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Social Media Lets End-Users Influence Learning Products
Learning software providers are monitoring social media to help drive enhancements and influence product roadmaps. Organizations should expect this and more from their vendors.
There are more and more examples in the marketplace today of consumers providing make-or-break feedback on product introductions and corporate actions. Two recent examples include Gap reversing its decision to change its logo based on consumer feedback and Bank of America changing its decision to charge customers $5 per month to use their debit cards. Less obvious, but potentially just as impactful, is the power an organization’s employees have in shaping how they learn, teach others and manage the flow of information in the enterprise. This power is evident even in the relatively staid business software environment.
Consider the migration from traditional classroom training to more informal methods of learning such as personalized portals, social networking communities, discussion forums and search engines. Organizational adoption of such methods to power learning can be tied directly to the prevalence of consumer-targeted applications such as texting, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google. Use of these applications — at home and on the go — has translated into use in the enterprise.
Now, think about the way business software providers are listening to and incorporating feedback from their consumers. For many years, software providers have been attuned to feedback and enhancement requests through traditional channels, such as vendor-provided support portals or phone lines. But the savvy provider is now monitoring and incorporating input in many additional ways. For users of learning software, there are many ways to help influence these products.
Learning leaders have more opportunities than ever before to not only engage with and benefit from peers using the same products, but also to connect directly with vendors to influence roadmaps and drive product enhancements. And the avenues below have the added benefit of being part of the everyday tool suite for most professionals.
Twitter: Yes, it’s limited to 140 characters. But this is a perfect way for vendors to reach out to a user who posts a question or a product wishlist item. Even just responding to a status update that references the vendor’s product can be a way to elicit, discuss and incorporate a great enhancement.
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