By Mitra Sorrells Posted January 26, 2012, 9:50 AM EST
ORLANDO At the opening session of the I.B.M. Connect conference in Orlando January 16, Guy Kawasaki, former chief evangelist of Apple and co-founder of information aggregator Alltop.com, shared his tips on how organizations and individuals can be successful in their use of social business tools to achieve what he calls customer enchantment.
“Enchantment is a relationship that is deeper, longer lasting, mutually beneficial, and voluntary,” Kawasaki said. He said all businesses should be using Google+, Twitter, and Facebook to engage their customers, because “they are fast, they’re free, and they’re ubiquitous. That is the holy grail of marketing.”
To use social media successfully, Kawasaki offered these tips:
1. Say something of value. Value can come in the form of information, insights, or assistance.
2. Engage. Make it fast (respond to online comments within two hours and answer email within 48 hours), flat (respond to everyone), and frequent (make social media activity a core part of your business, not an afterthought).
3. Plant many seeds. “Marketing 2.0, in a world of Google+ and Twitter and Facebook, is a much flatter world. Now if the masses fall in love with your product, the influencers take notice. So start from the bottom up.”
4. Trust others before they trust you. Kawasaki used Amazon, Zappos, and Nordstrom as examples of companies that are successful because they have return policies that demonstrate their trust of consumers.
5. Default to a “yes” attitude. “Think to yourself, I will do what this person asks; I will be happy to do it; I will probably say yes even before they ask, even before I know what they are going to ask me to do. Always be thinking, ‘how can I help the other person,’” Kawasaki said.
6. It’s much easier to develop a relationship with customers when you have a great product or service. Make sure you are offering products and services that have useful features, intelligent functionality, and empowerment for the user.
7. Provide a way to show social proof. Make it easy for your customers to share their love of your product or service by incorporating things such as widgets and “like” buttons on your site.
8. Become a baker, not an eater. “An eater sees the world as a zero-sum game,” he said. A baker, in contrast, believes in the value of doing things for the good of all, and that mindset is what helps businesses succeed.
9. Learn to accept others, especially those who are different than you.