The Most Dedicated Woman I’ve Ever Met

The Most Dedicated Woman I've Ever SeenEverything seems to be reviews, news, and help. So when I was thinking about what I want to write about, I thought of a story that always makes people laugh and think “How could a person do that?” So, without further ado, here’s the story.

A few years ago, before I had my website, I was known around town as “The guy who fixes computers.” Every day, at least five people would bring me their computer and say, “Here. There’s a blue screen. Fix it and don’t make me take out a second mortgage for the bill.” So I would take them and usually have them fixed by the next day.

Well, one day, a lady came in and told me that her computer was broken. She described to me what it was doing. It had all the signs of a broken operating system. “How can you tell what’s wrong with it by just listening to me tell you what the problem is?” She said.

“Well, ma’am,” I said, “I’ve been in this business for a little while, and I’ve fixed hundreds, maybe even thousands of computers. I’ve seen this problem before, so when you describe it to me I can tell what the problem is.”

“Oh.” She said with a suspicious tone. “Well, if you’re so smart then why don’t you tell me how much it would cost to fix it?”

“$40, ma’am.” I said politely. “The place down the street charges $80.”

“Well I’m going to find a place that’s cheaper than you. Because I don’t love my computer enough to pay that much to have it fixed.”

“Okay. Have a nice day.” I said.

She left my shop on that sunny Colorado afternoon, speeding down my gravel driveway and turning up the dust like a thousand cattle. “Well, I probably won’t be seeing her again. Or at least not any time soon,” I thought as I got back to work fixing the computer I was working on before she came in.

The next day, the same lady called me. “Did you go to college to work on my computer?” She asked.

“No, I didn’t. But I have plenty of experience to do what I need to do.”

“Okay. Goodbye,” she said as she hung up the phone.

Over the next couple of days, I had at least 20 phone calls from this lady asking me questions about computers. I answered all of them nicely, but apparently not nicely enough.

And then, I got the last phone call. “I’m in Denver! And I found someone cheaper than you!” She said, excited.

Just to clarify, I lived in Craig, Colorado. So for her to drive to Denver cost her at least $40 in gas alone.

“Well, that’s good. I guess you won’t need me anymore.” I said.

“Aren’t you going to say anything about me driving all this way to prove to you that you’re not the cheapest?” She asked.

“Nope.” I said. “Because even though half of this town hates me, none of them have ever wanted to prove me wrong as much as you did. And I doubt any of them ever will.”

After that, we went through a little bit of jabbering about her proving me wrong, and then we hung up the phone.

You’re probably asking yourself what the point of this story is. Well, there are a couple of points.

  • There aren’t many stories like this on LockerGnome, and I wanted to do something a little different.
  • I wanted to prove to everyone who says that this world has gotten so lazy that it really hasn’t. (That only applies to about three out of 10 people!)

Questions? Comments? Leave a comment below!

My name is Mark Devens. I live in southern Minnesota, where the winters are long and cold, and the summers are just as long but a lot more humid. I love to write. I write everything from poems to tutorials, and enjoy every second I’m doing it. When I’m not writing, I like to work on computers, play with gadgets, and help people with anything they may need help with, tech related or not. I do some fishing, but not a lot. I’m much more of an inside person than an outside person. Since I’m inside so much, I often am very bored, and that’s how I manage to get so much writing in.

[Photo above by NoXstar / CC BY-ND 2.0]

Clearwire Throttling and Bad Customer Service Ruins Experience

A Clearwire customer service representative told me last night that my bandwidth was being throttled due to excessive congestion and that it should only last 15 minutes. Unfortunately, this throttling has been taking place for a week, more often than not. During the conversation, she informed me that every customer in my area was being treated the same way. What she didn’t know was that my home has two of their 4G modems, and one of them was operating at 10 Mbps while the other was cruising at around dial-up speeds. If all customers using the tower located a block from my location are being throttled, there’s no reason why my two modems should have such a widely diverse connection speed. In fact, my portable 4G hotspot has bailed me out during the seemingly endless slowdowns affecting my home modem on a regular basis.

