Email marketing is far from dead. People read their emails daily. Just some of us have mastered the art of appropriate email selection. The other day I received a straight forward email from Best Buy. (Thank you for that) It was direct and got right to the point.
iPhone 4 8GB $49.99
I was not in the market for an iPhone, however when I saw this price, the lights went on and the wheels started turning! Which means I started sharing this great deal with people I thought might benefit, etc.
The more I thought about the price I actually considered getting the phone my self. By this time the email was already buried, 100 deep in my inbox, or worse, removed to trash. Instinctually I googled the nearest BestBuy Retail store in Palo Alto, CA . Then I changed my search to include (phone number) and eventually there was a store number to call; I dialed and right away, a recording. “The number you have reached (650) 321-1918 has been changed the new toll-free number is 888 237 8289” So I called the toll-free number, and guess what I got? The wicked IVR auto attendant phone recorded system. Push 1 to keep going, press 2 if you went to college, press A to implode now!
After 15 different actions on my part, I finally reached a person. I asked to be connected to the East Palo Alto CA Best Buy store. The attendant seemed surprised that I would ask such a thing, and offered to give me the stores local number to dial direct. Do you know what the number was she offered? You guessed it (650) 321-1918, the same number that redirects me, to her!
The Vicious Big Box Loop!
Here is a perfect example of a company that has massive consumer reach, but does a poor job of managing the engagement, follow through, retargeting and customer satisfaction. I mean who in the U.S. hasn’t bought something from Best Buy in the last 5 years. I would think almost everyone has either browsed and/or made a purchase from the big blue and yellow stores at some point.
This isn’t just happening with large companies, this happens to small businesses as well. Trying to stay profitable by cutting unnecessary costs, like expensive live operator support. Customer service is so very important to staying in tune with your audience. Once you have customers, you must keep them, they can be the life blood of your offering and will do more socially, spreading good news, current promotions and referrals, then your paid marketing campaign could ever achieve.
Most likely BestBuy has no idea the bounce rate, abandonment rate or up to date perceived notion of how loyal customers feel. I expressed my frustration to the ‘Toll Free’ operator on the phone and she didn’t seem to care and only continued to offer me the same local number to call, which I explained ‘twice’ already, only led me back to her! I wonder if her pay check depended on me buying a product or service if she would have been more thorough? That’s a whole nother blog post.. !
The sad thing is, Best Buy most likely has no idea this is going on, and the women that was trying to help me on the phone, was not updated about the corporate number change nor was she trained in current marketing promotions by her employer. At biztag we are changing the way consumers connect with their favorite retailers, either online or by location-based store front.
I don’t like to present a problem without a solution, golden rule for our company and the way of thinking at *biztag. So here goes..,
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