A few people in my social network are really good at using social media to get kickin’ perks.
I mean, really good.
And I’ve always wondered how they did it.
Trying to be one of those people, I’ve participated in a few calls-to-action on Twitter…all the while thinking that it’s just a ploy by that company’s social media team to get followers to engage for the sake of numbers. I get it, but sometimes it’s very frustrating to answer one of those calls-to-action and never get a reply – or even a retweet from it.
Social media has transformed the way companies interact with their customers. It has allowed small companies and big brands alike to build relationships, in the truest sense of the word.
A few companies I follow have really done it right…Crate&Barrel (my mothership), Lowe’s (my new mothership)…and Petco.
I will honestly say that my husband and I had favored Petsmart over Petco since bringing Bella home. Petsmart is actually a slightly farther drive for us and can be a bit inconvenient for us to get to, but it’s a larger store with a bigger selection and somehow just feels…nicer. My husband also used to do part-time work at Petsmart back in the day, so we’re a bit partial to it.
He also used to work at Chick-fil-a, but I won’t publicly admit to how often we eat there…
Anyway, I follow both pet stores on Twitter because they generally have some cute things to say.
A few days before New Year’s, Petco launched a #DearPetco campaign…
#DearPetco: My pet is wishing for: ____________________ in the New Year. Tell us with the hashtag #DearPetco
I thought it was kind of a cute idea and honestly never expected anything to come of it, but I still replied…
#DearPetco Bella is wishing for more IPO/Schutzhund training and lots of new tennis balls!
Almost immediately the social media team tagged us in this…
@ShepherdingB Hi! Pls email us at email@example.com w/ your street address. We’d like to send you a little something. #DearPetco
Whaaaaaaaaat? My husband and I started jumping up and down with excitement and high-fiving each other.
(I did not point out that it was me who replied to the tweet.)
Anyway, we sent in our info and waited, wondering what it would be.
A week or so later, Petco replied or retweeted (I can’t remember which and don’t want to dig through their many tweets since then) to another #DearPetco customer who took a pic of the $100 gift card the social media team sent for their cats who wanted new cat carriers.
My jaw nearly dropped to the floor.
We still hadn’t received our “little something” yet, but I was nearly drooling at the idea of a large gift card such as that.
A few days later it finally came in the mail. My hands were almost shaking with excitement and anticipation. <;—–This is a good brand experience.
The letter contained a $25 gift card.
I admit that I felt a twinge of disappointment that it wasn't a larger amount, especially knowing that someone else received $100 for doing the exact same thing.
But I did say that Bella wanted more tennis balls – not a really expensive dog bed or a travel crate or anything like that. After all, IPO training really isn't something they can gift.
And then I kicked myself in the tookus for being ungrateful and not appreciating the generosity of a company who went out of their way to make sure that little old me had a really great experience with their brand.
So, to Petco, let me say this…
@Petco You should reward the members of your social media team responsible for this great Twitter campaign. They have earned you a more loyal customer – for life. #DearPetco