Wednesday, September 3, 2014

We'll take your money ...

I ordered some brake pads for my 'classic' MR2 from Eurocarparts. When I placed the order this showed on the page,

Note that one set of the the pads were in stock, the other 'available to order'. However, a day after I got an 'order confirmation' email. I got this email.

Yep ... after taking my money, they have decided to see if they can get the products I ordered. And does this email apply to both products or are the 'in stock' pads already on their way to me?

But here's the worst aspect of this. They have taken my money - but I have to contact them to see if they can supply the goods I have already paid for. What if I do not? Will they automatically refund my payment. 'Shoddy' does not do this service justice.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

And email is still the poor relation

I covered this issue back in 2008 and again in 2012 ... and things seem to be getting worse and not better.

Here's the automated response to my filling in a response form on npower's website [they keep sending me the bill for something that I paid for six months ago]. 

Can you believe it - 7 to 10 days to respond? That's up to two weeks on their Mon-Fri working times. To paraphrase what I said back in 2008: 

Yep, they can supply folk to answer phones 12 hours a day, but it can take 10 days to answer an email!

Ho hum.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

locked out ... when I'm already in

This is similar to my previous entry in some ways - except in this one I was trying to access a facility AFTER I had logged in using my name and password. The problem was that the system was not accepting my memorable name. Now, I'm pretty sure I has it right - but anyway, I clicked on the link to get my memorable name sent to me. And got this ..

 As you can see from the 'sign out' link - I was already signed in. And yet the 'name does not match that on our records'. So ... that will be the name I used when I just logged in a few minutes ago. You know ... the name it used when it welcomed me in using - yes - my name. 

Saturday, May 17, 2014

unsubscribing a non-subscription

This is a subject I have covered before, and I suspect there is something nefarious behind it - but I got this email from 

Now, I may have looked at that site, but I have never purchased from it and I have never subscribed to it ... so I clicked on the 'unsubscribe' button, entered my email in the box and got this ...

Yep - the email address they sent me to welcome me as a subscriber to the Cheapflights newsletter isn't an email address that is subscribed to the Cheapflights newsletter.

So ... in a very competitive market, would I ever trust with my holiday flight booking?  

Friday, May 2, 2014

ooops ... Google spams its own email

Google's gmail managed to decide this message from Google was spam and [automatically] put it in my spam folder. Doh!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Get a life

I've been doing research for my new book [Social Media Marketing ... coming to a bookshop or computer screen near you soon] and I was looking for example of good practice in social media service. One organization which seems to get it right with customers is First Direct.

However, I came across the following example of one of the bank's Twitter conversations.

OK, so I'm maybe I'm living in the last [lost?] generation ... but conversations with my bank about odd socks? I can't even remember having a conversation with either of my ex-wives about odd socks - let alone complete strangers at my bank.

Is that really what social media marketing is all about? Or is it part of relationship marketing?  Or do people on Twitter really have nothing else in their lives that they 'like/friend' commercial entities and then respond to inane questions sent out to them?

Ho hum

Saturday, March 22, 2014

SERP that takes the biscuit

For reasons I won't go into ... I had cause to search for "McVities" on Google. And this was the result:

Now that is what I call getting your SE branding strategy right. Take particular note of the bold/blue/link titles - which are determined by the website developer. For students of domain names - I like the McVitie's' use of and .com. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

no phone ... no business

I was shopping around for some motorbike insurance - and this is what I found on one 'comparison-type' site:

So here's the thing: I don't give out my mobile phone number to businesses with whom I have no relationship ie I am not a customer. Even with those to whom I am a customer, I'm very selective about who gets my number. So there is no way I was going to give out my number only for every one of the insurance companies listed on the site to text or ring me about insurance.

So I abandoned the quote ... no business for them.

Oh ... I nearly forgot - what if I don't actually have a mobile phone?

Saturday, March 1, 2014

not supporting supporters

I received this email. It is from the football club I have supported for nearly 50 years. The football club for which I have had a 'Forest Player' subscription for around 10 years. A subscription for which this email address is the contact email address for my subscription to 'Forest Player'.
My only consolation is that [I assume] the service is outsourced to an organization that needs to read anything on the subject of relationship management.
Ho hum.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

no long names please

Here's another bad practice I thought had died out in the last century.
I was setting up a standing order from a TSB bank account - including, as you would expect, the name of the recipient. Which was fine if you have a short name. The recipient in my case is a business and has 28 characters [including spaces] in its name. But the form only allowed only 16 characters - I couldn't even fit my name in. Ho hum.