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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Adventures in Retail Returns

Gap recenly announced plans to transition to a new logo.  The new one is on the left.  The old one is on the right.

People complained.  Loudly.  The company caved.  The old logo stays.

I minored in public relations in college, and I took some advertising courses.  I've been in commercial broadcasting for thirty years.  I know the importance of look and image.

Having said all that, what's the big deal?  The new logo isn't that bad.  It's a little cleaner and fresher than the old. 

To those who didn't like the new logo:  Is this the most important thing you have to complain about?

The stores are the same-- still all those overpriced jeans, khakis, polos, sweaters and jackets.

America has spoken.

Moving on...

McDonalds has announced its McRib sandwich is returning, for a limited time only, early next month.  Gristle lovers around the country are rejoicing.  I've read where people will travel hundreds of miles to get one, and I just don't understand it.  I'll eat one, if given the chance, but I won't go out of my way for it.  They're not horrible, but the alleged "meat" is overwhelmed by a ton of barbecue sauce.

There are a couple things you should know about me.  I'm a freak about punctuality.  I fill out those "customer comment cards" in stores and I take the internet surveys that are often listed on cash register receipts.

If the sign on your door says you open at 8 am, you'd better ready to go at 8 am.  A local drug store has this nasty habit of using 8 am as an approximation, a rough guide.  The pharmacy counter opens at 8:05.  Then, they have to count the money in the cash drawer and fire up the computers.  Then, they have to get the manager because something isn't working right and the money in the drawer doesn't add up.  By now, it's 8:15, and I have better things to do with my time than wait around the drug store to pick up a prescription.

I found the customer comment cards and mailed one to the home office.  I lit them up, and it wasn't easy because the people in the store are all very nice.  They just don't realize the value of a customer's time.  Someone from the home office called me Tuesday afternoon, offering an apology and a promise to do better the next time.

Unfortunately, I'm stuck with them.  I can't find a drug store near me that opens before 8.  A new one opened a few weeks ago.  It's a chain that features several 24 hour stores, and I was ready to transfer my business there.  Just my luck.  It's one of their few stores that isn't open early in the morning.  By the way, I complained about that, too.

And, for the record, I say nice things more often than listing complaints.