The latest news in the world of customer experience and customer loyalty.
 
Tax Day Feeding Frenzy
One week. For those who haven’t yet filed their taxes, that’s how long you have until the Tax Man cometh. For those who meet the dreaded deadline, there’s a celebration in order, and several food brands are offering to help. Earlier we wrote about Great American Cookies offering free Cookies and Cream cookies on Tuesday, April 17. It’s now joined by Hot Dog on a Stick, which is offering one free turkey or veggie corndog. And Bruegger’s Bagels is offering its Big Bagel Bundle for the reduced—and appropriate—price of $10.40 starting tomorrow, Wednesday, April 11, and running until Tax Day. The Big Bagel Bundle, which has 13 bagels and two tubs of cream cheese, is $3.50 less than its usual price.
 
It’s a rough day to be…
British retailer John Lewis. After restructuring its customer experience operations at its home furnishing division in February from in-store customer service departments to a centralized hub, the brand saw a financial savings but at the cost of 387 jobs and, apparently, customer happiness. Customers have become so frustrated with the decline in customer service that they started taking to social media to complain. “6min on hold 2 furnishing team, 3wks of no replies to emails, 6mths waiting for curtains and £6k paid WHERE R MY CURTAINS?” one customer wrote, forcing the brand to apologize for its decline and scramble to hire more representatives to answer the backlog of calls. Retail analyst Richard Hyman told ThisIsMoney.com that “John Lewis cuts people at its peril, because the key thing it does better than anyone else is delivering customer service. It really needs to protect that for all it is worth.” Good advice for every brand.
 
Rock ’Em, Sock ’Em Twitter Bots
Social media is a growing—if not already key—component of any customer loyalty effort, but getting a message through the ever-growing bits of bot noise is proving to be a challenge. According to an article in USA Today, a study by the Pew Research Center found that two-thirds of all tweets were posted or shared by bots—automated accounts not tied to a person—and 89 percent of tweets that had links to aggregation sites were posted by bots. The 500 most active suspected bot accounts sent 22 percent of tweeted links to news sites, while the 500 most active human tweeters sent just six percent.
 

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