Occupo Vicis (Seize the Opportunity!)

April 18, 2012

Today is a holiday. No doubt about it. Tax season is over.

Well, at least for this year.

I for one dread doing taxes. That’s why I have preferred in the past to hand over the documents to an outside service provider and walk away knowing they will be completed. I didn’t care about the cost, as long as I didn’t have to figure it out on my own.

This year, however, my fiance put up a very convincing argument for why we should complete our own taxes using Turbo Tax online.

He finished his and helped me with mine. We submitted (after a few frustrations and a couple words of annoyance) on Friday night (4/15) just before midnight.

I must admit, my taxes were a bit confusing. During 2010 I had lived in NJ but had no income there, worked in NY but had no residency there, lived and worked in FL, had moving expenses and had medical expenses that exceeded the minimum amounts required.

We awoke Saturday morning to a rejection email from Turbo Tax for Federal and NJ State taxes. He was trying to fix the problem and ran into a ton of issues. (Playing softly in the background:   “I told you we should have used H&R Block.”) He couldn’t get anyone to respond to the online chat on their website and no one answered the phones. I was making pancakes in the kitchen while singing softly, “Why don’t you try Facebooking them.”

Now, for the best part:

At our wits end with a rapidly approaching deadline, we called the nearby H&R Block office and set an appointment for 30 minutes hence.

He went to the Turbo Tax Facebook Page and tried to write on their wall, but couldn’t because you need to “Like” them first. So he did, and then he wrote a harsh, pointed message on their wall, expressing extreme displeasure with their service and suggesting a number of painful places to put their program. He then proceeded to “unlike” them immediately.

Within three minutes he was shouting “NO WAY?!?” –> Turbo Tax responded via Facebook.

He then had to “Like” them again to reply. They went back and forth for a minute on the wall and then Turbo Tax direct chatted him.

They helped him solve the problem.

The taxes submitted successfully.

We canceled the H&R Block appointment.

We did not “unlike” the Turbo Tax Facebook Page this time.

How’s that for “crisis management” and customer service via Facebook?

Turbo Tax turned an admittedly ugly complaint in a public forum into an opportunity to convert us to loyal customers. It worked. Now I’m sharing my experience. Talk about a brand ambassador!

This was Facebook Pages used at its finest.