I’ve been hearing a lot from one of my favorite companies.

I purchased their product a couple of years back, used it, and been very happy with the outcome.

However, in the past few weeks, my email IN box has been flooded with special offers and announcements. Multiple items in each email with links to buy or give the product as a holiday gift. Special offers for new purchases but nothing that would enhance my use of the product or relationship with the company. Nothing to help me use the product better.

When I see nothing but “special sale” emails.. I begin to wonder “Is this company in trouble? Why are they so desperate?”

Today being Cyber Monday, I decided it was a good time to remove myself from a few of these mailing lists. I scrolled down to the bottom of today’s 23 offer email and found some fine print disclaimers and a few links.  I squinted to find the link that would unsubscribe me and noticed a button just above the fine print that invited me to become a fan on Facebook

Nothing for the fans who already bought?

Nothing for the fans who already bought?

Despite being there to drop my connection with this company, I must say I found it interesting that they were willing to pay $15 if I were to click on a button on Facebook.

I had to look.

I clicked through to the “fan page” and found 5 unanswered comments from customers using the product. All were politely asking for help with some small problem… no sign that anyone at the company saw them, let alone responded.

My first impression was that the company didn’t get social media (the professional way of saying “this sucks”).. so now I wanted to know: Is there any communication going on here?

Scrolling down, I found an ad for the $15 bribe and videos and photos posted by users, including an graphic with the word “PORN” .. but no comments on any of the wall posts.

Back to the email…

Preparing the post, I went back over a few emails to make sure I wasn’t missing anything that spoke to me as a user instead of just a person to help them get more sales… I had skipped to the bottom of today’s email and had missed this juicy headline:

we want to hear from you
review a product and help your fellow fans make the perfect choice

..followed by photos of their product line

(I’ve removed the product name before the word “fans”)

We have the tools today to segment our databases and provide a unique experience for our fans or customers.. speaking to each of them in a voice that makes sense and initiating a real conversation.

Just a couple of years back, a sales flyer from a company was expected.. and I believe still useful as one form of communication. However, when you decide to get into social media, and use terminology like you want to have a conversation.. you best be ready to have that conversation.

When you do engage your customers you will be adding real value and reap the benefits.