Customers might have some ridiculous complaints, but you can salvage their loyalties by how you respond. Letting customers know they have an easy way to contact your support team can be enough to sidestep potential issues.
But sometimes quick-witted humor also goes a long way. Take a look at five customer service responses that are so funny, you’ll be looking for reasons to write a complaint letter.
1) A Nightmare After Christmas
B.J. Schone was pretty peeved when he flew into St. Louis for the Christmas holiday, only to find out that his luggage had been severely damaged. What had started out as a “fancy, new TravelPro suitcase” came out a dirty, torn case that looked like it had been ravaged by a wild animal.
After an unpleasant interchange at the luggage desk, Schone decided to follow through by sending Southwest Airlines a letter and posting it online. Complete with graphics, references to classic holiday movies, and lots of color, the letter looked more like a wish-list to Santa than an angry complaint. His clever letter elicited an equally creative apology (plus a $140 check to reimburse his damaged luggage).
2) These Biscuits Aren’t Crummy!
VOOT is a UK-based business telecoms specialist that takes pride in giving clients “a level of service unparalleled in (their) sector.” That of course means offering clients suitable cookies for important meetings. So when one of the employees, Nigel, found that not enough of Freemans’ “Broken Biscuits” were actually broken, he wrote a letter of complaint.
As a result of the package’s false claims, Nigel wrote, the Bank Manager they were meeting refused a deal because the “biscuit extravagance” testified to VOOT’s poor business management. Nigel asked that in the future “Broken Biscuits” not put misleading labels on its packaging.
In response to Nigel’s simple request, a Freemans confectionary rep, Michael, issued a heartfelt apology but claimed no liability in the incident. Michael did, however, assure Nigel that proper measures were taken to dismiss the biscuit-breaking operative responsible for the incident.
“I know one shoudn’t be hard on single mothers, especially in the current economic climate (to which you have alluded)” he said, “but we take strong exception to any breach in our quality standards.” It’s typical British wit, wrapped up in a long-winded set of niceties and sarcastic jabs.
3) Bodyform Responds In Good Form
A Facebook post from Richard Neil harps on Bodyform, a British feminine hygiene company, for putting false light on a woman’s menstrual cycle. He claims Bodyform is true to its name since at that certain time each month, his girlfriend does in fact change body form, “from the loving, gentle, normal skin coloured lady, to the little girl from the exorcist with added venom and extra 360 degree head spin.”
Of course his post was a joke, but Bodyform saw it as a chance to turn what’s usually a no-tread topic into a hilarious video response. Who would have thought “that time of the month” could be so funny?
4) Felines Don’t Have Eating Disorders
Anthony, the author of “Dear Customer Relations.com,” wrote a fake letter to Mars Petcare, just to see how they’d respond to an outlandish letter. He wrote that his cat, Nahla, loves Whiskas cat food, but that she throws up after each meal. He suspects that her scrawny stature and saggy belly (from having kittens at a young age) has made her the victim of cat bullying. That would explain her low self-esteem and vomiting as “classic symptoms of Bulimia.”
It’s a ridiculous letter that could only prompt an equally ridiculous response from Susan, a rep from Whiskas’ Customer Care Team. Susan claims that low self-esteem is not a common problem for cats, and suggests that Nahla is instead experiencing anxiety surrounding her adoption into the author’s family. “So perhaps you could give her access to your internet and she could try to trace her relatives that way instead?” What a clever ploy to keep customers laughing (and buying).
5) Tide Rocks!
“The Onion” poked fun at corporate brands doing cheesy publicity stunts to garner Facebook likes and Twitter responses. In an article called “Hey, Everybody! This Cool New Tide Detergent Video Is Blowing Up All Over The Internet!” the author (alias Fred Hammond, Director Of Digital Video And Social Media Ad Integration, Tide Detergent) raves about a recent video Tide issued, complete with “cute, funny talking animals,” an indie-rock song, and a cameo by 80s rocker, Bret Michaels.
Tide responded to this sardonic article by actually making a video with talking puppet animals, an indie-rock star folding his laundry, and indeed, a “really cool indie-rock song.” It’s too bad the real Bret Michaels didn’t get in on this stunt, because it could have been his chance to relive his glory days.
Personalize Your Customer Support
No matter what your business does, make sure you have a customer support team that knows how to respond to customers. Whether it’s with humor or sincerity, customers who receive a personal response are more likely to stick with you.