ORM, Twitter wars and How to get someone to respond to your Complaints

Mobile service providers scam a lot of money from innocent subscribers like us. They say we’ve over used our data pack, subscribed for some nonsense spiritual quotes by some bhangi baba whatever they feel like saying when we call them up to complain. And most of us just curse them in our minds and leave it. Even I’ve been leaving it all the time. But this time, they didn’t give me an option. They deducted about four hundred bucks from my account and some 250mb of my data pack. Suddenly from being super rich, I was broke in terms of connectivity. So as usual I called them up, waited through the IVRS, dialed whatever they told and finally spoke to someone from the customer care. And the sweet lady didn’t even check my account and just told me that I’ve overused my data and before I could ask her for my transaction details, hung up on me. Then, I called them up again and there was another sweet lady on the phone. All she said was: “Sorry sir. Please understand, we won’t be able to do anything”. Wow! That’s how customer care is done. I asked for a customer feedback no. or to connect to her supervisor. Even the supervisor was of no use. When I asked for a transaction log for that particular day, he said it would cost me 50rs and he was not authorized to give it. It seems I had to raise a special request on their website to get this transaction log.

None of this was fruitful. There was one thing I could do, the last resort to express my anger, tweet! Twitter is one of the most powerful tools today to express yourself. So I tweeted!

And Guess what! They responded. I got a call from someone who spoke to me properly, figured out what was the issue and agreed to refund the money.

But All of this wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t gone on twitter and decided to kill their reputation online. Every brand tries to maintain their Online Reputation.

Looking at their responses on twitter, it’s clear that they have a team in place to respond to queries on twitter and to make it more accountable, the team member responding to these tweets use a signature with their name. Every response has a ‘regards, Name’ at the end.

Also these brands do not use their main twitter handle for these responses. they do not want to crow up the main handle with responses for queries raised by people. It just doesn’t look right. In case they do it, for someone who’s looking at the brand’s timeline, it will look like the brand has lot many issues and are trying to solve it. In this case, the company’s twitter handle, to which I raised the query was @airtel and their response came from @airtel_presence which is a separate handle they use just to resolve these queries.

Maintaining your reputation online is very important. Be it for an individual or a company, it gives you credibility, holds you accountable and gives you the reach. It’s important for an individual also because credibility is important. They wouldn’t have responded to me if I had tweeted from an ‘Egg account'(basically a twitter account with the default profile picture and no much activity). Since I had a few no. of followers on twitter, they felt that the statements I make can cause a damage to their reputation and hence looked into it.

Well, that’s a lesson learnt. Now we know why we need to maintain our reputation online and how to get issues solved in a faster pace when the brand doesn’t respond.

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