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Great post, and it's a topic that organizations are going to have to take a long, hard look at. I wrote a series of posts last week about a bad experience I had with Domino's Pizza, and how I was ignored on their Twitter account until I actually blogged about it. Not fair to most customers either, is it? But when their process led to them opening up a customer service ticket (their typical process, so far so good) that ticket was ignored and I didn't receive a resolution through that channel. It wasn't until I blogged again that the corporate office did anything. So I think they were on to a good idea...route Twitter inquiries into the standard process...but then, as you say, that process can't be broken. People will otherwise feel ignored and will get louder.

Will be interesting to see which brands do this well.

@Valeria - so much of bank discussion is ruled by attorneys -- the legal situation seems to dictate the response. Yet, the risk of poor interaction seems to get short shrift. This is an opportunity for communicators in dealing with legal: establish a risk profile for responses -- communicate what the potential risks are for each action, and quantify them based on your experience. Engaging with customers is far less risky than it seems on the surface (every lawyer will offer the alternative of doing/saying nothing) -- especially when we have cases of where lack of engagement (United Breaks Guitars, financial crisis, etc.) leads to brand damage at least and financial impact in other cases.

Thanks to @jgombita for alerting me to this post!
Sean
@commammo

@Gabriele -- it is in the business best interest to connect the dots between channels once it sees it has a problem. The need to train a separate teams comes from having outsourced the first one in many cases...

@Judy -- oh my, a Wikipedia entry documenting a poor business practice... making people feel "harassed, deceived, intimidated, and threatened" discourages long term relationships... and how many new customers does a company need to make up for those who leave? Regarding the luggage check in conversation, I've had bags ripped and cracked, and items missing on more than one trip. Gee, I wonder why people don't trust airlines with their valuable items when they are forced to send them through? There should be the name of the bag handler on your security tag; let's make the whole thing transparent, let's hold people accountable when they don't do so themselves.

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