Is Customer Service a Thing of the Past?

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It wasn't really till radio Edward Bernays created brands and corporate products, "Martha White Corn Meal in every store... " this was when retail (and competitive retail) took off.

Fixed that for you.
Had to look him up. I just skimmed his bio, but I get the idea that Customer Service is connected to communism. Makes sense to me. Ha ha. Keeping customers happy does seem socialistic. puffy
 
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warren

Lifer
Sep 13, 2013
11,717
16,293
Foothills of the Chugach Range, AK
Having a keen grasp of the obvious, some shops are customer oriented as they wish to make even more moneys. Others, where the owner is happy with the profit line, can get confrontational with a customer who feels wronged.

Then there are the always "right" customers who have no idea how to approach a retailer to seek redress.

Not sure I fully understand what "obc83" is getting at. The upper class, generations ago always demanded subservience and "correct" behavior from those they deigned to do business with. They often sent staff with very clear directions to handle such transactions. If the product received didn't, in every way, satisfy the buyer, the vendor could pay a heavy price, losing a paying customer, of which there probably few. One butcher in a town had it pretty well. A second butcher? That created an alternative, competition. This was probably back in the day where "the customer is always right" was born. It was a matter of survival, where those with money were the insurers of profit. Loyal customers were no more loyal than today's customer is. Granted people were a bit more accepting of poor product/service in smaller localities where buyer and seller were neighbors or, at least acquaintances.

"Retailing has been around since "bartering" developed. Food might have been shared with family and friends, a well formed club or nubile daughter could be wares. Bartering and selling are "retailing", swapping a sheep for a wagon or selling the same for money are simply two sides of the "same coin", "trade." Only the "currency" varies.

Boy am I glad there was no internet when I was a teenager.
But we had the drug store and its magazine rack. Some could resort to dad's "stash" of Playboy and such. Earlier generations had "Paris Postcards."
 

bullet08

Lifer
Nov 26, 2018
8,939
37,944
RTP, NC. USA
That's not a customer service being bad. Just a business owner being an asshole. I won't deal with any business saying "I got enough loyal customers." New customers are the lifeline for any businesses.
 
That's not a customer service being bad. Just a business owner being an asshole. I won't deal with any business saying "I got enough loyal customers." New customers are the lifeline for any businesses.
It's America... if a guy doesn't want to make more money, we can't force him. Free country.

Back in Harris's day, (god bless him) you don't like the service of a business, you just send a couple of goombahs down to straighten out the situation. puffy
 

brian64

Lifer
Jan 31, 2011
9,629
14,733
Had to look him up. I just skimmed his bio, but I get the idea that Customer Service is connected to communism. Makes sense to me. Ha ha. Keeping customers happy does seem socialistic. puffy
Bernays pioneered modern consumer advertising. I have no idea what you're referring to regarding a communism connection, and I was implying no such thing.
 

brian64

Lifer
Jan 31, 2011
9,629
14,733
But we had the drug store and its magazine rack. Some could resort to dad's "stash" of Playboy and such. Earlier generations had "Paris Postcards."
Very true...but pales in comparison to the internet.

And I never did find my Dad's Playboy stash...must have been very well hidden.
 

birdog

Lurker
Nov 26, 2019
48
66
Upstate, South Carolina
Sable brush had it right

That's why.
Customer service isn't dead, but it is getting rationed....

the retailer doesn't care enough about the vendor/customer relationship. They believe that honest negative online feedback will not matter.

I have been an amatuer gunsmith, and over the years have bought, refinished, reblued, repaired , kept some, and sold some...bird guns, side by sides, mostly....
great hobby and Gunbroker is where I have sold sell them...all legit, guns go to FFLs for transfer, etc.
they have a great self management buyer/seller system...
when a transaction is done, the buyer and seller can rate the transaction with comments...A,A+, B, C, D , etc. with a brief explanation of why they scored it that way....works great...when the seller sells, they don't have to, but often, offer a free 3 day look, so customer can return it, if unhappy and something is not disclosed, or photographed properly.

When you examine the particulars of my transaction, where I clearly received a faulty product ( I am 73 , smoking a pipe off and on since high school, so not "blowing smoke"!) ..I still can't fathom how people in business can be so cavalier in the seller/buyer relationship...should not matter if it's a $5 or $500 transaction, and if I spend $100 a year there or $1000...but that's just me being an idealist. I remember in the 60s when manufacturers competed to make the "best product, for the best price".

