A Look Back on 2011

As the end of the year approaches, it seems that most of the articles are reflecting on the last year. Journalists write about the best campaigns of the year, and the worst campaigns of the year.  They write about the most memorable parts of the year, and the most painful moments of the year.  Last year I wrote a post called the Final Post of the Year that went month by month through the best parts of 2010.  I really enjoyed writing that post and looking back on my past year so I figured I would do the same thing for 2011.

January

In January, I went to the Dolphins/Patriots game in Foxboro which is something I have wanted to do since I moved to Boston.  The Dolphins obviously got killed, but it was still a great time.

I also started my last semester of college at Boston University.  They had a few celebrations for seniors.

With Dean Elmore and John Battaglino

February

I had some exciting trips in February.  First, I went to Chicago for the first time.  I went to DePaul University’s PRSSA conference.  I wrote about it on an older blog post.  Then I spent the rest of the weekend exploring the city with my awesome tour guide, Nick Lucido!

Sky Deck!

The Bean

Deep dish pizza!

A week later I went skiing for the first time at Mont Tremblant.  It was definitely scary learning how to ski at first, but by the end of the weekend I was getting the hang of it.  But I have heard that your first time skiing should not be on this mountain.

March

In March I did something I had been looking forward to since I heard it opened.  HARRY POTTER WORLD!

April

This month started off bittersweet.  I went to Seattle for the PRSSA National Assembly.  I always looked forward to my PRSSA trips, and this one was my last.  The next committee was elected, and I was so excited and proud of them.  But it was also (potentially) the last time I was with everyone in my committee at the same time.  PRSSA continues to mean the world to me and truly made a huge difference in my life and my career.  I was also awarded with the Elaine Averick Outstanding National Committee Member Award.  Oh, and I caught a fish in the Seattle fish market!

The 2010-2011 and 2011-2012 PRSSA National Committees

The 2010-2011 PRSSA National Committee Saying Goodbye

Elaine Averick Outstanding National Committee Member Award

May

In May, I graduated from Boston University with a degree in Public Relations from the College of Communication and a degree in Business Administration from the School of Management.  I also received the Gerald Powers PR Scholarship, Blue Chip Award and Scarlet Key.

Scarlet Key

Blue Chip Ceremony

June

Even though I officially starting working on May 31, my new hire training at HubSpot started on June 6.  After six months of working, I can still say I love my job!

July

In July I spent a lot of time working and a lot of time enjoying Boston and getting together with friends.

BSMA Brunch

August

In mid-August, I co-founded a Young Professionals Network for the Public Relations Society of America in Boston.  Then at the end of August, Dreamforce, Salesforce.com’s annual conference that included 45,000 people this year, began.  My responsibilities at HubSpot all summer consisted of working on our presence at Dreamforce and planning for our HubSpot User Group Summit.  David Kirkpatrick of MarketingSherpa wrote a case study about our presence there.  It was memorable, exciting and turned out very well despite Hurricane Irene’s attempt to keep the HubSpot team in Massachusetts.

September

September was the HubSpot User Group Summit (HUGS) in Boston with 1,000 customers.  It was inspiring hearing many of the HubSpot customer stories and seeing how excited the customers and HubSpotters were to meet each other and learn from one another.  And I cannot leave out the balloon sprocket at the opening reception.  I had honestly wanted to do this since my first day at HubSpot!

October

October started off by going to Maine for the first time!  I have wanted to see more of New England since I decided to stay in Boston after graduation, and this was the first step.  I also had lobster for the first time.

Then all my dreams came true, and I FINALLY got the Verizon iPhone!

And I, of course, had to highlight it on my Facebook Timeline:

November

This month was busy, but at the end of the month, I went with HubSpot to Cloudforce.  It was great to see everyone who I had worked closely with all summer for Dreamforce.  And it is always fun to meet HubSpot customers and talk to other people about the company!


