Dell IdeaStorm: Turning Up the Volume of Customer Voice


In 1996, we launched to provide technical support resources to our customers. Soon after, we began selling hardware over the Internet. Back in the early days, most of the focus was on e-commerce. Today, having a web presence increasingly means giving customers a way to share their feedback and ideas. Our digital media strategy was a reaction to this evolution and it’s why we’ve focused our digital media efforts on listening to our customers and acting on that information.

Michael unveiled two new components of our digital media strategy today at a statewide education conference here in Texas: Dell IdeaStorm and new functionality in StudioDell that will allow users to upload their own video testimonials.

Michael talks about both of these new tools in this StudioDell video.

Dell IdeaStorm

As blog manager for Direct2Dell, I get lots of folks who e-mail me directly with ideas. Dell IdeaStorm takes this to another level. It gives you a direct path to submit ideas about what they would you’d like to see in Dell's products, services and operations.

Think of Dell IdeaStorm as a combination between a message board and Topics that earn the most points from the voting process move up to the top of the page. End result, by submitting ideas and voting on them as a community, you will tell us how you want us to change. Along the way, we'll call out the top ideas that are being considered by Dell. We'll also keep track of which ideas we've implemented, and make it easy for you to see.

If you're interested, here is the process to get started in Dell IdeaStorm:

  • Go to
  • Click on the Register tab (it's just below the Post an Idea button)
  • If you have an idea, click on the Submit an Idea button
  • From there, you can add a Title for the idea thread, add an Image if you want, and enter details behind your idea in the Editorial Summary dialog box
  • After logging in, you can comment on any of the discussion threads
  • To vote on a topic that would improve Dell’s ability to serve you, click on the blue Promote button.

You can browse by category just like you can on Direct2Dell. Overall scores for each idea are in gray just above the blue Promote button. If you’re logged in and promote an idea, you will add 10 points to that idea’s overall score.

Popular Ideas is the default view of the IdeaStorm page. It lists ideas in order of overall point total. Using the tabs across the top, you can easily see Recent Ideas (which shows lists in the order they are received) and also a Comments view (listing starts with the latest thread to receive a comment).

User-generated video testimonials in StudioDell

Beyond ideas, we want to hear how you’re using Dell products. Starting today, Dell customers who create video testimonials can submit them to the Your Stories channel in the Home network. We’ve added an Upload Your Videos button. When you click that, you enter a few fields like Screen Name, E-mail address, Video Title and Video Description. From there, you choose a category from a drop-down list, and then click on the Submit Video button.

Here are the Terms and Conditions.

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13 thoughts on “Dell IdeaStorm: Turning Up the Volume of Customer Voice

  1. I tried to sign in but it would not recognize me.  It is still very difficult to communicate wh Dell.  I saw that Microsoft is writing a home server program and that HP is building a box to run it.  I applied to be one of the test people, but I had rather buy a Dell box for the new Microsoft Home Server.  Is one on the way?  I will have three machines (all Dell) to link with my Linsys box and want shared backup and storage and printing.  Later on I want it to drive my web page.

    Why not?

    Gary Masters

  2. Michael…you’re kidding, right? 

    This new initiative by Dell is excellent…for Dell.

    But; based on your “what was once yours is now ours–for free…and
    thank you very much” terms of service; anyone with an idea/s which is or can
    be protected by a patent (or otherwise sold/licensed to you), it’s

    …meaning that a nice patent-pending add-on service idea I had for you and was going to tell you about…will need to go to someone else who values, and is willing to respect, the intellectual property rights of others…
    Another case of the headline givith…and the fine print taketh away…

  3. Its time for DELL to wake up, and offer Linux as an install option.

    On my DELL Inspiron 9400 [nice machine] I installed recent Fedora, it picked up the 1920×1200 res and basically all the hardware just worked, ‘out of the box’.

    You plug in a digital cam, and it just does the right thing, and you click a few times, and you’re away editing your photos – my grandma could do this!

    I want to buy the PC and choose the best software, regardless of price, why am I forced to pay for an insecure Windows default that I dont want?

    Isnt freedom of choice the _fundamental_ core value of the USA..?

    When it has been shown by European courts that Microsoft has acted in a non-competitive manner.. why is it that DELL feels it has to encode this noncompetitive behaviour by forcing users to pay for a bloatware OS, when there are better free alternatives, with better features and security?

    DELL is already selling a LOT of machines that are used by businesses as Linux servers.. its time to get real on the desktop too.. guys like me will just say ‘I wont pay M$ tax.. Ill buy from a vendor who offers at least a NO-OS option, keep the 150 bucks difference, and sleep well knowing Im not rewarding Microsofts uncompetitive bullying and unethical behaviour’

    Maybe with Mike Dell at the reigns again youll start listening to your customers – they want linux.

  4. Villian: As one of the folks who will be moderating user generated content, answer is yes, we will publish videos that may discuss some negative concerns you have as a customer… as long as your video fits reasonably in the guidelines on this page, then voicing some frustration regarding your Vista Upgrade experience is fair game.

  5. I haven’t watched any of the videos yet, as I am at work.  However, I’m wondering if they are taking the bad with the good.  If I upload a video that is critical of the way Dell has done some things (i.e. Vista Express Upgrade, or other current issues), will my video still be published?

    I don’t want people to think that I would only use something like this to bash on Dell (or any other company that offered the same feedback methods), but I would hope that instead of quieting the voices of those who aren’t necessarily happy that Dell would use that criticism to do a better job.  I think that something like the StudioDell site could be a great tool to let other users share both their likes and dislikes about a company or it’s products.  Just because I don’t like one situation doesn’t mean that I don’t like the entire company offering it.

    Personally, I love Dell hardware.  I have been buying Dell computers since 1998, and will likely continue to do so.  However, there are some things that I think should be brought up, and I hope that those issues can be without fear of them being discarded.

  6. Glen T.: Sorry to hear you’re having hardware problems with your Inspiron 9400. I’ll have someone from the Dell Canada Tech Support team follow up with you directly.

  7. My Dell Inspiron 9400 suffered its second hard drive failure last week. This is in addition to my problems with the original ATI X1400 video card, which led to a video card replacement with an NVIDIA card which is more compatible with the 9400. All in the first 9 months.

    Given that this machine has now cost me almost as much in downtime and out of pocket expenses as it did to purchase, I am tempted to video myself taking a hammer to the 9400 and then sending it in to IdeaStorm.

    I wonder what are the chances of having that published? Oh well, YouTube would show it.

  8. I was on a technical call to someone from Dell in India or something.

    I was on this call for over 40 minutes and the guy was a total idiot. Not only did not understand English but he also had no clue about my laptop. What a joke. I think the guy was in training because the whole time he was on the phone I could hear someone else talking or telling him what to say.

     I was so upset and then he clicked off the call. I called back and the next technician was amazing. I asked for Spanish but we ended up talking English and she spoke it perfectly! She walked me through and it went smoother and faster.

    Next time ask for Spanish because they speak better English than those form East India…good luck!




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