one man's journey into creating gibblybits

Monday, July 30, 2007

Customer Service FTW!

A person with a first and last name contacted me from Facebook. Not because I'm famous like Chris Pirillo (which I'm not, thank Buddha), but because their "help" on Facebook really sucks and their CEO probably puts a lot of stock in "making things right." Having once worked at a mail order biz, I completely understand this. You can make a reaaaaally crappy product, but you can mitigate the crap (to a point) by having superior customer service. Facebook's solution was wise, and I feel like a moron for not thinking of it: apply for an alumni email account. This won't let me join my film school network however, because they don't do alum email.

There are other problems with Facebook that I'll leave alone for now. I think they are experiencing some growing pains, but I hope they turn that ship around fast before people get tired of adding lolcat apps.

Another happy customer service story begins with a trip to my non-local magic supply store. A couple of weeks ago I got nostalgic and ordered up a DVD of Paul Harris, one of my favorite magicians ever. A week passed and no DVD, despite the "shipped" status of their page. Nothing irks me like a lying-ass web page! Those databases are the devil! So I called them up. Unfortunately, I got an omnious: "the number you are trying to reach is no longer in service"... Really bad! At this point I figure the place (in Vegas) has closed shop and is moving to Bermuda or something. Magicians are a slippery lot, after all. But that wasn't the case. After sending a rather inflammatory email threatening legal action (such a desperate, immature, silly ploy it shames me to admit it), I got an email from a person with a first and last name who apologized profusely, explaining the entire city of Nevada had suffered a phone outage. She apologized for the lying web page, and they immediately sent another copy to me, and gave me a free trick download for good measure. Smart idea-- in the mail order biz we liked to do that too, really calms the customer.

Now contrast this with Google, the company who supposedly does no evil. Well, they screwed C.K.'s domain reg, they refuse to add Download Squad in News, and it takes weeks for them to comprehend (never mind fix) the smallest of queries. Essentially they are dropping the ball on a small level because the can afford to... That's something that will eventually come back to bite them in the ass. In fact, there's a term for it. Karma. You'd think Dr. E and Sergei would know all about it...

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