A competition by Forbes Magazine blog named #50 top things you should know in 2011. Amongst them is a new position in every company "Chief Listening Officer".
The internet along with later developed media such as Facebook, Youtube, Twitter..etc. has created such a platform for consumers to kill or build brands. While brands use Social media as a tool to propagate their messages and products, it works in other direction where consumers talk about products. People talk about brands in both good & bad ways. The solution for brands was to have someone to listen to them so they can take action as appropriate.
Two examples given by the Forbes were Kodak and Dell. They both have a position called Chief Listening Officer to listen to Social Media as given below.
|Beth's ear is turned your way|
When vloggers complained that the company’s latest digital video camera needed a mic jack for crowded rooms, she let product development know and it was added to the next model. “It’s like a focus group of millions,” says LaPierre. “There could be ten of me.”
When fans of a popular Nickelodeon children’s program started complaining on TV blogs about Kodak pulling ads due to a transgendered character, LaPierre contacted PR and then swooped in to correct the false report. “With a chief listening officer, you can ensure an immediate reaction before things spiral out of control,” says LaPierre.
Of her title, she says, “It’s hard explaining it to my mom.”
"Her counterpart at Dell, Chief Listener Susan Beebe, describes her job, which she started in July, as building "complex queries."
Unlike many social-media jobs, this position is very inward-facing. She's listening to Dell customers and consumers and giving all the intel to her Dell colleagues internally.
"Our chief listener is critical to making sure the right people in the organization are aware of what the conversations on the web are saying about us, so that relevant people in the business can connect with customers," said Richard Binhammer, communications executive at Dell. Mr. Binhammer points out that "Dell has been listening for four years and created a position called 'Listening Czar' two years ago. We are a leader in the listening space."
Ms. Beebe and Ms. LaPierre said their companies were driving innovation through customer feedback."
Social Media is no longer a FAD. Or just another trend that will fade away. Its here to stay and its up to you an your company to listen to what's being said about you!!!