The bandwidth throttling is so bad that I’m often unable to use audio Skype, which makes my primary mode of communication useless. The representative I spoke with on the phone gave no indication that Clearwire had any tickets in, or plan in place to fix the ongoing problem. When a service area is being throttled more often than not, that is a “clear” indication that something is wrong and needs to be fixed.

After speaking to the representative about the basic issue and when it is expected to be fixed, I asked for a manager. In part, I wanted to speak to one in order to express my satisfaction with the representative in terms of her calm and coolness in the face of what she must have to deal with all day long. After having spent 10 years in customer service myself, I admire anyone that has to field calls for what amounts to a very misleading service. After a five minute hold, she returned to the line and informed me that not only was a manager not available, but I wouldn’t be receiving any calls back due to a high call volume.

At the end of the call to, I asked the representative for the number to their public relations office in order to get some form of official statement from them regarding the throttling. Until that point, I hadn’t indicated any intention of moving this matter to the public court. The representative put me on hold for a brief moment before responding, “We don’t have a number for them.”

I asked her to clarify, as it is uncommon for a modern company to have no internal directory of numbers for their call center representatives. She confirmed again that there isn’t a number for their public relations office available. Thankfully, I was able to get someone in a public relations capacity to respond when I made mention of the situation in Twitter. Unfortunately, the caring stopped at the initial reaction.

That’s when I took a look at their full Twitter feed. It appears Clear is doing more to deal with unsatisfied customers than they are spreading the word about the happy ones. I’m guessing they don’t see much positive feedback.

The Number You Call For Technical Support Really Does Matter

When you call technical support or for information about any company, the number you call really does matter. For the past few months I have written articles about my experience with Straight Talk. Yet when I have needed support from Straight Talk, I have found that either email support for a simple problem, or calling its corporate office, resulted in better customer service than calling the standard technical support phone number. FYI – the Straight Talk corporate phone number is 800-876-5753.

I also discovered that when you call DIRECTV, if you call 800-531-500 and press 0 0 quickly, you can usually cut down on your wait time. I received this tip from a DIRECTV representative when I called before. It seems to work, but like any tip, your mileage may vary.

So if you can stand listening to music for countless minutes on end, or just sit holding a phone to your ear, how do you find the best number to call?

My first step is to do a Google and find out what others are using. You would be surprised at how many recommendations you will find.

There is another trick you can try. When you are prompted to push a number, do nothing. Remember those old rotary phones? The system may be fooled into thinking you have an oldie but a goodie and connect you to a real person. Remember, your mileage will vary depending on which company or business you call.

Give GETHUMAN [link below] a try. This website has a listing of phone numbers for a wide assortment of companies and businesses that others have found useful. They even offer a listing of phone numbers for some elusive companies like Google and Facebook.

What tips do you have? Share your experiences with us.

Comments welcome.

Source – Gethuman

DIRECTV – My First 24 Hours

As many of you may have known, I switched from Dish Network to DIRECTV. The reason I made the switch was that DIRECTV offered a Premium TV package that was lower than what I was paying Dish for. I have been a Dish customer for 3 years and have absolutely complaints with the company nor the service they offer. In fact Dish customer care is great. As an example the hard disk went out on my Dish DVR and the company delivered a replacement to me less than 24 hours after I reported the failure. They even included a return box and postage to return the broken DVR.

So yesterday, Wednesday, December 8,2010 the DIRECTV technician arrived at my door to do the new installation. Before he even arrived DIRECTV was in contact with me to confirm not only the appointment time, but also to confirm the exact hour of arrival. The tech. took the time to check where the new receivers would be placed, where the connection to the Internet was and where the location of the satellite dish would be.

The install took about 2.5 hours and the system was up and running. The tech. was very enthusiastic to show me how to record a program in one room and play it in another from any TV. That is a nice feature. With Dish we only had the record capabilities from the main and one secondary TV. Also with the Dish DVR, the second TV connection only broadcasts in standard definition.

Much of last evening was spent setting up our favorite channel menu and dumping the stuff we never watch. Once that chore was completed we next channel surfed to see how the reception was. Perfect on all stations. I was pleased that all of our local stations were in hi-def. Dish for our area still broadcasts the locals in standard def. In order to receive the channels in hi-def from Dish, I had to have a second satellite dish installed, which I thought was a dumb idea.

