Suddenly Everything I Ordered On Walmart.Com Is Out Of Stock Thank You for Calling

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Thank You for Calling

Is is just me or has anyone else called a place of business … as in a retail chain of sorts … or a restaurant … seeking certain information and you’re received with a bombarding 30 second or more greeting script promoting sales that are of no value to you and are unintelligible because the speaker is talking faster than their lips can move? Why are they talking so fast? Because they have a lot to say in their scripted greeting and are most likely embarrassed about the content of the script even though they are employed there. I don’t want to hear all of this when I call someplace to find out the store hours or if they have a particular item in stock. Everyone reading this knows what I am talking about. Let’s try one out for size, shall we …

“Thanks for calling Mike’s Bikes and Trikes, where our deals on wheels will make you squeal, and 20% off all bicycle accessories for this month only, this is Rupert, how can I help you today?”

Okay … that wasn’t really 30 seconds, but it’s certainly a mouthful and if I’m calling just to see if they have bicycle chain oil in stock, I need nothing more than a quick …

“Mike’s Bikes, this is Rupert,” Enough said.

“Have you got bicycle chain oil in stock?” “We have over thirty two varieties of bicycle chain oil starting as low as $2.99 a quart and lower in viscosity than our premium blend of synthetic bicycle chain oils that range around $49.99 a qu…”

“Rupert?”

“Yes?”

“You’re carrying on again.”

Do you see where I’m getting at with this? And the problem is … we don’t even hear the proper scripted greeting because, first, we’re hoping we’ll dialed the correct number and we’re trying to listen in where the greeter happens to mention the actual location and name of the place. Secondly, they’re talking so fast to get out what they have to say … undoubtedly due to heavy incoming phone call volume, having to say the same damn thing over and over again all day, and sheer embarrassment of the scripted greeting; it comes out sounding like this …

“Tanxfercallin Mikesbikestrikes weredealswheelssqueal and 20 centsoff bikesorriesforsmonthly, disRupert, how can I help you today?”

“Um … yeah … is this Mike’s Bikes?”

“That’s what I just said.”

“Um … yeah … okay … sure … if you say so kid.”

The greeter does not take the time to enunciate. It’s that simple. Should they? I don’t think so. I don’t think scripted greetings are pertinent in the world of marketing. With that said, I’m no marketing guru, but I am willing to bet the amount of money in my wallet (relax, my kid most likely swiped it anyway) that anyone reading this can hardly argue the fact with me about this. Has anyone hearing a scripted greeting like this actually able to understand it and got excited about it to the point where the script actually served a purpose? Oh my gosh! I have to go to Mike’s because they’re having 20% off their accessories for this month only! Anyone? Contact me if this is so. I’ll buy you lunch and we can talk. Most likely, don’t be offended, but I’ll be writing about your kind in my next article no doubt.

Now the real question has to be asked. Because … let’s face it, the poor people that have to blurt out these scripted greetings are no more than pawns in the proverbial game of chess … where the corporate executives sit in closed meetings all day drumming up ways to show that they came to work that morning with an idea and their position to the company actually produced something of value. Do they hire marketing companies that show actual results by these scripted phone greetings that if enunciated properly and slowly enough do actually raise sales? I don’t think so. I think it’s more of the “how can we torture the minions today, Al?” approach.

“I know … let’s make them say this when they answer the phone!” Evil laughter emanates throughout the boardroom.

The thing they’re missing out on … is the fact that as embarrassing as the phone script sounds to the employee who has to memorize it … you do realize that many are made to attach the greeting to the phones so the would-be employee simply reads the script … like a news broadcaster reads a TelePrompTer … when they answer the phone … are working for the exact same company as the Bozo the Clown that came up with the idea of the script to begin with. So it’s embarrassing for the employee, yes. I would like to add that although Bozo does not have to answer the phone that way during the course of the day because he or she is in marketing and works at the corporate level … they still have to answer the question; when asked; “Where do you work?” And the answer can not be covered up by saying … “I work as the Marketing Director of Michael’s Bicycles, and Tricycles.” Everyone knows by now it’s Mike’s Bikes and Trikes, where the deals on wheels will make you squeal, yadda, yadda, yadda. I also challenge anyone whose shopped at Mike’s to tell me once when they actually squealed about some deal. Anyone? I’m buying lunch, don’t forget.

Now I’m just picking on Mike’s. It’s actually a fictional place I just made up along with the phone script. The sad thing is … what if there really is a Mike’s Bikes? I could be sued for plagiarism if I stole their sacred phone script. Or worse … given some marketing director and idea of how to seemingly drum up stagnant sales … or torture their employees. Eh gad! My sincere apologies go out to all the potential employees I just ruined the otherwise mundane lives of. My point here, is again, me not being a marketing guru, I was able to come up with a scripted phone greeting right here in front of my computer while writing this article. It’s that simple. And yet, people go to college for this and receive high digit income for their ideas.

Now, I’m not competing with this humorous Super Bowl advertisers. That’s true marketing. I’m trying to tell any potential corporate executives this simple fact. Although I am not a marketing guru, I am a customer and I know what I want and what I don’t want. That makes me a valuable source and a potential stock investment to listen up and jot this down in your legal notepad. I do not want to hear a scripted greeting when I call anyplace. I want to hear the name of the place I call to simply ensure I did not mis-dial and the name of the employee answering the phone so I know who I am talking to. That’s all I need. I know where I called. I called there because I knew. I know why I called and I doubt it has anything to do with your stupid phone script and that stupid phone script is not going to change my mind suddenly about the reason that I called. Time is money, you dingalings! How can marketing directors work in a corporate setting along with payroll personnel trying to find ways to trim hours and fall under certain budget guidelines?

Hasn’t anyone considered that answering each phone call could be cut down to this …

“Mikes Bikes, this is Rupert.”

“Yes, Rupert. Do you have bike chain oil in stock?”

“Yep.”

“I’ll be right there.” click. I don’t care if it’s on sale. If I was price conscientious, I would have gone to Walmart or maybe started oiling the bicycle chain every other year. If I was a payroll administrator for some major company that needed to trim budgeted dollars down, I’d know right where to start. The marketing department. The whole marketing department. See ya! And thanks for shopping Mike’s Bikes and Trikes … where this deal on wheels is going to make you go find some other place of employment and ruin their business by drumming up ways to torture the minions … as a matter of fact … that’s it! That’s brilliant! Why don’t they just cut out the middle man altogether and make the employees read the scripted phone greetings like thus …

“Thanks for calling Mikes, my name is Rupert and this is the thing my company came up with for me to say to make me take longer telling your where you called so that I can tie up the phone line that much longer, get on my lunch break that much later, not receive my raise and review when it’s due, because sales are down so they came up with this way to torture me and blame me over it … like it’s my fault to begin with, how can I help you?”

“Geesh, Rupert. I had no idea your life was that miserable. I’ll just go to Walmart. At least I know they’re all worse off than you.”

Jody L. Campbell

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