Social media and customer service failures of 2012

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Social media is still a new and ever-evolving phenomenon. As companies develop and expand their social media marketing strategies, mistakes are bound to happen along the way. Fortunately for us, yet unfortunately for the brands that made the mistakes, the Internet documents everything and allows us to learn from their gaffes in order to avoid doing something similar in the future. <o:o:p></o:o:p>

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2012 had its share of social media failures. An offensive anti-Obama tweet was posted from Kitchen Aid’s official Twitter account during the US presidential election. It was later discovered that a Kitchen Aid employee accidentally posted the tweet on the company’s official account instead of on his personal account and the company issued an apology. Keeping track of numerous social media accounts and different web pages can lead to confusion, which is why it’s essential to check, double-check and triple-check all of your posts before they go live. Once it’s sent, you can’t take it back. <o:o:p></o:o:p>

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Popular clothing company Gap posted a tweet during super storm Sandy, a storm that ravaged much of the northeastern coast of the U.S. in October, promoting online shopping at Gap.com to those stuck indoors due to the storm. The Twitterverse responded with anger and chastised Gap for being insensitive during a time when many people were in serious danger. It’s an example to brands that not every tweet should be self-promoting. <o:o:p></o:o:p>

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With the growing popularity of social media, customer service has had to rise to the challenge of addressing complaints and requests across numerous platforms. Customers can now simply send a tweet or post on Facebook and let everyone know about their good or bad experiences and if companies have social media pages, they need to be sure they’re checking the pages on a regular basis. <o:o:p></o:o:p>

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The biggest customer service complaints of 2012 are:<o:o:p></o:o:p>

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  • Companies replying with unhelpful corporate jargon. <o:o:p></o:o:p>
  • Complaints, questions or comments going unanswered.<o:o:p></o:o:p>
  • Companies continually updating social media pages while ignoring customer service issues.<o:o:p></o:o:p>

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Social media adds a different element to a brand and it also adds a different element to customer service. As our world turns more and more digital, the line between social media and customer service will continue to be blurred, so learn from other brands’ mistakes in order to avoid a similar situation.<o:o:p></o:o:p>

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