A classic girl-meets-retailer, retailer-breaks-girl’s-heart story
A tale of love and loss told in three acts
I’ll be over here, pouting, alone in my principles
Hello Guest Relations,
On 12/12/2016 I purchased an iPhone 7. I was enticed to purchase the phone at Target because of the $100 Target gift card promotion attached to the item I had planned to purchase through our carrier, AT&T, directly. The purchase was smooth, the Target Mobile rep was very helpful, and I was satisfied that I made a good purchase. Because I shop at Target all the time, I spent part of that $100 within a day or two of the phone purchase. I’m at Target a lot!
Yesterday, I noticed that the very same item was being offered with a $200 gift card, so I went back to the store with the hope that Target would offer some type of “adjustment.” Obviously, if I’d known that you would be offering an additional $100 incentive, I would have waited an additional week, as I still had time before the holiday. A Customer Service agent attempted to help me, but was unable, so the representative there sought help from the manager on duty. The MOD told me Target was unable to offer any remedy because Target and Target Mobile are “two separate accounting systems.” He referred me to the Mobile Department. I stated that his response felt like a blow-off to me, but the MOD shrugged and offered, “Sorry.” I went to the Mobile Department to inquire.
The Mobile representative was unsure how to offer assistance to me, and immediately suggested I speak to the store manager. I told him that the store manager had already directed me to Mobile, as the Target store was unwilling or unable to help me. The Mobile rep did make a few phone calls on my behalf. He said if I returned the phone, I’d pay a $35 restocking fee, and I was wiling to do this because I would still come out $65 ahead. But the line was four-deep, the rep was in his first month of employ and wasn’t sure exactly how to proceed; it’s six days before Christmas, and I am not blind to the needs of others. I thanked him for his honesty and his effort, telling him I would continue to try to find a way to work it out.
So here I am, asking you to help me work it out. I understand you are a business whose sole function is to make money. I further understand that I am the tiniest cog in your business wheel, so I am not voicing some ridiculous rant on how I’ll never shop at Target again and wage some type of personal boycott. It’s simply not feasible. But I will say this: In 2016 alone, I’ve spent $3,530.23 on my Red Card, and that doesn’t include what I’ve spent since my last Red Card statement, or purchases made by my husband or my children. Imagine the scenario from my view: If I’d known I could get another $100 by purchasing the phone the following week, I would have. Case closed. It’s not unreasonable to ask. Target makes price adjustments all the time, and in my view, this is akin to a price adjustment. The Target Corporation can easily give away another $100; you’d have done it anyway if I had waited to make my purchase.
I did leave your store this evening and fulfill my shopping list at a Meijer store. Quite frankly, I’d rather shop at Target. My past practice suggests that Target is my preferred retail outlet, and I’d like it to stay that way. But I felt slighted tonight, and want to continue to love Target like I did before my experience this evening. Please help!
Thanks for letting us know. I’m sorry for any frustration and disappointment this experience has caused. I’ll document your experience and share those comments with mobile senior leadership for further review. Typically I will hear back within 24-48 bus hrs and will notify you of their response.
May you enjoy the remainder of this holiday season.
Target Guest Relations
I was delighted when I arrived home today to have received a message from A at Target Mobile explaining how Target Mobile would “work it out” and provide a price adjustment of $100 for the iPhone 7 I purchased 12/12/2016. Please refer to my original email below (above here) for details. His message indicated that I would have to go to Target today to complete this transaction, that since it was “something we don’t normally do” I had to do this in the immediate. He said that J from the Target store was on the other line, listening in to the message, so would know what to expect when I arrived at Target TODAY.
I arrived at the Target store around 5:10 pm today. I recognized the man who helped me the other evening, who was leaning against the counter. I asked if he was in fact J; he said he was, and I told him why I was there. I was told that he “had just had a rush, he didn’t get to my stuff yet, was ‘trashed,’ and was going to take a 15-minute break” when he was done with his current customer, and that I should “come back later.”
In a remarkable show of restraint, I said nothing, and walked away. I was, and am, beyond disappointed.
