Marketing is more than mapping a customer journey through a sales funnel. It requires taking a walk in their shoes and understanding how to help them get where they want to go. But for that you don’t want to just think like a marketer. You need to BE the customer!

Brooke Sellas, Founder & CEO of B Squared Media, joins Jeff and Grace to explore how to connect, converse, and convert through social-led customer care.


This transcript is automatically generated by Descript.  Any errors or omissions are unintentional.

[00:00:00] Jeff Sieh: Welcome to Social Media News Live I’m Jeff Sieh and you’re not

[00:00:04] Grace Duffy: I’m Grace Duffy. And this is the show that keeps you up to date on the world of social media marketing.

[00:00:10] Jeff Sieh: And today we’re talking all about marketing with empathy and marketing.

[00:00:14] It’s more than just mapping a customer journey through a sales funnel. It requires taking a walk in their shoes, understanding how to help them get to where they want to go. But for that, you just don’t want to think like a marketer. You need to be the customer. So I’m so excited today that we are joined by Brooke Sellas, and she is the founder and CEO of B squared media.

[00:00:34] And she’s joining us to explore how to create. Converse and convert through social lead customer care. Brooke, thank you for being on the show again.

[00:00:45] Brooke Sellas: Thank you for having me again. You guys are always so much fun. I feel like I giggle more than I talk on your shirt, which is a sign of a good job. I’m pretty sure.

[00:00:52] Jeff Sieh: I hope, and I do a lot of giggling as well cause Grace makes me laugh. But if you don’t know who Brooke is, you really should. She is in the trenches, founder and CEO of B squared media and award-winning social media advertising and customer care agency. She’s the also, which is it’s an incredible podcast.

[00:01:09] The co-host of the Marketing Companion podcast with Mark Schaefer, where they discuss jaw dropping marketing trends. If you haven’t listened to that, make sure you guys go over to your favorite podcast player, apple, Spotify, wherever, and give them a rating review. It really does help podcasters out. And it is well worth the listen, so go check them out over there, but she was also recently named one of the 10 rising stars of the marketing world by LinkedIn, but she’s always been a star in our book. Whatever you went to and says, Brooke’s marketing mantras think convert a conversation, not campaign. So be sure to give her a shout out on all the socials as you see around today, Brooke, once again, welcome to the show.

[00:01:49] Brooke Sellas: Thank you. Thank you so excited.

[00:01:51] Grace Duffy: I also want to mention that you have a new book that is coming up and it’s all about how to connect, converse and convert through social media, listening and social led customer care. And that was a lne from her book. I did not write that. I’m just going to tell you like it was so succinctly captures exactly what it is now.

[00:02:11] Jeff and I were able to review one of your early copies advanced copies in preparation for this show. And I love how it actually steps you through the process, including scripts even had scripts on how to respond to customers, which I always find helpful because it’s always okay, I know how to do, I know what to do, but how do you do it?

[00:02:30] Like it really walks you through, but we’ve invited you here to talk about some of the marketing principles that you lay out in this book. So well marketing with empathy and that social led customers. But I certainly don’t want to give it all away. So hopefully the show leaves our listeners and our viewers wanting more because I definitely want to go back and reread and really dig through some of these concepts.

[00:02:54] Do you have any details on when and where it will be available to everyone right now or in the future? Yes.

Conversations That Connect Book Launch

[00:03:01] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So we’re hoping for a spring, a summer launch. So shortly, right? Not too far off, we just wrapped up the first rough draft, as we say, and we’re working on kind of the second rough draft right now, and then we’ll get into the final rough draft and then we’ll go into publishing.

[00:03:18] But if you go to that link that Jeff shared earlier, it’s the Bitly link. You can find our landing page. That’s all about the book. You can sign up, receive a free excerpt of the book today, and then I’ll just keep you updated along the way with some of the cool stuff that’s happening in the book.

[00:03:35] Some of the interviews that I have coming up, and then obviously we’ll let you know when it launches.

[00:03:41] Jeff Sieh: Yes. So by the way, yeah, I want to share this for our podcast listeners. So to get this landing page, you want to go to a, And that’s capital B two. Th the number two and book.

[00:03:58] So capital B the number two and books. So bit dot L Y four slash B two books. So make sure you guys check that out. We were like Grace said able to get that advanced copy and it is, seriously, this is going to be one of those primers that you’re going to use, that you’re going to keep around.

[00:04:14] It’s up there with any of her. Co hosts podcasts, Mark Schaefer. I love Mark’s book. She’s written a ton of them, but this is a good, this is just a great book as well. So I know it’s going to be hugely successful. So go there and get that excerpt that you can download from, for signing up to be getting those reminders and let us know what you think on social.

[00:04:36] Let Brooke know. Cause I’m sure she would just be, would love to have some feedback, but it is amazing. So make sure you guys go check that out as well. The other thing, before we jump right into the main part of the show, I also want to talk about Ecamm this week. They, this next week coming up next week, starting on Monday, they’re doing a thing all about.

[00:04:55] And if, as you watched us last week, audio is super important when you’re doing a live show inspect, especially if there’s like jackhammers outside your window, but it’s going to be all about audio. Why it’s so important, how to improve your audio, what gear equipment you need to use. Should you get a soundboard, all that stuff.

[00:05:13] The best place to find out about that is they have this new platform that they’re using with partnership with alter live. So if you go, you can sign up, it’s free. It’s going to be incredible training. So make sure you guys go check that out from our friends over at Ecamm

[00:05:34] So first section Grace, let’s talk about this empathy marketing by social led customer care.

[00:05:40] Grace Duffy: Absolutely. Brooke, you kick off your book by telling readers about a beta test that you have a social first customer care concept that you worked with a luxury brand to roll out. And you said you ran this test for almost two years.

[00:05:56] You write them, you launch a program in 2020, and just the first six months. I want to read these stats for everyone because these are incredible results. You increased and improved response time by 3278%. And then you also increased response volume by 2229%. And you going from an average of. 56 complaints, you said per month to 1248.

