Blame it on YouTube
Recently at my local appliance parts supplier, I ran into a friendly competitor, Phil. He was curious as to whether I had any service calls and I said, ” Yes, I can barely keep up.” He complained angrily that his business was dead slow and he had an explanation. He claimed that since the advent of YouTube his business had died. He said, “Everyone goes to YouTube to figure out how to fix their own appliances and never have to call me.” He went on at great length and was quite bitter about it. I sympathized with him and let him rant.
The Power of Social Media
Unfortunately for Phil, there is a lot more to the story. Over the years I have watched his business tactics and listened to more than a few of his very unhappy customers who came to me to correct poor repairs done by Phil’s company. Apparently he has a bad habit of both ignoring callbacks and getting irritated with customers.
Today it is extremely easy for an unhappy customer to post a bad review with full details of what a bum Phil is.
Facebook, Google My Business, NextDoor
and many others are all great platforms where people discuss interactions with service companies. Unhappy customers yell far louder than happy ones. A bad review is like stabbing a service company in the heart, it is virtually impossible to overcome.
I took the trouble to look up Phil’s Company on the web and found a very poor rating on all the platforms. It’s so easy to see why his business is slow. It’s a wonder anyone calls him.
Make Sure Your Customers are Happy
Over the years my pattern has been to bend over backward to make sure every customer is happy. In the rare worst case I simply give them back their money so that they really have no justification for complaint. The power of social media is so strong that service companies have to be exceedingly careful and avoid any negative reviews. You can safely assume that every homeowner has checked you out on the web before they call. It is imperative that you monitor social sites and check your ratings. Years ago it was far easier for an unscrupulous company to survive. Today we are all under the microscope.
The YouTube Effect
Getting back to Phil’s complaint about YouTube, there is no doubt that YouTube has stolen some service calls. However, the YouTube effect is complex and covered in far more detail in another post. Overall good business practices, though slow and sometimes painful, always win in the long run. Phil finds it easy to blame YouTube when in fact his own business practices are where the fault lies.
For details on the best customer service techniques see UncleHarry.com. That’s where I got my start. Uncle Harry is an expert in building long term relationships with customers. He’s been doing it for over 50 years.