By Juliet Umeh
Apparently trying to build an enduring communications relationship between service providers and their consumers, an independent voice for consumers, Feedbackhall, has just launched a community review website called Feedbackhall.com.
The website is open for Nigerians to review and rate products, ask questions, share opinions and real life experiences on products and services offered in Nigerian markets to equip potential users and also provide feedback to the service providers.
Speaking at the launch, the initiator of the website, Dr. Chiugo Kanu, said the aim is to give consumers power. He said: “It doesn’t make sense if the consumers are sharing this information and the producers are not using them. So we want it both ways, we believe that this aims at encouraging good relationships because if the consumers are happy when they share their experiences, companies learn better and will provide better quality goods.
“In a nutshell, we want to make consumers happier, more satisfied and then we want businesses to grow better because we believe that businesses that have consumers at heart develop faster,” she said.
Also speaking at the event, a Nigerian management expert, Professor Pat Utomi, said: “Apart from giving the consumers the voice, another important thing is that it will help the producers themselves to be getting more realistic feedback which is a critical thing for their own competiveness.” He noted that consumer behaviour is useful and key to understanding deeper programmes to help both producers and consumers.
In his keynote address on the topic: Information as a tool of accountability, Director-General, Consumer Protection Council, Mr. Babatunde Irukera, said information is an important tool of accountability because it helps decision-making process in both ways. He lamented that the consumer space is so abused in Nigeria and needs to change.
Said Irukera: “For me, full disclosure of information to consumers is not only the best standard but the only standard, there is absolutely no discretion. Any piece of information that will modify choice must be provided to consumers and that is the gap that is missing in our country. He, however, appreciated the initiators of the website and promised to work with them.
Also, Deputy Director, Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, Mr. Mathias Bassey, appreciated the initiative, saying it was in line with the vision of SON.