Yes, it is true that the consumer is not always right but your reaction can actually harm your business as opposed to rally other consumers to your cause. So it was that a New Zealand burger joint gets a private Facebook message:
“Hi, firstly this is not a complaint but I just thought you should know that we ate at Ekim on Friday night. Three of us had the same burger and my son had the burger with bacon and avocado,” the message read.
“He vomited all Friday night. It is the only thing he ate differently from us that day so we assume it was the burger. Just wanted you to be aware. We thought the burgers were fantastic and know it was probably a one-off.”
The response, made in public whereas the customer complaint was made in private was remarkably stupid:
“We sold well over 1000 burgers that day a large number had bacon in them ... If your son was sick I’d assume it was a lack of personal hygiene but I’m not the sort of person that assumes.”
The business owner, Mike Duffy, then posted a screen shot of the message sent by the customer. The backlash began almost immediately:
“This is a pretty terrible thing to do,” Fraser Pearce wrote. “You posted a screenshot of a private message they sent you. This is not on. They sent this message to you in confidence that it would be purely a dialogue between you and them.”
“What you’ve done exposes her to public ridicule — and from my view it looks like you’re attempting to gather sympathy from all the bad things that have happened to you, at the expense of this woman.”
Craig Doolan said: “They complained nicely and were polite and you responded by trolling them about their personal hygiene then went on to post a private message publicly, that’s arsehole.”
In response, Mr Duffy called his critics “total hypocrites”. “I’m not looking for sympathy,” he said. “I’m tired of giving people who are ill informed and accusing the benefit of the doubt along with a $50 voucher so as to avoid confrontation.”
He then went on a rant worthy of an idiot – he blasted every customer segment that probably ever frequented his front door saying “pissed-up office jocks” and “middle-class no-idea housewives” to “little sh*t kids” and “dimwitted parents”.
“Almost 20 years in this f***ing industry and never had a person who ate what I cook get sick from it,” he wrote. “The point most of you d***s miss is ... don’t point fingers unless you know for sure. Especially when it’s something as serious as a potential food poisoning outbreak.”
Our advice to this dim witted fool – shut your mouth and get on with business, take feedback as a positive and stay off Facebook!
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