[00:06:23] And if you’ve ever done customer care or support team or anyone I’ve done this. Anyone that’s worked in social media marketing has done this to some capacity. You understand what this means to increase your volume and that ability to respond to your customers that fast and that quickly.

[00:06:41] And so you lay out the details of the strategy in your book, but can you give us a broad overview of how you set up this beta test program?

Customer Care Beta Test Program

[00:06:50] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So what happened? It was almost like a natural evolution, right? So we’ve, we’re celebrating our 10th birthday actually in may. And we’ve always done organic management of social media pages for brands.

[00:07:03] What we started to see over the 10 years was that more and more channels became less of a. Place to distribute content and more of a place where people were coming for support questions throughout the digital customer journey. So when I say customer care, I don’t just mean post-purchase. I also mean pre-purchase because what’s happening again, more and more on social media is that shoppers are coming to brand pages and asking acquisition questions or pre-purchase questions.

[00:07:34] Meaning I’m looking at this shoe and your shoe, they are the same price. They seem to be the same color you offer the same things. Why is your shoe different? Why should I buy your shoe? And if you’re able to answer that question quickly and then maybe throw in a little something cell phone Hey, and also, if you want to buy today, I can give you free shipping.

[00:07:55] You’re going to capture that purchase, right? You’re going to capture that conversion, but only if you’re they’re actively listening and then responding quickly. As we saw this natural progression happened, we started to process out or operationalized. How do you take care of customers and would be customers throughout the entire digital journey and when they want it.

[00:08:20] So what they want when they want on the channel, they want it on and quickly which a lot of things went into, which I know we’ll talk about today.

[00:08:29] Jeff Sieh: Brooke, what were some like, you mentioned in your book, a lot of this stuff, but what are some of the, because I know people are listening and it can be overwhelming when they talk about, when you talk about, cycles of the customer journey and all this stuff and especially for a small company or even a solo preneur, it can be overwhelming.

[00:08:47] So what were some of the biggest takeaways you got or pitfalls? I say, I guess that when you were doing kind of this study,

Negative Comments Allow Innovation

[00:08:56] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. The pitfalls, I don’t see as pitfalls. So I think the pitfalls and what we all get scared of, right. Is that negative. Right. Everybody talks about, and we see all the time online, all of the negative stuff that’s happening.

[00:09:10] I say in the book is, I want you to be a negative Nancy because the only place that we actually have a catalyst for change is within the negative. If everybody was reaching out to tell you how perfect you are, you were, that’d be great for user generated content, but that’s not going to really help move the brand forward and to continue to innovate.

[00:09:29] So I want you to be a negative Nancy. I want you to dig into the negative things that are happening. And then I want all of the internal operations of the brand and the company to work together, to actually fix those things. Because if you can show your audiences, your community, your would be customers that you not only listen, but you take back what they say, and then you make a better product.

[00:09:52] You will gain loyalty, which is harder and harder to do today.

[00:09:56] Jeff Sieh: So I have a follow-up question really quick on that note. What do you do? Okay. They’re not, let’s say they’re not a troll. They’re not to that level of being a troll. But they’re constantly being met. And how do you, what filter do you use to okay it’s Grace again, and she’s saying that, so we’re not going to take much stock in it.

[00:10:19] D do you have a filter that you do, you run those people through? Because you, I know from doing this as well as, like you have somebody who’s always going to show up and always going to tell you what you’ve done wrong. And some of it can be valid and some of it is just them being negative. So how do you, where do you base that?

The Importance of Social Listening

[00:10:40] Brooke Sellas: well, there’s a lot of different answers to that question, but first and foremost, to move from a reactive state, right? Reactive means social media monitoring is what we’re all basically doing. That means that when somebody reaches out to your brand or DMs you or tags, your brand and a message on a social channel, we’re monitoring those channels.

[00:10:57] And then we respond that’s reactive. So to be proactive, we also use social listening, which allows us to listen to brand, keywords, product, specific keywords conversation, themed keywords, so that we can not only see when people are tagging us, but when they’re talking about our brand, our products, our competitors, our industry, just online in general.

[00:11:20] So that allows us to keep a pulse on the voice of the customer, including the would be customer and understand what it is that they’re looking for. Social listening also allows you to take all of those conversations and grade the sentiment within them. So I think we talked about this last time I spoke with you all was the positive, negative, and neutral a grade that you get back from most social listening tools.

[00:11:47] So how much of the conversation around your brand is positive? How much of it’s neutral? how much of it is negative? And yes, we do get a lot of Grace’s who are customers who are just not happy and you can’t please everybody. And this is why the whole block ban delete hide, troll, standard blanket way to deal with trolls doesn’t work because sometimes you just have a customer who wants to come through and complain constantly. So another thing that I would say without getting too far down the rabbit hole is, having some sort of social CRN or attaching your social channels to, some sort of API connection to your CRM will help you because then Grace would get flagged in our CRM.

[00:12:29] That she’s just a constant complainer. We know how to deal with her. We know what she wants based on past conversations. And then we can make sure that we’re, lowing lowering those gaps and responding as quickly as possible when, graces come along.

[00:12:45] Jeff Sieh: Ian has a great point here he goes.

[00:12:48] He thinks, so he says, I think it’s a lot easier to bounce, a positive, a negative when you’re not a solar brand. If it’s just you, it’s easy to take the negative very personally. How do you balance that? So I think that’s a great question. A lot of people have that issue.

[00:13:02] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. We try to provide a lot of support both with the clients, but also as a company through B squared, to understand that we have to separate ourselves from the brand.

[00:13:14] And honestly, there are people who are better suited to do this than others. Some of them like me, okay. I’m including me in this. I don’t have thick skin. I’m sensitive. I’ll be the first to admit if somebody said something nasty to the brand and I was the community manager, I would take it personally, but that’s why I wouldn’t make a great community manager for social ed customer care.

[00:13:33] You’ve got to find those people who can separate build out the thick skin, but also be the people who are the negative Nancy. And to look at that negative and say, how can we take this event and turn it around into a positive? And that’s truly what negative events are. They’re actually a chance to deepen the relationship.

