Jason Falls

Jason Falls

Brand responsiveness through social media continues to give companies around the globe high marks and good publicity. From the old standby of Dell to the emerging omnipresence of Ford and GM, big brands are starting to not just listen to conversations about them, but respond as well. But two recent experiences for me, ironically with major competitors, makes me pose two questions:

  1. Can a big brand’s personal responsiveness scale?
  2. Are big brands playing favorites by responding only to those they deem “influencers?”

Case in point:

In January while attending a conference with a friend, we both were having difficulty with our AT&T phones. I couldn’t get emails and he couldn’t get phone calls. An innocuous Tweet calling to attention the strange irony of the situation led to a sudden windfall of attention from AT&T. Someone who works for AT&T’s public relations firm contacted me via Twitter direct message, got both of our phone numbers and elevated our concerns way up the ladder. (He admitted later that AT&T elevated it higher up the ladder than he expected, but still.) We figured the issue out and my friend was back to normal in no time. My email connectivity had more to do with the signal strength in that building and everyone was happy.

RE:But I recall a couple of others chiming in with responses to the conversation (my apologies but a search through my replies only dates back to Feb. 12th) complaining about AT&T services. Did someone from the company reach out to them, too? My pal @MoAmy reports no response after complaining of voice mail issues and spotty service on a major interstate in Louisville in our conversation that day in January. And what about all the people listed in a search for “AT&T” and “frustrated” on Twitter?

Similarly, I took my teenage nephew to a Sprint store in Louisville Saturday to purchase a new phone to replace one he’d lost. Here are my Tweets (remember to read bottom up for the proper chronology). And @dbcotton’s question was, “Why are you still there?”:

Sprint Tweets from Jason Falls

John Taylor (@jbtaylor) from Sprint media relations called me about an hour after our store experience, forwarded the issue on the appropriate people in customer care and I had a voicemail from them by the end of the day Saturday. (I’m to call them back this morning.) John was profusely apologetic and made it a point to say, “thank you,” for Tweeting the concern to the company can learn from it and the location can learn from the experience as a training opportunity.

Now that’s pretty damn cool.

But @tracie_marie has been working on a Sprint issue for two months with no progress. She’s been a Sprint customer for eight years and is frustrated. Ky Palmer tweeted this a month or so ago:

“is very frustrated with Sprint. Wanting to switch to AT&T or Verizon. AT&T has better phones. Hmm”

I’ve reached out to find out if he received any contact from the three companies mentioned. I’m betting not. There are many others frustrated with Sprint, too.

Mind you, there are good examples of both AT&T and Sprint being responsive to customers. I’ve been very impressed with both my service and attention from AT&T since moving the iPhone in January and with Sprint’s responsiveness to my nephew’s situation and our service issues. But there are plenty of complaints out there, too. My concern is whether or not the responsiveness is weighted. Because I have 7,500+ followers on Twitter, am I then more important to them than someone who has around 70 like @tracie_marie? Should I be, even if she’s been a Sprint customer for eight years and I’ve never used them for anything to my recollection?

Is a blogger a higher priority than one who isn’t because they could potentially light a viral fire to a company’s poor service? Should they be?

My hope is that these brands and others value every customer, one at a time and none more so than the others. If not, then their participation in social media seems a bit disingenuous. But is that idealism realistic? Sprint, AT&T and other big brands have millions of customers while not having millions of employees. Can personalized service scale so that responsiveness is a blanket policy or will it always have to be encumbered by prioritization and favoritism to face the reality of supply and demand?

It’s one thing for social media consultants and strategists to preach that listening is the first rule of social media and responsiveness to customers is the most important social media activity a brand can participate in. But solving the problem of responsiveness on scale is another ball game altogether. Sure, I have my thoughts on how it can be approached, but why don’t you tell me how you would?

Let the comments produce ideas on responsiveness and scalability. Should big brands treat each customer the same or should they prioritize based on any number of factors? Can big brands respond to every customer? If so, how? We are smarter than me. The comments are yours.

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About Jason Falls

Jason Falls

Jason Falls is the founder and chief instigator for Social Media Explorer's blog. He is a leading thinker, speaker and strategist in the world of digital marketing and is co-author of two books, No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide To Social Media Marketing and The Rebel's Guide To Email Marketing. By day, he leads digital strategy for CafePress, one of the world's largest online retailers. His opinions are his, not necessarily theirs. Follow him on Twitter (@JasonFalls).

