Two recent customer service stories

Topic / Technology

DISCLAIMER: I realize this is totally outside the usual scope of my blog and most readers aren’t interested in this kinda stuff, but I still felt like sharing this away.

DirecTVBad Story
I’ve had all sorts of troubles with our new DirecTV service. I can never, in good conscience, recommend their service to anyone for many reasons. For example, I didn’t get the free DVR when we first signed up, so I called back two weeks later to ask that it be added to my package, as the installation guy recommended. Turns out I can’t get it for free anymore because I haven’t been a customer long enough to establish credit. But they’ll give it away for free to new customers?!

And then I specifically did not sign for the monthly equipment protection plan. I even have the carbon copy to prove it, but yet there it is on the bill. This irks me that they would charge me for it anyway, so I call customer service to have it removed. After being transfered eight times, it turns out I can cancel the service, but it’ll cost me $10 to do so. At first I thought they were kidding. Who charges a customer to cancel a service they never signed up for?! Since this was my fifth hassle with the company, I asked to just cancel my account altogether. That got their attention! Two minutes later I was talking with a manger who refunded the service charges with no questions asked. Why couldn’t they have done that in the first place?

SaturnGood Story
My wife’s Saturn Vue was having some problems, but we couldn’t find a mechanic in the area that would honor our extended warranty service agreement. So, I called the Saturn dealership in Texas that sold us the car and the warranty plan and they jumped into action like it was a code-red emergency. In less than 24 hours, the general manager of all the Saturn dealerships in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area called me asking for the phone number of the mechanic we wanted to service our car. He called the mechanic personally, instructed them how to submit the claim and then called me right back saying the mechanic had agreed to work on our car and honor the warranty. Now that’s service!

Posted on May 16, 2007

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  • Hi Tim,
    I am selling the domain on ebay if you are interested in using it to promote your site or bring traffic to it.
    Blessings on your new ministry,

  • Tim

    Hey Buddy. Thanks for the tip. Dunno what I’d need the domain for, but we’ll see.

  • Hey Tim,
    I’m selling lots of stuff (like my house) and you can just send me a check…
    Just kidding…

    I think sometimes businesses (churches?) get the idea that the customers who pay the bills are really just too much of an inconvenience and what they really want is for us to just send them outrageous amounts of cash for no reason…

    The Direct TV thing… I would have dropped them and never looked back…

  • Tim

    Actually, RevJeff, my wife and I are in the market for a house. Do you live close to our church? ;)

  • Lynn

    Wow! that’s amazing about Saturn! i’m impressed!

  • Found your blog searching for issues with DirecTV customer service.

    While I won’t bore you with my own bad customer service story, let me just say that even a loyal 3-year customer gets treated like dirt.

    I teach funeral directors how to market and manage their business (a specialized business, I know) and often refer to good customer service examples. A link to this post is going on my site.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Tim

    You’re welcome, Timothy! (Nice name, by the way) ;)

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