You’ve made it clear that Target and Target Mobile are different entities. I understand, but I no longer care. I would assume the Mobile operates under the auspices of the Target brand, so in my mind are fixed as one. The sale flyer and promotion were advertised in the Target advertising circular. Target Mobile failed in its attempt to satisfy this customer, so too then has Target. Please cancel my Target Red Card. I will pay my balance (adding another $750 to the approximately $3500 already on my Red Card in 2016), and sever my business relationship with Target. I stated in my first email that I was not going to make any great overture about shopping elsewhere, but this experience has changed my mind.
I understand it is the holidays and shoppers are desperate and often rude. I was neither of those things. Why demand that I go to Target TODAY, and then dismiss me? If that is acceptable to you, then I am sorry for you. I will vote with my wallet, as they say, and shop elsewhere. I reiterate that I would love to continue to love Target, but this level of customer “service” is entirely unacceptable.
Thank you again for reaching out to us. I am sorry that the second exchange with Target Mobile was not ideal.
I am going to connect with the District Leader on this issue. The employee should have been more professional in their approach to the situation, especially given that they were aware of what needed to be done. I apologize that this was not done. Sure, we get busy during the holiday season, but we are always still here to assist our guests in a friendly, professional manner.
I will reach back out to you via email when I hear back from the District Leader regarding the next steps. I want to make sure we make this right for you.
Target Guest Relations
Thanks for your prompt response this morning, and for getting A, the district leader, to call me to attempt to honor my request.
Thanks to A, I am now completely educated in the ways Target and Target Mobile are distinct. I completely understand that A was offering me something unique because Mobile simply doesn’t adjust specials. The offer was extended through today, but I am not able to go to Target today. At the time of his call, 11:30 this morning, I began preparing for my family’s holiday as my family will be arriving in a few hours. I truly do not have another opportunity to go out today. Frankly, I’m disinclined to return to Target Mobile anyway; I did as I was directed yesterday, and was unsuccessful in resolution. I feel I did live up to my end of the offer yesterday, which I wholeheartedly appreciated. I suggested to A that there’s a difference between what Target can’t and won’t do for me, so we’ve arrived at a stalemate.
Thank you for attempting to facilitate a happy solution for me. I truly appreciate the effort Guest Relations made on my behalf with Mobile. I did not receive the outcome I hoped for from Target Mobile, so I am giving up. Once my Red Card balance is paid, I will cancel my account. Even though there are two business entities at work here, I’m disappointed at the whole.
I guess they broke up with me first. Ah, how my heart weeps! I love you, Target! Come back! You. Complete. Me.
I know it’s silly to feel a loss here, I mean, they’re a retail store, Wendy, not your BFF or even a distant weird second or third cousin living in rural Pennsylvania. But I do feel a loss, and I KNOW it’s of my own design.
You’re reading this thinking, “You got some balls, lady, demanding $100 for nothing, for your own greed and bad timing, then bitching for not getting it.” OK, maybe only one person thought that, or said it anyway. I spend (to me) a sizable number of discretionary dollars at the red bullseye; I thought we had a good thing going here. I had such confidence they’d value my patronage so much so, of course they’d see my perfect logic. If I’d bought a 60-inch flatscreen and it went on sale the next week, they’d refund the difference via price adjustment no question. They’d love me back with the same starry eyes and same dopey, lovesick grin I wear, well wore, on my face every time I skipped through those magical automatic sliding doors.
Target’s bill gets paid mid-month, and then I’ll have to endure my self-imposed exile. Why? Whyyyyyy?? Why do I do this to myself? Sometimes my principles are stupid. But principles are necessary. Why would I allow someone to treat me badly, but continue to chase their affection? You can’t let someone treat you in a way that’s any less well than you deserve. (Not that I’m speaking from prior personal experience or anything, these musings are purely hypothetical. Or not. . .) Principles, people. Principles are necessary. Even when they prohibit your weekly retail therapy session.
I couldn’t even read Sunday’s glossy advertising circular. Too soon, too soon. *sigh*