Customer service is taking over social media to cover what is quickly becoming the medium one of the most popular communication ... and customer complaints are going the same way just as quickly.
Remember the common scene, when someone at the airport starts voicing their dissatisfaction with the airline staff, who then quickly start to try to quiet them up before the others around here about it.
If you think that was a challenging situation, think about how it's now amplified by Twitter or YouTube.
A perfect example:
That's precisely what happened with the above viral video customer complaint, in the form of a music video, put up on YouTube. It was circulated on Twitter and made its rounds in the social network world.
That's about as social as customer dissatisfaction can get.
Needless to say, the United Airlines brand was dragged through dirt and hushing this innovative customer was not easy.
With over 13 million viewers, United Airlines certainly would not have enjoyed this social media customer service experience -- but it's the direction customers are headed.
Social customer support software platforms can be used highly effectively to get customer feedback both positive and negative.
The website iRipoff.com is a great example of how a social software platform has been used to create a base for customers to voice their complaints, upload images, and audio to make their complaints very public as the video above shows.
The site offers a platform for customers to lodge their complaints and make other aware of their experience ... so as not to fall prey themselves. Going by the number and type of complaints on the website, it's clear that these customers were not heard by the business and sought to be heard on an alternate platform.
Now that's a lesson a business can really learn from!
They could consider providing their customers their own social service website to be heard and replied to before having to take the matter outside.
Adding a social customer support software platform into your business website, where customers can post complaints, discuss issues, have questions answered, and even upload their video complaints, doesn't have to be very difficult or expensive.
They can be built on top of a social business software platform, customized, and handed over to the online customer base without much trouble.
It sends a powerful message, "We would like to hear what you have to say, answer your questions, and help you in anyway we can," and it offers them a place to go to online, making your business more accessible.
It also creates a lot of confidence in consumers, who respect the transparency with which a business is able to converse with its customers.
If you think handling customer complaints on your website is too public, think about handling it on Facebook or YouTube.
Tim is president and co-founder of Axero Solutions, a leading intranet software vendor. He's also a bestselling author of Who the Hell Wants to Work for You? Mastering Employee Engagement. Tim’s been featured in Fortune, Forbes, TIME, Inc Magazine, Entrepreneur, CNBC, Today, and other leading publications.
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