How far should a company go to save its reputation? Is your answer different considering the assault was online? To help your thinking, here’s a story:
A little less than 2 weeks ago, Normand Boulanger, an unhappy customer, tweeted about his experience at Montreal’s Nespresso. He then posted the full story on his blog (French only). In short, the man walked in Nespresso, ordered a cappuccino and two macaroons and waited. The wait was abnormally long. After checking in on Foursquare, he posted this message on Twitter:
If you expected a tweet, try again. Nespresso Switzerland actually called the Montreal location to better understand what happened. They apparently take customer service very seriously.
Meanwhile, the waiter apologized and offered free cappuccino to Mr. Boulanger. Happy ending? Before Web 2.0, definitely. However, the tweet was already out and Nespresso was already organizing its action plan.
The store manager came down the stairs to talk with Mr. Boulanger. He was later informed by the waiter himself that the tweet could cause him his job…
One step too far?
Customer satisfaction should always be taken seriously. But just how much serious is too much serious? This kind of event is prone to be more and more frequent. Customers are online and express themselves all the time. Even more when they aren’t satisfied.
My advice? Avoid becoming a crazy stalker: looking at each customer’s dissatisfaction is not viable. That’s the problem when you give too much importance to the consumer’s voice. An apology or a tweet in store as an excuse would have been good enough if indeed the event needed one.
Have you, as a customer or a brand, experienced a similar situation? What was your reaction?