December

At HubSpot, not only are we around some of the greatest marketing professionals in the industry, but they constantly take the opportunity to teach us as well.  HubSpot, therefore, set up a program called HubSpot Fellows.  The CEO and co-founder of HubSpot, Brian Halligan, teaches a bunch of classes on leadership and helps us become better leaders at HubSpot.  It is an awesome chance to learn from Brian but also interact with other HubSpotters who are part of the program.

Happy New Year to everyone!

5 Must-Have Mobile Apps for Black Friday

There are two things that people do on Black Friday: get all your Christmas shopping done or hide in your home to avoid the crowds.  But for those who take advantage of the deals that kick off the holiday season, here are a few mobile apps that will help you identify where the deals are and even avoid the long lines at check-out.

Old Navy’s Snap Appy

Old Navy took their app to the next level and placed Old Navy logos around the store that are scannable. Once you scan them, you can unlock discounts and other surprises.  But even before you set food in the store, you can peruse through some of their most popular styles and upload some of your own once you get in the store.  And if a store runs out of a particular style or size, which can often happen on Black Friday, you can order it online right from your phone.

Fatwallet.com’s Black Friday

On Black Friday, shoppers are overloaded with thousands of choices from hundreds of stores. But the problem is, how do you decide who has the best deal?  Where do you get your new TV or toys for your kids?  This app sorts your choices by store or categories and even allows you to add filters to make your search easier such as brand, price, free shipping eligibity, and whether or not it is a door buster.  Before braving the hectic malls, this app prepares you to use your time wisely.

Amazon Deals

Whenever you are about to make a purchase, you cannot help but think, “Can I get this cheaper?  And with free shipping on Amazon?”  Even though there is an Amazon app, the Amazon Deals apps works especially well for Black Friday to track deals that are running out. Many stores will only have certain details in the early hours of the morning.  Instead of running to your nearest Best Buy to get the latest electronic and an even lower rate, Amazon Deals helps you pinpoint the discounts and purchase online.

ToysRUs

ToysRUs is notorious for its’ success, crowded lines, and sales on Black Friday.  This store will even open on Thanksgiving before the start of Black Friday just to handle the influx of people looking to purchase toys.  The app is vital for anyone who has to buy for a child.  The app lets you search by keyword or item, check out daily and weekly ads, and highlights the top sellers and new arrivals.  And the best part?  You can buy right from the app and avoid the store completely.

tgiBlackFriday

Though similar to Fatwallet.com’s app, this app will help you keep track of the deals you want to capitalize on.  Once again, you can search by store or categories, but the app shows you how many deals are available at each place and allows you to add items to a list.  Come Black Friday, you can knock out all your purchases much quicker and be aware of all the available details.

What are your plans for Black Friday?

