They say that bad customer service is talked about much more than good customer service and I completely understand why. Last night I was about to write a post entitled “I Hate This Company” because of a crappy situation.
I posted about it on Twitter and then a very surprising thing happened. The company contacted me through Twitter without me directly engaging them. I was shocked. So what happened to cause me to hate this company and what happened when they contacted me?
The Angering Event
Just a little bit over a year ago I bought my first house. The house didn’t come with a microwave so I had to buy one because I use microwaves a decent amount of the time. We settled on a counter top GE microwave that was a little less than $100 since we would eventually be remodeling the kitchen to include an over the stove hood microwave. It worked fine until this past Monday when we returned from our cruise.
Monday afternoon I received a call from my girlfriend while I was at work. The microwave wasn’t working properly. It looked and sounded fine. It would run but it wouldn’t heat anything up. I wasn’t happy but I figured we could get it fixed with the warranty that was likely included. That was until I pulled out the manual…
The limited warranty only lasted one year and we had bought the microwave over a year ago. I was disappointed but figured the next step would be to call GE and see if they could help me. I called their appliances number but every time I went through their automated menus I would get hung up on or told to call back later. This infuriated me. As a last ditch effort I filled out their contact form and figured I’d never hear back from them. Just so you know, I still haven’t heard back from my form submittal as of Tuesday evening.
The last thing I did that night in anger was write a tweet that ended up being the best thing I did. I wrote, “Time to write an I Hate GE Post… my grandpa had it right – Never buy a GE product. Microwave quit 1 month after 1 yr warranty expired.” (If you want to follow all of my tweets, follow me on twitter!) It was true, my Grandpa had so many bad experiences with GE that he vowed never to buy another product from them because they always broke. Now I was ready to take that same position until…
The Surprising Reaction
I woke up Tuesday morning to the following tweet from GE: “So sorry. If there’s anything we can do, pls let us know >Megan”. I was shocked mostly because I didn’t put anything in my tweet to alert GE. They must search for any mentions of their brand and respond accordingly.
She gave me a contact email and I sent them my story. I explained that I bought this microwave a little over a year ago and that it just quit heating. I knew the warranty had expired but I expect appliances to last more than a month past the expiration of the warranty.
They responded quickly, to my surprise, and said they were sorry for the experience I had and requested the model number and serial number of my microwave, a copy of my receipt, my home address and telephone number.
I gave them all of the info I had but I somehow had misplaced my receipt. (Another reason why I should consider a Neat Desk or Neat Receipts scanner I suppose…) I was super bummed but figured I’d see if they could help in any way.
The Result That Made Me Change My Mind About GE
I received a response from the representative that shocked me even more. They said they’d be willing to give me a Good Will Certificate for up to $90 to replace my broken GE microwave with a new GE microwave. I could buy a new microwave today and when I get the Good Will Certificate in 7 to 10 business days I just have to detach part of the certificate and mail it in with the receipt for my new GE microwave to be reimbursed. I must complete this within 90 days or else it will expire.
I was floored. I didn’t even have my receipt and they were still willing to help! I still have had a bad experience with GE’s product but I am willing to give them a second chance. They impressed me with their high level of customer service through Twitter and who am I to turn down a mostly free microwave? Hopefully this new microwave lasts a long time and GE can prove that all of their products aren’t going to break.
*Side Note* In retrospect I realized another option. Since I know I bought this on my credit card I could have use their warranty extending service to get it fixed or replaced. I’ve never used this though so I don’t know the details for how it works but at least be aware of this option.
Have you ever had a similar customer service experience? Share it below! Good customer service should be rewarded more often!