Australia Social Network: Customer Service and The Future

Miss me? I’m still in Singapore, teaching Social Media campaigns and how to build branded microcommunities for the Singapore Government. I’ll be back next week. In the meantime, here’s an interview I did with Choice Magazine on the future of social networking:

In the future, we will turn to the internet to get a job, for a loan and to take out health insurance, but we’ll apply through our online social network. And this will give rise to the development of peer-to-peer economies.

These are just a few of the developments that Laurel Papworth is anticipating. The internet strategist works with companies to help them understand user-generated content, social media and blogging and its implications for their brands and products. “We look at engagement and communication through both social media and social economies,” says Papworth.

and a podcast on why Customer Service should manage Online Communities. Plus BigPond’s Brady Jacobsen (who’s Twitter engagement has improved out of sight, by the way):

This week’s first feature interview on Smart Call is with Brady Jacobsen, BigPond’s Director of Customer Operations.

Brady explains that the company’s foray into Twitter., a micro-blogging service, has resulted in unprecedented levels of feedback from customers about how it can deliver customer service more effectively online.

In a similar vein, Social Networks Strategist Laurel Papworth expands on her Blog post that says customer service professionals – not marketing or PR – should get the job of interacting with customers in online communities like blogs and forums.

I’ll blog about Singapore later, ok?

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

5 thoughts on “Australia Social Network: Customer Service and The Future

  1. Thanks for the mention of our @BigPondTeam and our customer care efforts in Twitter. The feedback from you and others in the Twitter community is helping shape our Web 2.0 customer access channels and the way we support BigPond customers. The level of collaboration continues to be high and v.resfreshing. Our approach will continue to develop and evolve as more Australians use Twitter and as we consider extending our capability across other Telstra products and services. We have more to do and if anyone would like to share their thoughts or ideas please look us up http://twitter.com/bigpondteam or DM @BradyJacobsen.

  2. Hi Laurel,
    What’s your view on self regulation vs imposed or structural regulations within peer to peer economies? This is the bit that has me befuddled.

  3. @BJ goody 🙂 Feel free to organise for Telstra to offer a Twitter SMS service. We are one of the few countries in the world where Twitter cancelled the SMS – more Australians would use the service then, as a mobile community.

    @Kate, I gave a presentation a year or year and half ago at a Dept of Regulatory Affairs conference. Basically saying that the community will undertake regulatory affairs themselves. E.g. Whirlpool.net makes deliberately confusing broadband contracts simple, and names and shames those companies not playing right. Ditto Parent’s Jury community (advertising to kids) and so on. The regulatory affairs position in organisations and government will be rolled into PR and probably become the “Customer Community Affairs Relations” or similar.

    In other words, the community will allow it’s leaders (natural, from within) to stipulate what is acceptable and what is not.

    The phone/email carpet bombing (mass activity or flash mobbing) planned for Stephen Conroy’s office next week may show if Australia is ready for mass, grassroots accepting of responsibility to make their voice heard and to tackle issues of industry regulations. We’ll see…

  4. Thanks Laurel.

    I think what’s interesting is the norms that exist in different communities and whether these constitute acceptable vs non acceptable behaviour in the broader community or within other groups.

    So for example, irresponsible lending practices in the US have been deemed acceptable within the financial community for a period, and this has contributed significantly to the current crisis. Obviously, this has now been deemed unacceptable, but not before it caused huge problems for everyone.

    So do you think this kind of unchecked behaviour will become more difficult to engage as companies are forced to embrace greater transparency? What happens when standards within certain communities are out of step with the broader community but not subject to more structural regulation?

  5. Hi, Your press article talks a bit about p2p / social lending. I thought I would share this preso with you on the topic.


    Singapore sounds interesting.


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