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Better customer communication

thomast 01-26-15

Better customer communication

I received a message asking for feedback in return for the opportunity to win a $60 Amazon voucher.

 

You asked me to reply to the e-mail by the end of the day. Except you e-mailed me at 20:30 my time on a Friday night. How could I possibly respond? I now feel like I've missed out. You would have been better not to send the e-mail to European customers.

 

I gave you feedback. I replied to the e-mail you sent (since you started an e-mail conversation with me) except that failed. Obviously you don't really use that e-mail address.

 

So I sent an e-mail to support@. Except that also returned a blank because you have "streamlined", i.e. cut, customer support.

 

I'm a customer. You've asked for my help. Don't make it ridiculously difficult for me to talk to you.

 

Thomas

Level 2

greg 01-26-15
 

Re: Better customer communication

[ Edited ]

I agree... That was a strange email.

 

Mine offered a $5 gift card for a response (I guess they were A/B testing incentives). I almost didn't do the survey because I didn't want to feel like I was doing it for such a small amount (what am I going to buy on Amazon for $5???). It's like offering $5 to a friend for driving you to the airport... It makes things weird. Either just thank your friend for the favor, or give an equal favor in return. Don't turn it into a cheap transaction.

 

When I responded to the email with this feedback I got the same bounce notification.

Level 2
thomast 01-26-15
 

Re: Better customer communication

A perfect analogy.

 

I've given Optimizely a lot of feedback without any incentive. I've always liked the fact that there was a real person there who could deal with it. But they seem to have stopped doing that now. Perhaps they have grown too large to make the service experience personal.

 

Sometimes I do wonder who designs their tests though.

Level 2
Amanda 01-27-15
 

Re: Better customer communication

[ Edited ]

Thanks for bringing this up. I will surface these ideas and complaints internally and get back to you as soon as possible.

 

I'm so sorry for the confusion and inconvenience caused. For reference, you can reach out to me at optiverse@optimizely.com if you want to get in contact directly about this issue. 

Optimizely
olga_young 01-27-15
 

Re: Better customer communication

Hi Greg and Thomas,
 
Thank you so much for voicing these concerns. Both emails came from me and my User Experience Research team. Let me start by saying that offending and frustrating you guys was the far from my intentions. I genuinely and sincerely apologize for causing this negative experience.
 
Thomas, I can see how jarring it must have felt to get an email asking to respond by the end of the day when it was already past working hours! Greg, we've talked offline, but let me say again that I can also see how a $5 thank you card sounds very small! I can imagine it was additionally frustrating to respond with your feedback to an address that did not work. I am looking into this issue and will resolve it by the next time I send out one of these messages. 
 
Let me introduce myself, clarify some of these emails, and let you know what we are changing going forward.
 
I am a user experience researcher at Optimizely. This means I run surveys and interviews with our customers in order to understand what you like and dislike about our product and what needs you have as you accomplish your work. I report my insights directly to our product managers, designers, and engineers. This ensures that we are really building for you - based on your real frustrations and needs.
 
I have and will continue to send invitations to feedback sessions. These sessions involve chatting with you and, sometimes, showing you prototypes of tweaks to the product. At times, I need to run these sessions within a 48 hour period and need to recruit customers for them quickly. I send out invitations with a deadline to ensure that you guys know when I need a response. I don't want you to respond too late unknowingly. This would waste your time. I try to give customers 2-4 days to respond, but sometimes this isn't possible. I promise to avoid these "short term offers" as much as I can. More importantly, I should have put in a time zone into my email. This is 100% my fault. I will add a time zone going forward.
 
I also send out invitations to take surveys. In keeping with industry standards, we have always either given customers a small thank you ($5-10) or entered them into raffle drawing to win a larger amount. Both strategies cost us the same amount. There is a small debate as to whether a small amount that is a certainty is better or worse than a larger amount that is uncertain from the customer's point of view. I totally understand Greg's point of view, but have also heard the opposite. In response to Greg's email, I changed back to a raffle, but I wonder if this is a good opportunity to A/B both strategies!
 
Overall, please accept my apologies for what was clearly a poor experience. I promise that the whole research team and everyone at Optimizely really values your feedback as we move forward in our mission to help you turn data into action. We are all passionate about our product and about helping you! Please feel free to let me know if you have other concerns or questions.
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User Experience Researcher at Optimizely
Optimizely