Starbucks Takes Coffee Break, Makes Customer Satisfaction Gaffe
Starbucks can send me an e-mail when they reload my card -- yeah, I
know I'm a sap for giving them an interest-free loan, but it's
convenient -- and they can pepper me with communications when they've
got a sale to promote. So how come they can't bother to clue me in
when they're planning to shut their doors for three hours? Not very
Web 1.0 of them, huh?
The "Web 1.0" reference is deliberate, and that's just my point.
I'm not expecting Starbucks' chief bean -- that'd be CEO Howard
Schultz -- to stream me a video or text-message my BlackBerry with the
news that he planned to lock his doors from 5:30 to 9 pm on Tuesday. (My response would
of course be, "WTF?") However, I do expect some notification (a simple
e-mail, maybe) that Schultz was planning the downtime, in hopes of
getting his "baristas" to reconnect with coffee by training them to
make better espresso.
My reason is simple enough -- Tuesday evenings are my Starbucks
night. I repair there for a couple of hours, while my daughter is in
her dance class. Put aside the fact that it's insane to close your
stores during a prime customer period. Just focus on the fact that,
like I said above, if you pepper your customers with "push"
communications (i.e., crap they don't want), it's incumbent upon you
to proactively reach out to them when you're got some real news.
Like, they're not gonna be able to get their preplanned caffeine
Starbucks' stumble hammers home the point that, these days,
customer satisfaction kudos will go to companies who know how to use
the Web (more specifically, Web- and smartphone-based communications)
to their advantage.
I've long been on a rant about Starbuck's declining customer
service (see my recent post, How Dell Is Far Too Much Like Starbucks) and this latest gaffe
certainly doesn't fill me with hope for Starbucks' return to its days
as a provider of an unparalleled customer experience.
So here's what I suggest, Howard: Wake up and smell the coffee.
What do you think? Did Starbucks spill the coffee on this one? Leave a message on my blog and let us know.
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Former FBI Agent: We Need To Get Another Internet
Former FBI Agent Patrick J. Dempsey warns that the Internet has become
sanctuary for cyber criminals and the only way to rectify this is to
create a second, more secure Internet. Dempsey issues this call for a
restructured Internet because he claims various legal systems are
unprepared for a serious fight against global cyber crime.
Among the services Dell plans to make available are patch management, anti-virus, anti-spam, online backup and recovery, asset discovery, asset tracking, e-mail continuity, e-mail archiving, and image management.
Poll: Benign Worms
Readers nearly unanimously think that a Microsoft proposal to use
benign worms to distribute security patches is a terrible idea. Some
97% of responders oppose the proposal. In the forum, reader George
says: "Wonderful, just what we all need, a more insidious ActiveX like
capacity to infect my PC. No wonder I'm thinking to moving to an iMac.
This is really a premature April 1st joke - right?" Let us know what
you think: Take our poll or leave a message on our forum. Or, what the heck, go crazy! Do
Virtualization At The Desktop?
Examine how more than 250 companies plan to adopt server virtualization technology in this recent InformationWeek Research report, Server Virtualization.
The BI Explosion
Examine the business intelligence strategies of 500 companies, including deployment drivers and challenges, spending plans, and vendor selection, in this recent InformationWeek Research report.
From 'Energized' To Not So Interested
The little do-si-do between Congress and the White House over missing e-mails is apparently over. Cynics might predict the next steps will be a digging in of heels, followed quickly by threats to launch (and bungle) an investigation, or worse, appoint a special prosecutor.
Talk To Me, Openly
It's a cliche to say that open source breaks down barriers, but every day I learn about a new way that's happening. Here's one barrier that open source can help to bring down, incrementally: the language barrier.
Microsoft-Yahoo Merger Perfectly Timed For A Recession
Although I still have a lot of doubt that Microsoft and Yahoo will ever consummate a marriage, Microsoft continues to pursue the deal with a lot of enthusiasm. I don't know how loudly I can say this, but Microsoft: It's a trap! There's a reason why some major Yahoo shareholders are suing to make this deal go through, pronto. They think you're crazy and they want to get the money before you sober up.
An Ounce Of Virtual Prevention
Security researchers found/punched a new hole in one of VMware's products this week, and from some quarters, it's being written about as if virtual machinery had never been a target for malicious code before. Those in the data center know differently.
Technology And The Big Foot Problem
Michael Specter's article "Big Foot," in the current issue of The New Yorker, examines some common assumptions about carbon emissions and how technology is going to have to step on the gas to tackle the climate change problem. It's worth a close read.
Forrester Consulting: Unified Communications Delivers Global Benefits
This Forrester Consulting study shows how Unified Communications
(UC) makes it simpler to contact others over any device in any location,
enhancing business agility, cutting costs, and boosting employee
productivity. Forrester finds that UC is already delivering major savings
for organizations around the world in retail banking, manufacturing and
education. Download the full report for free.
Software as a Service Research Report
No longer a niche software delivery model, software as a service
(SaaS) can help small and midsize companies get access to enteprise-class
software functionality without having to commit enterprise-level capital
resources. Download the full report for free.
The Internet & the Developing World
The evolution of the Internet has been full of surprises –
surprises that have sometimes resulted in radical changes in the
commercial landscape, such as the arrival of Amazon, eBay, Google,
YouTube, and Skype. Could one of the next big surprises turn out to be
linked to developing countries? Read the full report for free from
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