Crappy Customer Service

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I was reading Capital Ideas today and the lead post was titled “Bad Customer Service: Baskin Robbins” and it was about the promotion Yahoo! ran yesterday where registered members could print out a coupon for a free scoop of ice cream in celebration of Yahoo!’s 10th anniversary. If the closest Baskin Robbins was too far away, I may have run into this very scenario. In essence, he brought the coupon in and Baskin Robbins wouldn’t honor it. Now you have a disgruntled customer posting on his blog about the awful customer service of an ice cream chain that isn’t doing as well as, say a Coldstone Creamery (they’re awesome by the way).

This got me thinking about my own customer service troubles. There was this one time that I brought in a coupon for 50 free prints to the Kodak PhotoCenter in a Target. The manager looked at the coupon (it was a printout from the Target website) and then looked me as I was just caught shoplifting baby clothes. She asked me I had ever used the coupon there before (no, I just printed it out that afternoon) and then asked me my name and practically scolded me. She told me that she had my name on record and that if I tried to use it again she would report me. Report me to whom? I gave her the coupon and took my prints. The prints were absolutely awful. Kodak prints terrible terrible digital photos. How do I know? I printed out the same photo from Snapfish, Target, and ShutterFly and the Kodak’s were the worst by far. I wrote Target a letter and was told that the Kodak photo centers are their own company and I left the matter alone. Don’t go to the Kodak booth in the Target in Silver Spring, MD.

Well, that’s a case of bad customer service. I have several instances of good customer service. I once bought a 12 pack of Diet Cokes from somewhere and they had no syrup! I called up Coca-Cola (number printed nicely on the can) and after I told them some tracking numbers so they could do quality control stuff, they sent me a nice metallic coupon for a free 12 pack. I probably should’ve tried the rest of the Diet Cokes but two of the 12 were bad and so I tossed the other 10. Starbucks once sent me two coupons for free drinks (anything you wanted) after I complained about rude service from a Starbucks in a rest stop. So some companies are on top of their game and others just don’t get it.

I suspect that if Murray complained to Baskin Robbins management, they’d send him a letter and a few coupons for the treatment he received at that franchise.

{ 5 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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5 Responses to “Crappy Customer Service”

  1. Murray says:

    Haha, funny to see that you picked up my rant against BR. And yes, when I called the 800 number to complain, they said they would be sending me a coupon for free ice cream.


  2. Matt says:

    First, being the ice cream aficionado that I am, I tend to disagree on the quality of the cold stone creamery. Their particular ice cream just has a odd consistency so that they are able to mix in any of the other topping that you choose. The ice cream also makes me very, very thirsty, which is a characteristic that is not normal for quality ice cream. What are my qualifications, you ask? Whelp, I worked in a local ice cream store (not a chain with corporate funds backing them up) for 5 years while in grade school and high school, so I am familiar with the product. And, that gets me to customer service….

    That’s great about Coke and Starbucks and how they sent you a coupon for free products. However, I am shocked about Target and how they treat you so rudely. The problem with customer service is that the attitude of many individuals in the workforce is one of indifference toward their work and the products that they have been hired to sell. People in America today do not value the quality and honor put in a hard day’s work as they once did. Work is seen as more of a chore rather than a responsibility or an opportunity. Therefore, customer services declines, the price of products and services will only go up because companies are sending out free coupons and have to recoup costs from lost customers. Anyway, here’s my 2 cents, oh, and who can I speak to about the service provided on this site? 😉

  3. jim says:

    Management will take your comments under observation. 🙂

  4. Matt says:

    Is this site a subsidiary of Target? I want some action like Coke or Starbucks. Observation does nothing for me and the other loyal viewers.

  5. Czarina says:

    The Target in Laurel, MD also prints terrible photos with their Kodak shop too. I am never going there again for photos. The quality if awful and Koda and Target should be ashamed that they want to charge people for such terrible work.

    You are also right about Coldstone. The icecream itself is not very good, and it is an odd texture…which only serves to hold the “mix-ins” that makes the stuff palatable. Coldstone also claims to have invented the technique, but they didn’t, it has already been in use for several years before there was every a Coldstone. I don’t eat their stuff, to “trendy” for me, and not that good.

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