Campaigns, Customer Service and Rackspace

Anyone who’s heard me speak on social media or spent time chatting with me should know that I’m a strong believer in using social media across the board when it comes to companies.

  • It should be a strategic component of the communications toolset.
  • It should be integral to all marketing actions, not just a bolt-on at the end of planning just because it’s ‘hot’
  • That in many cases the budget set up is wrong – it should come out of customer service budgets as well as marketing budgets. It applies just as much, if not more, to post-sales work as it does to getting people to consider your product or service.

I often draw the diagram below as a situation I would see as ideal. A foundation of ongoing activity, a combination of customer service and just conversation presence in social media areas, complemented by peaks of activities associated with campaigns, when new things are tried, when a brand extends what it is doing (with apologies for my poor graphing skills) Red is campaign activity, blue is service and general presence.

Social Media Activity over time
Social Media Activity over time

The same sentiment was reflected by Jamie Coomber yesterday when she tweeted:

Have been asked “what agency does great social media campaigns” 3 things wrong with the wording,

It’s all tied up with the thinking that marketing is just something that gets done by agencies on a campaign basis, instead of something everyone in the company who comes into contact with a customer or potential customer does all the time.

But what does Rackspace have to do with this? Well, last night they demonstrated how a company that integrates things across multiple channels can work when it comes to service. At Ale 2point0 last night, sitting in a pub with James Cridland, who runs mediauk.com, he was annoyed because his site was down and he’d had no communication from support. One tweet later and there were a bunch of people on it, including the official Rackspace account

@rachelclarke @jamescridland need immediate assistance? DM me and I’ll help route to right people ~ call +1.210.548.5616

James meantime had also raised a ticket and that was also picked up by the US based team and monitored to ensure it was resolved. Taking a look at the whole stream, that’s just what these guys do all the time; keep an eye out for mentions and get problems fixed

@gabeanzelini we’re real people, 24x7x365+ :) Thanks for the shout-out

Overall, completely impressed with the reaction and eagerness to get things sorted. This is the difference between a brand that uses the tools for campaigns and those that live and breathe them throughout what they do. One you treat slightly cynically because you know it’s just a short term thing that’s trying to get you to do things, the other will be there in the long term for when you need them to do things for you.

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3 Responses to Campaigns, Customer Service and Rackspace

  1. Rob La Gesse says:

    Thanks, Rachel. As a company that was based on customer service we look for as many ways as possible to help our customers. The immediacy of Twitter is wonderful at allowing us quickly find customers who we can help.

    Thanks for taking the time to write this up. If there is anything we can ever do to help – shout us out at @rackspace, or call me!

    Rob La Gesse
    Director of Customer Development
    Rackspace
    210-845-4440

  2. Thanks so much for your story on Rackspace. Every day we are looking at additional ways to coordinate our efforts between customer communications and campaign-related communication. It’s not easy, but it is do-able. Our intervention style is evidence of that. Come visit us sometime.

  3. Aristeiaa says:

    Peer1 UK seem to be pretty good at this as well, they’ve also got a team on Twitter who were the only ones that got back to me when i did a shout out for some hosting.