New JT Member Matt M. shares his thoughts on the growing power of social with a creative twist of wit and subtle sarcasm.
To Whom It May Concern:
I’m writing to you with a clear purpose of expressing my newly discouraged sentiment over what your company claims to be its exceptional product and customer care. In past experiences, I would have taken my words to pen and pad, tri-folded it inside a plainly labeled envelope that through appearances, could never express the betrayal from which I feel about how your company has handled my grievance.
Not this time. Gone are the opportunities for corporations, like you, to quietly brush the “experiences gone wrong” under the rug. Today rather, I have a voice; a voice that can reach listeners well beyond earshot when I yell at my loudest pitch. It’s a message that’s seemingly echoed from wall to wall, reaching thousands, remaining in electronic immortality.
And the message is clear: I, the consumer, your customer, have the power to change the way your company is viewed by others.
Platforms like Facebook and Twitter allow me a megaphone and a soapbox bigger than one in Speakers’ Corner that’s 50’ tall. From my blog to my tweets, I can sound the alarm to other consumers, like me, venting frustration. And please don’t assume that your customers aren’t there and won’t hear me.
Just today, statistics show that there are over 800 million active Facebook users. Out of those users Facebook claims that almost 25% are from the United States. That’s about 200 million U.S. Facebook users. That’s over half of the United States population. It’s an understatement to say your consumers are there, talking about you.
The funny thing is, my negative experience could be avoided. I don’t enjoy spreading negativity about your company, but when I’m ignored the gloves come off. I’m going to talk about my experiences and express my concerns whether you know it or not. Scary enough, the communication channels through which I discuss them are the biggest in the world.
Social media is not a fad. In fact, it’s the fastest growing and most preferred method of communication of consumers today. People are putting down the phone to call you, getting out of their cars instead of driving to your location, and checking out your social presence before your company website.
So you’re left with a simple choice: do you want to be part of the discussion; or are you comfortable leaving your company image for others to define?
Don’t be the metaphorical bug on the windshield. Be the car itself and drive consumer engagement and discussion on how to improve your products and services, and ultimately the customer experience. The consumer is the blood running in your company’s veins and they have good things to say! So make yourself heard, and more importantly, listen, listen, listen.
Your New Brand Loyalist