Last week I went off on a little rant about my un-favorite internet service provider Comcast. And yes, I am done being coy about the name of the company. We discussed how Local SEO is dependent upon your local reputation of not only your product or service, but your customer service as well. Clearly, as was evident in my previous diatribe, Comcast had dropped the ball in the customer service department. In fact their product, in this case their internet service, was also lacking, which is what precipitated the whole ordeal to begin with. None of this would have happened had I not called the support desk several times to resolve an internet service issue and had been finally convinced to change my package of services. What was I thinking?
Since that article was written, I did make my way over to the service center to turn in the modem. The impetus was my discovery that one of our TV cable boxes was not HD compatible, so I needed to exchange that box anyway. It made it so much more palatable to justify my presence there as not being because of the internet modem fiasco, but because of the cable box exchange necessity. Kind of like, “Oh, and while I’m here, I might as well turn in this internet modem that has been sitting around my office.” And who would have thunk it, but while I was there, anticipating the worst, I would be pleasantly surprised by their Local SEO upgrade to: “Well, that wasn’t so bad”?
Local SEO gets some face time
Of course I had to go on a Saturday, since their office hours during the week are conveniently scheduled to coincide with most people’s working hours, mine included. So I set off on my little adventure expecting the worst, which was a long line and more crappy customer service. So when I walked into the facility, I was not surprised to see about a half a dozen people in front of me already waiting in line. Strike One, I thought to myself. Fortunately, I did have some minor entertainment while waiting. One of the customers in line in front of me continually kept rolling his eyes and shaking his head as another customer being waited on kept babbling about the same thing over and over again. I could only surmise that this had been going on for some time, and that the babbler had over stayed his welcome as far as the almost next in line customer was concerned.
The babbler finally left, and surprisingly, the line moved rather quickly. There were 3 customer service people working that day, and I did a quick analysis to see which one I hoped to get. Don’t tell me that you don’t do the same thing when you are waiting in line. There was one younger female who seemed to have a very friendly and bubbly personality, and I was rooting for her. Unfortunately, she seemed to be wrapping up the conversation with her customer and there was still one more person in front of me. But then, one of the other reps finished with the eye roller customer rather quickly, and called for the next person. The friendly one finished with her customer and I was next. All right, at least I got the good one.
A pleasant Local SEO experience
No, I am not going to bore you with the details of my conversation with this customer service angel.
Well, she wasn’t really an angel, but compared to the ones I had dealt with and what I was expecting to encounter, I’ll just give her an upgrade. Since I was almost, and I really mean almost, itching for a confrontation before I got there, I have to admit that her friendly disposition disarmed me and made it almost impossible to be too irritable. I maintained a calm disposition, even somewhat friendly at times. Heck, I even volunteered some superfluous banter about the 4th of July and my disinterest in fireworks.
We took care of business to my satisfaction and I left after a pleasant exchange of salutations and headed for the door. And in fact, when I got to the car and my significant other asked me how it went, I actually told her “Not bad”. Quite the turn-around from my previous 1 star review on Google + Local!
The moral of this Local SEO story, Part 2?
So, once again, what is the point of this ongoing saga and how does it relate to Local SEO? Two phrases: reputation management and customer service. Your reputation management program must begin with making sure that all of your customers receive 5 star customer service. You must then monitor your reputation on line to make sure that you indeed have lived up to that lofty but absolutely necessary goal. Comcast failed in the monitoring but actually succeeded, in this instance, with their customer service. Twice I let Comcast know that their customer service sucked, with no response. Once during a requested customer satisfaction survey and again when I wrote a 1 star Google + Local review. Local SEO and reputation management require that you address all reviews, particularly the bad ones. But their saving grace was the excellent customer service rep who turned me around on that not so chipper Saturday morning. I left that facility not hating Comcast, at least not as much. That is what customer service is all about, creating a positive impression on behalf of the company or business. And if you are dealing with a customer locally, then it is a positive local impression. There you have it, back to Local SEO.
Finally, I promise that this is the last time I will write about my travails with good ole Comcast. Unless, of course, they really get under my skin again. Barring that, this is it. Oh, I almost forgot. Please be sure to schedule a FREE 30 minute consultation. Then I will quit. I promise.