UPS : Customer-facing

US logistics giant uses Facebook for a clear purpose.

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The Site

Content on the UPS Facebook page, which has about 1.5m ‘likes’, is consistently aimed at customers. There is a combination of magazine-style stories and more straightforward promotional material supporting corporate messages; as well as granular responses to customers complaining to the company about problems with their packages.

For example, when we looked at the page, the most recent post was from July 17th, a video story about ‘UPS driver Dexter and one special customer, Andie’. It had received almost 7,000 ‘likes’ and had been shared about 2,500 times. Still, the most visible comment was from a disgruntled customer ‘Autumn SunShine’: ‘This may have been a nice story but not all drivers care… How can you attempt to deliver a package without ringing the bell???’ A named UPS representative, ‘Kenzy’ has responded, asking the customer to email a helpline. There are many more similar exchanges down the page.


The Takeaway

UPS has clearly done some hard thinking about its Facebook presence and concluded that as a corporate channel it is best suited for building its reputation among customers. Limiting the content broadly to magazine-type material and direct responses to customers avoids muddling messages, a social media pitfall that trips up many corporate feeds. UPS Facebook followers know what they are going to get.

Some companies might be afraid of the kind of public vitriol with which UPS appears comfortable. But the company is cleverly turning the complaints to its advantage. By calmly and reasonably responding to every negative message, it shows it is taking customers seriously, even the more irrational ones. And it does set some boundaries by blocking abusive visitors.

The ‘customer-first’ strategy for Facebook won’t work for every company, but the broader lesson is how a focused and well-executed content plan can make a corporate social media presence more effective.
First published 22 July, 2015
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