Personal Experiences of Twitter Being Useful

By now Twitter is a well-known platform for sending out quick blurbs of info. In the beginning, it was more of a novelty for alpha-geeks who tweeted about being at the grocery store or what they just ate for breakfast. Big deal. However, as time has gone on, Twitter has been a viable tool for most anyone that knows how to use it effectively. Granted, it’s easy to get lost in the Twittersphere but done correctly, it’s just a great resource of information and can even be helpful.

To wit: Not only have I discovered great new music (huge music fan here) but it’s also helped with a few job leads, helped me meet some good people, and my latest greatest achievement has been fixing a giant snafu with Capital One that was pissing me off beyond all belief.

I’ll start with the good story, the useful story. In mid-January, Capital One decided to put a restriction on my account even though I made the payments I was supposed to make. I even had confirmation from no less than two different reps that everything was fine. Not true. I find they put a restriction on my account and they refuse to lift it. No less than two dozen calls over the next two weeks brings the same result…script reading “customer service” representatives hiding behind the “it’s our policy that once a restriction is placed, it cannot be removed” rhetoric. Even though it was THEIR mistake, they refused to fix it. I spoke with manager after manager with still no luck. A variety of emails were also sent, all of them having the same “policy” response. Fed up with this crap I called my bank and placed a stop payment claim with the fraud department because I didn’t get what I paid for with Capital One (use of my card). The calls and emails continued and all came back with the same result.

Finally, I hit the Twittersphere and voiced my displeasure with Capital One. Lo and behold, I get a message from someone named @AskCapitalOne asking if they can help. Sure…why not? We send a few DM (direct messages) back and forth (all the while my super anti-phishing guards are up making sure all is legit), she asks a few questions and I’m convinced she’s legit.

NOTE: never ever never ever give personal info away to someone you don’t know. She asked my name, street number (not even full address) and then asked if she could call me at my number (that I did NOT give…this helped ease my mind a bit). She called and we went through a couple more security questions…some I intentionally answered wrong to make sure someone wasn’t just collecting my info. She clearly had my account info in front of her and we proceeded. I recounted the past few weeks of frustrations and she said “I can see all that here in the notes” and then proceeded to lift the restriction. I checked my account again while on the phone with her and it was true, restriction was lifted.

This experience alone proves a lot:

  1. Used correctly, companies can repair massive damage by keeping tabs on what people are saying on Twitter
  2. Twitter is truly another tool that can benefit companies and shouldn’t be ignored
  3. Twitter isn’t just a toy for bored people
  4. Twitter isn’t just a tool for marketing or for information passing

Companies should seriously consider using Twitter to help their business in one aspect or another.