Maximising the trust of friends on social media: Interview with [24]7

By Chris Lee

People intrinsically trust the recommendation of their peers’ online purchases. According to marketing software developer [24]7, 15 per cent of online shoppers share their purchases on social networks, 40 per cent read product and brand postings by friends, and five per cent actually click through and purchase.

Given these powerful statistics how can marketers harness this behaviour? [24]7 has launched its social sharing product launch [24]7 Social, which the company says turns social sharing into an omni-channel experience by allowing customers to share whilst using another social channel, whether online, web chat, mobile, voice or other.  NMK spoke to Mike Hughes, Managing Director for European Operations at [24]7, to learn more.

Leveraging big data

[24]7 Social is a suite of apps that “leverages prediction, real-time decisioning and intuitive design frameworks” to make the sharing of purchases, promotions, products and customer experiences easy for consumers, according its creators.

“There can be few people out there that doubt the power, influence and potential of social sharing for brand awareness and sales,” Hughes told NMK. “Brands the world over are keen to get customers sharing their experiences, because they know that consumers’ friends and social contacts will often pay more attention to that message than one direct from a brand.”

As such, [24]7 Social uses big data and prediction to identify, target and entice customers to share their purchases, promotions, products, and customer experiences. For example, Hughes said, a voice caller – having been identified as an influential brand advocate based on previous history and interactions – could be incentivised by an agent to share their experience on social networks in return for a future discount.

“This effectively helps turn the best customers into sales agents,” Hughes argued.

Brand advocates equals direct sales force

Hughes said that consumers might want to share their customer experiences whether they were interacting on a social network or via another channel, so social sharing of purchases, promotions, products and customer experiences needs to be incredibly easy for consumers.

“Social sharing needs to be simple and intuitive or the moment will pass and the consumer will quickly move on,” he added. “We aim to bring social sharing from just a web interaction to a broader, omni-channel experience where consumers can share through different channels.”

Hughes believes that through predictive analytics, marketers can identify, target and engage influential consumers at the right moment, making it easy for consumers to share as a natural extension of the customer experience. Consumers do not need to leave the enterprise’s channel to share allowing them to continue their interactions, he said

About [24]7 Social

[24]7 Social includes the following four apps:

– Purchase Sharing: Consumers share purchases after checkout is complete, increasing conversion rates

– Product Sharing: Consumers share products while browsing product pages, increasing awareness

– Promotion Sharing: Consumers share promotions from an enterprise’s website and other materials, increasing incremental sales

– Experience Sharing: Consumers share their experiences after a successful customer service interaction, increasing brand loyalty

“Using these applications can help an enterprise turn a social consumer into its best evangelist by tapping into their sphere of social influence,” Hughes concluded. “People value what other people in their networks say and social sharing helps create buzz around different products, promotions, purchases and experiences which ultimately improves a company’s branding and business results.”

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