Whenever we feel cheated as a customer, it’s our first reaction to tell the world about it. Leaving a bad online review, lashing out on social media, posting the experience online for the world to see…it’s become the norm. Heck, there is a current news story titled: Scathing Yelp Review Could Cost Woman $750K. What about when things go right? Where is the “Amazing Yelp Review Could Earn Woman $750K”? While that will likely never happen, I do think we should be more equal in dishing out our online opinions. Don’t only shout to the masses when things go wrong, do the same when things go right. And that’s my plan for this post, I want to tell you of a recent interaction with Brooks Running.
I started running back in 2010 but I didn’t really hit my stride until last year. At the end of 2012, I bought a pair of Brooks Pure Connect running shoes. I bought them because they looked great and they were lightweight. Over the next year, I wore the soles off of these shoes. They lasted over 300 miles of actual running distance, a Tough Mudder, two Mud Brigade races, a Crazy Legs 10K and countless runs. These shoes were amazing, best pair of shoes I’ve ever owned.
When it came time to replace them, the Brooks Pure Connect 2 had just come out and I expected the same from them but I couldn’t find a pair that fit right. So I went to the internet and found that 6pm.com had a few different pair of the original Brooks Pure Connect shoes, new in the box. Sure, they were a year model old but I had proven these shoes were what I wanted. I bought three pair. I wanted to make sure I had the shoes I wanted for as long as I could. So I started running in them, spreading the load between the three pair to ensure they’d last me as long as possible.
One day I finished a 4 mile run and I noticed one shoe was a little looser than the other. After looking into it, I noticed the elastic tongue strap on one shoe was hanging by a thread. This shoe only had 20 miles on it. The other two pair had the same mileage on them and looked out of the box new. This is weird so I reach out to Brooks Customer Support.
When you reach out to Brooks Customer Support, they ask you to describe the shoe, the age, the mileage and to include a picture of the defect. I filled out their form, submitted and waited. My initial response from them could be summarized like this: Your shoe is the original Brooks Pure Connect, we just released the Brooks Pure Connect 3 so the best we can do is offer you 25% off your next purchase. This is a reasonable response but the shoe was only 4 months old and only had 20 miles on them and I really felt this was a defective shoe because of the nature of the tear.
I responded back but when I did, I made sure to be as tactful as possible. I told them I was disappointed because the shoe was defective, not something that can manifest by sitting in a box on a shelf I added, and that I was stuck with a shoe I couldn’t wear, a shoe that other than this issue looked out of the box new. The next response I got back was a breath of fresh air. They basically said that my respectful response was appreciated and that they had decided that they would honor the warranty from purchase, something they surely didn’t have to do, and send me a new pair of the Brooks Pure Connect 3 shoes.
I was blown away. I didn’t expect this after they had already said there wasn’t anything they could do beyond their standing offer in the previous email. I figured my email would be skimmed and put into some virtual folder. In the end, I was wrong and Brooks went above and beyond. The way they treated me has created a Brooks customer for life.
Note: I cannot guarantee this will be your outcome in a similar set of circumstances, nor should you consider this to be the norm. This story is to showcase an awesome example of customer service.