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Comments Policy

Comments on Social Media Explorer are open to anyone. However, I will remove any comment that is disrespectful and not in the spirit of intelligent discourse. You are welcome to leave links to content relevant to the conversation, but I reserve the right to remove it if I don't see the relevancy. Be nice, have fun. Fair?

  • http://blogs.dix-eaton.com/index.php/measurementpr-spectives/ Chuck Hemann

    Jason – a really interesting perspective, and something I've never thought of before. I think I agree with your sentiment that appearing as if you are placating to the “social media elite” is a very slippery slope. That said, I don't think it's realistic to expect brands like Dell or Sprint or AT&T to respond to every inquiry/complaint they receive in social media. You would almost need a person(s) dedicated to just that task alone.

    I actually think your post raises another problem/issue — when PR firms (Dix & Eaton included I think) are trying to help their clients determine their social media footprint we place a very heavy emphasis on the “influencers.” Who can we actively target for a social media outreach that helps us deliver our message faster than we could ever do it? I think you'd probably agree that this approach really misses the point of what social media is supposed to be – a 1:1 conversation between brands and their stakeholders.

    Anyway, thanks for the great post!

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Thanks Chuck. I agree that there is an air of unreasonable expectations for every customer to be communicated with individually. But I didn't want to make that blanket determination on my own without fairly asking for other's input, including yours. Thanks for the comment.

  • http://blogs.dix-eaton.com/index.php/measurementpr-spectives/ Chuck Hemann

    Jason – a really interesting perspective, and something I've never thought of before. I think I agree with your sentiment that appearing as if you are placating to the “social media elite” is a very slippery slope. That said, I don't think it's realistic to expect brands like Dell or Sprint or AT&T to respond to every inquiry/complaint they receive in social media. You would almost need a person(s) dedicated to just that task alone.

    I actually think your post raises another problem/issue — when PR firms (Dix & Eaton included I think) are trying to help their clients determine their social media footprint we place a very heavy emphasis on the “influencers.” Who can we actively target for a social media outreach that helps us deliver our message faster than we could ever do it? I think you'd probably agree that this approach really misses the point of what social media is supposed to be – a 1:1 conversation between brands and their stakeholders.

    Anyway, thanks for the great post!

  • http://www.twitter.com/hallicious Chris Hall

    Jason,

    I never thought of Real Time Status Updates being used for training purposes, (i.e. the Sprint anecdote), but that could be another serious potential use for micro-blogging in big business… as opposed to the old comment card in a box method.

    The problem large companies face is, how do you build a process around Twitter updates. Customer Care hotlines have been established to handle customer complaints, but they're traditionally used after the fact. I go to the store, I receive poor service or my product breaks, I call and complain.

    With real time updates, poor service could theoretically be adjusted on the spot. The question is, do you centralize or decentralize this new process? How should it work, exactly? And to your point, does everybody matter equally?

    A fundamental shift in the way most large organizations think about customer service needs to occur.:

    OLD: Customer Complaints – Isolated / Private
    NEW: Customer Complaints – Isolated / Public

    If customer care is to be handled in the public, then I would argue that everybody does matter. As real time trending information becomes easier and mainstream, people will check out the real time customer service stream of a company before making a purchase… much like the way that I check reviews on Amazon today. In this case, it wouldn't necessarily matter that the company “took care of” the influencers, if the majority of their customers are given the cold shoulder.

    Great post and fun to think about. :)

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Excellent perspectives Chris. Thanks for the additional thoughts. I think you're right, that if the public sees that you're not addressing everyone's concerns, they'll tend to think you're participation in outreach is slanted, isolated and disingenuous or that they'll still see the bad that percolates to the top. There aren't any clear answers on what's right or wrong, but you are right one one thing – it's a fun topic to mull over.

      Thanks for the comment.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hallicious Chris Hall

    Jason,

    I never thought of Real Time Status Updates being used for training purposes, (i.e. the Sprint anecdote), but that could be another serious potential use for micro-blogging in big business… as opposed to the old comment card in a box method.

    The problem large companies face is, how do you build a process around Twitter updates. Customer Care hotlines have been established to handle customer complaints, but they're traditionally used after the fact. I go to the store, I receive poor service or my product breaks, I call and complain.

    With real time updates, poor service could theoretically be adjusted on the spot. The question is, do you centralize or decentralize this new process? How should it work, exactly? And to your point, does everybody matter equally?

