One of the big fears about social media is that it provides a platform for consumers to make lots of bad noise about brands. This is what most senior marketing folk are afraid of, if they have reservations about the impact of Facebook and Twitter.
When the customer experience falls short of expectations people can easily complain about it in public, and if the network effect takes hold then the brand concerned could be in for a rough ride.
At that stage the brand needs to figure out what to do, and fast. Any social media ‘expert’ will tell you that transparency, honesty, responding in public and a hands-up-we-screwed-up approach to taking the blame all matter, in terms of how you react.
But hold on a moment: let’s not believe that stupid mantra about the customer always being right! What happens if the customer is wrong? Or worse, what happens when one of your competitors teams up with the aggrieved customer to stick it to your brand / product / service?
Dyson has found out the hard way…