[00:13:50] If you look at it the right way,

[00:13:53] Jeff Sieh: That’s a great point.

[00:13:56] Grace Duffy: I also want to note that in the book, Brooke does talk about how to approach this. So although she does is sensitive personally, she does provide a really good way of how to approach it, how to approach like these negative MES, I guess if we’re just people.

[00:14:17] So I will note that, but from this point you go under right. Quickly realized through doing this test, that there’s a fundamental, the fundamental structure of the organization and the need to manage social media based customer support, where there was an inherent mismatch, or there’s an inherent mismatch in general, not necessarily with this test.

[00:14:40] Can you talk to us what you meant by this? And then what is the first step in fixing this mismatch? Because a lot of times it’s the management and you’re just like everyone gets bought in on this, but then, you’re, whoever’s managing the company. You’re owns the company. It’s just yeah, I don’t really want to do that.

[00:14:55] And then you’re like, Okay, cool. Yeah. Yeah.

[00:15:02] Brooke Sellas: There’s three points. I think I would make about that one with that first beta test. What we realized is, and the mismatch there is their employees at a company at a typical company. Employees work Monday through Friday nine to five. That’s an inherent mismatch because social lives 24 7.

Customer Care as The Foundation of Your Business

[00:15:19] Brooke Sellas: So even if they have, a team or someone dedicated to handling social support that person probably only works Monday through Friday nine to five. And so what we found oftentimes when we were taking over social led customer support for some of our clients, was that the reason why we were able to have some of those big numbers that you mentioned earlier, grace is because, if something comes in on a Friday evening, it sits out there for the.

[00:15:46] I see for two days until the team gets back on Monday, but guess what a lot of these teams, and this is the second point are when we talk about like call centers, typical traditional call centers within a company where to often talking about the lowest level, lowest paid employees. So they were typical call centers.

[00:16:04] Then they got pushed into being able to handle email. And that’s a whole thing on itself because a lot of systems aren’t set up to handle secure messaging through email and whatnot. So that became a problem. And then we pushed these people even further and saying, oh, and now all of these requests are coming through on social.

[00:16:20] So you have to handle that, that as well. So that’s the mismatch that’s happening. When you dig down a layer deeper. And I think thirdly, there’s just a Mich mismatch in appropriately identifying customer care as something that needs to be the foundation of your business. I think a lot of.

[00:16:38] The C-suite still looks at social ed customer care as a cost center. And mark and I actually did a webinar together, Mark Schaefer, who I am on the podcast with. And he said something so great. So I don’t, I want to give him credit for this, but his analogy was, think of customer care. Like the ID it department in the nineties, everyone was saying, how can we cut it costs, right?

[00:17:02] It costs a lot. We need to cut it fast forward to today. The it department is foundational to the company. It’s comes in first, right? You don’t really build until you have that. That’s what I think will happen with customer care, because it’s so critical to your success as a brand, being able to connect with people and align your brand values with the values of your customers or your target customers.

[00:17:30] Jeff Sieh: That’s really great advice. Gary has a great question and I know that. He’s a friend he’s here almost every week. He goes, what do you think about using canned responses on social media when people complain, but also what do you know if what, if you know your own response times to complaints are poor, the rest of the organization, not understanding social.

[00:17:51] And I think a lot of people are gonna say, oh, Gary, I feel your pain. What would you say.

Can I Use Canned Responses for Customer Care?

[00:17:58] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. Oh so the first part of the question we actually get in trouble, we get backlash. If you constantly just use those canned responses. So if you’re just copying and pasting to a problem, people notice, and then they complain about that.

[00:18:12] Part of what we do when we talk about, processing out customer care, one of the first things we do is work on our frequently asked questions, documentation. So the low-hanging fruit is what are the questions that we’re constantly seeing come through on social or elsewhere through our digital channels?

[00:18:26] How can we document those, put some answers together and make sure that we have a couple of different variations to those answers so that we’re not just copying and pasting a canned response, right? And then as far as if your response times aren’t doing well, because people don’t understand Social, that is one of the biggest problems that we see.

[00:18:45] And that is one of the biggest things. That is also one of the biggest reasons consumers choose for leaving one brand for another is poor response times. So my advice there is put everything you’ve got and to getting better response times because there’s a lot of different information out there on what people expect, especially by platform.

[00:19:05] But overall, let’s just say that when people reach out on social media, they’re expecting a response somewhere between 30 minutes to an hour. So you need to try to work on meeting that. And if you can’t, that’s why companies like mine exist.

[00:19:19] Jeff Sieh: So by the way, if you’re just joining us,Brooke is chock full of amazing information, but she’s got a book that’s going to be coming out shortly. And if you want to get like advance, notice about everything and get a download of one of the chapters, make sure you guys go to B I T dot L Y forward slash B to book that’s capital B the number two, and then book B I T dot L Y forward slash B to book.

[00:19:43] It’s amazing. You’re going to love it. So make sure you guys go check that out. If you’re just started joining us Tommy even has some great insight. He goes it’s not about customer care. It’s about customer connection and I think that is great. Yeah. So very cool. So Sabrina, our friend Sabrina says, I find that some people.

[00:20:03] From a miscellaneous from, I find that some feedback from miscellaneous people are angry and they’re ready to rumble. So that becomes very calm and fast cons customer care. Sometimes it’s not even about the brand it’s so quick and professional customer care, they may stay around as a customer, or they may not because something else is going on in their anger levels.

[00:20:21] So yeah, dealing with angry people is something do you have to really quickly, Brooke develop a thick skin when you’re doing, dealing with all this stuff because it’s easy to, take it.

Finding A Common Thread In Customer Support

[00:20:36] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. I think part of how we train our team is to take like that analytical approach. What can we see in this angry sentiment or in these angry conversations?

[00:20:45] That’s a common thread. That’s a common theme. How can we take that common thread or common thing back to internal departments, whether it’s product development, R and D in some cases in one case, I’ll give you a quick story. We had a financial app client who when you shop through their app, you get cashback with some of their partners.