50 Reasons I Love My iPhone

  1. When I tell Siri I love her, she tells me “You are the wind beneath my wings.”
  2. The battery life is a champ.  I don’t need to charge it all day long like I did with my Android.
  3. I can move and delete my apps effortlessly.
  4. The camera is incredible.
  5. There’s an app for that. It’s actually true.
  6. I FINALLY have access to the “iPhone only” apps.
  7. I can group my apps into categories (love this about Apple).
  8. Find my iPhone. Need I say more?
  9. It is simple connecting to wifi.
  10. The GPS is 1000x better than my old Android GPS.
  11. When I type in a contact’s name, it pops up immediately (definitely did not have that on my last phone – the delay was very long).
  12. iMessage is AWESOME.  Such an easy way to talk to other iPhone users.
  13. Auto correct is REALLY good (it even knows to capitalize the “S” in HubSpot).
  14. Pocket MBTA – it actually tells me exactly how long it will take until the next bus arrives.
  15. It’s white. I’m a sucker for white phones.
  16. It syncs with my iPad and Mac. Thank you Apple; thank you iCloud.
  17. Privacy. Every time I have to open the App Store, it asks for my password. I like that I am the only one who will be able to download apps.
  18. The QR code scanner works.
  19. All it takes to clear my apps is double clicking the home button and deleting the apps currently running.
  20. All it takes to mute my phone is clicking a button. Literally one button.
  21. You can record much longer videos.
  22. All the Apple cords are the same to charge my devices.
  23. Getting the iPhone makes me look like this: 
  24. I get to have a Timeline that looks like this: 
  25. Facetime. I absolutely love Facetime.
  26. I have a camera on both sides.
  27. My apps don’t have to “force close” constantly.
  28. Downloading more apps doesn’t make it slower.
  29. If something happens to my phone, Apple Care will give me a new phone for $49.
  30. Posting pictures right to Twitter ACTUALLY works.  (Note the pattern of things ACTUALLY working on the iPhone)
  31. The phone automatically shows my updates.
  32. Siri recognizes my location and will tell me places that are nearby.
  33. Siri knows me by name.
  34. The notifications for Twitter come immediately.
  35. Streaming videos on YouTube is quick and easy.
  36. Flixster will find movies near me by location.
  37. I will get Foursquare updates before the Android and Blackberry users.
  38. My phone’s apps are sleek and organized.
  39. The games I paid for on the iPad are now on my iPhone.
  40. I’m finally part of the cool kids club (by having an iPhone).
  41. Deleting emails takes a second and does not have any delay.
  42. I can put as many accounts as I want in my apps.
  43. Siri can easily bring up my schedule for each day.
  44. I can simply tell Siri to text someone, give her the message and it sends.
  45. Running one app doesn’t kill my battery.
  46. I have many choices for accessories and apps.
  47. When I have notifications and my screen is locked, I can swipe the app icon across the screen to immediately go to that app.
  48. I have a pull down on the phone of all my notifications.
  49. When I pay for an app, it is worth the money.
  50. Did I mention I’m REALLY excited about having an iPhone?
What’s your favorite part?  Have any unboxing videos to share?

Super Bowl 2011 Advertisements

The entertainment during this year’s Super Bowl may have been unsuccessful, but at least the advertisements were great (well some of them)!  Between Christina Aguilera forgetting the words to the National Anthem and the Black Eyed Peas having a total fail for a performance, the advertisements may have saved the Super Bowl (not including the actual game, of course).  Below are my thoughts/reactions to some of the commercials that stood out (either positively or negatively).

First Quarter:

Bud Light: I usually don’t enjoy the Bud Light commercials.  They are normally the same thing: Person 1 is just SO excited that they have a Bud Light, and their entire LIFE is now better.  It is always the same exact thing.  The first commercial was the same theme as well.  BUT the second Bud Light commercial was a change from before AND for the better!  Bluntly incorporating product placement into Super Bowl ads, one of the biggest opportunities for product placement was genius and funny too.  Having a medieval play with random Bud Light product placements…genius…just genius.

Doritos: The first Doritos commercial was pretty elementary, but they definitely made up for it as the commercials continued.  The third commercial with the chip’s crumbs bringing everything back to life was pretty entertaining, and kind of creepy when it brought the kid’s grandfather back to life.  But still a bit more creative than the usual “DORITOS ARE JUST THE BEST” mentality.

Pepsi Max: Now I’m not a huge Pepsi fan (which would normally mean I wouldn’t write about it on my blog), but I have to mention the Pepsi Max commercial with the geek being made fun of by the “pretty, popular kids.”  Definitely entertaining watching the kids get shown up by the geek and his cool gadgets/toys.  Ya gotta love how nerdiness is the new “cool.”

Bridgestone: Kudos to Bridgestone!  I think you tapped into every person’s fear of hitting “Reply All” by accident and sending an e-mail out to many people who were not supposed to read it.  I’m sure everyone has done that once or twice.  Granted, Gmail has an “Undo” button now, but what about those e-mails you don’t realize you sent for awhile?  But anyway, Bridgestone just related to EVERY person who has ever sent an e-mail.  Great job, great ad.

Go Daddy: When I first started my blog, I used Go Daddy.  That year when I saw the Super Bowl commercials, I was so excited because not only did I use this service, but their commercials were so creative!  That being said, that time has certainly passed with the abysmal showing from them on this year’s ad.

