When a company doesn’t respond on Social Media

Last week, I was surprised to find the local coffee spot was closed at 6:00 PM. It is supposed to be open until 9:00 PM. There was no sign, just a dark storefront. So I sent the following tweet:

The reason I sent it wasn’t because I was upset. It was partly because this wasn’t the first time this Starbucks storefront had been closed. Once it was in the middle of the afternoon for a water problem. Also, it was partly because I was curious how these two companies I like and value would respond. How did they respond? Cue the crickets, please. That’s right, I got no response. No apology. No acknowledgment. Life went on. My wife and I went back to the church, I found a Keurig pod and we enjoyed a little caffeine on a

And how did they respond? Cue the crickets, please. That’s right, I got no response. No apology. No acknowledgment. Life went on. My wife and I went back to the church, I found a Keurig pod and we enjoyed a little caffeine on a fine fall evening.

Now maybe the reason neither company responded was because it is uncertain which company should do so. Is it Kroger? Starbucks? Krobucks? Starger? Who knows! I could see a social media finger pointing fiesta occurring.

This is why social media is hard for corporations to do right. Companies are used to one way shouting matches. BUY OUR STUFF! THIRTY PERCENT OFF! WE’RE SO AWESOME! 

But in order to be effective, social media must be two-way communication. If there is a problem, someone at the company should address it. If not, it could get out of hand. At best, they appear unresponsive. At worst, a simple comment can spiral out of control and make a mountain out of a tweetable mole hill.

So tonight, I may want some coffee. And I’ll probably think twice before driving out of my way to get a cup of joe at a place I can’t be certain will actually be open.

Author: Kevin Spear

I am a marketing professional with a design flair, based in Clayton, Ohio. I specialize in digital and content marketing that increases brand awareness for small businesses and nonprofits.

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