I asked Beth Ziesenis from Life on Avenue Z to tell me more about her online experience with SanDisk. She and I were talking on Twitter about my recent positive experience with WalMart via Twitter, and Beth had her own story to tell. So, here we are:
The SanDisk Story
A couple of weeks ago, I fired off a grumpy tweet after a frustrating 5-mile run with a SanDisk Sansa MP3 player that I was ready to flush.
“Forgive me, Steve Jobs. It’s been 2 years since my last iPod. I bought a SanDisk player, and it sucks.”
In reply to a running buddy, I added, “This SanDisk is the worst ever. Broken wheel, sketchy battery. Today screen blanked out.”
I checked back a couple of hours later, and I saw a tweet from SanDisk PR Manager Rachel Polish. “I’m with SanDisk. Would you email me at rachel.p—–@sandisk.com and let me know what’s happening? Thanks so much.”
Even before I hit the reply button, my opinion of SanDisk was transformed. Rachel Polish wasn’t one of my followers. SanDisk monitors the Twitterverse for mentions of its products and company, and jumps into conversations when a little PR is called for. They work Twitter as more than just a corporate presence â€“ they use Twitter to reach out to customers.
My SanDisk Sansa had been giving me fits for more than a year, but I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of it. My family spent weeks researching MP3 players to find the perfect one to support my running habit, and they had presented this one to me as THE BIG GIFT of Christmas 2007. The guilt of not liking THE BIG GIFT was bad enough, but when my mother developed one of those illnesses that bring on the whispers of “Well, this may be the last Christmasâ€¦”, the guilt grew even larger.
After a couple of emails with Rachel and an explanation of the importance of keeping THE BIG GIFT, I received a note from their shipping department that a new SanDisk Sansa Fuze was headed my way. My original gritching about my old player reached my 600+ followers. When I tweeted about the replacement and SanDisk’s customer service, the news was retweeted to thousands.
Twitter Search and other tools make it easy for companies to set up RSS feeds to monitor discussion about their brands. In the time it took to write this post, more than 150 tweets have mentioned BlackBerry. Some 300+ tweets have mentioned AT&T, many of them with expletives. Are these companies doing what they can to reach out to customers?
A sad prologueâ€¦
My new BFF Rachel Polish just became a victim SanDisk cutbacks. A PR whiz woman like that needs a great job! Any leads?
Beth Ziesenis (pronounced ZEES-nis) writes at Life on Avenue Z
Photo credit Chilled Phil