Brands Beware! We can turn the tables on You!

Complaining about a brand, that fails to deliver on its promise on social media is now a given. A consumer has now taken this practice to a totally new level.

When businessman Hasan Syed got fed up with the inept handling of his complain about his father’s lost luggage, he decided to take action against the airline. Rather than just tweeting his complain, he decided to promote the tweet. He chose the market that hurts the airline the most – New York & UK.

@rubigodi@BritishAirways@British_Airways Yes. I’m promoting my tweets to all BA followers since their Customer Service is horrendous.

—  (@HVSVN) September 2, 2013

Though this has cost him a thousand dollars, he has hurt the brand much more than that.

Whats even more hilarious is the response that he got. BBC reports that the airline indicated that their tweets are only monitored during working hours only.

This idea of using the same technology that brands use to target customers to turn against them was truly ingenious. Now imagine if there are more customers who start following Hasan and turn to technology against the very same corporates and brands, every one of such actions will damage the brand much more than what it would cost to avoid the mistakes.

In this world, world class execution doesn’t become a competitive advantage but table stakes. Speed of response to any complain becomes even more critical, which means that brands need to develop rapid response teams. This also means that the front line employees and their importance for brands  becomes even more critical as any slip ups from them could snowball into a major catastrophe for a brand if they don’t respond and contain it swiftly.

This definitely pushes brands to start planning their move towards becoming a real-time enterprise.

The critical question here is will there be enough people who use this option to create a critical mass that can push brands to get their act together. I guess we will get to know about it sooner than later!

Till then, brands beware! Tables could turn against you anytime!

Do share your thoughts and continue the discussion