Never has customer service been so prompt and public than in this present time of social media access. In years past, if a company had poor customer service, the consumer and close-proximity friends would know about it and that is pretty much where the conversation stopped. Nowadays, if there is an example of poor customer service, a company is lucky if the consumer’s family and friends are the only one who know about it. With sites like Facebook, Twitter and Reddit, just to name a few, people can and do rant about valid experiences and everything in between. I’m you’ve read your share of Reddit posts where a server was stiffed on a tip. Let’s take a perfect case and point. A friend’s mother had a horrible experience with a warranty company for a home appliance. After voicing her complaint with her daughter that the customer service department offered no solution even though the appliance was still under warranty, she turned to the equalizer that is social media. She logged into Facebook and made a public post of her mom’s unacceptable experience and mentioned the company in the post. Mentioning the company allowed them to see that their company was being talked about on social media…to get their attention. Within minutes, the company privately messaged her and resolved the issue. Why did it take a public display to get this resolved? Oh, the power of public perception and reputation!
What can we learn from this as businesses approaching our customer service practices? If you don’t take care of your customer’s concerns, your reputation could be at stake. We all know that the customer is not always right but we need to diligently approach a resolution so that all parties are satisfied. Customers want to know that they feel heard and if they don’t feel this way they will take matters in their own hands.
Designating someone who handles social media for your company is a great step in promptly addressing any concerns that are brought forward on these platforms. Engaging in an argument through this medium is highly discouraged. Kindly acknowledge the comment, apologize for the inconvenience and lead the consumer to a private message or customer service telephone number to discuss and resolve the matter further.
Most companies would love their product or service to go viral but not in the case when their reputation and image is on the line. Many businesses out there are handling social media the right way and generously adding value and prompt to engage in its customers.