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Do You Use Social Media To Contact Companies?

Do You Use Social Media to Contact Companies?

I just finished reading an article about a US couple who, because of visa problems, nearly missed their Russian honeymoon. They thought they'd done their research; online travel agency Expedia assured the couple that they didn't need visas to travel to St. Petersburg. It turned out, though, they did. After sharing their experience and anger in real time via Twitter and their blog, Expedia reached out to the couple, reimbursing the cost of their trip, the additional expenses they incurred, and offering a huge credit toward their next trip.

More companies are using social media to respond immediately to problems and interact closely with customers. In fact, some of Sugar staffers used the service to get in touch with JetBlue during a severely delayed flight.

While I agree it's a great way to interact with a company, I can't decide if this will increase their responses or just create a new forum for more people to complain. What do you think?

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Join The Conversation
KatieMullady KatieMullady 6 years
I think using social media is a great way for companies, such as Expedia, to communicate with their users. Not only has the internet taken over for social communications, but it is also turning into a medium most used by advertisers, people in PR, and most forms of marketing communication. It was a smart move for Expedia to reach out to the unhappy customers because, as an avid user of social network sites, I know how much reach a twitter post or blog entry can have in a community. "Tweets" and blogs are usually open to the public and in that case, if anyone were to google Expedia there is a chance they could stumble on the unhappy blog post. I'm sure that is how GeekSugar stumbled on this customer-company problem.I think that companies using social media to connect with their customers is a great advertising and marketing strategy. Even though providing such a forum might increase complaints posted on the internet, there is no way to stop unsatisfied customer opinions. People will always complain, whether online or not, and so responding quickly and directly online allows companies a chance to protect their image. I have no doubt, if it hasn't already happened, that every company will use social media to communicate and promote to its customers in the near future. Internet usage, especially social media, will be the dominate and most used form of communication. I think we can say goodbye to print and hello to the internet.
KatieMullady KatieMullady 6 years
I think using social media is a great way for companies, such as Expedia, to communicate with their users. Not only has the internet taken over for social communications, but it is also turning into a medium most used by advertisers, people in PR, and most forms of marketing communication. It was a smart move for Expedia to reach out to the unhappy customers because, as an avid user of social network sites, I know how much reach a twitter post or blog entry can have in a community. "Tweets" and blogs are usually open to the public and in that case, if anyone were to google Expedia there is a chance they could stumble on the unhappy blog post. I'm sure that is how GeekSugar stumbled on this customer-company problem. I think that companies using social media to connect with their customers is a great advertising and marketing strategy. Even though providing such a forum might increase complaints posted on the internet, there is no way to stop unsatisfied customer opinions. People will always complain, whether online or not, and so responding quickly and directly online allows companies a chance to protect their image. I have no doubt, if it hasn't already happened, that every company will use social media to communicate and promote to its customers in the near future. Internet usage, especially social media, will be the dominate and most used form of communication. I think we can say goodbye to print and hello to the internet.
kscincotta kscincotta 6 years
Not intentionally, but I've had great results when companies have responded to my various rants on Twitter. I've had bugs addressed on at least two websites (Mint & Kodak), plus I've contacted Comcast and Progressive and gotten pretty rapid responses. It's a surprisingly effective way to go!
dexaholic dexaholic 6 years
I haven't had the need to yet, but woulndn't hesitate if I had to.
kcwebgirl kcwebgirl 6 years
i have definitely done this. i rag on comcast all the time on twitter and every time they contact me to ask how they can help. i like it with local companies more though because i can follow up in person.
BuffBabe6108 BuffBabe6108 6 years
Definitely! If they are on Twitter or Facebook I will use those avenues to reach out to them. I can also get annoyed when they are on Twitter, I ask them a question, and they respond with a non answer ie @Boxcar responded to me after 5 tweets regarding the same question with an answer to write them an email (coming from an employee - not @Boxcar themselves). If you are going to have a Facebook page, or a Twitter handle, you should be prepared to respond to questions, comments and criticism. I think companies should get out there and listen to their customers and respond appropriately. If I call you - call me back, if I email you - email me back, if I tweet at you - tweet or dm me back. Otherwise get out of that field (Twitter, Facebook etc).
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