American Apparel gets it.
Heh. Bet you didn't think you would read that on my blog. But, they get it beyond their very cool store in Second Life, but they get blogs and the new PR in the blogosphere.
Yes, I linked to the Weronikia Cwir's comment on my post on their store in SL.
Which, btw, is the first Google link to her full name (pretty neat).
Why do they get it? Well, just like the first post, I was contacted by Cwir - but this time she emailed me directly to address the issues I brought up in my post about what's wrong with American Apparel.
I wish she had posted her comments on the post, but I understand why she did not. But, here's a lesson for any corporation in working with blogs.
- Monitor the blogosphere. Cwir had noted I had written once about American Apparel, and within a couple hours, had come back to check the blog.
- Respond in kind. Whether it is a comment on the blog, or an email to the blogger, be proactive. It's like a Blog SWAT team - find and respond immediately, and you can stem any blood loss.
- Repair the relationship. If it is possible, fix the relationship. Just by her showing up to email me, she has kept a customer. Think about that on various levels - you work with the public, and you can save that relationship. That's immense, and why some corporate blogs - like GM's Fastlane (full disclosure: GM's a client) - work well. It is a true conversation with the customers, in an honest voice.
- You don't need a blog to respond to blogs. That's just as important as others. Even if a company does not have a blog, that does not preclude them from the blogosphere. This is a huge lesson that PR firms need to embrace. It's not all about the blog, it's about the conversation.