by CorpComms on 29/09/2010 17:24:58 in CorpComms Online
Winner: Three 'Three Blog'
Helen Dunne is the editor of CorpComms Magazine, follow her tweets here @CorpCommsMag
When Three decided to launch a corporate blog, to provide a platform to respond to negative customer comments and to provide a reliable source of corporate information, the mobile phone network group did not just leap in feet first. It first spent months listening to customers online in an effort to learn how to engage in conversations without becoming intrusive.
But Three was also determined that the blog would not just be broadcasting by another name. If there were tough questions or negative comments out there, it would respond to them clearly and speedily. Three was also aware that, once launched, the corporate blog had to be regularly updated (at least twice a week) and have its own personality and voice.
Each post had to have a strategy behind it, whether it was helping existing customers use Three's products and services; to build awareness of a new release; or to grow a customer community by reaching out with questions and providing feedback on issues. The judges described the design as 'well thought out, different, while remaining true to blog functionality'.
The author of each post will monitor the comments left by customers, which average 87 but hit 623 on one occasion, and dip into the conversation, answering questions, thanking respondents and guiding the conversation to a positive outcome.
Many staff are involved, such as head of Internet services David Kerrigan who has contributed a list of his favourite Android apps, while head of implementation and planning Justin Bull reported on Three's New Year Meetup with staff, consumers and bloggers, posting photos and videos on his blog.
The blog launched in November 2009. Between January and May, traffic increased 700 per cent with an average 22,000 visits per month. There is also evidence of a customer community developing, which the judges viewed as 'excellent'. Four out of ten visits to the blog are repeat visitors.
The judges described Three's blog as 'an imaginative means of interacting with their client base utilising a number of social and viral means.' While it continues to be work in progress, which will evolve in line with consumers' needs, the blog is already helping to shape business decisions. For example, when Three decided not to include the Nokia E72 in its range and communicated this through the blog, the ensuing customer reaction persuaded the company that the decision should be reversed.
Consumers seem similarly pleased with the blog. One said: 'Three, I am impressed. You definitely listen to your customers and that is a very good thing for a large company.'
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