I hate to be “That Person.” You know the one. The guy or gal that loudly takes their problem with a company into the public arena. But I’ve discovered something lately – ever since the rise of social media, taking a company to task on twitter (or facebook) seems to be the most effective way to get something done.
I can spend days or even weeks being bounced to every supervisor with an anglicized name and faintest possible accent in the Bangalore call center with no results and no way to find direct contact information for someone with the power to help me. But call the company out on twitter in front of 4,000 followers and within an hour you have a company executive contacting you.
We’ve all seen how horribly bad the wrong response on social media can go for a company. How many videos, tweets and facebook posts have gone viral when companies treat their customers poorly? Urban Outfitters, GoDaddy, Progressive…are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to companies being exposed for bad behavior via social media. The phenomena has spawned a new industry in online reputation repair companies.
The best way to avoid having to repair your reputation online or offline will always be treat your customers with respect and stop hiding from them. If you deal with your customers ethically then you have no need to make it impossible to locate relevant contact information. Problems that are dealt with quickly and honestly do not grow into problems that will damage your reputation.