Yes. No. Maybe. I don't know. Can you repeat the question?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I currently work for Verizon Wireless.

(I should probably say a wireless phone company that shall remain nameless... but this really has nothing to do with verizon and everything to do with their customers).

There are two circumstances that occur repeatedly on a daily basis in our store and I feel the need to clarify/vent.

1. Indirect v. Direct Retail Locations.

Have you ever bought a cell phone from a kiosk in the mall/walmart/costco and wondered how come they can sell AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile?
Well, that's because they are an indirect retailer.

They are essentially a franchise, that buys the rights to sell Verizon cell service with their own merchandise. This concept seems especially difficult for our customers to grasp.
Daily, people argue with me that they bought their phone from Verizon.

Technically, if you didn't go into a Verizon Corporate location you bought the phone from whichever indirect retailer is on the top of your receipt (i.e. bullfrog, diamond wireless, wireless advocates). This is a little confusing because they say Verizon in large letters above their store followed by premium retailer (or something similar).

So... this means you can't return your phone to a Verizon Corporate store.

I accept that customers may not understand this concept initially, but once I explain the difference to you--it is not necessary to scream and throw a fit.

A perfect analogy would be if you bought a samsung tv at walmart, and although target sells the same brand, you can't return the tv to target.

2. Free phones

DAILY, I have customers who enter the store, and when I say "Hi, how are you today?"
They respond, "Well I have a piece of crap phone, how do you think I am? Maybe I'd be better if I didn't have this piece of crap."

First, if someone smiles and says hi, how are you? It's more polite to respond with a sociable answer, such as fine, ok, i'd even take a been better.

But, I digress. So they're case is that their phone is a piece of crap.

Well, I don't admit this to the customer (but their phone is a piece of crap).
It was free.
I guarantee they walked into the store several months prior and said "I want the free phone."
Now, they are back, crying foul because that free phone doesn't work like an iphone.

Back to analogies. If someone gave you a free tv, would you expect it to be a flat screen, have perfect picture, and get all the channels?

And when the free tv died a year later, would you call your cable company and cry foul?

No, for some reason I don't think you would.

And, yet.... that is what I deal with all day every day.

Thank heavens for Sunday.


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