Second Quarter:

Coca-Cola: Everyone expects the polar bear in these commercials, especially if the commercial isn’t going to be something unique.  I hate to say it because I am TOTALLY brand loyal to Coke, but this commercial was lame.  It was the same commercial they have ALWAYS had but with dragons, warriors, whatever they were.  I was hoping for something at LEAST as creative as their “Open Happiness” campaign.  I hope they bring something better a bit later.

Volkswagen: This ad was great.  The little boy trying to have Star Wars powers was absolutely ADORABLE.  I have nothing much to say besides good job, Volkswagen.  You got everyone’s attention in a positive way.  No complaints here, and I haven’t even heard any complaints on Twitter (which is even more impressive)!

Snickers: What was that?  Like seriously…you went from Betty White to that?  It wasn’t funny this year, and I stopped watching before I even knew it was a Snickers commercial (I only saw people tweeting that it was a Snickers commercial).  Not impressed.

Chevy: If you wanted to get the attention of any advertising and PR people, well you did it.  There are no complaints from this group as Facebook is more than an addiction – it is a way of life.  The tweets after this commercial were beyond excited as they saw the best possible scenario: driving AND having Facebook statuses read aloud.  Great job, Chevy.

Carmax: This was a commercial that definitely got an “LOL” out of me.  I had never even heard of Carmax before, but it definitely made a lasting impression on me.  Very catchy commercial, and definitely kept my attention the entire time.  “I feel like a kid in a candy store…”  Beautiful start!

Staples: When you think of Staples, you think of the “easy” button and the silly “That was easy” line.  I think Staples did a really great job of showing their products while still maintaining their brand image with the easy button.  Very nicely done.

Third Quarter:

Etrade: Let’s just put it this way, you can never go wrong with a talking baby.  They will be funny no matter what.

Best Buy: Great line: “What’s a Bieber?”  I have nothing against Justin Bieber.  Personally, I think he is a great kid and very talented.  BUT it was a great way to get some attention for Best Buy by making fun of him.

Groupon: I am a big fan of Groupon.  Love the company, love the deals, love just about everything.  But I think they could have been a bit more creative with these advertisements.  They seem to be making light of serious situations around the world.  And while I sort of see their point, I just think they could have been more creative.

Chrysler: Using Eminem in this commercial was perfect.  “Lose Yourself” playing in the background was a great addition.  The brand was prominent, everyone’s eyes were interested in Eminem (especially since his appearance in the Brisk commercial wasn’t too exciting) and Chrysler got their message across.  Their cars were branded as cool, luxurious and made for a star.

BMW: Who doesn’t like game shows?  And who doesn’t love FUNNY game shows?  “Cram It In The Boot?”  Who thinks of something like that?  But it was complete genius.  It was funny, got the attention of America who loves game shows and showed the purpose behind the commercial: the fact that this car has more trunk space and can really fit all your possessions.  Great use of strategy and humor.

NFL: This was one of the greatest ads I have ever seen.  It may not have been the funniest or best at promoting a product, but it was certainly the greatest ad of the night.  Watching all of the different shows celebrate the Super Bowl was fantastic and so nostalgic.  From the older shows like Happy Days, Full House and Seinfeld to most modern shows like Friends and Family Guy, this compilation of shows was truly top notch.

Fourth Quarter:

Bridgestone: Bridgestone has done a great job tonight.  First with the Reply All and then with the beaver commercial.  Great use of a cute animal to get your point across (kinda brings me back to the Geico commercials that I used to look forward to).  But not only is the commercial cute and well received (at least on Twitter), but it really incorporates the car well.  A lot of commercials are cute and use animals that don’t relate as much to the product they are selling, but Bridgestone is able to do both.

