This becomes the first of ‘Love Letters to Dear Corporate’. A series of artistic pieces meant to convey customer concerns over customer service in a generally unique manner. In this feature Customer is pouring out her heart pointing out were Corporate goes wrong in an attempt to embrace social media.
By Simba Mazoyo
This comes as my first letter to you in this inaugural edition of ‘The Customer’, a love letter to be precise. I happen to be the only human who writes to you in this manner. Why? Because I want to. Borrowing from Steve Biko, to you ‘I write what I like’. I am the soul whose liberties go beyond the oceans and the seas. The person who remains sovereign no matter from which direction the sun rises, an individual whose powers have multiplied due to radical globalization and technological advancement. All the same, we are lovers; we don’t hurt each other intentionally. Through coins and notes, our union must last. By VISA or PayPal we must be inseparable. I am the Customer, I need you and I know you want me.
This is one of the many letters I shall write you. Remember communication is the backbone of a sound relationship. My love, this particular piece serves to remind and correct you on your flaws in regards to Social Media. You have caught on the craze and dived into the world of clicks and likes. You now marvel at swelling followers, shares and re-twits. It is a pleasant development, well done! It means you are moving with times. It’s easier and costs less to convey messages to me using social media, but if executed inappropriately, it can yield exactly the opposite result.
Call me naggy, but I only correct you because I care about our union. Whenever I encounter you on Twitter, Facebook, Snap chat, YouTube or Instagram, I get a blood rush. It not only reminds me of your presence, but also fills my heart with great warmth. On social media platforms you educate, inform and encourage me. Constantly you remind me of what I should look forward to in any of our preceding dates. You entice and mesmerize me with beautiful graphics and before I know it, my dollar will be flying out of my pocket into yours. Our union must thus it’s a healthy thing.
My issue with you sweetheart is; why do you indulge and refrain at the same time. Wanting and not wanting are opposites but you seem to force them into one picture. How can you create a page on Facebook, harvest likes then go for weeks without posting something? I will be expecting to hear from you dear. Coming out to social media means you want to socialize. Going mum for ages is of such bad taste. You need to revise your manners in that regard darling. The same applies for Instagram and other social media platforms. I want to hear from you constantly and consistently. When Thomas Chizhanje, Anne Kansiime and iMzansi are flooding my newsfeed with humour, I tend to wonder if at all you are still thinking of me. Psychologically it makes me feel less important and causes me to assume you are now with a younger lover, one with warmer blood. I don’t want to hear about you from others, speak for yourself and ensure only accurate information about you is available. Quoting from Thom Fox, “Social media isn’t simply a megaphone for your brand, it’s a two way street – hence the ‘social’,” Please lover, let’s socialize!
After claiming attention, I must make it clear that over sharing is equally annoying. Do not bombard me with posts and information as if it’s a mathematics seminar, its only social media my dear. The balance is very critical. You don’t need to flood my timeline to get my attention. Salt makes relish delicious, but too much of it spoils the dish. Always try to post stuff that is relevant. Posting the spaghetti bolognaise recipe on a Funeral Insurance Facebook page is a No! Olivine cooking oil might get away with it, but not Clientele Funeral Insurance. I also don’t mind competitions, they keep me engaged. Freebies and other gift vouchers are always welcome in my house any time, any day remember?
Another one of your boobs which irks me is when you share something and disappear on the radar. As polygamous as you are, remember we want swift responds from you. There has to be rapport, its social media anyway. We sometimes end up interacting on our own whilst you remain silent like a granite boulder. You need to be part of every single post dear. When you do that, I will give you full marks for embracing social media. After unfolding a thread, go along lest some intruder comes along and poisons your audience in your absence. Cyber bullies are real!
Another point my lover, do not share uniform content on all social media platforms. The nature of communication on Twitter is not necessarily the same as that one on Facebook neither is the flow on Snap Chat similar to that on Whatsapp. Language is contextual; the word mouse in a computer lab means a computer component, but it will likely ring a different bell when mentioned to a pest controller. I know you wouldn’t want your communications to seem like spam, do you?
You know me; I unapologetically unravel errors, but never fail to bring forth possible solutions. I also wouldn’t want this letter to be as long as my grandmother’s prayer so I will shorten it this way; Have you ever heard of a social media manager? Do not panic, this person does not need to bite deep into your revenue. They are not part of management; they simply create content, then feed and manage it on all company social media platforms. They are supposed to be naturally creative and good communicators. Given enough support, they become the solution to your flaws dear. In this era you can’t afford to miss this member on your team, especially if you wish to pursue consumer-centrism whole heartedly. Just like a receptionist, they have become vital.
If you can’t have this fellow in your organisation, you can simply outsource. I know you fear costs, but most of the modern marketing firms offer this service for a nominal fee. With someone playing this role, our relationship will definitely blossom. Doubts of each other’s commitment will varnish. More of my dollars will surely gladly relocate to your wallet.
I hope to see positive change. The chain of goods, services and money will forever join us sweetheart….S’kawara. For now, receive a thousand kisses.
PS: Do not reply by a letter, I prefer action.