all want bigpond to remain safe, boring and relatively conservative. we'd all like them to improve the quality and the customer service usually associated with their offering.

we want to feel we can trust our daggy uncle when we need to depend on someone who won't let us down, who'll always be there in the lean times as well as the good, who'll always be slightly behind the leading edge because that's a safe and secure place to be.

meanwhile, this particular daggy uncle appears to have given up trying to cadge an E off us but only in order to hit on our best friend. this cannot end well.

Katie Harris said...

Hi Alan

I love this: it's a perfect analogy!

I agree with your conclusion too. It'll end in tears.

: P

Mark Pollard said...

Funny analogy, Alan.

You can see how they've started changing their approach (links to images):

Not so good - mid September 2008

Working it out - late September 2008

Nearly there - early October 2008

This can end (or simply evolve) well for Bigpond but 'customer service on Twitter' is surely not the best use of Twitter for their brand or business - not exclusively, not now.

It would be an interesting strategy for a business to deliberately try to get social media wrong, get a bunch of negative attention then turn it around and get more attention for doing a good job. Result = plenty of linkbacks, plenty of discussion, pats on the back for doing it well. Interesting - but slightly evil.

John Lacey said...

I cannot help but think your problems with Bigpond might be better served by, frankly, finding a better ISP.

I've seen many blog posts and suggestions regarding Bigpond's involvement on twitter (as well their other misadventures - such as branding Uluru on Second Life).

I've also seen a particularly diligent and amicable Telstra employee go around and 'make nice' in blog comments, too.

I really believe, as consumers, if we believe in good service and expect it... we really must demand it by going elsewhere when appropriate. An email or a tweet might communicate something, but a significant drop in customers would REALLY send a message.

Sean Carmody said...

My guess is that some bright spark at Telstra heard about @comcastcares, thought "brilliant, we could do that", but didn't really think it though.

Katie Harris said...

John - you're right. I've really had enough banging my head against the Big brick wall. Time to take better ISP action.

Sean - they soooo obviously didn't think it through.

I've noticed iinet twittering away in a totally different way (non-annoying, non-contrived, bit of a personality, etc).

Interestingly, they don't follow people...just other providers. Smart.

Katie Harris said...

And Mark - great links. Thank you!

kuku fashion australia said...

WOW.. Sweet Fashion! Fantastic topics. Liked it., Thanks for the nice Blog. This is really Fantastic. Enjoy online fashion shopping with us! We are- Kuku fashion Australia, with Kuku, Kuku dress, Kuku dresses, Kuku fashion, Mad Love stockist, Mad Love fashion, Toi et Moi online, Toi et Moi jacket, Toi et Moi online. Thanks for staying with us.

Knowledge Plus Australia said...

Thanks for the Great Post. Knowledge Plus is a Registered Training Organisation. training provider australia, certificate iv in business australia, diploma qualifications australia, elearning australia diploma qualifications australia, training provider australia, elearning australia, management qualifications australia, diploma qualifications australia, certificate iv in business australia and many more Training and Supports.

office 365 said...

Thanks for the Great Post. Groupe Conseil Solinteg can support -
office 365
cloud services
sharepoint online
exchange online
lync online
cloud services montreal
microsoft crm montreal
windows intune
and many more services and product from Microsoft Corporation. Thanks.

karmaloop code said...

russian gift
nesting doll
russian dolls
russian hat

green products said...

Thanks for the Great Post. We want a Green earth for LIVE, why we need- green home, green products, green product, buy green, eco friendly products, environmental products, eco green products, environmentally friendly products. Thank you for staying with us.

mou liton said...

We are the contractor since 1980 for alternations, renovations and extensions. On our website you find more information and you can request a quotation. aannemer, aannemersbedrijf, bouwbedrijf, verbouwen, renovatie, kosten uitbouw,kosten verbouwing
Thank for the Post.

oil change va said...

Nice blog. Try to repair engine oil leaks to keep the environment clean. Thanks- oil change and oil change va

stop car engine oil leaks said...

Nice blog. Try to repair car oil leak to keep the environment clean. Thanks- stop car engine oil leaks

how to remove grease said...

Nice blog. Try to know how to remove grease and how to clean oil spills va to keep the environment clean. Thanks- fix engine oil leaks

joana lui said...

It is great to observe somebody put enough craze towards a matter. I'm thankful that I stumbled upon this process. I am lucky I used the time to read on past the 1st paragraph. You have got a whole lot to say, very much to offer. I really hope guys understand this and look into your page.

safety deposit box
bank safety deposit boxes
mailbox post
residential mailboxes
gold bar for sale

asif ifteakhar said...

Thank you for the great article I did enjoyed reading it, I will be sure to
bookmark your blog and definitely will come back from again.
I want to encourage that you continue your great job, have a good day

north london business opportunities
london networking groups
london business networking
london business group

best wedding coordinator washington state said...

Nice Article topics. This is really excellent and fantastic. I hope it’ll be helpful for our readers. We are - Muse Event Planning and Production, LLC is a full service event planning and production company that can accommodate many types of events. From intimate dinner parties to events/weddings for over three hundred, we can handle every last detail. We work as your seattle wedding planner . We have an extensive list of award winning vendors and venues to build a team for our client’s events that will make any event picture perfect and stress free. We are well known as woodinville wedding planner or woodinville event planner . Our goal is to ensure that our client’s event is a reflection of them and their vision. Using creativity, attention to detail and experience in management and bookkeeping, we vow to create a one-of-a-kind event within their budget. We were rewarded as best wedding coordinator washington state last year. We demand, we are the best wedding planner tacoma .Thanks for your cooperation.