    A fundamental shift in the way most large organizations think about customer service needs to occur.:

    OLD: Customer Complaints – Isolated / Private
    NEW: Customer Complaints – Isolated / Public

    If customer care is to be handled in the public, then I would argue that everybody does matter. As real time trending information becomes easier and mainstream, people will check out the real time customer service stream of a company before making a purchase… much like the way that I check reviews on Amazon today. In this case, it wouldn't necessarily matter that the company “took care of” the influencers, if the majority of their customers are given the cold shoulder.

    Great post and fun to think about. :)

  • http://www.communplug.com/ Ed

    As to what you're asking, my answer is an astounding – YES, some brands are engaging only those whom they feel are influencers. Many social media practices doesn't believe in true conversations, but rather free advertising through blogs. As much as they hate to admit it, it's all that readership statistics at play. Saw the same episode with Samsung, Rummz and a couple other brands who are sneaking into social media in my country. I figured, that's enough to sum up the kind of “social media” they're doing.

    Ironically, the better experiences come from foreign service providers (iStyles & Scribd) than my immediate environment when I wasn't really a customer to begin with. (And they actually shared information).

    To be totally flat out about sales acquisition of new customers, it's not about the brands trusting the bloggers. The brands should be more worried about if bloggers trust them. If they're continuing with the kind of favoritism that they have, I don't see how they can guarantee that my problems with their products will be attended to in future. Simply – bad customer service. If not for certain better functions, I would have drop that brand totally. But then again, I can't find a better replacement. That isn't a good reason for brands to get all high and mighty.

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Great perspective, Ed. I'm very appreciative of the non-U.S.-centric viewpoint since, by default, I lean toward it. It's nice to know this is a universal issue and not just one with U.S. brands. Thank you for the thoughtful response.

  • http://www.communplug.com/ Ed

    As to what you're asking, my answer is an astounding – YES, some brands are engaging only those whom they feel are influencers. Many social media practices doesn't believe in true conversations, but rather free advertising through blogs. As much as they hate to admit it, it's all that readership statistics at play. Saw the same episode with Samsung, Rummz and a couple other brands who are sneaking into social media in my country. I figured, that's enough to sum up the kind of “social media” they're doing.

    Ironically, the better experiences come from foreign service providers (iStyles & Scribd) than my immediate environment when I wasn't really a customer to begin with. (And they actually shared information).

    To be totally flat out about sales acquisition of new customers, it's not about the brands trusting the bloggers. The brands should be more worried about if bloggers trust them. If they're continuing with the kind of favoritism that they have, I don't see how they can guarantee that my problems with their products will be attended to in future. Simply – bad customer service. If not for certain better functions, I would have drop that brand totally. But then again, I can't find a better replacement. That isn't a good reason for brands to get all high and mighty.

  • http://www.lithium.com Joe Cothrel

    I personally find tweeting that you found a dead zone to be kind of funny. That's like tweeting when you can't find a place to park in the Best Buy parking lot.:)

    But seriously, it's seems true to me that these social media outreach efforts aren't aimed at addressing *every* customer with a problem out there — otherwise, you wouldn't need 10 or 20 people (the largest outreach efforts I know of), you'd need something equivalent to a call center.

    But I don't think that makes the efforts of these big brands “disingenuous.” I just think it means, to Chris's point, that companies are still building out a process for doing this stuff sustainably. In my book, the Dells and Comcasts and Sprints of the world get a lot of credit for starting on this path. (Mind you that I think it's fair to apply a more rigorous standard to traditional channels like call centers.)

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Thanks, Joe. I can certainly see your point about the brands not being disingenuous, but still think, even without intent, they can be disingenuous to the general philosophy of social media by selective outreach and reaction. Still, you and Chris are right. We're still in a learning curve for how companies can and should behave in this new medium. It's good be keep that perspective and be fair to those involved. Thanks for keeping us centered.

  • http://www.lithium.com Joe Cothrel

    I personally find tweeting that you found a dead zone to be kind of funny. That's like tweeting when you can't find a place to park in the Best Buy parking lot.:)

    But seriously, it's seems true to me that these social media outreach efforts aren't aimed at addressing *every* customer with a problem out there — otherwise, you wouldn't need 10 or 20 people (the largest outreach efforts I know of), you'd need something equivalent to a call center.

    But I don't think that makes the efforts of these big brands “disingenuous.” I just think it means, to Chris's point, that companies are still building out a process for doing this stuff sustainably. In my book, the Dells and Comcasts and Sprints of the world get a lot of credit for starting on this path. (Mind you that I think it's fair to apply a more rigorous standard to traditional channels like call centers.)

