True story: Once upon a time, I bought a new television from a large electronics chain, and what should’ve been a simple purchase turned into a protracted comedy of errors spanning multiple weeks. It was, bar none, the absolute worst customer service experience I have ever had—primarily because the company in question didn’t care how inconvenient or idiotic they were being, or, indeed, how unpleasant my dealings with them had become.
In the aforementioned example, I not only told everyone I knew, but I blogged about it (several times). I work hard for my money; I want to give it to companies who appreciate my business. Bottom line: I haven’t shopped there since, and still actively campaign against others patronizing that establishment.
Another true story: Once upon a time, a great little company in Kentucky was diligently preparing for the upcoming Halloween season with all the costumes kids might want. They ordered everything they would need to be ready, and then catastrophe struck.
(Here is where we segue from “once upon a time” into “this week.”)
Ty’s took a large number of pre-orders on the extremely popular Deedee Doodlebops costume in size 3T/4T, and for the first time their supplier was unable to come through with the promised merchandise. (The actual letter can be read here in PDF format.)
Now. What’s a company to do in such a case? Well, I’d say that most retailers in this situation would just point a finger at the supplier, refund your money, and say “Sorry, not our fault.” And, sadly, as long as they remembered to say “sorry” you probably wouldn’t expect much more than that, such is the atrocious state of customer service these days.
The customers who are affected by this shortage are all receiving individual contact from Ty’s customer service representatives, but I thought it was worth noting—for all Ty’s customers—that this snafu is turning out to be a textbook example of “making the best of a bad situation.”
If you’re one of the customers missing a pre-ordered Deedee costume, Ty’s Toy Box is sorry. They are also offering three different options in an effort to help assuage the difficulty this may have created:
- Option 1: Were you ordering large, and think perhaps your child can fit into a 2T? If so, there are still 2Ts available, and Ty’s would be happy to ship one out to you.
- Option 2: In addition to a complete refund, Ty’s will send you a Deedee Doodle wig completely free of charge.
- Option 3: In addition to a complete refund, you may opt to receive a Deluxe Stephanie costume absolutely free (a $39.99 value). This is an unbeatable deal if your child is a Lazytown fan!
All three options also come with an official Doodlebops photo and a coupon good for $5 off your next Ty’s Toy Box purchase of $25 or more.
It’s really unfortunate that this problem arose, but as a parent I am impressed with the care and thought Ty’s Toy Box has put into handling it. And with all due respect to the Ty’s guys (I do adore them, you know), they’re not paying me enough money to buy fake praise. I praise because they’ve earned it, because they’re the kind of company I admire. The industry has tested them and they get a big thumbs-up from this mom for their classy response.
Now. If you’re one of the affected customers and your child opts for either the Deedee wig or the Stephanie costume, feel free to send me a picture if you’d like her to appear here on the blog! After all that, I think we can use a little pink hair around here to lighten things up.