DIRECTV also offers a library of some 4,000 movies and TV programs that I can stream via my Internet connection.

Thus far DIRECTV is working perfectly. I am pleased with the install.

Comments as always are welcome.

Verizon Won’t Let Customer Go, But It’s Not The Only One

I read an article today in which a prior customer of Verizon was being chased by the company; Verizon wanted him to come back. It seems what annoyed the prior customer was the time Verizon sales people were calling him. He thought 7:15 am was just a little early in the morning.

Yet he is not the only one who has been bugged by companies that want us back. I have had two incidents in which I had to get downright rude to get the company to stop calling.

The first was with AT&T and a sales representative that I tracked down to a Florida call center. This yo-yo was calling at 6:00 am in the morning, forgetting all about the time difference of three hours from where he was and where I lived on the west coast. I recall one Saturday morning getting the call at 6:00 am and I was able to reach the phone before he hung up. I gave him a severe tongue thrashing and the calls ceased. I think it was the sentence that I was going to fly down to Florida and personally strangle his neck like a chicken that might have done the trick. LOL

Recently it was Vonage that wanted me back. After dumping their service in favor of going to cell phones only, Vonage would not let go. Even after I came up with a ridiculous story that I was moving to China, where Vonage had no service, the calls kept coming. My problem was when I disconnected from Vonage, I gave the company my new cell number. Shame on me.

So after a flurry of phone calls I finally said to myself enough was enough. At about 8:30 pm one evening the phone rang. Guess who? Vonage calling. I firmly told the woman on the phone that I do not accept these type of phone calls for solicitation and to cease in calling. That worked and I have received no calls since.

What have you done to stop those annoying phone calls?

Comments welcome.

Source – Consumerist

Straight Talk – No BlackBerry Support And AT&T Now Available

During the past few weeks I have received quite a few comments to the three articles I have written concerning Straight Talk. For some of the questions that were asked, I did not have an answer. So I contacted Straight Talk Customer Service and this is its response to two of the issues I was asked about:

Dear Ron,

Thank you for your interest in Straight Talk Wireless. We are responding to your recent inquiry.

We understand that you would like to inquire if a BlackBerry phone can be used with Straight Talk. We also believe that you want to inquire when AT&T service will begin.

We regret to inform you that you cannot use a BlackBerry phone with Straight Talk since we are only able to activate handsets manufactured specifically for Straight Talk Wireless.

With regards to your concern about the service with AT&T, we are happy to inform you that we have already started the service. You can buy phones which has the SIM card since these are the phones that are utilizing AT&T towers to have its service. However, we cannot assure that every area will have the coverage of the service. In order for us to check the availability of the service in a specific area, we need to have its ZIP code.

If you have any further questions or concerns, please contact one of our customer care representatives at 1-877-430-2355.  For your convenience, our representatives are available Monday-Sunday from 8:00 AM to 11:45 PM EST.

Thank you for being a Straight Talk Wireless customer.  We appreciate your business.

Sincerely,

Straight Talk Wireless

I hope this answers some of the questions that were asked.

Comments welcome.

Are You A Computer Moron? Geek Squad Gal Has Advice For You

The folks at Best Buy have a group of geeks they call the Geek Squad, who can help those who are computer illiterate fix their machines. But one Geek Squad gal sent 7 things that anyone can do, just to avoid having to bring their computer to Best Buy. These are not earth shattering suggestions for those who are avid Lockergnome readers, in fact for most of us these tips are common sense. But for those out there in computer land who find the computer a mystery, these seven tips could save you some heartache and pain.

Here is what she says:

I work with the Geek Squad and have tips on how consumers can SAVE MONEY when it comes to their computers. This is what all computer owners should know by now:

1) Keep all your data backed up.

Put it on a disc, external HDD, upload it to a data safe website, another computer, somewhere! One place is NO GOOD, two places is OK, but once one fails, you need to create another second spot! This will save you from 99 to 149 dollars when you bring your computer in to Geek Squad right off the bat. NO manufacturer warranty covers your data — you need to do it yourself. Back up your pictures, contacts, documents, taxes, music, and ANY business information you have.

