Brits are stereotypically regarded as reserved and trying to avoid confrontations but a recent survey suggests that UK consumers may have become more outspoken when it comes to complaints.
The study, from business software provider Sage UK, has revealed that 22% of UK consumers share negative shopping experiences on social network sites.
Dr Thomas Charmorro-Premuzic of Goldsmiths University in London commented that complaining does not come naturally to Britons but more and more of them find social media convenient for expressing negative reactions to services and products, as there is no need to come face-to-face with the other party.
However, it appears that not many brands respond adequately to the new trend. A surprisingly small number of companies monitor consumers’ reactions and comments on social media and even fewer have a strategy to deal with complaints. The survey shows that less than 40% of the complaints posted on Facebook or Twitter received an answer from the brand. Currently, just 28% of UK firms employ people to develop social and apply network strategies.
Gary Young, head of customer operations at Sage UK, commented that engaging into social media comments is vital for a business and this could be demonstrated by simple mathematics; if there are 1,000 consumers unhappy with a brand. at least 220 will voice their dissatisfaction on social sites. Keeping in mind that an average Twitter user has 27 followers, it is easy to imagine the effect this can have on brand reputation.