Recently, I had reason to complain about some poor customer service I received from a rep at a call center for Network Solutions. I had two client accounts that needed to merge in order to setup some E-commerce functions, but not only was the fellow I spoke to not helpful at all, I could barely understand his accent.
So what did I do? I vented on Twitter about it. Even with the recent bad luck they’ve had with downtime and unreliable service, I’ve not quite decided to be a Twitter Quitter either. For a while I was close to it, but I’ve decided to stay and post maybe 3 – 4 times a day.
I’m glad I stuck around, actually. What happened after I vented was quite interesting. After figuring out the problem myself, I went to my Twitter page and I had a direct message from @netsolcares, a Network Solutions customer assistance rep on Twitter itself. And this wasn’t the first time he’s contacted me on there!
Yep, I actually meant to blog about this the first time @netsolcares contacted me about mentioning Network Solutions on Twitter. I got into a discussion with him, not about the issue, but about how he was using Twitter and how he found my message. He used Summize, a search engine for conversations going on at Twitter and found my message within hours of posting and contacted me directly to see if he could help at all.
Now that is proactive customer support!
How can other people use this as an example? If you have a product or business that people use, try finding out where and what they are saying about it online. You’d be surprised at what you find, both positive and negative. Seek the positive remarks and chime in to say thanks. Find the negative comments and poke your head in to see if you can change their minds. That is the future of customer service online.
Do not wait for problems to come to you because they can boil up beyond your control, which would be a shame if a single proactive approach and a “sorry” could have kept the issue small.