Tesco Mobile’s Twitter Is Refreshingly Frank With Its Customers

In Customer Engagement, Featured on App, Marketing and Sales, Social media by Vaughn Highfield

Tesco Mobile, Tesco, Twitter, Customer engagement, Customer acquisition, customers, social media, technology, retail, PR

A little while ago we picked five retailers’ Twitters that you needed to pay attention too.

I’m hoping you actually did pay attention to them and pick up some of their absolutely excellent practices because it seems that we were right on the money with our guess about Tesco.

While that’s clearly no surprise to ourselves (why would we have put it in the list otherwise?), it looks as if whoever’s been running the Tesco Twitter has now taken to tweeting from the Tesco Mobile account – and it’s doing everything right.

Seeing as Tesco Mobile generally has a reputation to shake from the days when it offered a pretty sub-par service, people tweet insults or ridiculous complaints at the Tesco Mobile account @tescomobile.

Its reaction?

Immense ‘burns’, put-downs, and cutting sarcasm. And it’s utterly fantastic for doing so.

While you could complain that its tactics aren’t very befitting of portraying a professional image that a big company should have, it’s clear that you just don’t quite understand how social media works.

When one user tweeted that they felt bad leaving the service, Tesco Mobile’s reply of “YOU ARE WHAT? This is not how we expected to find out. You best not take our Barry Manilow CD’s” was a stroke of genius.

It’s cutting riposte to another tweeter’s message of “Immediate turn off if a girl’s mobile network is Tesco Mobile” with “Are you really in a position to be turning girls away?” gained over 6,500 retweets and over 4,500 favourites. Although, they did send the guy a free gift for being a good sport about the whole thing.

It’s very similar to Tesco’s reply to one consumer complaining about how cheap their carrier bags are.

However, Tesco Mobile does deal responsibly with customer complaints, but it also replies to the scathing blows given to it, trading them like for like. People may get angry and so RT it to friends and such, who largely find it hilarious and Tesco Mobile wins some kudos.

Others find the replies surprisingly refreshing and it dissolves that corporate image that so many company social media accounts seem to have.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not here to champion insulting your prospective customers!

But perhaps it is worth burning down that veil of obscurity that covers your social media campaigns with the legal department, gaining approval for tweets and posts and so forth.

Instead, tweet what you like, say what you like and act like a person who’s using a Twitter account themselves.

In the case of Tesco Mobile, if people can dish out the insults, they should be able to take being insulted themselves. If corporations want to become more relevant and liked in this modern technological world where transparency is becoming key, they have to start acting as people – not businesses.