The rise of social media has given customers unprecedented access to companies. This can be a double-edged sword: companies are able to communicate with customers in more ways than ever, but they need to be aware that communication is a two-way process.
Customer expectations have risen accordingly and they are willing to act against companies who don’t meet their expectations:
Social media impact on business – Failure
#1 – JP Morgan Q&A session on Twitter
In theory, this sounded like a great idea. Why not engage consumers via a Q&A session on Twitter? The problem is that people really aren’t that fond of major banks right now. So the enlightening Q&A with vice chairman James B. Lee Jr. from JP Morgan became an open invitation for people to vent their frustrations, which in turn, forced the session to be cancelled.
#2 – Expresses a personal tweet on the company’s home page
The Red Cross’s social media specialist Gloria Huang, by accident, expresses a personal tweet on the company’s home page. The Red Cross recovered nicely and only minimal damage was done. But, the fail was that their social media specialist had meant for that tweet to go out on her private account. But, she accidentally sent it on the Red Cross handle because she wasn’t familiar with HootSuite.
#3 – An update from an employee at the automaker’s social media agency
The official Twitter account of Chrysler brand vehicles dropped the F-bomb in an update from an employee at the automaker’s social media agency. Chrysler gained a lot of attention because of the following Tweet: “I find it ironic that Detroit is known as the #motorcity and yet no one here knows how to *bleeping* drive.” No. It wasn’t part of some edgy viral campaign. Just another Twitter fail that was the result of an employee from a social media agency in charge of a brand’s social media accounts.
#4 – How not to use hashtags to market products and services
Habitat, a UK home accessory and furniture retailer, was looking to gain more followers on Twitter, and who doesn’t? But, the approach that it took wasn’t the best tactic. Instead of relating its tweets to popular topics that were relevant to its field, it tried to take advantage of popular hashtags, such as #Apple and #iPhone. This is the perfect example of how not to use hashtags on Twitter.
#6 – Rogue employees took over the company’s Twitter account
When some 60 staff members are losing their jobs, it’s understandable for people to get upset. And, that’s what happened with UK entertainment retailer HMV after rogue employees took over the company’s Twitter account.
#7 – Better stick to corporate social media policies
CNN’s senior editor of Middle Eastern affairs, Octavia Nasr, was shown the door after sending a tweet that expressed respect for the Shiite cleric Grand Ayatollah Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah.
#8 – Be very sure who is tweeting on behalf of the company
#15 – A little comment can create a firestorm of unhappy customers
All it takes is one little comment gone wrong to upset a whole slew of your social media fan base and that’s exactly what happened on Nikon’s Facebook page.
#16 – Don’t SPAM
The Toyota account @CamryEffect was replying to users who used a Super Bowl related hashtag like #Giants or #Patriots with an offer to win a car.
Social media impact on business – Attack
The organization of the future will be more transparent than ever before. Firms will find it increasingly hard to hide poor service, high pricing or unpopular practices, as technology makes them more visible to end-consumers. Just as social media aided political protests around the world, so too will it allow consumers to put firms in the spotlight. In the austere decade that lies ahead, companies will need to behave better than ever, or risk a consumer backlash.
#17 – What happens if companies don’t listen to their customers
In a world where consumer and peer reviews are available via social media, positive customer experiences become amplified and produce word-of-mouth referrals. On the flip side, negative customer experiences become amplified as well and can make big damage to even great companies.
#18 – Companies that provide poor customer service can’t ride out the situation
Companies these days must understand that everybody has a voice. So the best way to avoid a public relations nightmare is to give great customer service.