  • http://www.budgetpulse.com Craig

    Even though every customer is important to a company, the truth is that they want to please the influencers over us little people first, and I can't really blame them. There may be tons of consumers tweeting about a bad experience but a company may only have the ability to do so much, maybe put someone else on real time twitter alerts to work on their reputation building, but the numbers may be too high. If a company is going to be selective, they will get in touch with those who have the most followers, or higher blog authority.

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Thanks, Craig. I agree that companies natural response will be to go influencer first, but still question whether or not that is right or fair, even if it is the most responsible way to do business. It's not something any of us can definitively answer now, but certainly worth continued discourse.

      Thanks, as always, for the comment.

  • http://www.budgetpulse.com Craig

    Even though every customer is important to a company, the truth is that they want to please the influencers over us little people first, and I can't really blame them. There may be tons of consumers tweeting about a bad experience but a company may only have the ability to do so much, maybe put someone else on real time twitter alerts to work on their reputation building, but the numbers may be too high. If a company is going to be selective, they will get in touch with those who have the most followers, or higher blog authority.

  • http://sazbean.com sazbean

    I think that at this stage of the game many Social media accounts are monitored by people who are empowered to fix problems – mostly because they are higher up in the company. By its very nature, people who use social media are usually some type of influencer or creator. I've had several similar experiences where using a company's standard support mechanism wasn't working, but if I wrote a blog post or tweeted about it, I would get a VP or manager who fixed everything. I think the problem with most customer support these days is that companies measure success by the number of tickets closed in the least amount of time – not how happy the customer is. This leads to hiring customer support reps who must stick to the script and are not able to really help you. I think it mostly points to a broken customer support system.

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      You bring up an interesting point, Saz. If th customer support system can't be relied upon and only threats and reactions from VPs and higher is the solution that best suits a company, what the heck is the customer support system for and why isn't the company empowering them to solve problems? Sure, the circumstances and answers will vary from company to company, but all are good questions to ask.

      Thanks for the perspective.

  • http://sazbean.com sazbean

    I think that at this stage of the game many Social media accounts are monitored by people who are empowered to fix problems – mostly because they are higher up in the company. By its very nature, people who use social media are usually some type of influencer or creator. I've had several similar experiences where using a company's standard support mechanism wasn't working, but if I wrote a blog post or tweeted about it, I would get a VP or manager who fixed everything. I think the problem with most customer support these days is that companies measure success by the number of tickets closed in the least amount of time – not how happy the customer is. This leads to hiring customer support reps who must stick to the script and are not able to really help you. I think it mostly points to a broken customer support system.

  • http://www.radian6.com Amber Naslund

    Jason,

    To me, the more relevant discussion should be not the source of the issue per se, but the nature of the issue itself. It's a triage system, and each company has to outline it's own priorities for response based on the nature of the issue, how quickly it can be resolved, and the resources they have to dedicate to it.

    Yes, I think it's a bit idealistic to think that influence won't ever matter. Same reason you'd take a call from the NYT without hesitation, but you might let your local paper sit for a few days if you're busy (whether or not you say you would aloud). Even when it comes to engagement and conversation, things like reach and power of networks still matter, and I think they should. Why? Because it empowers the GOOD things to spread faster, too, even if they often take a back seat to the negative ones. The goal, of course, is finding a way to get to every conversation, even if they have to be prioritized somewhat.

    As for scale, I say it's possible. But it's going to take more than heaping the responsibility for listening and outreach on a handful of PR people or customer service rookies with an interest in the web. It's going to require retooling of systems and processes, the same way we did when all of a sudden we had email inquiries to deal with on top of the call center. For companies deeply engaged in SM, these channels will start shifting the ratio of communication volume from analog to digital media. But scale wont' happen by just piling on social media as an “and”. It has to become integrated into the fabric of a company, giving people in both frontline and backstage roles the ability to use these tools in ways that make sense for their piece of the business.

    Whew. Okay, was that long enough? Sorry. :)

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      When it's that strong, long is fine. Thanks for the additional thought, all of which is dead on as usual. Good to see you here. It's been a while.

  • http://www.radian6.com Amber Naslund

    Jason,

    To me, the more relevant discussion should be not the source of the issue per se, but the nature of the issue itself. It's a triage system, and each company has to outline it's own priorities for response based on the nature of the issue, how quickly it can be resolved, and the resources they have to dedicate to it.

