kinetik IT blog spot

Tech Buzz at its best

Social Media: A Force for Good! (Interactions with Customers, That Is)

As we pass the halfway mark in 2014, not much has changed this year in how social media affects our use of various outlets—perhaps with the exception of those taking part in the “99 Days of Freedom” experiment. The usual rules still apply, to post topics that are timely, emphasize the customer’s needs and building a relationship, make offers and information unique to the outlet, and, most importantly, use proper grammar!

While some companies fail to grasp these simplest of rules, others have not only embraced the use of social media to build their brand, they are taking innovative steps to connect with customers and offering unique incentives for those who interact. By integrating social media into their corporate structure and business plan, these companies are engaging with customers on a new level.

One such company is Whole Foods, who established a dedicated team responsible for monitoring social channels for customer questions, and concerns, as well as praise. After announcing in March that it would begin labeling GMOs, the company received a lot of customer questions and feedback, which it then used to create a initiative to educate customers and to answer the most frequently asked questions.

Hampton Hotels and Restaurants is another example of business getting to the heart of what matters to customers. The company employs a dedicated staff to listens to every single tweet, post, status update or comment about their hotels and restaurants—and for a chain of their size, that’s a lot of mentions.

Primarily, the staff members address the issues and complaints, but this company takes it a step further. In one example, a guest received a bowl of soup and a spot of tea. This may not seem terribly out of the ordinary. That is, until you consider that the guest, who was in a Maui hotel, had voiced her woes over social media that she was sick that day and couldn't go out. In addition to the thoughtful nourishment, the hotel included a get well card to her tray, for good measure.

Credit card behemoth American Express connects card members with merchant partners—millions of them—allowing a card member to load an offer directly onto their card via Twitter hash tags. Last March, the company launched a program with the functionality to tweet special hash tags to make purchases, allowing customers to buy products from companies like Sony, Amazon, and Microsoft.

Using social media in business is far from an exact science, and while the basic tenets may not change year to year, the inventive ways businesses engage with their customer base is evolving, creating its own niche.

Security Tips for Business

To ensure online safety, users should start with the basics – whether it’s for business or personal use.  Namely, users should make sure the computer is clean from data compromising software such as spyware before completing any online transactions related to banking or personal information; users need to have a complex password; and, when online, users must verify websites are secure and sensitive information is encrypted by the provider.  For business-specific security, a few more considerations apply.

While tips for business security are similar to those for personal use, businesses need to view things from a more comprehensive enterprise-minded level.  For businesses, it’s imperative not only to have anti‑spyware and anti‑virus software installed, but also maintaining security updates and patches are installed in a timely fashion.  It’s also imperative for businesses to ensure that backups of data are performed on time.

It’s not enough just to back up data, either.  At Kinetik I.T., we recommend trying once a month to restore a file from a backup to verify it was done correctly, ensuring that data is accessible when needed.  “We have often seen it happen where a company, after doing years of backups, has never tried to restore a file. Then, when they lose data and try to restore it, it’s very disappointing to find that all the time and effort they’ve spent on backups has been for naught.  And restoring a file is a quick and simple task – and it can make all the difference,” said Kinetik I.T. president Josette van Stiphout. Businesses should make sure data is backed up correctly, and that the restore is successful.

Businesses can also have a network assessment performed, which, in addition to assessing security, includes ensuring that employees only have access to the appropriate information and files, that the Active Directory is set up correctly, and that external vulnerabilities are being identified and taken care of.

Feel like your company’s online security isn't what it should be? Talk to a member of the Kinetik I.T. Team today to see how we can help.

Kinetik I.T. At a Glance

At Kinetik I.T., we love and take pride in what we do, specializing in web site design, internet marketing, branding, software design and programming, web application development, ecommerce and shopping cart applications, computers and networking, and disaster recovery planning.  While we work with a wide variety of clients, we guarantee the highest quality work in all areas to achieve the client’s goals and vision. 

To give an overview of our work, we maintain a CV, of sorts, although the projects listed are only a small representation of client projects in the Phoenix-Scottsdale area, and across the US.  We provide this resume on the Kinetik I.T. website, as a method of outlining our diversity in experience and skills. We want both our continuing clients, as well as potential ones to see the range of our expertise.  All of our software developers and analysts have participated in the projects listed in this resume and have various skills and expertise that will contribute to any project.


Skills Summary

  • Analysis (Functional Specification)
  • Database Design
  • Software Design (User Interface, External & Internal)
  • Implementation & Coding
  • Testing
  • Integration
  • Client/Server (n-Tier)
  • Project Management

Operating Systems

Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP,  Windows 95/98/2000, Windows NT, Windows Mobile, Windows PocketPC


Technical Expertise

Microsoft Access, Microsoft SQL Server, SQL Reporting Services, VB.NET, Visual Basic, C# (C-Sharp), VBA (Visual Basic for Applications), VB Script, ASP.NET, ASP (Active Server Pages), Silverlight, SharePoint, Microsoft Office Automation (Excel), Visual Studio.NET, Visual Studio, Visual InterDev, Expression Web, XHTML, HTML/DHTML, CSS Standards.


KINETIK I.T.’S PROGRAMMING STANDARDS, GUIDELINES & TECHNIQUES FOR: Windows Application Development, Microsoft Visual Basic, Microsoft Access, Web Application Development.

To learn more about services and products, and to stay up to date with Kinetik I.T., visit or follow Kinetik on Facebook