Twitter Customer Service

The Power Of Customer Service On Twitter

By Staff Writer
In July 14, 2011
2091 Views

Customer service has entered a new realm of immediacy with the continued growth of social media. Consumers are online talking about and sharing their experiences with friends. They could be praising or venting about a brand online whether or not a company chooses to acknowledge or address it. An analogy I like to keep in mind about the social media consumer discussion is that proverbial tree falling in the woods. You may not hear it, but it doesn’t mean that it didn’t fall. With the ability to instantly share anything with a click of a button or a touch of a screen, the customer experience has never been more important.

I would like to share a recent experience I personally had with the power of customer service via Twitter. About four weeks ago, I purchased six pairs of shoes from DSW.com for my bridesmaids to wear in my upcoming wedding. I was so excited to have finally found the perfect shoe after searching for months. When they finally arrived, I was ecstatic and loved them even more in person. Soon, all of that excitement evaporated when I had my bridesmaids try on their shoes and discovered that a few pairs seemed to be stretched out and falling off the girls’ feet. Talk about a deflating moment! If you have ever planned a wedding, you know that little problems such as this are the last thing you need. My first instinct was to call the local DSW stores here in Cleveland. They were very sympathetic, but the only help they could offer was to have me call the DSW customer service center since my shoes were only available online. So I followed their recommendation and called the DSW customer service line. I was deflated yet again when I found out their customer service call centers closed at 7:00 p.m., and it was now 7:45 p.m. So in desperation, I decided to reach out to @DSWShoeLovers through Twitter, which started the following interaction:

DSW Twitter Customer Service

You can see the frustration in my tweet. I know there are worse things happening in the world than my bridesmaid shoes not fitting, but in that moment it was a nuclear disaster in my life. @DSWShoeLovers responded in less than five minutes. I quickly emailed the address they provided and began corresponding with two lovely ladies named Mandi and Kerstin that same night. They quickly took control of the situation and told me they would work with their warehouse department first thing in the morning to resolve the issue. Even though they could not fix the problem that instant, it was good to know that someone had acknowledged my issue and was going to handle it. I followed up with a tweet of relief and thanks:

DSW Twitter Customer Service

They promptly emailed me at 9:05 a.m. the next morning to give me an update on my problem. Over the next week, I continued to correspond with Mandi and Kerstin, who stayed in constant contact and kept me updated as they worked to resolve my issue. They truly went above and beyond and made me feel like my problem was a priority. Never once did I need to contact the call center to speak to someone. In summary, they have resolved my problem completely. They have sent replacement shoes to a local DSW store here in Cleveland, so I do not have to re-order or re-ship anything. I even received this lovely surprise in the mail about a week ago.

DSW Twitter Customer Service

Let me tell you I am now a true DSW Shoe Lover – I even plan on buying a pair of fabulous DSW shoes I have been eying for my big day with my DSW gift card.

Customer service via social media is building or breaking brands daily on Twitter. Consumers are using Twitter as an outlet for brand praise or brand bashing. Brands that choose to embrace this medium and coordinate their customer outreach appropriately are thriving and becoming industry examples. Of course, there are also companies out there that are becoming “what not to do” examples.

Here a few articles with examples of the good, the bad and the ugly of customer service on Twitter:

The Good:

The Bad:

The Ugly:

Have you had an experience with customer service on Twitter that has either built up your faith in a brand or managed to destroy it? We would love to hear some of your stories.

Staff Writer

So who is this mysterious staff writer? Could be anyone really, as long as they meet our very strict criteria. 1) Worked with us in one capacity or another. 2) Have something pretty interesting to say. 3) Want to use our blog to say it. See? Told ya they were strict!