When I first heard of GetSatisfaction, I started using it as a repository for my rants about bad customer service and software or Web apps issues for companies and their products. I liked the premise of GetSatisfaction – dialogue with other customers who may be experiencing similar issues and might have answers is a smart way of crowdsourcing technical support.
However, early on, many companies were not monitoring the site and not addressing the complaints. In fact, one of my rants was actually addressed by a former employee of the company in question.
Now I’m finding that GetSatisfaction is becoming a key tool in troubleshooting all of the technical – and vendor – issues that come up in my web work.
First, I had to make sure that I was accessing the right forum to vent my frustrations. Then I had to decide if I had a question or was announcing a problem. GetSatisfaction prompts you to provide as much detailed information as possible to expedite the process of getting a response and appropriate answer or recommendation.
My latest GetSatisfaction interaction occurred when I discovered that a Firefox Add-on that I was trying out – Power Twitter – wasn’t working well for me. In addition to a few bugs that were driving me crazy, my typical twittering flow was being interrupted by the app. Granted, I knew the app was in beta, but when I realized it wasn’t for me at this time, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how to remove it from my browser.
My first thought was tweet it so I put out the question “How do I remove Power Twitter from my browser?” The recommendations that initially came in were telling me to download an application cleaning software to remove it. This didn’t sound right to me. Then I noticed a tiny T3 at the top of my Power Twitter’d Twitter page. Clicking on it led me directly to the company’s GetSatisfaction page. Smart. Very smart.
I posted my quandry in the company’s support forum, and gave my question a catchy title (per GetSatisfaction’s recommendation): “How Do I Kill Power Twitter?” Okay, maybe I was a little harsh. But it got responses from other users. The trick was to go to my Firefox menu: Tools > Add Ons > Extensions > Uninstall.
To be honest, the first person to give me the above solution was on Twitter, and the tweets came in within about an hour of my initial question while the GetSatisfaction responses were hours later than that. Still, I’m impressed that a company would have the foresight to build in a link or button to get users – beta or otherwise – straight to their GetSatisfaction forum. While I didn’t hear yet from an actual employee of the company, clearly harnessing the combined knowledge and experience of customers is working.
You may also want to use GetSatisfaction to make suggestions and recommendations to a company for their product or application, especially if you’re a beta user. Sending your ideas to a company directly may get lost in the ether while posting it on GetSatisfaction creates a permanent record which has obvious value.
Companies can benefit from paying power users of their products to monitor and participate on their GetSatisfaction page. Or GetSatisfaction could build in some kind of payment or “tipping” process for very helpful members. The helpful advice and solutions are really worth the money.
Have you been getting satisfaction from GetSatisfaction.com yet? What other ways are you getting great customer service?