Under-promise, Over-deliver - Pt 2
May 17, 2011
There’s no question that you have a story about a moment, or two, when things didn’t go smoothly, or an experience/product/service turned out to be different than you expected. And there are also those moments, when you came across the scammer who was only focused on tricking you to make a fast buck ... and doesn’t care who gets hurt.
Like anyone who may have one of these scenarios happen, it’s common to tell as many friends, family and co-workers as possible about that bad experience. You certainly don’t want them to make the same mistake ... and in some situations you want to send a clear warning that hopefully ripples through enough people to impact the person to change, or get out of business.
In today’s age of social networking, a bad experience can be spread to hundreds, if not thousands (or more) in a matter of minutes. You will be black-marked before you ever know what hit you.
It’s why access, listening and response are so critical in customer affairs today.
The first place to start is by setting up a social media dashboard to monitor conversations that are happening about, around, and are relevant to your brand. There are many services that are free and allow you to build different windows and/or tabs to see tweets, hashtags, posts, check-ins, RSS feeds and so on about you. You can also keep an eye on what’s topical, buzzworthy and more in your particular category, region, etc.
Here’s a great blog that shares 19 Free Social Media Tools for Your Dashboard
The second key piece, and one that many people miss, is access. You have to make it easy for people to contact and communicate with you.
The story I shared last week simply would not happen in 95% of companies today, because it is virtually impossible to find anything other than a general/generic business line or e-mail address, request line, Facebook page or Twitter account.
Being social is being human and that is the expectation now when someone reaches out to engage with you. You don’t want a mystery voice or avatar that has no real value except to speak the company position and policies ... or worse, no response at all.
You want to connect to another human.
Update your website to move the contact tab to the top of the page, instead of being buried way below the fold. List names, positions and contact information of key people who may be contacted around areas that matter, or I challenge you to be really remarkable and list everyone.
Use the same idea with your social pages, e-mail accounts and company materials.
Finally, remember the under-promise and over-deliver rule: No one really expects that you will respond, no matter how they contact you. This is the real opportunity to make a difference and leave a lasting impression.
Answer e-mail, return calls, comment on posts and threads, respond to tweets, say thank you for a mention or re-tweet, and really be present in the moments when someone is reaching out.
It seems so simple, but most companies simply don’t do it. How about you?
The result will turn a fan into a fanatic and a bad experience into a story of great customer service, like I experienced with the Jingle Ball example, when a dad had a moment that went from “Holy Shit” to ”Holy Cow!”