By Kate Merrill

BOSTON (CBS) – Having your complaints heard is easier than ever.

“The customer has tremendous power that they didn’t have years ago,” says Patrick O’Malley, a social media expert. “Now if you have a problem with a company you can tell the whole world about it if you want.”

With a simple email, or a post to Facebook and Twitter, anyone can get a company’s attention fast.

“I think that’s why people choose to complain publicly, because they want somebody to pay attention,” says Jen Kane.

Kane knows all about online complaints. She advises companies on how to handle them.

Kane recommends researching a company’s social media sites before posting your gripe “because if they are not really tweeting much don’t waste your time sending them a tweet.”

And if you’re looking for action watch your language.

“I wouldn’t swear because they may have in their policies that they can just go ahead and delete that,” explains Kane.

Still, sometimes the only way to really get through is to pick up the phone and talk to a company one-on-one.

The volunteers at WBZ’s Call For Action get results for people who have hit a customer service wall. But, it can take time.

“We get on the telephone and we wait forever to get somebody to respond to us,” says Rosalie Snyder.

If waiting on hold discourages you from making that call, you might want to try the website Lucy Phone. “Lucy” waits on hold for you for free, then calls you back once a person picks up on the other end of the line.

It saved the Call For Action volunteers a few minutes giving them a little bit of time to check on some other cases. Not all companies are familiar with Lucy Phone, so there’s a chance you might get disconnected.

Whether you’re complaining by phone or online it’s good to be direct and spell out exactly what you want. All in hopes of reaching a resolution as fast as possible.

To contact Call For Action click on this link or call 617-787-7070 Monday – Friday between 11:00 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.


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