It’s evident that new technologies have changed the way companies interact with their customers. And vice versa. Nowadays everyone is a potential content and information generator about a product or a service. People talk, that’s inevitable.
I like to believe that big companies that ruled the market, sitting peacefully on their comfy thrones in the hall of fame, those who claimed they were always listening to their customers but never actually did, were afraid of them.
I don’t like it, I love it
So far, customers haven’t had the means to make companies listen to their complaints, especially the biggest companies, especially online. Companies kept closing their ears and playing dumb. But social networks started echoing customers’ opinions, and companies were forced to wake up.
Customers began to understand that strength lies in unity and that many small players could fight the big ones. Companies then perceived the danger and that things were about to change.
Having understood that they could not avoid online reviews, companies saw things clearly. “We are going to create our own reviews and they are all going to be positive.” Easy. Now all they needed was a company that could make this possible, and this is how online reviews companies were born. They had shining stars, “quality” seals and enabled to create positive opinions so that companies seemed to be excellent in everything.
It was working, since the market was not ready yet and consumers tended to believe everything they read. But there was another problem: they kept complaining. Not only about the company itself, but now about their online reviews systems as well, which were not publishing negative reviews. Those systems were basically making things worse.
An example. Check out what people think about eKomi.es:
In the meanwhile, big and less big companies that were working well every day, being polite and having a good customer care system, were not being rewarded for their efforts. Until real reviews systems came along.
In conclusion: do things well and they will work
Companies have been changing their attitude from the fear of reviews to the belief in the idea that “what goes around comes around”. And this can be noticed in the management of online reviews. There is still work to be done because many big companies keep being reluctant to install online comments tools. They think it won’t be necessary… for now.
Generally speaking, many companies have experienced a benefit in getting along well with their consumers and have learned that online reviews are not as annoying as they thought. They can help the shop since there’s no better publicity than the one that satisfied clients do. It looks like we’re on a good way.
Remember: you can’t escape. Your customers talk, listen to them.