2) Have recovery discs for each computer you have.

This is your licensed copy of your OS. These are specific to your computer’s guts (processor, mother board, sound, and graphics cards). They have the drivers needed for your computer to use itself. Burn them right away when you get your computer on to DVDs and put them somewhere safe. It will take from one to three hours to do. If you lose them you can order them from your manufacturer for between 15 and 50 dollars, depending on the brand. HP is usually cheaper; Sony is wicked expensive. They take about two or three weeks to get in if you end up needing them when you replace a hard drive or need to fix Windows. If you don’t get them that way, you can purchase a full copy of Snow Leopard for about 30 dollars, or Windows 7 for about 200.

3) One anti-virus at a time, please.

Two at a time is like pushing fat pigs through a dog door: neither can get inside correctly and they block each other from functioning properly. They can tear nasty holes in your operating system depending on which ones you’re trying to combine (seen it!) or at least SLOW YOU DOWN TO A CRAWL because two systems are trying to scan your every move as well as each other’s moves. More than one is usually LESS protection than one good one. Remove the old ones — even if they’re expired, they’ll get in the way. YOUR COMPUTER CAME WITH A TRIAL OF SOMETHING, take it off if that’s not the one you’re gonna use! Most anti-viruses are 40 dollars for a year, but if you buy two or three licenses, you usually get a deal.

4) Don’t install tool bars. They’re bloatware that will slow down your Internet speeds.

You don’t need five of them; they take up most of the screen and will end up affecting performance.

5) “Free” stuff can be expensive:

Free games, movies, and music taken from torrent sites, as well as pornography sites and even free social networking sites, are riddled with viruses. Virus removal is 129-199. Be safe and smart on the Internet. If you got a virus, it’s your own fault. A virus is a software issue, and is considered private data not covered by any warranties.

6) Computers don’t like liquids.

This includes water, Coke, beer, soup, bodily fluids, and excessive cleaners. Don’t spray screen cleaner directly on your screen; spray it on your cleaning cloth and then wipe. A stream of any liquid can cause damage. Computers also don’t like gravity or being punched. This will probably cause lots more damage and not fix a speed issue.

7) No computer is immortal.

Technology changes at an extremely fast rate. Average computer life span is two to three years for a laptop or closer to four for a desktop. This makes sense, because laptops undergo more stress: movement, impact, and temperature changes, and they’re prone to overheating on a lap. Your computer takes electricity and circulates through lots of things and gets hot. It’ll burn out sometimes, but if you have your data backed up, you’ll be up and ready on a new one in no time.

You wouldn’t get mad at your mechanic because you don’t know how to change your oil, or your vet because you didn’t know how to take care of your dog. BE POLITE to people in the service industry. They touch your grimy, nasty computers full of skin, nicotine, pet hair, dust bunnies… and fix them if you can’t.

There are other things one can do to keep their system running smoothly, but the seven tips above are a good start.

I do want to make one comment on item #2. Most companies do not supply the recovery disks any longer and the consumer needs to burn the disks themselves. Look in your documentation and it should explain exactly what you need to do.

Comments welcome.

Source

Straight Talk Cell Phone Service – Customer Service Reviewed

I had the opportunity to contact customer service at Straight Talk for two issues I was having. I had read reviews and comments from other Straight Talk users, had nothing but complaints about the service they had received. So when I dialed ST for help, I braced myself for a hard time and possible non reconciliation of my problems.

The first issue I had was with a new ST cell phone I had bought for my wife. When I activated the ST cell phone for myself, I had no issues and the phone activated immediately. But I wasn’t able to activate my wife’s phone and contacted ST. They tried a number of things, but the bottom line was that their servers were overwhelmed and it could take 24 hours to get the phone activated. No problem.

So I brought up another problem to the agent concerning my ST phone. I had signed up for auto refill and some how I lost 3 weeks of talk time. Long story short, I hit the wrong button when I signed up and accidentally added more minutes to my phone. The support person was able to credit me with a full refund and correctly signed me up for auto refill. No muss, no fuss. I was impressed.

