A friend of mine recently posted a complaint on Facebook. It seems that in a single day, he received multiple automated telemarketing calls for products he wasn’t interested it. He visited websites and was greeted with pop ups (a minute long) trying to advertise something with a buy button built in. He had a door to door sales person trying to sell the latest hot water heater replacement scam. His reaction:


“A message to all those purveyors of marketing by aggravation, pestering, and annoyance: Pissing me off does not make me want to buy your product”

The post on Facebook received some interesting comments from others.

1. One person was complaining about waiting on hold for technical support and the company was using that time to advertise their products. Comment from the customer: If I cannot get the product I bought to work, do you really think I am going to buy more from you?

2. Another person returned a $20.00 gift card sent by a research data company with bogus data.

3. Others lamented how companies  ignore  ‘no call lists’ or try to find ways around them. An example that annoys me is when a company I do business with calls to thank me for my business and then proceeds to sell me their latest product or service. I never buy. They have annoyed me with the pretense of the call. The thank you appears insincere.

Customer satisfaction is not just about customer service or customer surveys. Customer satisfaction is about the experiences customers have with your organization, from  trying to obtain service or product information,  to when you are trying to  get their attention in order to market to them. If you use shady or annoying techniques to get their attention to your product, you may acheive exactly the reverse reaction from what you were hoping for.

Sending out unsolicited surveys may return inaccurate data, as consumers vent their dissatisfaction by providing unusable data. When I receive unsolicited surveys, by mail, I don’t even open them.

With new web  technologies and constant competition for consumer attention, it is normal for companies to try new techniques to break through. But some are over used and are now annoying.  I think we will continue to see more and more marketing innovation but I hope the marketers will test how their customers and prospects might react before adopting what others are doing, because any innovation can be overused.

What is your opinion on these overused, annoying,or pestering marketing techniques? Has your company received complaints about them? Leave your comments below.

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Adele Berenstein

Adele Berenstein is an Experienced Customer Satisfaction Executive, recently retired from a Large Global IT Organization after a long productive management career including Sales, Marketing, Services, teaching and education center management and most recently, 19 years in customer satisfaction management. She turned around divisions with customer satisfaction problems, implemented measurable improvements and management systems, and implemented programs to prevent problems from ever affecting customers.

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