Seth Godin’s semi-recent post “Complicit” argues that we perpetuate poor quality by choosing crap vendors out of convenience or the desire to pay less. He also calls us to account for not using social media to constructively (not just complaining) to spread the word. This is a good reminder that social media finally gives the consumer the power to make businesses change.
But, there are many posts on how social media works for the consumer before, so although power is a fun thing to write about, I’m not going to rehash the details. If you’re not familiar with this idea, just google “social media gives consumers power” to find related articles.
Instead, I find I’m inspired to use today’s blog space to write about three services that I do like, since social media is also effective for promoting the good stuff, as well as dressing down the bad.
1. I like apple stores. I’ve found the staff to be knowledgeable, friendly, and efficient. You can check out anywhere in the store and have your receipt printed or emailed to you. The moment you walk in, someone asks what you want, and figures out the fastest way to get it to you.
If you want to buy something, you are put in a queue electronically, and then you’re free to browse (and pick up more neat, expensive toys) until the associate is free and then they find you.
If you have a question, it’s answered. If you need tech support, you can make an appointment and get help right in the store, not over some crackly phone line overseas. It’s a bloody miracle and a great retail model, and it’s gone a long way towards convincing me that I want to do business with them in the future.
2. I like Market Basket. This is a relatively new flirtation, and yes, I like it largely because it’s cheap, but you don’t sacrifice much because of this. Sure, the store’s not as bright & shiny, and the carts can lead to mayhem and traffic jams, but the staff is friendly, they bag your groceries correctly (the eggs are wrapped separately, cold goes with cold, and nothing gets crushed) and their selection is great, at least for my needs.
3. I like Netflix. I am watching a movie from Netflix right now. I don’t like going to the movies because I have a low tolerance for noisy theaters and also, around here they’re $10 a pop. I like the convenience of ordering & tracking online, I like having a queue so I can pick movies when I’m in the mood, and I like that there’s only ever been one movie I haven’t been able to find.
Now it’s time to watch the rest of this movie with pre-Newsies Christian Bale (Empire of the Sun). I liked Newsies better, because I saw first saw it at a young & impressionable age, and almost the entire cast consisted of boys who could ride ponies, sing songs, and beat each other up. But I’ll give this a try as well.
What businesses do you like? Why? Have you ever used social media to promote a business or to warn other consumers?