Sometimes it seems like no one is listening, especially when you have a complaint. What can you do when you are unsatisfied with a product or a service rendered? Naturally, the first step is to contact customer service, but when you feel like you are not being heard, social media offers opportunities that did not exist until the digital age.
It’s common for a business to have a Facebook page or Twitter account and they are keenly aware that feedback works wonders when it’s positive. They encourage customers to post testimonials or offer messages of satisfaction. If they’re looking to be around for years to come, they respond quickly and appropriately when a customer has had a less than satisfactory experience.
If you choose to use social media to air your grievance, consider your goal or intended outcome. When addressing your concerns, stay your course and state the facts. Keep away from inflammatory language or verbiage that sounds threatening.
On a business Facebook page, a business may offer options such as writing a review or direct message. If not, you may be able to comment under another post. Exactly what happened and what do you want them to do about it? Are you seeking a refund? Do you want a replacement? Was the service not up to par or was it delivered in an untimely manner? What would it take for the business to ‘make you whole’?
If you have a Twitter account you can Tweet to initiate contact, but first you have to find the business’s Twitter “handle” (i.e., @companyX). A business handle might be different from a business’s customer service handle. Do a brief search to locate the correct handle. Start at Twitter.com or try typing @companyX_helpline into your search engine. When you locate a handle for the business, start off with a simple tweet such as “Can you assist? My package arrived later than promised and was damaged.” A typical response from a business might be a return tweet with a phone number for you to call. Remember, their goal is to minimize negativity around their brand.
What else can you do?
Consumer-Action.org is an organization that empowers underrepresented consumers nationwide to assert their rights in the marketplace and financially prosper. You can submit your complaint using their hotline form (English and Spanish). Another excellent resource is “How to Complain” booklet.
Another avenue, although not as public as social media, is to utilize the services of your state. Individual states handle customer complaints independently, according to state law. In Florida, the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs is the governmental agency that handles customer complaints. Their Hotline is: 1-800-HELP-FLA or 1-800-435-7352. To file a complaint, visit: https://www.freshfromflorida.com/Contact-Us/File-a-Complaint