Bacon is Good, Good Customer Service and the Power of Twitter.

Bacon StripBacon is Good
Stick with me on this people. I love bacon. I am somewhat of a connesuir. I’ve tried all kinds of bacon from all over the world. My favorite bacon in the whole world is Niman Ranch Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon. It is AWESOME. I put this bacon in recipes, render it down to cook with the fat and straight up eat it.

Bacon StripGood Customer Service
Several months ago my local everyday grocery store Publix stopped carrying the Niman Ranch bacon. I gave it a little while thinking maybe they were just out of stock every time I came through (it’s possible, it’s dang good bacon). Frantic for my bacon I searched stores all around this area, nothing. I visited their website, they don’t sell the bacon online. Finally, I came to the sad conclusion that I would be without my beloved bacon. In a last ditch effort I visited the Publix website and completed the online email form. I simply asked why I couldn’t get my bacon fix anymore. Sure enough, the very next afternoon I got a phone call from an associate manager of my local Publix. He told me that my the product had been discontinued through out the whole division. Noooo! After my meltdown he calmly explained that he could custom order the product just for me. The only down side he said was they would have to order a whole case. Me, I’m thinking, where’s the down side? Awesome right? In less then a day I was contact by the grocery store to my total satisfaction.

Niman Ranch BaconThe Power of Twitter
As I am known to do with events like had just occurred I rushed to pimp what had transpired. The quickest way I know how was to tweet it. I love getting great service and when I do I want everyone to know about it. I tweeted the following:

Yah Publix! One email about discontinued Niman Ranch Uncured Applewood Smoked Bacon (my fav) and they put in a custom order just for me.

To my surprise, more then my “followers” where watching. Less then an hour later I got this tweet from none other then Niman Ranch’s Twitter account:

@webaggression that’s great news! Let’s all start sending emails! 🙂

My emotional replay was next:

@Niman_Ranch Seriously, you have the best bacon I have ever had. I love it. I just wish I could order it on your website.

Fifteen minutes after my reply:

@webaggression Stay tuned! I’m working on it as we speak. You’ll be able 2 order the applewood smoked or the maple within the next 2 weeks.

Now I am SUPER PSYCHED! I have bacon coming at me in all directions. THAT is what good customer service is about and that is why, when done right, brands SHOULD be on social media. Oh, and by the way got this post from Niman Ranch today:

It’s offical! For all of you who have been patiently waiting, you can now purchase NR bacon online!

BOOM! I love it. Have you had any amazing customer service experiences like this? Share!

Spelling – A Lost Art?

thx4readingmyblog
I will be the first to admit that I am not what you would call a strong speller. It’s not that I can’t spell; it’s just that I am too lazy to sound out the word and spell it correctly (at least I admit it). With the advent of spell checking software and word processors I have become spoiled to no end. I wrote my first paper on a word processor that had a spell checker.

Now that cellular phone texting and micro-blogging applications like Twitter have become such commonly used communication tools for both individuals and businesses, has spelling gotten lost? Twitter has a spelling checker as does most of the software that are used to access them like TweetDeck. By limiting you to 140 or 160 characters (for text messaging) spelling many times goes out the door. In some cases you are forced to truncate your message by abbreviating words.

How important do you think spelling is in common communications or in business communications on social media? Are you less like to do business with a company that has misspelled or abbreviated words in their communications?

BTW if U want to B my BFFL U can CMB, THX and HAGD.

Are You a Twitter Snob? Why I am not following you.

twitter-bad-profile

The popular and much talked about micro-blogging site Twitter has received a lot of main stream publicity recently. Whether you have been on Twitter for years or just joined you may wonder why someone follows you on Twitter or why someone doesn’t reciprocate your following them. Well, I certainly have no clue, but below I have listed some criteria I look at to determine if I will follow someone.

