It never ceases to amaze me just how many companies, businesses, organizations, etc have still not recognized, embraced and out and out fallen head over in heels in love with social media.
Today's example is American Girl Doll.
For those of you not familiar with it, (from Wikipedia) "American Girl Doll is s a line of dolls, books, and accessories based on pre-teen girl characters that originally focused on various periods of American history from the viewpoint of girls and has now expanded to include dolls of and stories about contemporary girls."
Oh yeah, it's a pretty expensive line of dolls, books, etc...But I digress.
As a matter of full disclosure I must tell you that this post, while bringing to light another example of another social media fail, is also very personal to me.
On December 5th, my wife placed an order for some American Girl Doll "stuff" for our 11-year old daughter for Christmas. Thanks to some serious health concerns regarding my mom and my wife's stepfather, we lost track of time, not realizing that as of December 24th, AKA Christmas Eve, we still had not yet received anything.
So my wife placed a call to American Girl Doll HQ and was told "the package is at your local post office."
Hmmm... ok, so it was the USPS' fault, always easy to blame them, right? Still had time to go get the package in time to give to our daughter on Christmas Day.
So I hop in the car and make the short drive to my local post office with the obligatory tracking code in hand. What's this? The USPS has no record of ever receiving the package.
Back on the phone with AGD who tell us "there was activity on the 20th" whatever that means and that they "stand behind FedEx." Turns out, they (American Girl Doll) sent the package to FedEx who was to have sent it to the USPS for delivery to our home.
So, my wife and I were essentially s#@t out of luck.
Frustrated beyond words (and yes, the stress of the aforementioned personal issues surely did not help) I decided to "take it to the streets"... I immediately went in search of their social media presence. I wanted someone's head is what I wanted.
This was my baby girl here and the thought of disappointing her... well, if you're a parent you know where my head was.
My first stop was the American Girl Doll Facebook page where I posted this missive...
I checked periodically to see if there was any response from AG but judging by their last Facebook post, I'm not holding my breath...
Yes, their last post was on March 1, 2009.
Hmmm... something tells me they're not updating nor monitoring their Facebook page. Just a hunch...
But that's ok, I still have Twitter, right?
American Girl Doll doesn't have a Twitter account.
Oh, there's plenty of folks talking about American Girl Doll on Twitter, including yours truly...
So, here's what we have...
- Another example of another company not taking full advantage of social media; of not taking the opportunity to interact, often times in real time, with their customers
- A mother and father who were unable to deliver on a Christmas wish to their daughter
Now, obviously I am over-dramatizing this as this is clearly not the end of the world and rest assured my daughter had more than enough to open on Christmas morning, but...
I over-dramatized it to make a point.
And the point is this...
After all this time, after all the stories of companies using social media to increase sales, to talk with their customers, to spread goodwill, and all that stuff.... there are STILL an inordinate amount of companies who still don't get it.
I wonder if American Girl Doll had a competitor, a viable competitor who WAS social media active, if that would be the impetus to dip their toe or their whole foot for that matter, in the social media pool.
Because for the life of me, I cannot see why a company would NOT.