/// Twitter: The New Old Customer Service?
Wired.com – When I was a kid, I remember getting dragged along with my mom to the local JC Penney department store where she had a complaint about a broken toaster oven she’d recently purchased. After what seemed like some normal dialogue (“What’s wrong with it,” “That’s horrible… I’m so sorry”) we got a new toaster and I got a Charms blow pop for my patience. She put the toaster and me in the backseat of ‘The Tank’ (a green Oldsmobile we’d nicknamed as such), and headed home — two happy customers.
This was before kids had car seats (I think I sat on the toaster oven box, for fun!), before hostesses stopped asking “smoking or non,” before toothbrushes started looking like sneakers and, more to the point, before toll-free numbers for customer service became de rigueur.
Now, we all know what’s happened since… and how hard it is to speak to someone who not only speaks your language, but can address your customer complaint quickly, promptly and efficiently. Online customer service experiences are often enough to make you want to purchase a large mallet from the local hardware store and whack yourself in the forehead with it.
But if recent experience is any indication, that’s all changing now, for the better, via Twitter. In fact using Twitter for customer service might be the best use case for Twitter I’ve discovered to-date. Here are 3 recent examples:
1. The other week, my son received a birthday present: A new Lego Star Wars Super Star Destroyer kit. He got close to finishing it only to discover a missing, critical part! But I told him not to fret, that we’d get it solved via Twitter. Check out the image above… and talk about quick turnaround! The reply came within minutes of the original tweet!
2. Recently, I had some serious trouble resetting my Dropbox password. You’d think a company like Dropbox, what with it being cloud-based and all, would have simple procedures in place for resetting a PW. But no, it was a small nightmare. Finally, I complained about it on Twitter. Within hours, someone had called me directly from Dropbox and we got it solved quickly and efficiently over the phone.
3. Last month, I was staying at the W Hotel on business in Atlanta. Working out of a hotel room isn’t much fun anyway, but especially when the $55 in-room Wifi is so slow, you might as well drive to Google and ask them stuff in person. So I complained about it on Twitter. Again, within minutes there was a tweet back and a cheerful customer service manager on the phone offering not only free WiFi, but a free night to make up for the issue.
So I’m batting 1000 so far with my Twitter-based customer service cases. How about you guys? Is this just beginner’s luck, or …?