Verizon iPhone: I could probably write a full post on this advertisement.  In fact, I will probably end up writing a post about the Verizon and AT&T ads that have been produced since the iPhone was announced on Verizon.  But tonight…tonight this single ad has made my ENTIRE NIGHT.  Not only does it show the sleek, magnificent iPhone, but VERIZON BROUGHT BACK THE “CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW” GUY!  That basically makes all my hopes and dreams come true.  Definitely the best ad of the night.  Perfect advertisement for the Verizon iPhone and PERFECT way and reason to bring back the original face of Verizon with the “Can you hear me now” actor.

And that’s that for this year’s Super Bowl ads.  Congratulations to the Green Bay Packers!  (And me, for picking them to win tonight!)

The Marriage of Verizon Wireless and Apple

On January 9, 2007 the iPhone was introduced on AT&T.  Four years and two days later, Verizon made the incredible announcement that the iPhone will be released on their network starting February 10.

As I said last week, I am very brand loyal especially when it comes to Verizon Wireless.  Yes, I have always wanted an iPhone, but I was NEVER going to consider switching over to AT&T.  Let’s be serious, there is no network that even comes close to being as reliable as Verizon.  Can you hear me now?  Yes, because I have Verizon.  Dropped calls are unheard of on this network!  But let’s get back to what happened today…

There have been rumors for months and months about the iPhone coming to Verizon (if not years).  After all, the iPhone is the phone that single handedly helps AT&T compete against Verizon.  When my phone broke in September (or you could say, drowned in a rain storm), I wanted to wait until the iPhone potentially came out at the beginning of the year.  I even subjected myself to using a Blackberry (see #downwithblackberry) for three long months as I awaited the iPhone.  So when the Wall Street Journal published “Verizon Finally Lands the iPhone” on January 8, I started to take the rumors seriously.  My “Verizon Wireless” Google Alert has been posting stories about the iPhone coming to Verizon for months, but until a reputable source published the story, I was not going to believe anyone.

That’s when my world exploded, and the clues just all appeared.  Fast Company published “Verizon’s iPhone Tomorrow: Everything You Need to Know” on January 10 explaining everything that was going on.  To quickly summarize this article, they displayed the invitation from Verizon to the press event, stated that Gizmodo was not invited (which could possible be due to their disagreement with Apple when they leaked the iPhone 4 pictures) pointed out that Verizon’s official tweets were coming from an iPhone instead of the web and wrote about the design and plan for the Verizon iPhone.  Gizmodo commented in their article “The Verizon iPhone Will Be Announced on January 11” saying they were not invited to the press event even though they are normally invited to Verizon press conferences, but they still love Verizon anyway.  What great sports!

So while I was basking in the glory of all these articles, journalist Jon Swartz from USA Today tweeted “Any Verizon customer who’s been waiting for a chance to buy an iPhone? Can I interview you?”  My fellow Verizon supporter, Jenna Glynn, tweeted back at him saying “@jswartz652 you should talk to @RSprung! She is a Verizon SUPERFAN & tomorrow is her Christmas.”  He immediately got in touch with me, interviewed me and published an article entitled “Would a Verizon iPhone be a hit?” quoting me!  More excitement for my Verizon holiday!

This morning was quite exciting.  I set myself up in front of the computer with multiple websites open awaiting the 11:00 press conference starting time.  Engadget was posting live from the event.  Lowell McAdam, President and COO of Verizon, began the press conference right on time (I really adore him).  Some key highlights:

11:00 am: “Okay, it looks like you’re expecting a big announcement. I don’t think we’ll disappoint. If the press write something long enough, eventually it comes true. We’re very very excited about our announcement today.”

11:05 am: “This is putting us at the hub of the wheel driving this industry. Collaboration is the key to innovation. We’ve worked with partners across the industry.”

And my favorite:

11:06 am: “Today we’re partnering with a giant of the industry, and that’s Apple.”

11:06 am: “Late in 2010 we started offering the iPad… today, we are extremely gratified to announce that the iPhone 4 will be available early next month.”

And some quotes from Tim Cook, COO of Apple:

11:09 am: “Tens of millions of customers have purchased the iPhone around the world. Customers have downloaded billions of apps. I am incredibly happy, and I can tell you all of Apple, is very very excited to bring the iPhone to Verizon’s customers.”

