Sunday, July 29, 2012

The worst Customer Service reply ever #Samsung

Samsung was doling out freebies worth Rs.5000 with Samsung Note in India in the month of April and May 2012 : Sennheeiser Headphones worth Rs. 3500 odd, Flip cover worth around Rs. 1250 and some other stuff. They even made a website (www.samsungpromo.into activate this campaign. This offer and the high decibel campaign seems to have delivered the desired impact by bringing unprecedented sales that even the promo team couldnt handle.

Everyone associated with the campaign seemed to be having a party except the customers. Samsung didnt deliver the freebies within the mentioned time and when they did they delivered a different model than the one promised to the customer. For those Not keen of going into the details of the problem may skip to the next para to see the reply while those wanting to go to the depth of the issue may continue reading. On  customers seeking an update about the delayed delivery of headphones, the promo service team dutifully mentioned that "due to the shortage of Sennheiser Headphones PX 100 II units , we would like to upgrade your request for redemption to Sennheiser Headphones  HD 205 II" only for customers to catch the bluff and reply "I dont find Sennheiser Headphones HD 205 II an Upgrade as you have showcased. Its just a different product. The upgrade to Sennheiser Headphones PX 100 II is  Sennheiser Headphones PX 200 II. If you can upgrade and offer me that I would be happy else kindly ship me my prefered opton at the earliest." They didnt heed to the customer's choice and shipped in their choice of headphones. Customer replies to the promo service team like the one below went unheeded "I received a pack of Sennheiser Headphones. But it isnt the choice I had opted for on the website and reiterated again in my mail to you ... I do not want these headphones and have kept the pack as it is, unopened. Kindly send me Sennheiser Headphones PX 100 II at the earliest and take back these headphones." Finally the promo service team went mute and customers had to go to the Samsung service team

[More: Customer Service can make or break your brand on Social media]

This trouble didnt end here. Infact heres where it really seemed to start. Read the reply below to get a hang on how Samsung's service team values its customers and how they prioritize sales service. This is the worst customer service reply I have ever seen or received. It is the reason why Customer Service personnel should be chosen carefully and trained comprehensively. It seems that brands today dont focus on this aspect though this is a phase that can convert a brand user to a brand advocate or a brand rebel. While marketers spend millions on advertising they dont even spend a small percentage of it on customer service that is so essential to maintain and build their customer base.

The reply

(Click this image to enlarge)

My 3 basic problems with this reply are

1] It is factually wrong. Or should I say that its a lie.
When they say that it is "clearly mentioned that which Headphones you are clicking is not necessary that you would get the same model so, we cannot do anything in this issue." the reverse is actually true.
Their *Conditions Apply aka the Term and conditions on this offer shown at the bottom of their promo site state that "the customer shall be entitled to choose any one of the following gifts (i) Sennheiser Headphones PX100 II, or (ii) Sennheiser Headphones HD205 II, or (iii) Sennheiser Headphones HD419"" 

Even during the process there is no such mention that the company has every right to cull customer's choice and do whatever it deems as illustrated by this screenshot.

The redemption status shows that the customer's choice of Heaphones have been delivered while they havent.
(Click this image to enlarge)

2] Secondly, the reply looks down on the customer by as it puts her 'seniors' sense of judgement above the customers sense. When they say it is "clearly mentioned that which Headphones you are clicking is not necessary that you would get the same model so, we cannot do anything in this issue" do they actually mean that they can do anything they want.

3] The reply seems like casual office chat except with improperly baked sentences, rude tone and improper research.

This letter is a prime example of what not to do in a customer service reply. The next mail that I received from them on following up this issue further shows that this callous attitude and disregard to customers in not just the trait of one customer care executive but of the team in general. The following mail is from another representative from that team. 

Add ons

Customer's mail

------- Original Message -------
Sender : sajith<>
Date : Jul 26, 2012 11:50 (GMT+05:30)
Title : Samsung Galaxy Note Promo Offer Problem


I bought a Samsung Galaxy Note in May when there was a promotional offer of free Seinheiser headphones. Click here for the details of this promotion This offer in fact was a reason for me to buy the Note over other competing models. I had opted for Sennheiser Headphones PX 100 II on this offer. But you have sent me a different headphone the Sennheiser Headphones HD 205 II. I dont want these headphones because these have a smaller design and would be small for my head. I have kept the pack unopened as I thought that this might have happened by mistake. But now the promo support team doesnt respond to any of my mails on this. Please find all the mails below. This is a very irresponsible way of supporting customers after making a mistake.  

Now I request the Samsung support team to kindly look into it and send me the chosen Sennheiser Headphones PX 100 II at the earliest and take back the HD 205 headphones from me. 
Look forward to your reply and a solution.

The Reply in text

On Sun, Jul 29, 2012 at 12:11 PM, SUPPORT INDIA <> wrote:
Dear Customer,

Samsung Namaskar!

Firstly, we would like to thank you for spending your precious time in writing and bringing up your concern with Samsung Sales/Service to our knowledge.

With reference to your mail dated 26 July, 2012, we have disscussed your issue with our seniors, as per them when you have registered your product for promotional gift, there was clearly mentioned that which Headphones you are clicking is not necessary that you would get the same model so, we cannot do anything in this issue.

Thanking and assuring you best of our services always.

Warm Regards,

Supriya Jaiswal
Customer Satisfaction Team - Support. India
Contact Numbers                            
MTNL/BSNL Users: 1800 110011 (Toll-free)
Others: 30308282 (Chargeable - To dial, prefix your local STD code)

Terms and Conditions of Samsung Promo which seems much more customer friendly than their customer service

While we have poor Customer Service examples as this one there are brilliant Customer service departments like one of Sainsbury's which spent time on pleasing even a 3 year old girl who asked "Why is tiger bread called tiger bread? It should be called giraffe bread. Love from Lily Robinson age 3 and 1/2." The customer service reply was so popular that it actually got Sainsburry to rename its Tiger bread as Giraffe bread.

[More: How 'The Protester' can be used in a marketing campaign]


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