There is an interesting anonymous post in reponse to my post on MonRoi. I think this exchange is worth surfacing in a new post. Here is my response to that comment.
Hi Anonymous. I regret that I don’t have time to do this personally, but I think it would be a valuable exercise to go back to the Daily Dirt postings and count:
1. The number of people who say “I will never buy MonRoi” in response to Mig’s posts or indeed in response to the delay problems in broadcasting the US championship games, and
2. The number of people who say “I will never buy MonRoi” in response to posts BY MONROI.
I’ll give you a hint as to the outcome of this exercise: The second number is very high, and the first number is close to zero. So Mig’s damage to MonRoi is nothing, and MonRoi’s damage to itself is significant.
Really, I’d recommend strongly to anyone involved in Internet marketing or customer service that they spend time reading a few specific blogs. One would be David Churbuck’s blog. David is the former online general manager at my company and now the head of Internet marketing for PC manufacturing powerhouse Lenovo. On his blog (in between reports on his rowing machine workouts) he quotes and links to both positive and negative feedback on Lenovo’s products and customer service. He does this not to call the negative posters dummies, but to work toward honest conversation and to establish Lenovo as a brand responsive to customer feedback. Another good source of understanding is Rob O’Regan’s blog. Rob is the former editor of CMO Magazine and really attuned to issues of brand image and customer service online.
And there are lots of other good blogs about this subject. Brand Autopsy in particular is one that strikes me as potentially useful for MonRoi.
What you will learn from all these blogs is that negative customer comments are a part of life on the Internet. The Internet is a giant conversation. The hours spent trying to stamp out any negativity with aggressive tactics and litigation will only make the avalanche grow. It makes people angry. It makes YOUR POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS angry.
What you do instead is embrace the feedback and the customer behind it. If you can make that person happy, or even merely demonstrate to everyone else reading that you’re a decent joe making a good faith effort, then the net effect is positive. Positive. Your brand can grow from this discussion.
Incidentally, I read the post on the Canadian message board in which Mig “ falsely claims that Canadians dropped religion, that the Canadian dollar is worthless, that people from Canada are jerks (or viagras)…” O goodness. You are kidding, right? He certainly was. And if you read the responses on that message board, you see (as of this moment) ZERO people responding that they are offended, and a few people responding that they think his message is funny.
A sense of humor is really, really going to be critical for survival in the Internet era. Not just for individuals, but for companies.