After my recent post about my experience at Which Wich, I was surprised to get an email from their founder and President, Jeff Sinelli, which included the following:
As you will see in our logo/brand we strive for
“Superior Sandwiches” at Which Wich. It looks like we may have come up short on your recent visit.
Find the Word of Mouth
How did Sinelli find my humble little blog entry? If you don’t know, then you just may be oblivious to what your customers are saying about your company and brand.
I was able to find my post via blog search engine Technorati and a simple search for “Which Wich”.
Here are some sites you can use to find customer ramblings and news about your company:
Most of these services let you subscribe to results via RSS. With that you can get updates via your favorite feed reader or email automatically! Try some of these searches out and you’ll be that much more aware of your customers’ thoughts and experiences.
Sinelli asked me a series of questions that would narrow down the location and time of my lunch visit. I can only assume he then would follow-up with that franchise’s owner or manager to discuss the problem.
Once you find your customers on the web, reach out and touch them. Although I never heard back about my particular incident at Which Wich, I was impressed that its founder took the time to contact me.
When you go dig up some references to your business, you may find that you:
- need to answer questions
- dispel rumors
- correct misinformation
- fix a problem with your product or service
When you contact those whose feedback you find, please be considerate. If their feedback was negative, the last thing they will want to hear is excuses or an arrogant response. Follow Sinelli’s example by asking for more details so you can fully understand the situation.
Fix the Problems
Once you’ve found out what people are saying: take some action. Confirm the problem exists and figure out a way to fix it.
After you fix one round of customer issues, more will inevitably arise. Be sure to continually monitor what others are saying about your business. Look for patterns or recurring problems. These tend to group together and validate problem issues.
Search out customer comments and discussion and you’ll be surprised what you may learn about your business.