Not Quite There Yet: UAE Brands on Social Media
After waiting for responses that never came, Eva Fernandes isn’t too impressed as she reveals the good, the bad and the ugly of social interaction among homegrown brands on Facebook.
October 16, 2011 4:47 by Eva Fernandes
And while the majority of the brands I contacted got back to me within a day to three days, there were some like Sharaf DG, which has 34,848 likes on their page, that chose to take nothing less than 8 whole days to reply my query:
Eva to Sharaf DG: hey guys, i bought a universal adapter from the Deira City Center Sharaf DG. I was fiddling around with it, and kinda got it stuck-so i sent it back to the store. The guys there said they’d give me a ring back, but they haven’t till date…what gives? and when can i have my adapter back?
8 days later: Sharaf DGto Eva: We are very sorry. Please provide us your service request number to assist you further in this matter.
10 minutes later: Eva to Sharaf DG: No worries, I got it back a few days ago…was perfect as ever!
And sure the team was good enough to reply to my comment with an apology and an offer to help-but it was a response 10 days too late. The staff had already replaced the adapter in question by the time their social media team got around to replying to me!
If you thought it could get any worse than my encounter with Sharaf DG, consider what happened when I posted this complaint on home-grown The Nail Spa’s Facebook wall, which currently has 946 likes:
Eva to The Nail Spa: “I really love the girls at The Nail Spa-so thorough and so meticulous… but last week when I went to TNS at Dubai Mall, the lady who was doing my manicure was too meticulous- while she was hacking away at the cuticles, she continued on to the regular skin. I didn’t realise what was happening until i got home and my fingers were absolutely pink and raw. My finger tips are still really painful, one week on! “
What do you think such an elaborate not to mention reputation-damaging complaint as mine should warrant? A personal explanation? A discount on future visits? At the very least, a reply? But, two weeks on I have got absolutely nothing. Zero. Zip. Nada . Zilch. Nothing.
What is frustrating about the treatment from The Nail Spa is the company is rather active on Facebook and Twitter. So while I might be able to excuse the company for their shoddy customer interaction on their poor social skills, it just seems to me that the company chose to ignore what was a truthful account of my experience with the brand. Overall, this customer is unhappy.
Granted, as I said earlier my methods aren’t scientific, the fact remains that the average time companies took to reply to social media feedback lies in between 1-3 days.
But let’s not forget that this, of course, applies only to those companies that actually have a social media presence.
In fact, some of the companies that I tried to get in touch with, like Fitness First, had their profile set up in such a way that required me to be-friend the company in order to post a comment on their wall. Not only is this a time-consuming process that heavily detracts from the instantaneous nature of social media, but it also presumes the consumer is OK with allowing a company such an extensive and invasive access to their personal life.
And though a proper survey and study would better confirm my hunch, I’d have to say “UAE Brands at Social Media: Good but can be Better.”
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