    Yes, I think it's a bit idealistic to think that influence won't ever matter. Same reason you'd take a call from the NYT without hesitation, but you might let your local paper sit for a few days if you're busy (whether or not you say you would aloud). Even when it comes to engagement and conversation, things like reach and power of networks still matter, and I think they should. Why? Because it empowers the GOOD things to spread faster, too, even if they often take a back seat to the negative ones. The goal, of course, is finding a way to get to every conversation, even if they have to be prioritized somewhat.

    As for scale, I say it's possible. But it's going to take more than heaping the responsibility for listening and outreach on a handful of PR people or customer service rookies with an interest in the web. It's going to require retooling of systems and processes, the same way we did when all of a sudden we had email inquiries to deal with on top of the call center. For companies deeply engaged in SM, these channels will start shifting the ratio of communication volume from analog to digital media. But scale wont' happen by just piling on social media as an “and”. It has to become integrated into the fabric of a company, giving people in both frontline and backstage roles the ability to use these tools in ways that make sense for their piece of the business.

    Whew. Okay, was that long enough? Sorry. :)

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Thanks Chuck. I agree that there is an air of unreasonable expectations for every customer to be communicated with individually. But I didn't want to make that blanket determination on my own without fairly asking for other's input, including yours. Thanks for the comment.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Excellent perspectives Chris. Thanks for the additional thoughts. I think you're right, that if the public sees that you're not addressing everyone's concerns, they'll tend to think you're participation in outreach is slanted, isolated and disingenuous or that they'll still see the bad that percolates to the top. There aren't any clear answers on what's right or wrong, but you are right one one thing – it's a fun topic to mull over.

    Thanks for the comment.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Great perspective, Ed. I'm very appreciative of the non-U.S.-centric viewpoint since, by default, I lean toward it. It's nice to know this is a universal issue and not just one with U.S. brands. Thank you for the thoughtful response.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Thanks, Joe. I can certainly see your point about the brands not being disingenuous, but still think, even without intent, they can be disingenuous to the general philosophy of social media by selective outreach and reaction. Still, you and Chris are right. We're still in a learning curve for how companies can and should behave in this new medium. It's good be keep that perspective and be fair to those involved. Thanks for keeping us centered.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Thanks, Craig. I agree that companies natural response will be to go influencer first, but still question whether or not that is right or fair, even if it is the most responsible way to do business. It's not something any of us can definitively answer now, but certainly worth continued discourse.

    Thanks, as always, for the comment.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    You bring up an interesting point, Saz. If th customer support system can't be relied upon and only threats and reactions from VPs and higher is the solution that best suits a company, what the heck is the customer support system for and why isn't the company empowering them to solve problems? Sure, the circumstances and answers will vary from company to company, but all are good questions to ask.

    Thanks for the perspective.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    When it's that strong, long is fine. Thanks for the additional thought, all of which is dead on as usual. Good to see you here. It's been a while.

  • http://dannybrown.me Danny Brown

    This is a really interesting point you bring up, Jason. While it's obvious that brands have been going after the big-name bloggers for reviews and sponsored posts, it's not really been discussed what the flip-side to this is.

    Obviously your cries for help were heard because someone from the brand was either following your stream or someone that follows you. Or, they were simply using the Twitter search option. Either way, they came to your aid while missing others. Coincidence or more to it, only the brand can really tell.

    Yet if they want to engage social media better, they should look at what still works in the *traditional* field. Look at call centres. You have boards on the wall that show waiting time, on-hold, dropped calls, success rates, etc.

    Should big brands have a similar option for the likes of Twitter? I'm not sure how it would be implemented, but it could lead to some monetization for the company. Think about it:

    * Brand A pays a certain amount to Twitter for unique bandwidth. This allows them to have their own search engine by geographic location.
    * Customer service operator for that location are plugged into Twitter and monitoring stream. Any complaints that come in (or praise) can be answered with a “We're on it” response.
    * Customer service operator raises a ticket for tech team, who get in touch with customer. Problem starts to be resolved.

    This is a really basic idea and probably one that isn't feasible. But wouldn't it be nice to think it could be?

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      I freakin' love it when someone smart thinks of a problem with a new filter. Nice idea, Danny. You may have given Twitter a business model that might work. Of course, they don't listen well, so they'll miss it. Heh. But damn if that isn't a neat idea. Let's go into business together and build it! (Need funding … salary up front … a few developers … that's all.) Heh.

