1 Good Reason – Social Marketing

Social and Digital Marketing for the New Reality

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Case Study on Reacting to Social Media Criticism

July 23rd, 2010 · No Comments

A few weeks ago I wrote this blog post about Coldwell Banker’s new website.  Too often when a company is publically criticized it fails to react.  In the past this strategy often worked because the magazine or newspaper was an “evaporating media” which would soon be forgotten.  However, in the age of  Google that’s no longer the case.

NEW RULE: Respond to all serious online criticism of your company or product so there is some balance in the discussion for discerning readers to consider opposing viewpoints.

All too often in recent history social media has proven that the failure to respond to criticism leads to speculation that the attacks are true and unassailable.  In most business situations that’s not the case.   The reality is complex and there are trade-offs that must be made (Better, Cheaper, Faster- pick any two because you can’t have all three).  Reasonable people can disagree on the wisdom of a choice, but rarely will they argue that the choice needed to be made. 

Coldwell Banker or rather more specifically David Marine, Director of Interactive Products & Services responded to the blog post.  David took an unusual tactic by picking up an ancient device, the telephone and calling me.  We spoke for a while on a Friday evening and I invited David to put his reply in writing as a comment on my blog, which he did. 

David then invited me to come to corporate headquarters and meet with Coldwell’s CMO, Michael Fischer, Senior Vice President of Marketing.  To discuss the strategy of the website design and to learn more about what Coldwell is doing in online marketing.

I met with the Coldwell Banker marketers in the company cafeteria, and the meeting was very good. They are an intelligent and dedicated pair with many accomplishments to be proud of in the area of online marketing.  The meeting started off on a high note for me when they discussed running a SWOT analysis of their marketing strategies which is an all too often overlooked tool in marketing.  I’ll discuss their marketing plans and my thoughts on them in a future post.   The main thought for today is that they took the time (about 45 minutes) to meet with me and discuss my blog post and their reasons for doing what they are doing.  This goes a long way to improving my impressions of their efforts. 

Dialog actually works!  You should try it sometime.

Image credit:   Uploaded on March 16, 2009 by plenty.r.

Give me 1 Good Reason why your company doesn’t respond to criticism online…

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Tags: Reasons For Net Marketing

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