Answer the question honestly. Then point me to the page on your website where I can find email addresses and phone numbers for real people in your organisation. What about if I phone up and ask to be put through to a Director? Thought so.
Tomorrow, at our client conference, I'm going to be using this slide with a quote from Darren Cornish, Director of Customer Experience at Norwich Union (now Aviva):
It's from a blog post he made to his staff in which he distributed his email address and phone number for them to give to customers at their discretion. That's so unusual it's almost shocking, but I think it's where we all need to get to in an increasingly communicative market.
Big brands need to learn the lessons of the cluetrain manifesto—the era of one way conversations (brand broadcasting) is over. We need to allow customers and staff to engage at all levels of the organisation. Taking the first steps is scary, but it'll be a better, more honest, world.