Hey, everybody, it’s Jay, and this is another episode of Jay Today brought to you by Emma. Get more from your email marketing and go to myemma.com.
Today I want to talk about what the internet has stolen from you forever and that is our ability to interact with one another in a difficult, complaint-field scenario. Now, when I was younger, and when many of you were younger, if you had a problem, if you had a complaint or an issue with a business, you had to resolve that issue in a one-on-one confrontation-filled scenario. You’d have to go talk to somebody, you’d have to call somebody and then eventually maybe you could email somebody but it was much more fraught, right? You had to confront your accuser, you had to get up out of your chair and actually complain.
And now, of course, because of the internet, we don’t have to do that. The internet has made everybody passive aggressive and I don’t know that that is for the best because today, you could just lob hot shots from the sidelines.The internet has made everybody passive aggressive. - @JayBaer Click To Tweet
You don’t have to go up and physically confront somebody and get in their face and say, “Hey, my soup is cold,” or, “My room is wrong,” or, “My seat is uncomfortable,” or whatever your particular gripe may be. Now you can tweet it, leave a review, all these other kinds of things, and that is very, very frustrating for businesses because they feel like, hey, if you’re not going to tell us what’s wrong, we can’t fix it until later.
And interestingly enough, Cafe Patachou, which is a venerable restaurant chain in Indianapolis doesn’t want that to happen. My friend Stephanie sent me this picture, which is actually from the menu at Cafe Patachou which says, hey, if you’ve got a problem, let us know about it, right? A human caused this problem, a human can fix it. And what they’re trying to have you do is to not leave a negative Yelp review, to not leave a negative Trip Advisor review, but to get your problem solved by a human being as opposed to turning to social media. That’s a great idea.
However, it doesn’t actually work, and it won’t work because people don’t want to have a confrontation if they don’t have to. It’s much easier psychologically, and in fact, it saves time as well, to actually use apps and the internet and technology to do these kinds of complaints. In fact, Patachou actually, essentially acknowledges that in their own menu because it has an email address to solve this, it doesn’t say, “Come up to the front counter,” or, “Ask your waitress,” or, “Talk to the manager,” it says email us.
So even they acknowledge that the internet has made us passive-aggressive and less likely to have one-on-one confrontations and conversations.
This is true in business all the time. I read a research report not too long ago about a hotel that was trying to get more complaints from guests because they want to see what’s wrong and how to fix it and how to be better. Great idea! I talked about that a lot in Hug Your Haters. So, they put a little sign next to the telephone in the room with a little letter from the general manager. It said, “Hey, I’m the general manager and if you have anything at all, any questions, any problems about your stay with us, give me a call, here’s my cell phone number, and I’d be, you know, delighted to take care of it.”
Got no calls.
They changed the sign, changed the letter and said, “I’m the general manager, you can send me a text message if you have any issues,” and got dozens and dozens and dozens of texts. Why? Because a phone call requires a one-on-one confrontation and conversation and a text message doesn’t.
It’s no wonder that 64 percent of the people who use text, which is a lot of people, prefer it to a phone call when contacting a business about customer service. Of course we do. It’s faster and it’s psychologically a lot easier to be removed from that confrontation. So, the internet has stolen from us and from you and from me our ability to, in many cases, have one-on-one customer service conversations and as a business, you need to play into that. You need to give your customers the opportunity to communicate to you in all the places and ways that they want to. Text, social media, Snapchat, ratings and review sites, smoke signal, whatever. This idea that you have to come talk to a person, or you have to call us, or you have to send us an email is not going to work much longer because people just don’t understand how to have these conversations.You need to give your customers the opportunity to communicate to you in all the places and ways that… Click To Tweet
I have two high school kids at home as some of you may know, they don’t know how to use the phone in any meaningful way. If I said hey, you need to get on the phone right now and complain, it would blow their mind. They wouldn’t even know the first thing about how to do that, it completely freaks them out, and that’s true for a lot of people. So, in your business, give your customers ways to be passive aggressive. Give them ways that they can communicate to you in ways that are comfortable for the customers. You’ll get better feedback and you’ll be a better business as a result. That’s Jay Today, see you next week.