Retailers & Service Providers still don’t get social media

I live in an area that has been hard hit by hurricane Irma.  However, we, like a lot of other people, had ample warning and were able to evacuate safely.  You would think that retailers and service providers would have triggered resources to help them provide good customer service but they still don’t get social media.

When a customer complains about something on social media they don’t want to hear how sorry you are, they want you to fix their problem.  Here are two examples..

When I got home my Direct TV dish was out of alignment from the wind.  I called for an appointment, but the soonest appointment was a week out.  I was actually OK with that until I learned that a neighbor called later that day and got an appointment for the next day.  When I contacted Direct TV by phone I was told “there was nothing they could do”.  I took to facebook and Twitter to express my frustration.  I have been a customer for over 20 years.  I was contacted via DM by a representative, but nothing happened.

The key lesson here is (1) your best/longest customers should get priority service and (2) Don’t tell me you are here to help and then do nothing.

The second experience involves Lowe’s.  I needed a specific product for my pool and, according to Lowe’s website, the product was in stock.  When I arrived at the store I found mayhem with new, unopened boxes waiting to be stocked, pissed off customers looking for help and sales people who were largely ignoring people.

Why Lowe’s didn’t have an emergency response team consisting of more store help and products people might need after a storm was beyond me.  As far as I am concerned, I will never ever step foot in a Lowe’s store again and predict that within 4-5 years they will be in trouble.  A contact via social media said “they were sorry” but I don’t want to hear that, I want you to fix the problem.

Key lessons here

1ne: You can apologize, but fixing the customer’s problem should be a priority.

2wo: If you know, as a retailer, that an area is going to be hit by a weather issue you should have developed and implemented emergency plans that include resupply of essential items plus additional help.

3hree: You always, always need to take care of your best customers . You can’t afford to let them go.

4our: Empower social media people to help people right away .  Don’t wait for them to go viral on social media.

 

 

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