[00:21:06] One of their partners who was a grocer, wasn’t showing your like cashback points in the app. And we kept seeing this over and over. It’d be really easy for us to come up with those patented answers and quell the situation. Don’t worry, they’re there. You just can’t see them. Cause there’s a bug in the system and blah, blah, blah.

[00:21:24] But no, instead we went back to. Our clients said, we really want to get with a developer, show them what’s happening, show them what the customers are showing us so that we can get this bug fixed. And ultimately we did. So we not only were able to fix this problem by taking it and doing the deep work. We were also able to save on time and capital and energy and effort because we could have forever for the rest of our lives, known how to answer the question and solve the customer’s pain point.

[00:21:51] But why don’t we fix the gap? Why don’t we fix the pothole in the customer experience instead?

[00:21:58] Jeff Sieh: Great. That’s great. So what is that? Let’s go back to this, the social first customer care concept you talked about at the beginning of this book, and you talk about this mysterious luxury brand that if we don’t know who it is, but but I imagine it’s one that’s established well known and we’d all and well-staffed, but how would you adopt the same social led customer care approaches to a social team of one like Jeff Sieh what am I supposed to do?

[00:22:25] Because I don’t have the resources to have all these people answer this stuff. And I want to take a break every once in a while. How, w how do you do all this stuff? You’re a small business too. An agency not a huge multi, time zones, you don’t have a New York office in a California office and all that.

[00:22:47] So I don’t think maybe you do. But what do you tell somebody who’s like a social person.

The Importance of Teams Not Tech

[00:22:54] Brooke Sellas: Yeah that’s where it gets hard. And I say, this is actually more where tech comes into play. In the book I talk about teams, not tech, and it’s really more human centered because the machines bring you back the data so they can alert you to what’s happening.

[00:23:06] But the humans make the creative solutions based on those data points. Right. But for a team of one, I would say, this is where the tech comes in. This is where you have to understand where are the places we can use a bot to answer some of those frequently asked questions, how can we use automation to help us be more efficient with what we’re trying to get done?

[00:23:26] And then I think also making sure that as a solo social media team, you have the buy-in from any sort of like customer support teams teams who would be, working on, a product that didn’t work so that the luxury plants brand, which by the way is global. But part of that. People come to us for support with is fixing say the refrigerator.

[00:23:48] That means we have to go to the service department and send someone out to service the refrigerator. So that whole, like time to resolution thing, has a deeper meaning because it’s not just time to resolution on social it’s time to resolution for the social service or I’m sorry, the service department.

[00:24:04] So I think there’s a lot of different factors, but one, it would be the tech and two, it would just be like understanding, like when something does go wrong, that needs to be fixed that you aren’t going to do as the social person. Are you Jeff, aren’t going to be able to do, how can you create those processes and relationships, including the tech and the automation to get those resolutions created faster.

[00:24:28] Jeff Sieh: So do you think it’s necessary to be on every channel when you’re doing this Social led customer care program, especially when you’re talking about, and you’ve talked about this in the book, the tagged and untagged.

Tagged vs UnTagged Feedback in Customer Care

[00:24:41] Brooke Sellas: Yeah, so tagged and untagged feedback means we’re humans, right? Sometimes we’re angrily tweeting away at a brand and we misspell their brand name.

[00:24:49] So we think we’re tagging them, but because we misspelled the name, they’re not actually getting tagged sometimes. Like I mentioned earlier in the show, we’re talking about a brand, but we’re not including the brand in the conversation. Right. So that’s untagged as well. When we tag a brand, we’re actually tagging them correctly by mentioning their handle on social.

[00:25:12] My approach is to look at where you are being tagged, but also use that proactive, social listening tool to find out where you’re being mentioned. I think more importantly, it is about being tagged though, because let’s say you are getting a lot of social support requests or acquisite acquisition requests through Twitter, but not so much Facebook.

[00:25:32] Then I wouldn’t tell you to be everywhere. I think you need to be, you need to meet the customer where they are. So part of that is doing an audit and understanding where do most of our support or acquisition questions come in. It’s likely going to be more than one channel, but you are probably also going to see it’s not every channel.

[00:25:50] And even if you’re getting like one support request on TikTok, that doesn’t mean you have to jump on, on, on TikTok because one person asked one support question one time. Does that make sense? Like where are you seeing the highest volume go in, meet your customers?

[00:26:05] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. And not so much on TikTok. So yeah, that’s

[00:26:09] Brooke Sellas: me, neither me neither.

[00:26:11] It doesn’t make that clear me either.

[00:26:14] Grace Duffy: We touched on this a little bit just a few minutes ago, as we all know, marketing is becoming more and more reliant on AI. Everything from chatbots that we just talked about to streamline that customer communication, and then even writing tools like Jarvis, which has now been renamed to Jasper where, entire social media posts are now being written in this, with this AI.

[00:26:36] And it feels like a relief to marketers, especially those that are required to be 24 7 or the expectation is that they’re very 24 7, but of course we know we’re not. But then you mentioned despite being hugely helpful chatbots, don’t always convey that sense of human empathy. And that is absolutely true.

[00:26:53] And which is central to. The social lead customer care. So how do you know when and how to automate, like what is the right time to automate and also, how do you know what parts of your journey you should be automating and what should be left to the real people? Because I just know that going through like a customer service request, sometimes it’s I need a human, like 15 responses, or where I never needed a human at all.

[00:27:22] And oh, you had a solution already typed up and I don’t have to talk to anyone. That’s I can see that. I can see both of those situations being a good thing, depending on who you are.

Should You Automate Customer Care?

[00:27:33] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So what we’ve seen for our enterprise size brands. So these are larger brands with high volume is that bots don’t really work because the support questions that they’re getting are more complex.

[00:27:45] However, and this is what’s great for a lot of smaller brands. It’s a lot. The questions that you’re receiving through social are some of those frequently asked questions like those easy layups are you open today? What are your hours today? Do you have these shoes in a size seven? Those kinds of easy questions can be answered by a bot so you can easily set up a bot to help you be more efficient and help you be more available 24 7 when it gets too complex.

