Monday, November 4, 2013

5 Lessons From A Social Media #fail

Recently I started investing video conferencing systems for meetings with more than 10 video participants and the ability to call into a number from a phone line if you aren't near a computer.  I was pointed in the direction of Fuze Video Conferencing by PPAI board member Rod Brown.  I also found Blue Jeans video conferencing in my own searching.

I visited Fuzebox.com and got the information I needed and made a phone call and had a great meeting.  #success.

I visited bluejeans.com and couldn't find out whether or not it met my criteria so I clicked the CHAT option (which was not too annoyingly in my face).   When I asked my question, it was greeted with "They aren't in the office right now so I'll have them call you back."

The first problem was that they offered chat but didn't staff it.  This is a company that just received $50,000,000 in funding.  They can afford to staff their chat at 8am EST even if they are on the West coast. Otherwise, they should not offer chat at this time.  (Another pet peeve was that they required me to give them my email and phone before I could chat. I was interested enough that I was willing to do that but I find it tacky.)

The second problem is that I asked to chat and they offered a call back.  I had reluctantly given the chat person my email and phone #

To make matters worse, they did call back.  In fact, THREE different people called back within 6 hours. Not a single one knew the other had called.  That was the 3rd and 4th problem (not knowing what each other are doing and calling rather than emailing).

The 5th problem is that I tweeted and specifically mentioned them and they never responded.
don't offer chat if you don't have the people to answer questions.

The 6th problem is that I tweeted them again after the calls and they still did not respond.
I've had 3 Different sales people call me today.First I sent a chat, not a call, 2nd, coordinate your effort. .

The 7th problem is that when googling them, I found some pretty horrible reviews on Glassdoor.com from employees for both Fuzebox and BlueJeans.  Both gave me pause even though I know disgruntled employees are still more likely to post than happy ones, some of the comments are relevant to my search.

So here I am an active interested customer who is so turned off by my experience with this company that I am hoping they don't have what I want. If a company can't get the pre-sales experience right, what can I expect from them long term?

Here are the primary lessons from this interaction
  1. If you offer chat, staff it properly to answer questions.
  2. If people send you an electronic message, that's usually a good indication they want to communicate that way. Try to work with people the way they want to be worked with.
  3. Have a single channel managing leads or use a CRM that ensures people don't step on each other.
  4. Watch your social media feed carefully and if someone tags you, respond appropriately.
  5. Google your company and see what comes up.  More and more, www.glassdoor.com is coming up in searches and needs to be a part of managing your online presence.  It is important to both customers and potential employees.   Of course, it's impossible to get all good reviews but pay attention to what people are saying and make appropriate changes. Respond to comments by making appropriate changes and over time, the comments will improve.
For now, I'm planning on working with www.fuzebox.com despite a few minor issues I have with the product.  The price is great and the service is even better.

Geiger CIO Dale Denham, MAS+ provides practical insights on how you can benefit from technology in no nonsense terms. Follow him on Twitter:@GeigerCIO.