11:10 am: “We’re incredibly pleased to give Verizon’s customers the choice we’ve been waiting for. We’ve designed an iPhone 4 which connects to the CDMA network — and it has all the features that you’d expect. Like FaceTime. Features like Apple’s stunning Retina Display.”

11:11 am: “5 megapixel camera, HD video… the custom A4 chip. But most importantly, it provides an integrated customer experience that’s far beyond what anyone else is providing. From iOS, to iTunes, to the App Store — they’re all designed to work together.

And some quotes from Dan Mead, CEO of Verizon Wireless:

11:13 am: “We’ve built our business on building the very best network — and now our customers have a choice for the iPhone 4 on the nation’s most reliable network.”

11:17 am: “On February 3rd our existing customers will have an opportunity to pre-order… on February 10th, everyone will be able to order online, in stores, or in Apple stores.”

And right as this was announced, the beauty that you see below was updated on Verizon’s website AND Apple’s website!

And Mashable posted “It’s Official: The iPhone Is Coming to Verizon.”

Check out the Wall Street Journal’s great recap (and video) at their article “Verizon Wireless to Offer iPhone 4 in February

I’m expecting AT&T to come out with all sorts of insults about how you cannot go on the Internet while on the phone, but the truth is Verizon is the superior network.  They have the more reliable service.  There is a reason Apple felt the need to bring the iPhone to Verizon customers.  AT&T was unable to fulfill all of the needs of the iPhone.  Enter: Verizon!

And that’s that!  The iPhone 4 will be on Verizon starting February 10, and my entire life is now complete!

What are your thoughts about the release?  Disclaimer: Negative comments are not welcomed on #VZWiPhone Day!

Pongr: A Dream for Anyone Brand Loyal

If you read my blog, you know one thing about me for sure: I am extremely brand loyal.  I am brand loyal about everything from what I drink to what technology I use (cameras, phones, etc.) to even what shampoo I will use.  So when Pongr, a game that highlights brand loyalty at its best came out, I knew I had to try it out.

The purpose of Pongr is to show how people interact with a brand on a daily basis.  Everywhere you turn, you are surrounded by brands.  Pongr adds a gaming element to it and has players take pictures of themselves and others as they interact with various brands.  You are then “employed” by the particular brand and move up the ranks from intern to CEO.  They recently added more components to the game which definitely make it more challenging and exciting.  In addition to submitting pictures to the website, you must recruit others to “work” for the brand, promote the pictures you take on Facebook and Twitter and create deals that the brand could potentially use.  For example, if you send in a picture to Pongr for Android, you can get 10% off of an accessory (I think I used this when I was trying to become CEO of Android).

Every brand you can think of needs a CEO.  All you have to do is submit pictures through your phone (yes, feature phones work too which was great for me because I did not have a smart phone when Pongr first came out) or even through e-mail.  You simply send your pictures to the brand “@pongr.com.”  For example, when sending pictures to Verizon, you send it to “verizon@pongr.com.”   When sending pictures to Apple, you send it to “apple@pongr.com.”  You can even send pictures as a JPEG and attach it to an e-mail to send them in.  This way of sending pictures made it really fun for me because I could look back at old pictures of myself interacting with different brands and send them in.  It is always fun to look back at old pictures, and this time you are playing a game while doing it!

To celebrate the holidays, they decided to award a few of the newly appointed CEOs.  The first person who became CEO of a Fortune 500 company was given a $500 American Express gift card.  The person who submitted the most creative picture of their favorite pair of shoes would win free shoes.  And my favorite, the first person to become CEO of Android would receive a free Android phone.  After the death of my Droid back in September that resulted in my hatred for Blackberry (thus, the #downwithblackberry hasthtag I have been using in most of my tweets), I was determined to be reunited with Android again.

