Big Brother Is Watching

Big Brother – and the Rest of the World – is Watching

 

Worried about getting good reviews on your social media, referral sites, and Google? Be more worried about getting negative reviews on your business! There is an axiom many marketing folks quote, “You have to get 10-20 good reviews to wipe out a bad review.” Once you have a bad service review reported publically, it will be seen.

Nothing exemplifies this more than the recent viral video from F & R Auto Sales in Westport, MA. A pizza deliveryman returned cash he believed was a tip, and tactfully explains why he believed the money provided to him was a tip. The common sense was if handed an extra bill over the invoice amount, it was intended as a tip. The video showed the deliveryman being tactfully polite as he explained his viewpoint and to notify the buyer it cost him gas twice – to deliver the pizza and the change. The vitriolic response from the employees in the dealership office was unwarranted and the cursed demands for the deliveryman’s job were unprofessional.

The employees were not aware of ‘big brother’ watching. This dealership only had one review on Yelp (a popular referral website for retail and other businesses) before the incident (negative), but when the video vital went viral there were 2,003+ reviews from folks who decided to pile-drive the company with negative reviews based on their employees behavior (http://www.yelp.com/biz/f-and-r-auto-sales-westport).

What does a business do when this occurs? The owner and his son took immediate action by visiting the pizza restaurant and apologizing personally to both the deliveryman and the owner. The employee who verbally abused the deliveryman was fired. Many video viewers were so incensed at the actions of the employees a GoFundMe account was started, and within days over $19,000 had been raised to reward the pizza delivery driver, Jarrid Tansey, for his pain and suffering.

Has the car dealership been punished appropriately? The new General Manager, Gary Batista, issued a public apology and explanation and indicated the woman had been fired, and the bald gentleman verbal abuser was not an employee. The auto dealership and owner will suffer, financially and publically, because of the actions of their employees. They may have to change their name to avoid future negative publicity as the car dealership that ‘insulted the pizza guy.’ This will be costly – they will have to re-register a new LLC name in their state, change logos, stationary, signage, bank account names, hire new (nicer?) employees, and retrain them (for positive office communications). This argument over $7.00 has cost the dealership thousands of dollars in lost income, reputation, and public humiliation.

Customers who complain do so because they feel ‘hurt’ by the actions of the person who served them in the store or perceived lower quality of services received. When they go public, or share videos of the incident, they are not just hurt, they are angry and upset and want action they feel them can’t get otherwise. Home service companies such as plumbers, carpet cleaners, and handyman services, are ripe for customers to complain, whether is it on Angie’s List, Yelp, and Facebook.

Businesses should avoid ‘big brother, big Internet’ negative exposure. Activate an employee social media policy and emphasize protection of proprietary company assets (data, employee information, any videos, social media posts about or on the company profile). This policy needs to be published in an employee handbook, as well as posted publically as a reminder to all employees.

Provide training to employees to be on best behavior 24/7 at a worksite. Great Britain has thousands of closed circuit cameras; America is not far behind in private security. (Some businesses post warnings: “You are being video monitored 24/7.”) Homes have motion activated security cameras and businesses have installed cameras to protect themselves from legal liability when employees are injured.

If a client complains, the company should move quickly to cure the complaint, salvage feelings, and fix the issue. Have the client acknowledge in writing that the issue is resolved. The best question to ask the client, “What will make you happy?” It may be a simple apology, but could run to a refund, redo, or a chat with the owner to recognize emotions. Future clients will look for reviews to determine if they wish to do business with the company. Just one bad review will hurt a company for months or years. This recent incident emphasizes that even a small company needs to seriously consider policy and training in dealing with the public, as well as with internal staff.

 

Dawn Boyer, Ph.D., owner of D. Boyer Consulting – provides resume writing, social media management and training, business development, human resources consulting, and print-on-demand author coaching and consulting. Reach her at: Dawn.Boyer@DBoyerConsulting.com or http://dboyerconsulting.com.

