A personal experience with 1-800-FLOWERS
(including a not-oft-used “new/old” element)
Recently, I had an anniversary of a past birthday, and received a delivery from 1-800-FLOWERS, via FedEx, on a Saturday. Door delivery. Sweet!
FIVE MINUTES LATER, my phone rang. 1-800-FLOWERS! What?! Intrigued, I answered the phone because it was so coincidental. A lovely operator from Customer Service, Tammy, was calling to ask if I received my delivery, if the roses were in good condition, or if I had any problems. I was a bit startled. A call? An actual phone call not selling me something?!
I opened the box while on the phone; splendid flowers. My curiosity peaked. I asked her “why the call?” (I haven’t received a call like this in YEARS). Evidently, it is a new ‘call’ initiative from marketing; a personal touch point to ensure quality and a good customer experience. So, me being me, I pushed it further and asked if I could speak to someone in the marketing department. On a Saturday!
Tammy got Jessica, her marketing manager, on the phone who explained it is part of a new call initiative to reach out directly to recipients of orders. I was impressed; I delved a little further.
Me: “Loyalty and acquisition are expensive. Call centers are expensive. This must be costing you.” Jessica said they use VoIP. It has severely decreased CC costs. To me, obviously this helps enable this initiative to fly having worked with numerous companies with CCs in the past.
Me: “I got a call 5 minutes after the delivery arrived. Is this coincidental? (possibly? Not sure. But it was the first FedEx delivery window). “Do you have an automated alert to the CC when delivery is complete?”
Jessica said they did get reports of orders/deliveries, but she couldn’t be specific with details and suggested I contact corporate. I tried, to no avail. So I assume some things here, but have fairly solid background knowledge and experience on how things work. (oh, and I asked the sender) … again these are assumptions.
The SENDER of the flowers used his Smartphone to place his order, received an email confirmation to his personal email account, and a tracking #. I got the flowers on time, in good condition and a CALL from 1-800. Within five minutes of delivery.
So in this case, we’ve got Smartphone –> Web Order –> Customer transactional confirmation with Tracking Link via email, back to Smartphone –> Actual delivery –> Auto-order/delivery record automated or batched quickly to Call Center –> Immediate recipient phone call.
The personal phone call was most impressive.
For some marketers, this might seem like something from the ’70s. I know there are multiple call efforts out there, just not for me in the last decade with such relevancy.
As an existing customer, this service level impressed me and increased my own loyalty. I’m not easily impressed. If I was a first-time recipient, I believe I would consider using 1-800 post-experience. I looked at their website further, and they also have a link for Radio Listeners (where you can enter a code you heard on the radio. Nice!).
As a marketer: One VoIP call for acquisition – very good. One VoIP phone call to increase loyalty? Even better. A personal call with a pleasant employee? Priceless.
First published on The Relevancy Group Blog