Thus far ST has been great.  Phone calls and text messaging are received and sent without issue. Browsing though is not so hot. It is sooooo slow that to me it is useless. But at $30 a month per phone, I still believe it is a deal.

Update: This morning I activated my wife’s phone and it now works.

Comments welcome.

Netzero DSL Broadband Service For $9.95 A Month, But It Is Not Available Everywhere

This a.m. I viewed a commercial on the tube from Netzero, it which they are advertising a new DSL broadband service for only $9.95 a month. So I decided to do some investigation to see what this offer included, and also what limitations were in play.

The first stumbling block was that a landline must be installed at the residence where you want service. This is required to determine availability to sign up online. I don’t have a landline so I called Netzero customer service in which I encountered an automated system that again wanted a landline number to proceed. FWIW, you can get AT&T DSL service without having to have a landline service, of course you won’t see it being offered for $9.95 a month.

But is Netzero really offering DSL service for only $9.95 a month? Yes, but the offer is only for 6 months, after which it reverts to $22.95 a month. In the tiny print at the bottom of the Netzero web site is this:

* Introductory offers not available in all areas. Additional fees may apply including a network management surcharge of up to $2.95. Plans may require a commitment period; commitment periods may vary depending on service location. Discounted plans will revert to the then current rate after the discount period has ended. All plans require a one-time processing & handling fee of $29.95. Cancellation prior to the end of the commitment period may incur an early termination fee.

** Limited guarantee, applies only to first month of service. Refund limited to first month’s subscription fee and $29.95 processing & handling fee, must cancel within first 30 days of service to receive refund. Does not apply to registrations with free introductory periods. Guarantee available for limited time only.

I checked different landline numbers from family, associates and friends from around the country and found a wide variety of different options and that the introductory offer of $9.95 was not available everywhere. Also I did make contact with Netzero customer service and confirmed that you do need an existing landline to get Netzero DSL service.

Netzero also offers faster speeds of  3.0Mbps for $27.95 and also 6.0Mbps for $33.95.

Comments welcome

Source – Netzero

Straight Talk – Samsung R355C Cell Phone – Reviewed

First of all I wanted to thank everyone who provided me with information concerning Straight Talk and for their phone recommendations.

I did my homework and took the recommendation about buying a Straight Talk phone directly from Walmart. Some of you recommended using Walmart because of their liberal return policy and in the fact that some were skeptical of the customer service that Straight Talk provides.

Here is what I learned. I went to our local Walmart store and found that if I bought the Straight Talk Samsung R355C cell phone for $128.88, I had to purchase a separate $30 phone card, which brought the total cost to $158.88. The same package directly from Straight Talk was $159.99 with free shipping.

As I was viewing the Samsung phone, I looked down below the product description, and to my surprise they had both the phone and a $30 phone card for $128.88. I have linked the page below and I hope that it works for you, as it did for me. I also opted for home delivery which was free as well. The delivery was quick and took only two days via Fedex.

So here are some of my first thoughts about the phone and Straight Talk as well. This is based on only having the service and phone for four days.

The good points:

Activation was simple and uneventful. I completed everything online at the Straight Talk site. The phone is simple to use and setup, with easy to use menu’s. There is also a tutorial online at the Straight Talk site which walks you through every step you you need to complete any task. The cell screen is clear and easy to read. I also enjoy the voice command software that makes dialing a call easy by just saying the persons name you wish to call, ‘call John’ and confirm with a simple ‘yes’ command. Signal strength where I live is strong and better than the AT&T phone I replaced.

The not so good points:

The keys on the keyboard are small. Camera resolution could be better but is OK.

I’ll be using the phone for the next few weeks and report back my findings in a follow up review.

Comments welcome.

Walmart – Samsung R355C Cell Phone + $30 Phone Card

AT&T Apology To Customer Who Was Threatened With Cease & Desist Order

In a 100% reversal, AT&T has offered an apology to a customer that had emailed the CEO two times in two weeks. In the emails the customer had requested an extension on his iPhone eligibility date and also his displeasure with the new rates AT&T  is considering. But in a press release the company stated:

AT&T’s official statement on the matter:

We are apologizing to our customer. We’re working with him today to address his questions and concerns. This is not the way we want to treat customers. From Facebook to significant customer service channels, AT&T strives to provide our customers with easy ways to have their questions addressed.