[00:28:14] Needs or questions. You can go from enchantment with a bot to enraged in about 2.5 seconds, which has happened to me. And it sounds like it’s happened to you, Grace. I think the mistake that a lot of marketers are making is we’ve got this shiny object syndrome happening with these really cool tools.

[00:28:31] But if they’re not able to answer the question quickly, right? So if it’s not that simple FAQ that it could just spit out the answer every time, always right? 24 7, if it’s a more complicated answer that involves meeting empathy, a bot is probably not going to be this best solution for

[00:28:46] Jeff Sieh: you. So I liked what you said about the frequently asked questions.

[00:28:50] So that might be a place to start if you want to do a bot. But I think isn’t there a way that most of these bot platforms, you can have talk to a real person where they can click on that button as well. And so adding both of those options would probably be the best solution to that kind of scenario.

[00:29:06] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So for our clients who do use bots, we actually I don’t want to say forced, but we highly recommend that they have that. I want to talk to a human now option. There’s actually a research done by , which is a chat bot company on why do people want to use bots? The number one people, number one reason people actually want to use bots is because of poor response times by most brands, they want a quicker answer.

[00:29:31] So if brands actually got better at those response times, I think we would even see that bots would be preferred less and less, which is pretty interesting.

[00:29:41] Jeff Sieh: Okay. I’m going to do this one time because well, we’re getting into it next, but I’m gonna talk about the cruise. I was just on, because it was a Disney cruise and Disney does this stuff really well.

[00:29:50] And one of the things, so you have like reservations for a big rescue. And it’s hard to get in and I didn’t want to do it because I didn’t want to take up an evening dining plan or whatever. And so I wanted to do a brunch and I was like, I don’t want to go downstairs and wait in line with that stuff.

[00:30:06] And they have an app. And so I clicked on it. I immediately was connected to a person and I said, Hey, I don’t want to do this. Can I do this here? And she immediately switched me over and it was so easy and other people were still waiting in line and having, and I’m like, I’m done. I got it. Like as soon as I was on the ship and it was amazing.

[00:30:23] So that kind of stuff delighted me that I didn’t have to wait in line. And if people get, if, because I was able to connect to that real person, I had the kind of the flow chart that you went through at the beginning. What do you want to do? Are you talking about dining? You’re talking about, you need something else.

[00:30:39] You need to have a, when you’re at port. And so it broke it down. But then I was immediately connected to a real life person who took care of my problem and it was amazing. So that’s what I think you’re talking about.

Creating Conversational Workflows

[00:30:50] Brooke Sellas: Okay. Yeah. Yeah. If you can set up the, what we’re calling conversational workflows.

[00:30:55] Cause that’s how bots work. Right? So not to get too far down this rabbit hole, but there’s natural language processing, but bots still don’t process. Natural language is great. And I’m going to give you an example. I’m going to say I’m going to say a pretend bad word, right? Bots do not know the difference between these two statements.

[00:31:13] This is the S H I T. And this is S H I T. Do you see the difference? We know that first statement is actually saying this is amazing. This is great. Oh my God. I love it. Bots would tag that as negative sentiment, but humans know that’s actually a positive sentiment, right? So even with natural language processing bots don’t understand empathy because they don’t understand sentiment a hundred percent.

[00:31:43] So this is why I say teams, not tech because a lot of times a, we need that human. If the problem is complex, but B if we can set up the. Easy FAQ’s are those easy, conversational workflows and they don’t involve sentiment or empathy. Then we can get somebody to a human, as long as you actually can get somebody alive human, then yes, the bot and the humans can work great together.

[00:32:05] And that is the perfect example and obviously Disney. Right? So it was a Disney cruise. I don’t know if you said that yeah. Has their stuff together.

[00:32:12] Jeff Sieh: Yeah, they have it. Yeah. And they were the, yeah, it was amazing. So we’ll talk about that a little bit, who else is amazing? Our friends over Eddie camp.

[00:32:20] And in fact, that’s what we’re doing to produce all this live show with next week. They’ve got an amazing thing all about audio, how to do it. If you’re struggling with it, what to upgrade, what not to upgrade, what to get. So make sure you guys go check them out at And they have free trainings all next week.

[00:32:38] So make sure you guys go and check that out. So speaking of Disney, creating magical moments, we’re going to talk all about that because that is important. And there’s a lot of stuff that you think oh, I’m not. I can’t do that. I can’t draw, I can’t animate, but there’s so many great things you can see that they’re doing.

[00:32:55] And other companies that book Brooke has mentioned in this book that you can actually take inspiration and go, I can do that. I can be conversational. I can, see what people need and respond to that. So we’re going to be talking all about that more this next section. So take it

[00:33:11] Grace Duffy: away.

[00:33:12] Yes. So these creating these magical moments. So whether it’s this amazing Disney cruise experience or Hilton hotel, where I used to work fulfilling these oddly specific customer requests, marketers are told all the time that we should be creating these incredible audacious wow. Out of the box moments that in our customers’ lives.

[00:33:32] And let’s admit it like for the gram as well. Right. And I was pondering this idea as I was preparing for this show. And I saw this post from my friend, Amanda Henson. She works in marketing for a healthcare system and she I’m going to read this because I love, I loved everything she had to say. And it goes into my next question.

[00:33:49] She says, I’ve seen a lot of Salesforce, 360 commercials on YouTube for the Olympics. Of course, they’re one of the big sponsors. I really wish customer service work that way. I love that my local, I would love for my local coffee shop to know how my latte, how I like my latte or the hotel. I’m checking into to know that I prefer warm room.

[00:34:06] The tech is theoretically. Parentheses if the product works as advertised, of course. And then we just need companies to truly care about their customers and to hire the brains, to put it all together. I love this and it just fits right into our topic today. But let’s break this down, starting with the technology.

[00:34:27] I know I mentioned life Salesforce 360, but is the tech really there to do something like this? Is it possible to get this level of personalization in our customers?

Creating Personalization for Your Customers

[00:34:42] Brooke Sellas: It definitely is. It’s definitely there. I think also it depends on budget, right? So we know that Salesforce is an amazing tool, but it’s also a very expensive tool.