So every day since the contest was announced, I recruited others to play Pongr, sent in pictures, created deals and promoted the pictures on Twitter.  Part of the excitement of Pongr is that you never know when you will reach the position of CEO.  At the end of December, I was finally promoted to CEO and won my Android, the Droid X (which I just received a few days ago)!  Pongr has not only combined my love for brand loyalty and photography but has given me quite possibly the greatest gift possible: a Droid!

To hear more about my rise to CEO of Verizon, check out this blog post.

I recruited many people during my rise to CEO of Android.  Some of their thoughts are below!

Amy Bishop: “Some of the things I like about Pongr:

  • The ability to display and promote the brands that you support and use everyday
  • The chance to win contests and deals by just sending photos of your daily interaction with brands
  • Before my smartphone, I also loved that I could upload photos just by sending an email on a regular computer.”

Lauren Gray: “I like that you can win real prizes and submit pictures of what you are doing with the product/brand.  It’s also fun to “recruit” people because not many other geo apps have that recruitment aspect.”

Eric Mendes: “Pongr is an innovative startup that allows users to express their love for their favorite companies to the world.  Personally, I love how Pongr allows users to interact with one another and how the site maintains close contact with their users through social networks such as Twitter.  Always feels like a small connected family.”

Kara Robinson: “Pongr allows consumers to directly connect with and promote the brands they use most often.  It is a win-win situation for the brand and the consumer.  And, it’s tons of fun!”

If you have played Pongr and have some thoughts you would like to share, let me know, and I will post them above with the others!  (More are expected to come later today too!)

Check out Pongr on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube!

Complain Online Lately?

It is pretty much a known fact that I am brand loyal.  Whether it is VerizonPoland SpringsStaplesJetBluePantene Pro-v,FedEx (I’m literally looking around my room and naming off brands), I stick to what I like and feel comfortable with.  No, this isn’t a blog post about brand loyalty again, but it is a post about what goes happens with some of the other brands that I haven’t had the greatest experiences with.

It is known that negative feedback about a company has a larger impact than positive feedback.  People want to know the bad things that are happening in the world.  The good news is not always as interesting, and the public tends to ignore it.

Within the last year, I have come into a habit of complaining about brands over the Internet when I have a bad experience.  My first instinct is to immediately pull out my phone or computer and tweet about the bad experience, update my Facebook status or even write a blog post about it.  When did this sudden change come?  Why do we all of a sudden feel the need to complain publicly instead of dealing with the problem by ourselves and moving on.  I guarantee there are much worse things in life than UPS not delivering a package on time (see, there I go again with my “not so subtle” complaints).

I remember when I was younger, my family was going on a trip to Florida.  When we got to the airport, our flight was canceled and I swore that we should never fly with that airline again.  I started telling everyone (who would listen at least) that we should always fly Continental, and it became an ongoing joke with my family.  (This was the pre-JetBlue days).  But when did it become necessary to tell as many people as possible and in real time when a company drives me crazy?

Honestly, I want to be the one to tell one of those amazing stories that I complained about a company on Twitter, they DMed me and fixed all of my problems.  I would LOVE to write a blog post about how my flight was canceled (even though JetBlue would never do that), but they came to the rescue and fixed it!  That is actually 95% of the reason that I tweeted a lot when I was stuck in Dallas in March (the other 5% was because I was very angry).

Advertising Age just wrote an article called “Are Major Marketers Training John Q. Public to Whine on Web?” This article was exactly what I was planning to write my blog post about.  There are so many stories published about companies virtually “coming to the rescue” to fix a problem.  As more and more companies invest in digital to increase revenue via Twitter and other social media outlets, more and more consumers take advantage of the possibility that their problems may be solved quicker than they think.

So what does this teach us?  To complain about our problems publicly?  To take word of mouth communication to the next level?  To target companies that have departments to handle virtual complaints?  Will the companies really be able to handle the massive amounts of complaints they receive?  Sure we hear some of the solutions to the problems, but how many issues do they really resolve?

And to end my blog post, I need to give a special shout out to Verizon for the the launch of their new campaign Rule the Air.  Check it out on the website!