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BizReport : Social Marketing : January 27, 2009

CMO: Marketers aren't listening to online customers

Companies are missing out on opportunities to collect meaningful intelligence via listening in on online customer conversations, finds a new report.

by Helen Leggatt

CMO logo.jpgWhile companies are building brands and reputations online, not many are monitoring the feedback that sites such as message boards, blogs and social networks generate.

Such are the findings of a new report, "Giving Customer Voice More Volume", by the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council.

"Obviously there is a lack of Internet listening," said Donovan Neale-May, CMO Council executive director. "That is the big value of the Internet and these communities, discussion groups and blogs. With the right technology you can easily listen in on those conversations and extract meaningful intelligence from text analysis. You can freely and continuously monitor the sentiment of those conversations, and it doesn't cost a lot of money."

Just 16% of the 500 senior marketers surveyed by the CMO monitored online message boards for complaints and feedback, even though over half (58%) believe that "the Internet and social media have changed the level of influence and expectations of their customers."

Other findings from the report include:

• Just 37% of companies gather customer insight from customer engagement situations.

• The majority, 60%, don't compensate employees or executives for helping build customer loyalty or satisfaction.

• Only 13% have implemented real-time systems to collect, analyze and distribute customer feedback.

• 75% receive customer feedback via e-mail, yet only 23% track and measure the volume and nature of these messages.

• Only 14% track word-of-mouth on the Internet.

• Only 11% are using a word-of-mouth marketing platform to drive online customer advocacy.

Tags: blogs, CMO, consumer feedback, message boards, social sites, word of mouth

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