[00:34:52] So how many companies can feasibly use Salesforce 360 to understand how somebody likes their latte as the example? Right? Not everyone. So I think, part of what I break down in the book is like, Hey, listen, even without the tech and the tools, you can do this as long as you have that customer centric attitude from the beginning.

[00:35:15] So it’s you’re saying, we can gather so much social intelligence and by the way, people don’t just go to social media and say hi, my name is Brooks Ellis. And I live in Flemington, New Jersey. They’re going out on social media. They’re telling us their opinions, their feelings, their interests, their activities, they’re sharing the interests and activities of all of their friends.

[00:35:33] There is a massive amount of social intelligence available to you. If you’re listening.

[00:35:40] Jeff Sieh: Could it be just as easy as a simple CRM, you don’t have to do Salesforce or whatever, but you can start making notes about, Brooke I, her birthday’s here and I know she likes this. And just, and so once again, example at the screws, you have a dining rotation and the cool thing is as your servers come with you.

[00:36:02] So we eat at different restaurants each time, and your server comes with you and they know what you want every night. So the first night I like unsweet iced tea, and we’d like to have coffee with dessert. Every night after that, I had my ice tea waiting for me and they always brought us coffee for dessert.

[00:36:17] Just those little simple things. I tipped my head server really well, but they, everybody does that on the entire ship. So taking that concept and making it, even just making a note, like I know Sabrina lives in New York and that she, her husband is a. And she’s on our show every week.

[00:36:35] And I always remember that because she’s amazing. She shares her stuff. I love her to death. She’s a great part of our community, but I’ve made notes that I’ve seen her. I’ve seen her. She takes some gorgeous photos of New York with the snow all over it. And I remember that from her Instagram feed and I show up there.

[00:36:51] And so just those little things I think small solopreneurs can do. If you just take the time to make those. Am I right.

Taking the Time to Care

[00:37:00] Brooke Sellas: That’s exactly right. It’s taking the time. It actually is caring. And I think, one of my friends, Kenneth I think is also going to be releasing a book soon. It called we care ish and that sums it up brands.

[00:37:14] Really? Most of them care ish. And they’re not truly customer centric, they’re platform centric, they’re revenue centric they’re shiny object syndrome centric. They’re not customer centric. So to truly do it, and if you really want to do it, you first have to be customer centric. And if you are, like you said, Jeff, it’s so simple, HubSpot CRM, it’s free.

[00:37:37] There’s a free CRM for you to go use. If you put the notes in and you’ve got these notes about how Jeff likes unsweet iced tea or whatever the situation may be, then they’re there. And you can act off of those notes with all sorts of marketing messages. If you don’t have the notes, like what do we always hear with CRM?

[00:37:55] Like trash in trash out, it takes deep work and thought and critical thinking to make sure that these machines that we’re relying on are giving us data back, that the humans can then take and make creative solutions with. So I’m sure with your Disney example CRM or a PLS or something within Disney, where they can first take those first orders and then understand this is how Geoff likes his tea.

[00:38:17] This is how Jeff likes his coffee, but the people, someone within the Disney organization came up with the idea and the solution of, okay, we’re going to take this intelligence that we have from our guests, and we’re going to have their servers follow them and use this information each time to make the experience better.

[00:38:38] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. And I think it doesn’t take a lot to make an impact. So I went to Sabrina. You’re so sweet. She goes, my heart is melting. You make me feel so good, but, and then Alyssa, she goes, I need to go on this cruise. I don’t know if they let you on Elisa. I don’t know if they would, maybe it’s this place where it’s a happy place, but they might let you on see what I did with Elisa there.

[00:38:57] I told you before. Anyway let’s talk a little more about this. Grace mentioned, Amanda things that she mentioned are really small and ordinary, and we’ve been talking about this and you make a great point in this book about how companies are so focused on throwing a parade for their customers.

[00:39:14] And what they really want to expect is someone to fix their potholes. Like people just want, I just want to talk to the bright people or, fix the product. Can you elaborate a little bit more about just fixing the potholes? Because I think we try, we tend to overthink this a little bit.

Fixing the Potholes

[00:39:31] Brooke Sellas: Yes. Thank you. Okay. So I want everybody to close your eyes and I want you to picture a road. Okay. Just a little road and. This is the digital customer journey. Right. But just picture a road, everything we normally hear from marketers about customer experience, which means traveling down that road. Okay. It, you feel like you have to throw like a fanfare.

[00:39:53] You’re like rolling out the red carpet on the road and then there’s a parade happening on the road. And then there’s somebody on the road with a drink table and refreshments, but it has to be champagne. That’s how a lot of marketers. CX customer experience feel as you’re going down this road. And I think that is actually the wrong approach because when we’re traveling down the road, what we really want is an easy road to travel down.

[00:40:15] So less potholes on the road, less distractions on the road and in real life through like digital right marketing. What that probably means is like less clicks to get from. I’m interested in buying your project product to I’m buying your product and then to retention loyalty, evangelism, repurchase, all of those things.

[00:40:36] How can we make it easier as we’re traveling down this road, we’re imagining not throw a huge fanfare down the road every time for every single customer, which is totally not scalable.

[00:40:47] Jeff Sieh: Oh, that’s music to a lot of marketers ears. I can tell them. They’re like, oh, finally I have permission. It’s okay. I don’t have to.

[00:40:52] Cause we do. We get almost like an vapor lock. We have so much stuff to do. And we’re like, I just can’t compete with like other people.

[00:40:59] Brooke Sellas: Yeah, marketers need to chill. We need to chill. I’m gonna, I’m gonna probably gonna make some people mad, but marketers just need to chill out. All right.

[00:41:08] Jeff Sieh: This is what happens.

[00:41:08] Yeah.

[00:41:09] Grace Duffy: We all need to chill. But let’s look to the people side of this broke you, right? That automation is great. But at your company, B squared media, you seen firsthand that combining technology with actual humans enhances that customer enhances those customer relationships. And we’ve touched on this quite a bit on today’s show, but tell us how you integrate this technology with the actual human experience at B squared media.

