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Posts Tagged ‘bad marketing’

Recently my washing machine was acting up.  I’m not an appliance repair person, so here’s my best explanation of what was happening.  Basically, the drum spins really fast at 2 different cycles during the washing period; once during the ‘washing’ cycle, and once during the ‘rinse’ cycle.  During those cycles it sounds like the drum isn’t being held in place and my washing machine was preparing to fly off into space.  I only bought it 2 years ago, so I wasn’t prepared to buy a new washing machine.  After a few trips to mom’s house to get my clothes washed, I realized I had to make a few phone calls.

First Attempt:  For the Ladies

First I tried asking a few friends if they had any references that I might be able to use, because I would trust my friend over some ad in the yellow pages.  A female friend of mine recommended a company whose name was something along the lines of “Hubby Helper”.  The website seemed pretty nice and friendly, it had some guy opening jars, killing bugs, etc.  I couldn’t call this company and still consider myself a man.  I’m sure he does great with the ladies, but I just didn’t feel right calling them to fix my washing machine.  Sorry Hubby Helper.

Second Attempt: Misleading Website #1

A male friend of mine who just had some electrical work done on his house referred me to a “Mr. Handyman”.  That name had a nice ring to it.  He researched the company before using them, and he said they did a good job on his condo.  Their website states that “No Project is too small!”.  I can’t lose right?  I call the local number and ask them if they fix washing machines.  The person on the phone asks me what the problem is, and I spend the next 30-45 seconds trying to describe the problem.  After I’m done he goes, “Yeah, we don’t really fix those types of appliances, we do more carpentry/electrical type stuff.”  Really?? Why did you ask me what my problem was with the washing machine if you don’t fix washing machines?!! I asked him if he could refer me to anyone, thinking maybe they have partners in other trades so they could refer each other, he didn’t.  Back to the drawing board.

Third Attempt:  Misleading Website #2

I start googling the yellow page type websites.  I find one that specifically states on their website that they do washer repair.  They have different numbers for all the areas they do business in CT and my town is listed.  I can’t lose!  I ask the lady who picks up the phone if they fix washers.  She asks me where in CT I live.  I tell her my town to which she replies, “Yeah, sorry, we don’t service that area anymore.”  At this point, I am getting a little frustrated, and I say “But right on your website my town is listed, and I dialed the number specifically for my town.”  She replies, “Yeah I know but we don’t service that town anymore.”  Really??  Why do you have my town still listed on your website with a phone number?  Why are you still answering that phone number if you don’t service that area?!?! Fix the website and take my town off your list, save yourself some money by getting rid of the phone number for my area that you no longer service.  Heck, you might even be able to get rid of a few employees since you have one less town to service, you should stop answering calls from that town!

Fourth Attempt:  Please Hold

So I call the next place on the list.  I get an automated response saying something to the effect of, “Please hold.  We want to give you quality service and attention.  Right now we’re doing that with other customers that are before you, but once we get to you in the queue, you will receive the same quality and service.”  Well that little pitch impressed me, it sounds like they focus on quality, I’ll stick around and see if they can help me.  But, after 20 minutes of sticking around and hearing that message repeated 10 more times, I lose my patience and hang up.

Fifth Time’s a Charm

Finally, after calling another place, I found someone who could repair my washing machine.  I scheduled for a Monday morning, he came, and we were done in about 45 minutes.  Apparently ‘they don’t make ’em like they used to’ and as cheaper parts are used they are more prone to breaking down.  That’s unfortunate.

Recap

My main frustrations were with the first couple of phone calls I made.  Mr. Handyman should list the types of projects that are too big for them.  The second place I called should fix their website and take down the number for my town.

But all is well now.  My clothes are nice and clean and the washing machine no longer thinks it’s a space shuttle.

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