Thanks for an amazing Extra Life!

How Jack Spade lost a customer. It isn’t hard.

When I started this company in 2007, it was pretty rough explaining to the suits around the conference table what this thing called online communities was all about and why it mattered.  Forget explaining virtual worlds and avatars.  Then came along Facebook and Twitter and Social Gaming and all the sudden we at Metaverse were selling bread (Rich told me I should clarify that “selling bread” means “common”, but I believe in the sophistication of this blog’s readers.  Then Rich said “don’t say ‘sophistication’ in any way connected to our blog” Touche, Rich).  But the most significant move we made as a company was recognizing very early on the power that was being unleashed on the individual.

While customer interactions of yesteryear were one-on-one affairs, today’s customer can share experiences on websites, blogs, and social networking sites, singing praises from the digital rooftops or inciting a virtual mob.  And it was exactly our years of experience talking to your fan/consumer/gamer in a very public way, that translated smoothly into handling not only your front facing social support when potentially millions are listening, but also traditional one on one support that can also potentially turn extremely public.

Nothing illustrates this more, than my personal experience in the past week.  In the last 20 years, I have spent $405.00 on bags (I don’t do purses).  First was a $5 backpack from Target.  I still have it and it is still super cute. Second was a Manhattan Portage bag my new husband bought me as a wedding gift, we hadn’t combined checking accounts yet, so I don’t count that. 😀 Third was a free messenger bag from Cartoon Network.  I also still have that.  But a couple of years ago I was wandering around the West Village in NYC between meetings and I took a turn into Jack Spade’s super awesome store.  I fell in love with their Waxwear messenger bag, swallowed the huge lump in my throat, and plopped down $400.  “You will have it for life!” Said the shop assistant.  And seeing as I still have my 1972 VW Squareback from college, my Docs from the 90s, and my husband, I believed him.

Unfortunately, the bag didn’t hold up well.  In fact, last summer I stopped using it all together, because frankly it was a little embarrassing to be seen with.  As one of our chief moderator’s “friends” on Facebook said, it looked like I lived with 25 feral cats.

The next part of the story is in this video, which I posted on Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo yesterday.

My Jack Spade Bag 🙁 <——This is the video link, Rich.

Screen Shot 2013-10-17 at 11.32.41 AM

The rest of the story is the awesome new bag I got from Timbuk2, the explosion of Timbuk2 love on Twitter, Facebook, our internal company network, and now this blog.  And the complete silence from Jack Spade.  Jeffrey Hayzlett, former CMO of Kodak, was once asked by his Board “What is the ROI for engaging on social media?”  His response was “What is the ROI for not listening?”  One on one, customer interactions can become extremely public.  Do you hear that Jack?


–Amy Pritchard, CEO

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