Customer opinion in the age of the internet is ever more paramount. If it were true in pre-cyberspace times that “a happy customer tells a friend, while an unhappy customer tells the world”, modern businesses must assume that dissatisfied customers extraterrestrially broadcast messages of disappointment. To balance their reputations, corporations are working laboriously for positive feedback. Some will stop at almost nothing for a 5 star review. Take this letter I received in the mail recently, following my purchase of a microwave (it was followed by 3 phone calls and 6 emails):
Thank you so much for purchasing a new microwave from Electrical Brothers! We’ve been in business for nearly 250 years, and we credit the success of our appliance stores to the positive feedback from customers just like you! We hope you love your microwave, and that your experience with its installation was profound. Please take 5 or 50 minutes or so to complete a customer satisfaction survey for us. Our goal is 200% consumer contentment. Meaning we hope you’re so happy with us that you have a non-customer friend sign a photocopied survey with excellent ratings, just so you’ll relieve them from hearing your nonstop acclaim about us!
Should you find yourself unable to give us a score of 11 (meaning Preternaturally Infallible), please contact our Chairperson, Carmelito. That’s right, Carmelito wants to hear from you if you think we’ve only earned a 10 on any single question. He’s six sigma like that.
As a token of our gratitude for your survey of all “11” ratings, please enjoy the enclosed gift. It’s a travel mug with the ability to contain coffee, water and tea simultaneously yet separately. Now, would a company with services and products less than “11” give you a mug like this? We didn’t think so! Look closely and you’ll see not only your sales contact Al’s autograph on the mug, but Chairperson Carm’s too!
Carmelito actually lives in Bora Bora, so while you shouldn’t be shy in contacting him about any less than stellar experiences, we ask that you do take account of the time difference before calling. Make no mistake, however; he wants to personally guarantee your delight. Nothing matters to him more. On one occasion, a customer ranked their appliance delivery only a “4”, and Carmelito insisted that his cousin Anthony pay a personal visit to them. The client had some terrible misfortune that day, because Anthony found the man bruised beyond belief from some freak staircase accident, and offered to be a good Samaritan and drive him to his private doctor for medical care. Needless to say, the customer edited that delivery score to an “11” as soon as he was released from the hospital! That’s how much Electrical Brothers cares for you.
So please, take a few moments and rate us the way only a satisfied customer like you can.