Clients used to fear that they would, inadvertently, provide poor customer service to a reporter. The headlines would scream of their mishap and weeks would be spent in crisis control. Ah, the goood ol’ days.
Today, everyone is a potential reporter with advent of blogs and YouTube, as United Airlines recently discovered. Having destroyed a musician’s $3500 guitar during a layover, United basically ignored the passenger’s repeated requests for reimbursement. The musician then penned a song about his experience, posted it on YouTube and, in days, logged thousands of views. United took notice.
They are now working with the musician to provide reimbursement and have asked his permission to utilize the video for internal culture change. In the world of user content, companies can no longer hide behind uncaring call centers.
The lesson in this is clear. Companies need to know how to locate these complaints that go viral before they’re viewed and forwarded to thousands of potential customers. Companies also need to know how to respond quickly without overreacting.
Consumers have found a way to have their voices heard — are you listening?