..... Curiousity more than anything else has me pursuing this more by sending this product to a trustworthy blender in the business for his expert analysis. He will have good feedback as to how/why has this happened, and if the vendor's "it got too warm in transit" rationale, has any validity.
 
Bernays pioneered modern consumer advertising. I have no idea what you're referring to regarding a communism connection, and I was implying no such thing.
Hey, just seems like making some dweeb that has already given me his money... happy, seems like communism to me. puffy
Customer Service, Human Resources, Public Relations... just seems communist. Take that 2 cents an hour I pay you and go home! puffy

wikkipedia also connected him to propaganda, so... thus started my line of thought.

Of course, I'm kidding.
 

anotherbob

Lifer
Mar 30, 2019
15,779
29,590
45
In the semi-rural NorthEastern USA
I've had companies say that to me that it's not their fault something happened with something I purchased. I point out they got my money and I got something that is totally useless and yeah the person who did the shipping broke it so maybe refund me not lose a customer and you work on getting a refund from the idiots you paid to safely deliver your product to your customer. Oh and already sent you the pictures of how the thing got to me. Works sometimes.
 

obc83

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 4, 2023
244
1,144
200 years ago? Maybe 60 or 70 years ago. There really wasn't much retail in the 18th and 19th century. You wanted fruit, you went to the orchard or the orchardists kid would walk around selling fruit. You wanted a dress you made it. Or paid someone to. Especially in the US, there was very little retail, or "stores". There were some... but, so few that if you didn't like the service at a store... you're fucked, ha ha.
It wasn't really till radio created brands and corporate products, "Martha White Corn Meal in every store... " this was when retail (and competitive retail) took off.
I disagree, think High St. in London. "The 1870s saw the introduction of laws guaranteeing the quality of goods and fixed pricing saw the end of the old negotiating system." (random web link) Which doesn't exactly put your point on notice, Victorian England and the Old West proper are basically the same time frame. Obviously the rise of the supermarket and franchising, which is the time frame I think you're referencing possibly morphed things into the retail environment we currently recognize...gods on bicycles, I'd love to have an argument.
 
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obc83

Starting to Get Obsessed
Sep 4, 2023
244
1,144
I remember in the 60s when manufacturers competed to make the "best product, for the best price".

Some might argue that the period you're speaking of was the peak of the concept. Retail up to that point may have paled in comparison because the economic conditions of the post-war West created a perfect environment for that model. And yes, customer service is worse now, but it was also never expected to such a degree before as it was from 1947-1960ish. It may yet be even less expected as the paradigm continues to shift away. Not saying it's good or bad, I sure don't know.
 
I disagree, think High St. in London. "The 1870s saw the introduction of laws guaranteeing the quality of goods and fixed pricing saw the end of the old negotiating system." (random web link) Which doesn't exactly put your point on notice, Victorian England and the Old West proper are basically the same time frame. Obviously the rise of the supermarket and franchising, which is the time frame I think you're referencing possibly morphed things into the retail environment we currently recognize...gods on bicycles, I'd love to have an argument.
You can start without me. I will have to read up on England. I think they have a king or something, emperor? Sometimes its a dude, sometimes a chick. I think they boil chickens there? Maybe? Ha ha
 

jpberg

Lifer
Aug 30, 2011
2,953
6,691
yes, thanks all.
..fact is, I RARELY complain, and don't believe the "customer is always right"....

Just an unfortunate incident, and like the retailer indicated, he doesn't need my business, because he has lots of faithful repeat customers....I also have many other places to buy from...so that's that.
Fact remains, it is a defective product.....manufacturer? Distributor? Post Office? no one really can tell who is really responsible.
Thanks for letting me vent.
Yeah I’d tell you to piss off as well if I sent you a sealed pouch of relatively garbage tobacco and you said it sucked (and presumably the 50 pouches before and after you had no complaints).
WV is a small outfit that’s been around for a while, I’d give them a get out of jail free card under almost any circumstances.
 
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warren

Lifer
Sep 13, 2013
11,717
16,293
Foothills of the Chugach Range, AK
I remember the 60's as a time American manufacturers went into denial with reference to Japanese products and lost the automobile market, the copier market, and such. They, the US manufacturers, would determine what the consumer wanted and would pay. Not the consumer. The all had to either adopt a different attitude towards the market or start selling off, laying off and such. Time marches on and if old dawgs don't adapt, they die off. The "Big Three" adapted, to a point but, they are still shrinking their line-up and aligning with foreign manufacturers. Or, being purchased by more savvy, richer foreign companies. It's a dawg eat dawg world and, to paraphrase Norm, some companies are wearing "Milk Bone" underwear.