Computer Setup Issues

    October 18, 2006

Shel Holtz recently had some issues with his computer setup. Shel:

    “I’m running Windows XP SP-2 and have been happily running the public beta for Office 2007 (which I love). A minor problem has occurred whenever Microsoft releases an update. I have to repair the Office 2007 installation in order to get it working again. After this past week’s update, though, bigger problems occurred. I cannot get into Outlook, so I started a repair but got a message telling me the Office 2007 installation was corrupt and that I should reinstall. So I tried reinstalling, but that only got about 20% through the process before it gave me an error (2711, I believe). I tried uninstalling Office 2007 but got the same corrupt installation error. And reinstalling Office 2003 did no good at all-I cannot launch Outlook 2003 because of a mismatched .dll file.

    So I have no Outlook and, effectively, no Office installation.

    So…any Microsofties out there with a clue what I should do?”

This triggered the thought: instead of this being a process where a customer puts a note in a bottle and throws it into the blogosphere, what if this were a pre-meditated process? Here’s how it would work:

  • When an organization puts out a product, the organization defines and publishes a particular tag that they will listen for in the blogosphere when there are customer questions (for example, “office2007question” would have been a good tag the MS could promote with its Office 2007 product)
  • If a customer has a question with a product, he posts the issue (just like Shel has done) with the tag(s) of the associated product(s)
  • The vendor organization, which is theoretically listening for posts tagged with its “support tags” takes notice, and addresses the issue on the customer’s turf.

I believe we’ve just (re-)entered the era of the customer support “house call.”

Further reading: A Customer Support Barn-Raising



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Social Customer Manifesto weblog, and has been occasionally told that he drives and snowboards just a little too quickly.