Twitter Strikes Again

I recently purchased a new computer from a certain manufacturer with whom I’ve done business many times before. I was purchasing a laptop they had advertised in a catalog, and the price I ultimately paid was $50 less than I had expected based on the price advertised, and included a [nice] carrying case. I immediately posted to Twitter a comment about the nice deal I had gotten:

Satisfied with purchase

A day later, I checked the delivery estimation for the system, and discovered that the estimated date of delivery was a month later. While I understood that the delivery estimation was exactly that, it bothered me that a completely standard item would take so long to reach the consumer, and I vented:

Venting about delays

My carrying case arrived, but still no laptop, and no change in the estimated date of delivery. Following a phone call to customer care, I was told that they were backlogged with orders for that particular system, and that there was nothing to do but wait. While their support was pleasant, they did not actually solve my problem, and I vented yet again on Twitter, this time naming the company:

Naming the culprit

Finally, my computer shipped, though there was still no change in the estimated delivery date. This implied that Dell fully expected the delivery company to require 3 weeks to ship something from Mississauga to North York, something patently false. Amused, I posted once again to Twitter, this time as a joke:

Joking about estimations

What I didn’t expect was to get a response, seeing as I had not been contacted the entire time I was complaining about Dell. However, to my surprise, I was contacted by someone from Purolator, the company named as the shipping company being used for deliveries from Dell:

Purolator responds

I responded to Jeremie, if only to see whether or not there was a person behind the post, or if this was another automated responder that saw I had mentioned Purolator:

Checking the account

Minutes later, I got a response, indicating that it was, in all probability, a real person managing the account:

Purolator offers to help

I was intrigued that despite knowing my issue was not with Purolator per se, but rather with the manufacturer, they still offered to make sure that my delivery was made promptly. While the manufacturer was ignoring me, Purolator wanted me to know that they would ensure that they would do their best to create a happy ending.

In case you’re wondering, Dell is quite active on Twitter. A quick search reveals about 20 accounts, most of which are being used to market their products. A few are devoted to other interests, such as following members of the Dell team. There’s an account claiming to belong to Michael Dell (though I would be surprised if it was actually him). But they aren’t listening and responding to the complaints.

Contrast that with Purolator – I had no idea if they were on Twitter, I named them once in conjunction with a complaint about a different company, and they responded anyhow. Once I clarified that I had no issue with Purolator, I did not expect to hear that they would check the order for me – there was no need for them to do that, but they reached out anyways.

Perhaps this was because they realized that I could and would vent about poor customer service, but I think it goes beyond that – they actually care. They want to make sure that the end of every customer’s experience is a happy one, and they’ll reach out in order to be able to do that.

Purolator figured out what Twitter is all about. Dell? They’re still in the world of paper, radio, and TV.