We have company in our home this week. On Friday morning I rose early and drove to Albertsons to pick up some needed breakfast items. It’s close to my home, so I continue to shop there—especially if I’m in a hurry.
Over the past couple of years I’ve noticed this Albertsons’ demise. Less and less choices. More and more food items either past or close to their expiration date. Prices that feel twice as high as Wal-Mart or Super Target.
Then, the kicker… I hate those self checkout lines. The whole scanning deal never works for me. Every time I’m forced to do it, it takes forever. I end up standing there waiting for an employee to come by and punch a bunch of buttons to clear the scanning error.
In other stores, I have a choice. Self check, or wait in line. I’ll wait in line 10 or 15 minutes to have a checker’s help. But at Albertsons, many times there’s no choice. They simply open the five or six self-check registers and have one employee monitor them. Again, Friday, I had no choice.
I could no longer hold back my irritation. As I walked from the store to my Honda Element in the parking lot—grocery bag in one hand and iPhone in the other—I tweeted, “The Albertsons store in my town sucks. Can’t understand how they stay in business. High prices w/ no service. Old food. No choices.”
It felt good. Having read how other big companies use Twitter to monitor what’s said about them, I half hoped I would get an immediate response tweet like, “hey @jack_hadley… thanks for voicing your displeasure… please call sally at (xxx) xxx-xxxx so we can make things right”.
The tweet never came.
Later that day, I searched the Twittersphere for other tweets about Albertsons. There were lots of them! They ranged from pleased to displeased to simple general references like, “meet me at Albertsons”. Sort of what I expected.
Then, I decided to see whether or not Albertsons was listening. My research on Twitter, Google, and their corporate website led me to believe that they’re absolutely NOT listening.
I did find one store in La Habra, California making an effort… Good for you.
So what’s up with this? How can corporations the size of Albertsons be so unaware of the business, marketing, and PR opportunities afforded them by these simple tools? I’m sure it’s not easy running a chain of grocery stores in a very competitive space. I get it. All the more reason to be aware of the things that could help.
What do you think?