Verizon discovers friends matter more than salespeople

Verizon discovers friends matter more than salespeopleWe’ve all been there, scratching our heads trying to figure out which phone is right for us: Do I really need this feature? Is this feature better on other phones? And is it worth it to spend more money for a nicer phone? Salespeople offer their help, but that isn’t good enough. Advice from a friend is a hundred times better than any a paid representative could offer.

Verizon understood this dilemma, and in response, created a unique Facebook campaign that encouraged customers to ask their friends, not Verizon salespeople, for advice.

By clicking on the “Shop Tips” tab on Verizon Wireless’ fanpage, fans could create polls to post on their Facebook walls to quickly receive feedback. “Shop Tips” also had an “Ask a Friend” button that allowed the users to send a message, including specs on a specific product, to their tech-savvy friends to get their thoughts.

The Verizon Facebook page also added a fun smartphone glossary, which provides simple, jargon-free explanations of common terms in a fun and off-beat e-card format. Not only is it easy to learn about smartphones, it’s also easy to share that information with friends who may be looking for a new one.

This strategy paid off. In the last fiscal quarter alone, Forbes reported that Verizon Communications saw a 6.9% return on invested capital (ROI), partially due to this campaign.

Indeed, friendship is a lot more persuading than salesmanship. Verizon embraced this idea rather than fighting it, and as a result, created a unique Facebook presence that wasn’t pushy, yet still acted to the company’s benefit.

One comment on “Verizon discovers friends matter more than salespeople

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