Social Customer Service Done Right

Below is a recount of how my afternoon was ruined and what Chobani did to address a quality issue.

Note: there is no evidence that Chobani had anything to do with the product issue.  It’s quite possible that the product was not kept a consistent temperature during delivery.  Point is, Chobani recognized that they are their product; it’s how you deal with people that matters.

Here are 5 steps to executing Social Customer Service:

  1. They listened – if you don’t listen, you can’t engage
  2. Quick response – 6 minutes after my tweet they acknowledged me
  3. They offered to take it offline – social is an outpost, make the conversation private so details can be shared safely
  4. Keep your promises – just do what you say without the customer having to remind you
  5. Follow up – make sure the customer issues have been addressed

Since I’m posing this as a case study, what did I miss?  Are there other steps Chobani could have done?

Here are the details of what transpired.


  1. Hi Reff,

    Looks like Chobani did a solid job of transactional social customer service for your issue. It appears they listened and acknowledged your @ message in a timely manner. It also seemed like an appropriate conversation to move offline, since they would probably need personal information to move forward in their service recovery. And finally, it looks like they delivered to your expectations.

    You asked if they could have done anything more in this transaction, here are some thoughts on what they could have done to really exceed your expectations.

    1. Believe it or not, I am not a big fan of email for service. Yes, I know that may sound blasphemous considering that I work for a huge email company, but email requires a lot of effort on the customers part. An by effort, I mean time to await responses, and it could take several hours or days. I may have offered chat or a call, both are quick and a call is still your most opportune channel to really connect with a customer.

    2. Not sure if they did or not, but I probably would have checked into you a little bit before deciding on my service recovery action. Big man with a Klout score of 55 and a blog may be someone that we want to make sure we follow through on. You have the opportunity to applaud or trash them based on things such as your mood to expecations.

    3. Lastly, I think the service recovery here was slightly weak. If they provided you with coupons for the same number of cups you lost, that to me does not match the hassle you “endured”. You not only lost yogurt, but a bunch of time (emailing, getting a new snack, shopping with your coupons). I also think issues like these are a great opportunity for a “Wheat Thins Moment”- see here Now I am not suggesting that they should have sent you a palate of yogurt, but a case would have cost them roughly the same as sending the coupons.

    Keep in mind, my suggestions are all optimal. As a leader of customer service organizations, there is a tremendous amount involved in being able to go above and beyond the normal call. If you can get the time and money to do the extra, you then need to instill the ability for your associates to exercise responsible freedom to do extraordinary things for their customers.

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