Pizza, Privacy and A Social Media Storm

Pizza Man & Thermal BagI admit it, I don’t even know who Iggy Azalea is. I know, that probably makes me seem really old and lame.

But, when I heard a customer service story about how she ordered a Papa John’s pizza and her personal cell phone number was distributed to friends by the delivery boy, resulting in many awkward texts and a huge violation of her privacy, it definitely caught my ear.

[Insert Shameless Plug Here] I recommend that Iggy signs up for to get a local number to mask her personal cell phone number so she never has to give it out again!

Customer privacy is absolutely no joke. Whether you deliver pizza or answer calls in a call center–you must ensure that the details your customers provide you are safe. This is from their phone number to their passwords to their credit card details. Customers are trusting YOU to deliver a product and to not worry about any repercussions from them sharing personal details with you.

We continue to hear about data breaches from large stores like Target and Home Depot. And, while these are frustrating, they are huge system issues that impact many people. It’s the day to day routine customer interactions that can sneak up on you and bite you in the butt.

I could write many a post on customer trust, legalities and the violations of this and what it means for the customer experience and your business in general. But there is another hefty element in Iggy’s experience that must be brought to the surface:


Iggy, like every other consumer who utilizes social media, hopped on her handle @iggyazalea to share her feelings with Papa John’s on this situation.

And, with 4.22M followers, she was not ignored.

Especially since her Tweets about this experience were shared on February 8th, the eve of National Pizza Day.

Some critics are throwing insults her way saying that she wasted time sharing this feedback and should close her Twitter or do something better with herself.

Anyone in the growing customer service world knows just how important and how impactful social media is.

Jeremy even comments about it in his post, Got Fears? You Are Not Alone, saying:

A customer has a negative experience with one of your agents and they post it to social media. In this case, the customer ends up being Taylor Swift and she writes a song about the experience and it goes viral.

So, was Iggy wrong to share her experience with her 4.22M followers plus the rest of the world? I don’t follow her on Twitter but I still heard about the story. And while I don’t order from Papa John’s (I’m super biased after living in NYC; pizza is not the same anywhere else), I probably won’t ever recommend anyone else to order from them. Not like my friends are huge celebrities and their cell phone numbers are in jeopardy, but simply because this story is now in my head.

And, to you reading this, it’s in YOUR head.

Ahhh, the power of social media and the customer experience.

If it’s a celebrity with a gazillion followers or Joe Smith from down the street Tweeting about your business, people see these Tweets and they impact the customer decision.

Is your company prepared to handle a negative situation on social media?

For a round up of Communicate Better Blog’s adventures in social media customer service, click here.


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