Lip Service

This is a post about acting concerned and pretending to take action – when in fact it’s all just appearances.

Follow-through is, sadly, an amazingly absent thing these days. Posting on social media doesn’t make it all okay.

I wrote about my little issue with UPS and their very long-visit-every-city-like-it's-a-reunion-tour delivery of my grandson’s birthday gift. I posted on Twitter with a picture of the tracking history, and a very nice rep from UPS responded via Twitter – very concerned. I needed to contact help via email – which I did.

Ancient history, the gift arrived – late – but it arrived. All done. Right?

The Tweet heard around the world. Sort of.

The Tweet heard around the world. Sort of.

Well my daughter, Lindsey, in Louisville, bought a coffee table online and it was shipped via UPS, she tweeted to me her tracking record, which had a few entries and stated her concern that I may have jinxed her. I responded back with “you think that’s bad, take a load of this” and posted the final tracking of my delivery.

For the record, I do not possess magical powers to jinx anyone. UPS does fine on its own.

Lindsey's puny tracking history.

Lindsey's puny tracking history.

Because of our Iittle public exchange on Twitter (and the fact that both of us used @UPS) I got another response from UPS, very concerned, telling me to contact Help.

My Very Impressive Tracking History. 

My Very Impressive Tracking History. 

The problem is, is that their Help department isn’t. And my issue was old news.

So, they may have this awesomely concerned presence on Twitter, it just isn’t reality. And besides that, they aren’t really reading the content. My issue was done. Over. Delivered.

What in the heck was Help going to do? Good for you! Your package arrived!

What bothers me is the fact that the folks monitoring Twitter are a world apart from the folks answering email at the Help Desk.

This is a company that clearly doesn’t have its act together. Is it because they’re too big? Too disorganized? Or perhaps it’s because they know they need a Twitter presence, they’ve probably had a Help Desk since the phone was invented, and they have never even considered that the two should be linked.

The folks following Twitter respond almost immediately, and the Help Desk is the same, lame, do-nothing entity it has always been.

This is about customer service. And customer service at its most rudimentary does some sort of follow-up.

But instead, I get lip service – which is the hallmark of lazy, out-of-touch businesses run by the smartest guys in the room. They’re clueless as to what’s going on with their product in the public market.

So, yeah, I can bring this back to Advertising, Marketing – any business: find out what your customer experience is. You don’t need a focus group. Just ask your employees what they hear and see from their customers Every Day.

 If you’re not paying attention (aka listening) someone will come along and simply do what you do – better.