You see it one day in your news feed. Someone you know to be a customer of one of your competitors are complaining bitterly. ‘This is my chance.’ you think to yourself. You gleefully tweet back that you understand their frustration and would be happy to treat them right. Boom, one point for the home team. Easy win, right?
But you never hear from them. What happened?
I’m just going to call it JD’s Law of Normalcy: Treat online interactions like in-person interactions.
Imagine there is a girl (or guy) you always liked, but they were with someone else. Then one day you find them alone, weeping, and sure enough they just had a break-up. Would you put an arm around them and say “I’m sorry you’re sad, but I’ll be your new boyfriend”?
No, you wouldn’t. So applying JD’s Law of Normalcy, you wouldn’t do that online with prospects either. It just comes across wrong. Too opportunistic, too predatory, even if you have genuine motives.
So what should you do?
Again, apply the LoN. You would comfort that person, and leave it there. Your concern is solicitation enough in that circumstance. The same is true online. Show that you’re listening, show you care, and leave it there. Walk away. Definitely take future opportunities to engage them without being too direct. You see where this is going now.