Internet marketing is a complex field that consists of plenty of different areas. But a lot of times, it comes down to one simple truth: doing the right thing pays. Regularly, companies get embarrassed on social media in situations that could be easily avoided with a more pro-active approach. The latest example is the popular mailing service UPS.
The company, known for its brown trucks, fast service and low prices, was in deep water (forgive the pun) recently when a customer published video of a company driver throwing a package and relieving himself on the side of his home on social media. The driver had found the gate to the home locked, and decided to let out his anger on the homeowner’s unsuspecting flowerbed.
Of course, he had not expected the homeowner’s surveillance cameras, which captured the event and allowed the world to see his less than favorable actions. Once the video went viral on social media, UPS was forced to release an apologetic statement:
“UPS was dismayed by actions that violated decency and delivery care. The local management team did take action to terminate the individual who was a seasonal delivery helper. However, they were wrong if they did not clarify this resolution with Mr. Lucas at the time. UPS sincerely apologizes to our customer. No behavior like this is acceptable.”
That statement is damage-control at best – the reputation of UPS has been harmed, and it will take more than a few words to make future customers forget about this memorable incident.
What could they have done better? After all, the incident was the delivery driver’s personal decision and fault. But that’s not the whole story. After he saw the footage, the homeowner contacted UPS directly, offering to send in the video and asking for an apology. He was treated dismissively, prompting him to publish the video on social media and allowing it to go viral.
In other words, UPS disregarded the potential power of a simple video by a single customer along with its ability to harm the company’s reputation significantly. In the end, it comes back to doing the right thing, both in customer service and in marketing. Not everyone will be happy with your services – but responding to concerns and criticism honestly and diligently can prevent the problem from escalating. The digital realm has given consumers too much power to ignore their complaints. Contact us for help in managing your digital presence and reputation!