Let’s face it. This was a PR nightmare that needed to be addressed.

In addition, AT&T may be facing a backlash from customers over their new tired pricing plan.

Comments welcome.

Source

“What Would You Do If You Were In My Situation?”

Dealing with other human beings is always a challenge, but knowing what to do, or not do, is very helpful. We have all experienced some type of a problem that we need to call a company in order to get the problem resolved. The most annoying aspect of the call is getting through the maze of phone buttons trying to reach a real human being. Once we get to a real person, how you proceed next will determine just how well your problem is resolved.

But in one recent survey I read in which people were asked their opinions about dealing with customer service, this one stood out:

“What would you do if you were in my situation?”

What is your favorite technique?

Comments welcome.

You can read all of the suggestions at the link below.

Source – N.Y. Times – Money –  The Haggler

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Providing Good Customer Service Is Key To Surviving Down Economy

There should be an image here!The recession and the recent holiday shopping crunch have brought further into focus the true importance of receiving good customer service. Americans are being more careful than ever about how and where they spend their money. A new report from the Center for Services Leadership at the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University reveals advice from some of the top names in business on how to keep customers happy.

“Services have become a driving force in economies around the world, with less growth happening in products and manufacturing,” says Stephen W. Brown, executive director of the Center for Services Leadership (CSL). “That’s why we formed the center in 1985 as a response to the unique challenges that companies face in this arena. Some of the highest-level executives from our member firms contributed to this new report, which is meant to be a real guidebook on how to create and deliver valuable services and how to provide great customer service.”

The center is now world-renowned with many big-name member firms, including Boeing, Charles Schwab & Company, Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Hewlett-Packard Company, Honeywell Aerospace, IBM Global Services, Marriott International, Mayo Clinic, PetSmart, Sony Electronics, Southwest Airlines and State Farm Insurance Company.

The center’s new report “Research Priorities for the Science of Service” will be featured in next month’s edition of the prestigious Journal of Service Research. The report is designed to help boost both customer satisfaction and company profits. It is the result of 18 months of in-depth interviews and surveys, including contributions from more than 300 executives and academics.

“Marriott contributed to this important effort because we are committed to delivering extraordinary service experiences for our guests,” says Julie Moll, senior vice president of portfolio strategy and research at Marriott International, a CSL member company. “With the world so much in flux, brand leaders must embrace new approaches to understand and deliver on consumer values — and to assess where it makes the most sense to invest. For example, with the increasing impact of both social media and consumer reviews on the Web, brand marketers have both a challenge and an opportunity to ensure that the live service experience not only lives up to — or exceeds — its promise, but is also compelling and ‘buzzworthy’ enough to provide a viral push.”

Among the premises of the report is that “all businesses are service businesses” and that services dominate the economies of advanced countries. As a result, governments, academic institutions and businesses are calling for an increased focus on the science of service to direct and support emerging business models.

“In the past 10 to 15 years, there has been an increase in the reliance on service business revenues within product-based companies like Boeing,” says Joe Shaheen, director for the Defense and Government Services division of Boeing, a CSL member firm. “The combination of the strained market and economic conditions has provided companies with the unique opportunity to engage and adjust, leveraging their current capabilities and focusing on the design of customer-centric service solutions for existing and new customers. This report comes at exactly the right time to help with these efforts.”

Debbie Freeman @ SAGE Publications

[Photo above by Daniel Y. Go / CC BY-ND 2.0]

[awsbullet:customer service stories]

Frank Eliason’s Top Ten Reasons Your Company Should Use Twitter

Frank Eliason is THE Comcast Cares guy on Twitter. Thanks to his work and that of his entire team, Comcast has proven that they really DO listen to their customers. By asking “how can I help?” Frank has used Twitter (and other social media outlets) to set a new trend in customer service. Frank feels that social media is bringing control back to the customers. Here is Frank’s list of top ten reasons your company should be using Twitter.

