Social Media Trends Taking Customer Experience That One Step Further

Customer engagement and social media trends are key to online selling for all types of brands, irrespective of the products or business sector; one online US shopping site that understands this is, PlumWillow, who has collected a select group of young women to harvest their thoughts and views about how to enhance the PlumWillow site. None of these girls are social media experts or PlumWillow employees; instead they are 15 and 16 year old interns who are being tapped for their own special brand of expertise: an insight into the life and mind of high school teenagers, exactly the type of PlumWillow customer that the online store is targeting.

What’s happening at PlumWillow is a sign of an even more intimate relationship between a company and its customers. It shows how savvy web-based businesses have become in shaping their products and services, by using customer input. Making them part of the design and marketing process. Social media trends have moved things beyond the old-fashioned focus groups and instead now allow a business to co-create with its target audience and conjure up real customer engagement. All business will have to learn how to cope with a new generation of users that are used to their particular experience of social media trends and social media platforms. Once the conversations begin, the dynamics change, allowing customers to be listened to. In fact it’s nothing new for companies to gather input from audiences they serve...as Gap recently reverted to its old logo after customers complained about its new redesign. While, Facebook is constantly modifying its site to show members’ updates, new social media trends and apps most relevant to them.

PlumWillow wants to be more than just an online shopping destination. It is tackling the tricky challenge of recreating the experience of a young group of girls going into shops and malls to a social media trends platform where they can but online. PlumWillows success hinges on getting all the details right, down to the pop songs that young girls want to hear while hunting for a new pair of skinny jeans. So, what do the girls get for putting their thoughts into the site? They get school credit, experience and importantly a taste of the challenges of entrepreneurship.

Charlie Federman, Chairman, PlumWillow says, “The site needs to be authentic to their voice and how they shop. Adults trying to recreate that are just asking for trouble because these kids are smart and sophisticated and know when something is phony.” While, Lindsay Anvik, director of marketing and who helps oversee the internship program says, “They definitely aren’t shy about telling us what they like and don’t like.”

The PlumWillow girls help keep the company nimble enough to catch and fix mistakes before they are pushed out to broader audiences; allowing them to stay ahead of the curve. However, the trick to all businesses like Plum Willow is to find a balance between its own strategic direction and fickle consumer feedback!

Photo Credit: x-ray delta one

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