How salesforce.com Makes Sense of Customer Input
Blogging from the 2008 Communities Exchange Summit. We've had incredible presentations from major B2B customer community programs: Intel (Josh Hilliker, Rhett LIvengood), Intuit (Scott Wilder), Oracle (Jake Kuramoto). Bill Johnston at ForumOne Networks gave results from their most recent research . . .
IdeaExchange was inspired in part by Digg, combined with a prioritization platform (which SFC acquired).
The way employees participate in a customer community is the single most critical factor in the success of a community.
Moderation: the point is not just to weed out spam, but to encourage and reward participation from members.
Handling "inconvenient" ideas from the community
- Reconsider - is it really a bad idea of lots of people want it.
- Often adds useful ammo for internal debates
- Is it an opportunity for partner solution?
- If it just can't be done, state why, if possible
Competitor activity on your site: let the community deal with it. (they'll typically either ignore it, or dispute it for you). Be reluctant to take postings down.
Analytics for Product Managers: These are the things that Kingsley's team reports to PMs. How many of these can you report?
# of Ideas – by product line, each release cycle
Top 20 Most Popular
% of All Ideas Delivered
% of Top 20 in last quarter that were delivered
# of undelivered All-Time Top 20 ideas
$ of Opportunities Lost due to Undelivered Ideas
Ideas From High-Potential Customers
Ideas From At-Risk Customers
Then, of course, report back to the community on progress in implementing product ideas.
CRM (Sales, Suppport and Marketing) - an often overlooked component of community programs. The community can do great things for you, but only if it's tied back into CRM. Community information can provide context and nuance to otherwise static CRM info.