Small and large companies have figured out that on-line presence is important to attract and keep customers. They realize that customers look for reviews and feedback on companies on the internet. These on-line opinions matter. Social media presence has increased as a result and some are very good at it. Small Businesses are turned on to social media to drive their growth with 3 out of 5 saying they gained new customers that way. It can backfire though.
Several weeks ago I decided that after 20 solid years of performance it was time to replace our furnaces. The weather was getting cold and a few uncomfortable breakdowns had already occurred. Several HVAC companies from the area were contacted to make proposals. Fascinating process and one that shows you can go too far.
At the end of the process two companies ended up making offers. One a employee company with very moderate social media exposure, which raised some concerns because I could not get a good read on them. They had serviced us but not extensively. Proposal was very good, sales person was very credible ……and they offered a Honeywell system to remotely control temperatures from a smart phone app. Something I had dreamed off.
The other company had a huge number of very positive social media comments. Their offer was much more expensive and a furnace supplier with less quality products. No app system either. They did offer some incentives. $300 for a positive Yelp comment and $300 for a positive comment on their website. Ahhh we found the reason for their social media success.
Which company got the business? The one that was more authentic.
I do not know how the two companies compare in getting business but for me the lesson is, alway remain authentic. That is true for all of us and that is true for companies as well. For us it worked out well, we love the app to control our furnaces and we feel good that we did not support fake social media results.