Combining Technology with Human Experience

[00:41:34] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So I’ll give you a son, another story here. So with that luxury of clients a luxury appliance brand they released a new cappuccino machine and it was a great product, very expensive product and very cool products made the most delicious. I’ve had a few cappuccinos you’ve ever had, are amazing.

[00:41:53] Okay. You feel like you’re like right there in Italy at a cafe. But. When they released the product using social listening, what we saw was not necessarily tagged, right? People aren’t necessarily tagging the brand, but Brooke will use me. It was going out onto social and saying Hey, does anybody know how to change the coffee filter in this very expensive Kappa cappuccino machine because I’m not seeing it.

[00:42:17] And I Googled and I’m not understanding how to change the coffee filter. So the machines, right? The social listening alerted us to this negative sentiment happening online through social media, but it took humans to come up with the creative solution for that. So what we did with that data is we said, Ooh boy, this is a lot of negative conversation.

[00:42:38] This is a brand new product. We should see positive conversation, not negative. We went back to the client. We said, Hey, People don’t know how to change their coffee filter and this machine. And they said, oh yeah, it’s on page 437 of the service manual. I’m you’re like, yeah, no, one’s going to read that. No one wants to flip to page 437 and then follow some sort of written word on how to change this coffee filter.

[00:43:01] Why don’t you create a video and put it on the product page, right? So that people can, when they’re searching a, that video will pop right up. But if we do have some of this negative sentiment, we can say, oh Brooke, Hey, no, no worries. Here’s a video on how to do that. Right? Once we made that change and that piece of content was available, we saw that not only didn’t negative sentiment go down around this particular product, positive sentiment went up around the product.

[00:43:28] There was more than user generated reviews and content and peer to peer recommendations around this product. So then sales went up for this. So does that make sense? The machine brings us the information. They give us the social intelligence, but they don’t give us the creative solutions that takes humans.

[00:43:45] No,

[00:43:45] Grace Duffy: but do you, are there any tools that you personally recommend CRM tools for social listening or coding? Communication. I know we talked about that. There’s a human element to it, but we still need the tools. Are there any that you that you would wreck you feel confident, recommend?

Recommended CRM Tools

[00:44:03] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. There’s are so many tools, right?

[00:44:06] So it’s a tools are of a preference. It’s highly subjective. What tool’s going to work for you. It also depends on budget. We use and love sprout social for social listening, but we’ve used a myriad of other tools out there. I think Agorapulse also has social listening on a lower price point.

[00:44:24] There’s also tools like There’s Google alerts, which is totally free by the way. You’re not going to get like the robust reporting and out of the box sentiment scoring, but Hey, it’s a place to start. And then there’s like the expensive side of CX and tools that can help you with this like sprinkler.

[00:44:43] So I would just say, do your homework when you’re searching for a tool. Let the people know when you’re doing your demo, what you’re trying to solve for what you’re trying to do with this tool and make them show you how the tool is going to be able to do that for you. Right?

[00:45:00] Because it’s so easy to get like shiny object syndrome with all the cool things the tools do. But if you need it to actually do something, tell them that and make them show you, show me how your tool is going to help me do X, Y, Z. I want to see it in action where I buy.

[00:45:17] Jeff Sieh: So how could these magical moments be found and ignited get behind those things, but, and on that kind of that same kind of question, Gary has a great point.

[00:45:26] He goes, I love user generated videos. I find a lot of my tech questions from other users and brand messaging boards, music software, for example. So on that same note, we’ve all talked, everybody talks about like user generated content. That’s everything it needs to do, but that’s hard to do.

[00:45:44] What are your like best practices on user-generated content? Because I think that’s a great way to ignite those magical moments, because one it’s, that’s something important to your end user. So how do you use that in your kind of strategy?

Creating Magical Moments

[00:45:59] Brooke Sellas: That’s another great way we use social listening.

[00:46:02] So funnily enough, a lot of user generated content is not tagging the brand. It’s just like a Brook going and being like, oh, I got this box and it opens like this, but instead of using it like that, I’m turning it upside down. And now it’s a floss holder, I’m making that up but Brooke will go out and do that just because she wants to share with her audience.

[00:46:23] Right. But she’s not tagging the brand. So if you’re being proactive and you’re using socialist. You can actually get alerts about that user generated content that’s happening, where you’re not getting tagged. And then you can reach out to Brooke as the brand and be like, oh my God, Brooke, I love the way you’re using our products.

[00:46:39] Can we share your video with our community nine times out of 10? Brooke says yes. Right? Because we all like to be recognized. We all like to be lifted up on social and then you’ve got a peer to peer recommendation of Brooke telling everybody how awesome your little boxes versus the brands, telling everybody how the boxes.

[00:46:59] Grace Duffy: I have a flip side from the brand perspective of this, of the. Oh, so I have a, I’m a flip example of this user generated content. So I worked for restream and we have a lot of people that will test our tool and we had a whole influencer program. And so we actually got a comment from our social team or a support team, got a comment that someone else had created some sort of tutorial all completely on their own, had nothing to do with us.

[00:47:27] And the information they had in there was incorrect for some reason. I don’t know if it was out of date or they just were not giving. And so we ended up getting a lot of flawed from this person about it. And we had to be like that really wasn’t like us. Here’s the solution. And but the person was very irate because they’re like, I thought I could do this.

[00:47:44] And this guy said, I could, it’s I’m sorry. So that’s another way that like, you also have to manage kind of things as well. So yeah, with user generated content, it’s not always. We didn’t like, we didn’t tell him like, no and no shade on the person that did it. I don’t want to discourage this. It was just I think the video is like maybe a year old or whatever.

[00:48:07] See, no one was at fault here, but it was still just and then they come to me and they’re like, how do you handle this? And I’m like, I can’t, I don’t know. I don’t know how to stop this. Person’s.

[00:48:19] Brooke Sellas: I have an anecdote like that in the book, a lot of people were spreading misinformation about what wasn’t actually mission formation, but they were spreading negative information about the new apple phone and how if you put it in your pocket and you sat down the phone might actually binned apple had to meet that head on.

