It is clear that customers across all industries are getting really tired of being spun, misled, and lied to. Individuals like Jon Stewart are taking very public approaches to complaining about horrible service when they see it. Eliot Spitzer appears to be single-handedly taking down the insurance industry for shafting its customers (and it looks like he has his eye on the music industry next).
Customers simply aren't taking it anymore. And if an organization is not opening up to them, and not interacting with them, and not meeting their needs, those customers are going to make sure the organization knows about it. Maybe not today, but soon…and that's if the organization is lucky. More likely, those same customers will just go away and never come back.
On this front, there are a few trends that we've identified from the customer's point of view. They are listed below. And this is known to be an incomplete list.
We need to build it out together with stories, comments, criticisms, debate and insights. There are no spectators anymore.
THE SOCIAL CUSTOMER MANIFESTO
- I want to have a say.
- I don't want to do business with idiots.
- I want to know when something is wrong, and what you're going to do to fix it.
- I want to help shape things that I'll find useful.
- I want to connect with others who are working on similar problems.
- I don't want to be called by another salesperson. Ever. (Unless they have something useful. Then I want it yesterday.)
- I want to buy things on my schedule, not yours. I don't care if it's the end of your quarter.
- I want to know your selling process.
- I want to tell you when you're screwing up. Conversely, I'm happy to tell you the things that you are doing well. I may even tell you what your competitors are doing.
- I want to do business with companies that act in a transparent and ethical manner.
- I want to know what's next. We're in partnership…where should we go?