This might be the last item I write about Web care, even though I find it very interesting to see how companies are pouring tons of cash into a brain-dead activity. Essentially, a lot of companies are trying to duct-tape their poor service online by being great on Facebook and Twitter. Because poor service is what it boils down to: you have failed with your product or service, either by delivery poor quality or make it difficult to understand it or to handle it. Seldom you see companies handling messages on social media from enthusiastic groups of fans that throw idea after idea to a company or any other positive feedback on why the products or services (or the brand in general) are so great.
Web care: the Shiny alternative for failing business processes
So the current state of Web care is pathetic, just for the simple fact that Web care is a way too narrow view on social business activities. Web care is now just playing help desk on social media. For now people perceive this as sexy because it is new. For now having a lot of people in your Web care team is something great, however if you frame it correctly it is often the sign of a company in demise that unfortunately still has too much money to spend to really see that their world is colliding.
Having a big Web care team shows that you have a lot of activity to handle. However if all you do is answering questions of your customers day in day out and these questions are nearly the same, you have an information issue: you seem not to be able to offer the right information on time to your customer: Instead of fixing the real problem you are duct taping this issue with Web care: the shiny sexy alternative for failing business processes.
Is it a thing or does it matter?
However you might realise that the thing you are doing with Web care is just that: a thing, not something that matters in one way or another let alone that it can be a profit centre for your organisation or drives real change. However it is hard to go from a thing to something that makes a difference and matters. To be able to transform this, you have to know where you are at, what you are doing wrong and what you need to do to move away from hiding process failures with the shiny new thing and move into the next stage: social business transformation; transforming your organisation towards a social business in which social adds value, instead of hiding your issues.
To make you more aware of what might be wrong with your current Web care activities, I have created a list of archetypes of the ways in which Web care is executed within organisation. With these archetypes you are able to identify your pitfalls and show what you can do to make a change. Since if you want to move forward you need to make a change, with Web care you are just running round in circles, instead of making a real substantial and sustainable change in your way of working and interacting with your ecosystem.
These archetypes are:
- The Lone Wolf
- The Schizophrenic
- The Firefighter
- The Fashionista
- The Dodger
- The Performer
- The Replier
- The Bot
- The Mobiliser
In the upcoming week all of these archetypes will be published and you will find links to the articles here. If you want to keep the articles as soon as these are published: scroll down and subscribe to these articles using your email.
Start transforming your business now
Coming to the end of the introduction, I realise that this is probably not the last thing I will write about Web care, just for the simple fact that there is still so much work to do in transforming so many organisations into a social business. Although so many business already think that they are already there because they have a Web care department. Therefore there is a lot of work to do, and basically it starts here with the identification of the archetypes of Web care.