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How not to run a promotion - or - losing a customer 101

Posted by Gregg Haughton on Nov 16, 2012 2:22:00 PM

Those of you who know me well, know that I am a bit of a motor head. So, when it's time for me to replace a car, I give careful consideration. This time around, I sought a car that would be efficient yet still be fun to drive.

I have always been partial to Fords and over the years have owned 8 Mustangs. My wife has a Ford, and I also have my Dad's 1922 Model T. After careful research, I zeroed in on a Focus ST.

I was so certain of my choice that I put a deposit on the car months before they were available. Ford was offering a Go Pro camera for the first 1000 orders. The dealership confirmed that I was one of the first 1000.

I pickup up the Focus on 9/20 and the folks at Saybrook Ford (a customer of ours) did a great job showing me how the systems work. The car is everything I expected and get's 10 MPG more than my last car.  

The dealer told me that Ford would be sending me the Go Pro camera directly and it may take a few weeks.  

Well it's 11/16, no Go Pro, and my numerous requests to Ford have proven fruitless. For weeks I have been trying to reach anyone a Ford who gives a &%#@. I finally got a name of someone in customer service. After expressing in great detail my frustration this is the e-mail response I got:

I have been in contact with the program manager for the Focus ST camera promotion and he has assured me that you will be getting your camera.

I found this quote from Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, which I think is appropriate:

"If you make customers unhappy in the physical world, they might each tell 6 friends. If you make customers unhappy on the Internet, they can each tell 6,000 friends".

Ford has produced a great product delivered my  a supply channel that performs, then soiled the whole experience over a camera. That's how you lose a loyal customer.

Topics: Customer Service, Loyal Customers, Promotions

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