Customer EngagementBad customer service is ubiquitous. Recently, I dealt with two companies. One who was a perfect example of what not to do and one who blew me away.

The first company is Adobe. I have used Adobe software for over twenty five years. Periodically they institute anti-piracy solutions. These solutions have always had a fatal flaw. When you make a change to your computer (i.e. updating your system software) their system flags your software as pirated. After a recent system software update, it happened again. I called customer service to have them reset the account so it was correct. This is something I have done dozens of times.

This time my call was routed to a customer service rep in India. Not only was English not his first language, he was almost incomprehensible. His position was that I had pirated software and had to buy a legal package. Never mind that I was looking at the box, gave him the serial number, and offer to send him a photo of the box. He argued with me and told me there was nothing he could do because I was using fake software. I ended up yelling at him and ultimately finding a way to solve the problem without him.

This is how Adobe treats a customers who has spent thousands of dollars and has been with them for years.

On the other hand, I had to call Apple customer service. My call to them was a simple inquiry to find out if an older piece of software was still available, as I had an older computer that I wanted to run it on. If available, the cost of the software was $20. All the rep had to do was look on their system and tell me yes or no. When the rep found out the software wasn’t available anymore, he didn’t stop there. The customer service rep contacted other departments to see if someone still had a copy. While I was ultimately unable to purchase the software from Apple, they searched high and low to see if they could get a copy. They spent far more in manpower than the $20 purchase would have made them.

Both of these companies rely on repeat customers. Guess which one I will definitely use again.