[kml_flashembed movie="http://www.youtube.com/v/kRKfXWs4h38" width="320" height="240" wmode="transparent" /]
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  • Employees. You can find out what people are saying about your company quickly by searching on Twitter. Twitter has made the world a much smaller place, even in business. You can get information that used to take you hours, or even days. Know what your customers are saying about you.
  • Customers. Your customers are all over Twitter. Why don’t you know what they love — and hate — about your business? It’s a simple of matter of taking a look at their Twitter page. However, I caution you not to ever try to fire someone for what they may have said on a tweet. Keep in mind that whatever they’re saying could end up being something you need to know in order to make a change in the way you do business.
  • Frank works for Comcast. People tend to talk about him. He’s just a customer service guy, and claims he’s nothing special. Doggone it, people like him! He really is a great guy.
  • It all starts with a tweet. News stories today start on Twitter. If you’re a business, and this happens to you, you can get on top of the situation quickly. Don’t wait until you hear about something days later via television or print news. Take action immediately to save your reputation, and possibly your company, should something negative/bad happen.
  • Sometimes you just need a break. Twitter is great for that; it gives you a break all the time!
  • To go with your break… If a company is on Twitter and you’re representing your brand there, you get to learn a lot of things. One of the best things to learn is about free things! I was on Twitter, and learned about free pastries at Starbucks. I went to Starbucks that day.
  • All businesses need a Social Media expert! Someone once claimed there are 60,000 Social Media experts hanging out on Twitter. Frank claims to not be an expert, so he turns to Twitter when he needs to find one.
  • Your brand is trending. It’s fun when your brand starts trending. It’s a great way to get more attention, and get your message out. Take part in the conversation. What if you trend, and you miss it?
  • We hear of businesses on Twitter all the time. It’s always the same brands and companies that are out there. There’s a lot of great examples on Twitter for these companies to listen, and learn from. Sadly, many of them aren’t bothering. They don’t have a presence on Twitter, and they’re missing out on some great opportunities.
  • The #1 reason to have your business on Twitter: You can make new friends, not just business contacts. You’ll never know exactly who is behind that next tweet! It’s all about relationships.

Being on Twitter, and other social media sites, can help you turn your detractors into your biggest fans. It really is insane for you to not be taking advantage of social media outlets. Get your business out there today!

Dell Tech Support

Gnomie Chris “Vorped” writes:

Hey Chris, I just wanted to say thanks for letting the public hear Ponzi’s mom’s call. The call really touched me and made me think about all the people who have suffered this kind of problem. I seriously don’t know how these freaking OEMs can let any ol’ person who goes through some three-month training program — and memorizes a list of textbook responses to almost any problem — treat their valuable customers like crap.

You were on the mark about everything you said, and so were Kat and Lenny. What the hell is an industry without the customer? Companies, in general, just think that outsourcing and hiring pretty much anyone who can talk on the phone will make them millions of dollars to put in their pockets and get their CEOs Audis made of silver. It’s just wrong.

I hope that, if this gets on YouTube, Dell goes out of business and other OEMs and other companies in general quickly fix their act. I have to admit that Apple is a good example of an OEM changing with the industry. NO LONGER is computing just for geeks, but for the average consumers. Apple, in my opinion, has set that path perfectly, developing products that appeal to the professional as well as the average consumer. Its support isn’t the best, though. What major company has amazing support these days?

I would love the idea about OEMs hiring people who know and love what they’re doing. I’m not talking about someone who claims to be amazing at computers and just can’t find another job. I’m talking about people who are passionate about helping others (Kat is an amazing example, to be honest).

From a business standpoint, there is definitely money for hiring people like Kat. Perhaps a company that is willing to spend a little more on its human resources might increase the price of products, but hey, at least you have peace of mind.

People see a one-year warranty on something and think to themselves, “Oh, I’m fine if something happens to product xyz. Company xyz will fix it IMMEDIATELY!” It’s really sad how companies make you think that you’re going to be absolutely fine with their “amazing” warranties and so-called tech support.

Maybe I’ll become CEO of some huge OEM and make some serious changes. But that probably won’t happen, so calls like this — first-hand accounts — are what are going to change this new industry.