[00:48:35] Right. They had to acknowledge that was being said, but also acknowledge that yes, while that happened in earlier prototypes, it had been fixed by the time the phone came out and there was a new version also coming out that wasn’t going to do that and blah, blah, blah. It’s a similar situation where if you’re listening and paying attention, you can meet that head-on and avert the crisis that could come from whatever’s being said, right?

[00:48:59] It’s like crisis and PR social listening leads to so many different things, not just social intelligence, not just customer care, not just content marketing, but also PR and crisis comms. Right. So I think. Social listening to me. I don’t understand why not everyone’s using it because it can help literally, almost every department of your business.

[00:49:20] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. And I think it’s important when you do that. Social listening is also, do general stuff and the not to crash into other conversations because I’ve seen brands do that and that’s just spammy. You don’t want Hey, by the way, you can come here. And we got this dah, it just, but being helpful.

[00:49:37] And part of the conversation, I see that a lot of times in ECamm community is the people join in and Hey, this is what worked for me. I’m using this. And there’s that group, which you build a community and we touched on it a little bit. But that’s also a lot of in your book, you talk about how that works together with social listening and all this other stuff.

[00:49:57] You have some great stuff on that term that you wrote your thesis on. That is say it

[00:50:05] Brooke Sellas: social penetration system, the worst name for a theory. It’s the social penetration theory. And I apologize, whoever we’re offending right now, that’s literally the name of the theory, but it’s a terrible name, but it’s a beautiful concept.

[00:50:19] Jeff Sieh: Right. And it’s fascinating. So you guys, we didn’t even get into that. But a couple of things that Gary mentioned, because I think this is really important is loom is a great way for show until also. So I think anytime you can respond to people with a video or a response, like in a DM where you actually showing your face, though, they’re almost friends for life.

[00:50:42] Like I tell this story all the time. It’s like Eileen Smith back on Google plus days, I was trying to do something and she sent me a Twitter video and I’m like, oh my God, And she showed me how to do stuff. And I’m like, and I’m like, this is she’s amazing. And so I’m an Eileen fan, a Smith fan for life because of what she did.

[00:50:59] And so that stuff like Gary was saying is how you can delight and create, what we were talking about, those magical moments. You don’t have to be a huge brand like Disney, you can drop into somebody’s DMS and do it.

[00:51:14] Brooke Sellas: What’s so beautiful too. As a lot of it’s there like community, right?

A Community May Already Exist for Your Brand

[00:51:17] Brooke Sellas: Big buzzword right now, building a community, starting a community. I don’t know if any of you follow Ikea, but a lot of Ikea customers, there’s like a whole internet culture around Ikea hacks, like hacks that you can do with Ikea furniture. Ikea basically had a built in community. All they had to do was realize that conversation was happening.

[00:51:37] Realize that community existed, gently join the conversation, right? Not crashing like Jeff just said, but they gently joined the conversation. Then they started gently guiding the conversation until it became an owned community of Ikea. This is how you do it. You have to first listen smartly, and then you have to figure out how to join the conversation in an organic, healthy way.

[00:52:00] That makes sense. And then you can get into the tactical execution of changing consumer behavior, right. Which is where the rubber meets the road. But. This is a lot of work. Right. And it has to be done correctly. Otherwise, like Jeff said, it can come off a little bit icky.

[00:52:16] Jeff Sieh: Yeah. So we are now Brooke. I’ve been bringing this up the entire time while you’ve been talking to, because it’s going to be amazing, but you’ve got to promise that you will come back on when your book actually launches and we can talk even more about it because we just got the first draft and it’s amazing.

[00:52:32] Make sure you guys go check it out bit dot L Y forward slash B2 book. That’s capital B the number two, and then book, we, I T dot L Y forage slash B2 book. Go get that sign up for the updates. So you know what, it’s going to come out, get that free excerpt that’s in our book and you will be hooked because this stuff is fascinating and super smart.

[00:52:51] But Brooke, where else can people find out about you in all things Brooke Sellas?

[00:52:56] Brooke Sellas: Yeah. So you can Google me on Google, just Brooke Sellas. I think it would be only Brooke Sellas that exists right now, or as of late. Or you can visit our website at B squared, the letter B and the word So it’s not com.

[00:53:12] So you got to dot to find B squared media. Yeah.

[00:53:16] Jeff Sieh: And Gary says, and other people saying great topic. Very cool interview today. Thank you. Thank you, Gary, for always showing up and always asking some great questions. Grace, where can people find out about all things?

[00:53:28] Grace Duffy: I am work at restream and I have to do a shout out.

[00:53:32] We have live human 24 7 customer care customer support. We have agents all over the world, so every time zone is covered and I am not only their lead con video content lead. I am also a customer and I can attest to their amazing. They’re very helpful. Socially, if you have no idea what you’re doing, or you just started a company and you have no idea what you’re doing.

[00:53:57] So I highly recommend that. So that’s where you can find me every week that I’m not every day that I’m not here with Jeff on Fridays. That’s

[00:54:04] Jeff Sieh: right. And don’t forget. Our next show is on Friday, February 18th at 11:00 AM. Eastern 10:00 AM central. You always find us on Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Amazon live.

[00:54:14] We’re also a podcast we’d love for you guys. Brooke gave so much great advice today. If you want to go listen to it while you’re on your walk, you working out whatever your. Eating a bag of potato chips. I don’t care, but go listen to it on your favorite podcasting platforms like Spotify, Google play, Stitcher apple, all of those were there.

[00:54:30] We’d love for you guys to leave us a rating and review. Once again, do not forget about Ecamm coming up with this great stuff next week, this training all about audio, how to make your live videos and your presentation sound really great. What equipment you need, what you don’t need and how to make all that stuff that you have sound better.

[00:54:46] And how important that is. So make sure you guys go check them out. They are. Thank you again for them sponsoring there. They are amazing. They have great customer service as well. Great community. And with that, we’ll see you guys next time. Thank you so much. Thanks Brooke. Thanks Grace. See you next time.

[00:55:00] Bye everybody.

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