Dell's social media hub monitors and responds to online chatter

©IDG Communications, Inc. Photo contributed by Matthew Mikaelian.

PC maker’s command center prioritizes the 20,000 daily mentions of its brand on Twitter, Facebook, blogs and forums and answers accordingly—in almost a dozen languages., 3/18/11

Think of it as the information-age version of NASA’s Mission Control Center: A cutting-edge “war room” where watchful eyes monitor information coming in on huge screens, ready at any moment to contact an engineer or a technical expert.

That’s what Dell had in mind in December when it launched its Social Media Listening Command Center, a room at its Round Rock, Texas, headquarters where six screens display information about all 20,000 conversations going on about the Dell brand in a given day. The employees who monitor the screens don’t respond directly to the conversations, but they make calls to the people who do.

“They’re the ones with the proverbial red phone there,” says Adam Brown, executive director of social media for Dell. “They can flip alarms and levers when they see something that needs to happen.”

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