How to effectively complain on social media
TORONTO -- While a good old fashioned customer complaint can go a long way, the way in which consumers report their concerns to companies is taking a digital turn. Look up any company on Twitter and you’ll likely a number of businesses responding to comments or concerns from customers.
Here are some tips and examples of customers taking to social media to effectively file a complaint.
Oakville resident Jonathan Sharp said he was using the self-cleaning feature on his oven when the door shattered.
“While standing in our kitchen, I suddenly heard the sound of glass breaking,” Sharp said.
“I looked around to discover that the outer pane of glass of the oven’s door had shattered and sent pieces of glass all over the kitchen floor.”
Sharp said that even though the oven is 15 years old, he had used the self-cleaning feature a number of times without incident.
“I attempted to turn off the self-clean cycle, but was unable to. The only way to turn off the oven was to turn off the circuit breaker to the stove/oven” said Sharp.
Sharp said he then tweeted at Frigidaire Canada, who responded the next morning.
“We certainly apologize this has happened to you,” the twitter response read.
“So that we can get more information plz [sic] send us a DM [direct message] with your model, serial number, phone number and dealer name.”
Andres Baracaldo took a similar approach when his custom-made smoker arrived damaged with dents and dings.
Baracaldo then posted photos on Facebook with pictures of the damage.
“People right away started chiming in with similar experiences and how it wasn’t made right" Baracaldo said, speaking to CTV News Toronto.
The company took notice and sent him parts for repairs and fresh paint and he was even refunded over a thousand dollars.
“Honestly, I don't think I could've gotten better customer service," Baracaldo said.
Kevin Doyle with Consumer Reports said that more consumers are taking to social media to get results.
“Well, the appeal of using Twitter is that it's typically very public, easily searchable, and the company is very limited in its ability to hide that complaint."
There are ways to complain on social media to get results. First, target an active verified account, one that is regularly monitored. Never post private information in public places, especially on Facebook and Twitter. Only disclose that type of information through direct messages when you know you're chatting with a company representative. And be honest, exaggerating your claim won’t help you get better service and always be respectful. A positive attitude may result in a positive outcome.
“Companies recognize the power of social media. They know that a negative complaint can reflect badly on the entire company," said Doyle.