      • http://dannybrown.me Danny Brown

        Should we ask Mr Brogan if he has some spare pennies? I hear he's good buddies with that Ted fella from Izea.. ;-)

        Cheers Jason, appreciate the compliment. :)

  • http://dannybrown.me Danny Brown

    This is a really interesting point you bring up, Jason. While it's obvious that brands have been going after the big-name bloggers for reviews and sponsored posts, it's not really been discussed what the flip-side to this is.

    Obviously your cries for help were heard because someone from the brand was either following your stream or someone that follows you. Or, they were simply using the Twitter search option. Either way, they came to your aid while missing others. Coincidence or more to it, only the brand can really tell.

    Yet if they want to engage social media better, they should look at what still works in the *traditional* field. Look at call centres. You have boards on the wall that show waiting time, on-hold, dropped calls, success rates, etc.

    Should big brands have a similar option for the likes of Twitter? I'm not sure how it would be implemented, but it could lead to some monetization for the company. Think about it:

    * Brand A pays a certain amount to Twitter for unique bandwidth. This allows them to have their own search engine by geographic location.
    * Customer service operator for that location are plugged into Twitter and monitoring stream. Any complaints that come in (or praise) can be answered with a “We're on it” response.
    * Customer service operator raises a ticket for tech team, who get in touch with customer. Problem starts to be resolved.

    This is a really basic idea and probably one that isn't feasible. But wouldn't it be nice to think it could be?

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  • http://sheenatabraham.wordpress.com Sheena T Abraham

    I'm sure you'd appreciate this 2005 blog post by Ed Bott titled “A is for Arrogant, B is for Bloggers, D is for Dell.” It makes the same claim as you, only four years ago.

    http://www.edbott.com/weblog/archives/000825.html

    • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

      Thanks for the link and the reminder, Sheena.

  • http://sheenatabraham.wordpress.com Sheena T Abraham

    I'm sure you'd appreciate this 2005 blog post by Ed Bott titled “A is for Arrogant, B is for Bloggers, D is for Dell.” It makes the same claim as you, only four years ago.

    http://www.edbott.com/weblog/archives/000825.html

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  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    I freakin' love it when someone smart thinks of a problem with a new filter. Nice idea, Danny. You may have given Twitter a business model that might work. Of course, they don't listen well, so they'll miss it. Heh. But damn if that isn't a neat idea. Let's go into business together and build it! (Need funding … salary up front … a few developers … that's all.) Heh.

  • http://socialmediaexplorer.com JasonFalls

    Thanks for the link and the reminder, Sheena.

  • http://www.rkpr.net Rachel Kay r

    Great post. What I find the most telling is that you were contacted by the media relations contact, not consumer relations. As a PR person, my job has never been to field customer complaints, but to shuttle any I may receive off to the appropriate people. Clearly in this scenario you weren’t being regarded as simply a consumer but a member of the press – which is why your complaint was probably handled with much more attention and care. As PR people we are trained to approach a dangerous situation involving an influencer with the utmost urgency. It is two different machines. Now if only I had that kind of power I wouldn’t have sat on the phone with a company’s customer service for an hour today and had my tweets totally disregarded. 

  • http://www.rkpr.net Rachel Kay r

    Great post. What I find the most telling is that you were contacted by the media relations contact, not consumer relations. As a PR person, my job has never been to field customer complaints, but to shuttle any I may receive off to the appropriate people. Clearly in this scenario you weren’t being regarded as simply a consumer but a member of the press – which is why your complaint was probably handled with much more attention and care. As PR people we are trained to approach a dangerous situation involving an influencer with the utmost urgency. It is two different machines. Now if only I had that kind of power I wouldn’t have sat on the phone with a company’s customer service for an hour today and had my tweets totally disregarded. 

  • http://dannybrown.me Danny Brown

    Should we ask Mr Brogan if he has some spare pennies? I hear he's good buddies with that Ted fella from Izea.. ;-)

    Cheers Jason, appreciate the compliment. :)

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  • http://interimsales.net Charles Sipe

    I don't think it is a question of scale based on the number of people that Frank Eliason of Comcast has helped. He has over 27,000 updates! If Comcast can do it, there's no reason that Sprint or AT&T can't. It can't be that difficult to monitor “Sprint” on Twitter and have a small staff respond to complaints, can it?

  • http://interimsales.net Charles Sipe

    I don't think it is a question of scale based on the number of people that Frank Eliason of Comcast has helped. He has over 27,000 updates! If Comcast can do it, there's no reason that Sprint or AT&T can't. It can't be that difficult to monitor “Sprint” on Twitter and have a small staff respond to complaints, can it?

  • DrGerius

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