A Dissertation on Jerks and the People Who Buy From Them
OK, in this case, the buyer was me (shaking head in disbelief).
A supplier of ours (the Jerks) who shall remain nameless recently screwed up. Big. They cost us money. When I called to see what, if anything, they could do for us in light of the loss, I was pretty much told to deal with it and that I’m one of many others, and bottom line… “too bad.” When I pointed out how much business we bring to them, I was told in so many words that it didn’t matter. Ack! I was treated poorly and the “customer service” rep I had to deal with was far from sympathetic to our situation and clearly didn’t care that my business had experienced a loss. All the person had to do was to express sincere remorse and compassion – that would have been enough (for me). I’m a pretty easy going person and can understand mistakes, but when he acted like such a JERK, it became about principle.
As a result – I won’t do business with them anymore, nor will I refer to them anymore.
What that rep cost the company (because he didn’t see the big picture) was immense. We used to bring them a LOT of money every year, and to make me happy would have cost a tiny fraction of that just once. But somehow it wasn’t worth it? Talk about biting your nose off to spite your face.
Had they handled it correctly by making SOME gesture to amend for the loss, I would have continued to do business with them and continue to refer new business to them on a regular basis.
Marketing Lesson to be learned here:
RELATIONSHIPS are one of the best marketing tools you will ever have. Your clients and customers need to feel like they are important. A relationship that produces not only their own business, but solid money-yielding referrals, is a relationship to be kept and nurtured. When people hear how great you treated your clients through adversity (as well as the good times), your reputation will do your marketing for you and that’s not something you can buy.