Don’t have the default profile image.
Twitter Default Profile/Avatar

There is no faster turn off then to have your first impression be this lovely avatar. Don’t tell me you can’t find ONE decent picture of you. At least put something up, a logo or SOMETHING. Seth Godin (marketing guru) agrees on the importance of the profile picture in his article “The power of a tiny picture”.

Have a description of yourself or business.
You get a chance to tell me a little about yourself or your business, so use it. Why should I follow you? What are your interests? What are you going to tweet about?

Have a link to something more about you.
Twitter provides the opportunity to link out to more information about you or your business. If you don’t have a blog, website use your Facebook, LinkedIn, Flickr or YouTube space. Be sure to link to something that tells me more about you.

Be relevant, informative, funny or controversial in your tweets.
Finally, I look at your stream. What do you tweet about? Is it relevant to me? Can I learn from you?

Follow people back.
If I come to a profile of someone that has thousands of followers and only 5-10 that they are following, unless their content is REALLY relevant, I won’t follow them. More on why in the next point.

Join the conversation.
If I look at your stream and none of your tweets is an @reply (meaning you are replying to someone else’s tweet), chances are greater that I won’t follow you. In my humble opinion Twitter is about the conversation. If you try to make it all about you, you’re missing out on many opportunities, opinions and information.

Don’t rush it.
So many now are reading about Twitter and a rushing to get involved. I see it all the time, they are following the initial maximum 2000 people and have just a few followers. Their only tweet is, “Figuring out this Twitter thing”. Talk your time and follow people that you are going to want to listen to and converse with. Don’t follow everyone because you think they’ll follow you back. Twitter is not a popularity contest.

To sum up, the worst scenario: No profile picture, no description, no link, following 500+ with 12 followers (probably auto-follows) or 500+ and only following 12 and you have two tweets. This is just what I think, what do you look for?

Feel free to comment or elaborate on this blog or via my Twitter account @webaggression, if I don’t follow you back at least you’ll know why.

Newspapers are dead or dying, is email next?

If you are a fan of print magazines and newspapers you better get it while you can. Despite the many that are still clinging to print, it IS dying a slow death. Several discussions with colleagues have brought up an interesting thought, is email the next communication tool to die?

We all still us email, but will social media and network sites along with texting kill email? More and more business are jumping on board with social media (Twitter, Facebook), more and more adults are using text messaging to communicate. If you are in your 20’s or younger, you probably communicate exclusively through Facebook or MySpace and texting. So is it that inconceivable that email might be next on the extinction list?

 I am very interested in what you all think.

 Related articles:

http://www.psfk.com/2009/01/what-will-you-miss-when-newspapers-disappear.html

http://www.dmnews.com/Is-e-mail-marketing-next-for-extinction/article/123979/

Guilt by Social Network Associations

Guilty by Social Marketing or Networking

 Are we responsible for the content of the sites we link to, or the people we follow? I started thinking about this awhile back. I have a friend that is extremely conservative. This person regularly quotes and links to a blog that has some questionable content deeper in the site, specifically the use of many expletives. Now this doesn’t offend me personally and I would never judge someone based on them linking to other sites or even using expletives (goodness knows I have said a few myself), but it got me thinking. With word of mouth and social marketing and networking being so prevalent for business and individuals, how careful must you be who you are associated with? Who your “Friends” are? Who you “Follow”?

Alternately, I think everyone realizes the importance of their own comments and posts and how they not only reflect on you but your business. Do those comments reflect on those you link to?

During these last few days of the elections the political talk increased on the social network and micro-blogging sites like Twitter. Some people make no bones about the side of the aisle they sit, which is great; I have strong political opinions myself. Can expressing your personal political (or any other) opinions as a representative of your business effect your business? If I disagree with the opinions that one posts, am I less likely to do business with them?

I am asking a lot of questions, I know. For me, I don’t take links, blog posts, opinions that are broadcast on Twitter or any other web site personally. I don’t think (unless it was really offensive to me) that I would change my opinion of a business based on comments or posts by an individual. I suspect, however that many might.

What do you think?