We LOVE talking about customers who are awesome, that treat us like family, you know the ones you’d literally do anything for? This article isn’t about them. This article is about the people who treat you badly and generally just don’t care.
I answer the phone when people call StratLab.
I genuinely LOVE marketing and helping people so it’s a good fit. Sometimes though, I get calls from people who for some reason or another, are out to ruin my day. Now probably not intentional, but if other people make you so upset you need to vent to a stranger I think you need to talk to a professional.
I got a call from a “day-ruiner”
Yesterday I got a call from one angry person. He complained about the first people he hired, one for being from another country, the other because she couldn’t come into the city from Yorkton.
I know what you’re thinking. He’s cheap. That’s the only reason you’d hire someone from another country or another city to build your website. There are plenty of great website developers within the city limits. So first, he’s complaining about the people HE hired? WTF? That’s like complaining about the customer service at a Wendy’s! It’s YOUR fault you’re AT a Wendy’s!
The funny thing is, we have lots of experience in his field, and if he was nice he was going to get a GREAT deal on a website. But instead, he swore at me, and asked if every company in Regina was “fucking terrible”.
I got off the phone a little shaken. I mean, it’s not often I get told to Fuck off. Ever since I stopped heckling at Redsox games I can’t think of a time where someone told me to Fuck off to my face for a good reason.
People remember when you’re an asshole
Regina isn’t a big city. Canada isn’t a big country. The Internet has made the world a small place when it comes to Googling “who” someone is. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the call but I’m sure he treats people like this all the time. That sucks. I feel bad for the next company he calls and even worse for the next one that works with him.
Some other Red Flags we’ve Come across over the years
Bashes all of their competition. Honestly bashing anyone is a red flag. Do you think these folks won’t do the same to you when you stop working with them? I remember early on Brandon and I went to a meeting and the guys were making fun of someone in their industry. Brandon didn’t think it was funny, he knew the business owner these guys were bashing. Fast forward 6 months and we’re no longer working with that company.
It’s almost like negative people work their way out of working with us. And I for one couldn’t be happier about it.
Rude to the front desk, custodial staff, servers, or anyone else in the service industry. This is a big one for us. In the StratLab early days, Brandon and I went for lunch with a potential client. A fellow owned a business he wanted us to build a website for. He orders coffee and when it comes it wasn’t up to the temperature standard he’s used to. In this situation, you politely mention that an old pot must have been poured because the coffee doesn’t seem too hot. You don’t blame the server!!
He embarrassingly sent it back making the server feel about a foot tall. And the meeting was downhill after that. On our way to the car, Brandon mentioned that “he won’t be working with us”, with a wink in his eye he said, “our price will be too high”. Sure enough, he said no to the proposal that was sent. Brandon added the stress tax and it ended up increasing the price A LOT!
A gentle reminder that people who treat other people poorly, eventually will treat YOU poorly too. It’s not worth it to work with people like that.
Growth at all costs no matter what. This will tax your team, frustrate the hell out of you and the client will eventually fire you for moderate growth. Run from these people. I get it, companies need to grow to survive. But growth at the cost of reputation is never worth it in the long run.
Negative emails. I still remember working with another marketing company, every time a certain individual messaged me, it was bad news. Never anything positive. It got to the point where I could feel the hair on the back of my neck stand up when I saw an unopened email from this negative Neville.
Here’s an easy rule to NEVER become a negative email person. If you have bad news, CALL THEM ON THE TELEPHONE. I know it’s a weird concept in the age of TikTok and Snapchat. But if you never send bad emails, people will never expect bad emails from you. Instantly putting you into a new category in those people’s minds. The positive person who always sends nice emails category!
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