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Big Brother Is Watching

Big Brother – and the Rest of the World – is Watching

 

Worried about getting good reviews on your social media, referral sites, and Google? Be more worried about getting negative reviews on your business! There is an axiom many marketing folks quote, “You have to get 10-20 good reviews to wipe out a bad review.” Once you have a bad service review reported publically, it will be seen.

Nothing exemplifies this more than the recent viral video from F & R Auto Sales in Westport, MA. A pizza deliveryman returned cash he believed was a tip, and tactfully explains why he believed the money provided to him was a tip. The common sense was if handed an extra bill over the invoice amount, it was intended as a tip. The video showed the deliveryman being tactfully polite as he explained his viewpoint and to notify the buyer it cost him gas twice – to deliver the pizza and the change. The vitriolic response from the employees in the dealership office was unwarranted and the cursed demands for the deliveryman’s job were unprofessional.

The employees were not aware of ‘big brother’ watching. This dealership only had one review on Yelp (a popular referral website for retail and other businesses) before the incident (negative), but when the video vital went viral there were 2,003+ reviews from folks who decided to pile-drive the company with negative reviews based on their employees behavior (http://www.yelp.com/biz/f-and-r-auto-sales-westport).

What does a business do when this occurs? The owner and his son took immediate action by visiting the pizza restaurant and apologizing personally to both the deliveryman and the owner. The employee who verbally abused the deliveryman was fired. Many video viewers were so incensed at the actions of the employees a GoFundMe account was started, and within days over $19,000 had been raised to reward the pizza delivery driver, Jarrid Tansey, for his pain and suffering.

Has the car dealership been punished appropriately? The new General Manager, Gary Batista, issued a public apology and explanation and indicated the woman had been fired, and the bald gentleman verbal abuser was not an employee. The auto dealership and owner will suffer, financially and publically, because of the actions of their employees. They may have to change their name to avoid future negative publicity as the car dealership that ‘insulted the pizza guy.’ This will be costly – they will have to re-register a new LLC name in their state, change logos, stationary, signage, bank account names, hire new (nicer?) employees, and retrain them (for positive office communications). This argument over $7.00 has cost the dealership thousands of dollars in lost income, reputation, and public humiliation.

Customers who complain do so because they feel ‘hurt’ by the actions of the person who served them in the store or perceived lower quality of services received. When they go public, or share videos of the incident, they are not just hurt, they are angry and upset and want action they feel them can’t get otherwise. Home service companies such as plumbers, carpet cleaners, and handyman services, are ripe for customers to complain, whether is it on Angie’s List, Yelp, and Facebook.

Businesses should avoid ‘big brother, big Internet’ negative exposure. Activate an employee social media policy and emphasize protection of proprietary company assets (data, employee information, any videos, social media posts about or on the company profile). This policy needs to be published in an employee handbook, as well as posted publically as a reminder to all employees.

Provide training to employees to be on best behavior 24/7 at a worksite. Great Britain has thousands of closed circuit cameras; America is not far behind in private security. (Some businesses post warnings: “You are being video monitored 24/7.”) Homes have motion activated security cameras and businesses have installed cameras to protect themselves from legal liability when employees are injured.

If a client complains, the company should move quickly to cure the complaint, salvage feelings, and fix the issue. Have the client acknowledge in writing that the issue is resolved. The best question to ask the client, “What will make you happy?” It may be a simple apology, but could run to a refund, redo, or a chat with the owner to recognize emotions. Future clients will look for reviews to determine if they wish to do business with the company. Just one bad review will hurt a company for months or years. This recent incident emphasizes that even a small company needs to seriously consider policy and training in dealing with the public, as well as with internal staff.

 

Dawn Boyer, Ph.D., owner of D. Boyer Consulting – provides resume writing, social media management and training, business development, human resources consulting, and print-on-demand author coaching and consulting. Reach her at: Dawn.Boyer@DBoyerConsulting.com or http://dboyerconsulting.com.

Be Sociable, Share!


Follow my podcasts

Available on iTunes and Podomatic:

Add to Google

addtomyyahoo4

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