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Re: [prbytes] RE: Tech Support Hell - This is remarkably close ...

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  • Ned Barnett
    Kezia If manuals were written in a way that didn t require a Stanford graduate degree to comprehend, I d be with you all the way. Ditto for online answer
    Message 1 of 6 , Apr 30, 2006
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      Kezia

      If manuals were written in a way that didn't require a Stanford
      graduate degree to comprehend, I'd be with you all the way.

      Ditto for online "answer" pages. That stuff is all Greek to me.

      I need someone to walk me through - absent that, I accumulate "stuff"
      I can't use (my Palm Pilot, for instance) -

      Recently, I was asked to buy a service plan for ACT! - it cost more
      than twice what the software did, and the software was nearly $200
      bucks. Decided that Outlook would do just fine ...

      At 03:55 PM 4/27/2006, you wrote:
      >Devil's advocate time...
      >
      >I was doing PR for a software company during a time when they began
      >charging for live phone technical support after more than a decade of
      >providing it free. Customers and editors were NOT happy.
      >
      >The sad fact of the matter is end users usually don't:
      >
      >1. Read the manual that came with the product. (Tech workers have an
      >acronym for this - RTFM).
      >2. Consult the product's help file menu.
      >3. Check the often ample support resources available on the product web
      >sites, including user chat boards.
      >4. Use the online contact form or email support, which tends to be free,
      >just not all that prompt.
      >5. Look for a recent update to the product, such a free firmware
      >download, that fixes known problems automatically.
      >6. Have any confidence in their ability to solve the problem without
      >help, nor any confidence in products' tendency to self-heal, which often
      >happens with a reboot and relaunch.
      >7. Install and begin using a new product within the acceptable window of
      >time when free support is generally provided - 30 or 60 days of
      >purchase, usually.
      >
      >In some cases, certainly, you need help because you can't get on the web
      >to take any of these steps. But frankly, most of us feel like we deserve
      >to have our intensely critical problem fixed NOW if not sooner, with
      >very little effort on our part. And we think we're utterly unique,
      >meaning no one else would have ever had this problem before, nor would a
      >QA engineer have detected it, so we don't bother to look around to see
      >if the fix is out there already. And Windows computers and networks have
      >become so much more complicated that the majority of us are frozen with
      >fear, so we don't try simple things like restarting, or removing and
      >reloading the program from scratch.
      >
      >In my client's case, the vast majority of their support calls would have
      >been eliminated if people would have tried one of these options, which
      >benefits society because it in turn would have cut down on the wait time
      >for the rest of us, who have legitimate problems and need them solved
      >NOW!
      >
      >My client decided to implement a three-tiered support package that was
      >as flexible as possible (per incident, annual, or one other option I
      >forget). Within the first 30 days, phone support was still free. They
      >only had about 105 employees total, and they could not in good
      >conscience lay off people and outsource the task. And like you say, Ned,
      >I found that when I explained these business options - charge for it or
      >lay off truly effective, but overwhelmed, employees - people tended to
      >agree that $12 per call or $60 per year was a better choice.
      >
      >I myself just uninstalled a free trial of a program that had great
      >potential, but no email support available to me during the trial period.
      >Too bad for them. I would have gladly paid for the product!
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >--- In prbytes@yahoogroups.com, hgigante@... wrote:
      > >
      > > The sad part is, this is no different than any bank, airline,
      >insurance company, . . . US companies have found a new way to increase
      >the number of new sales they need each year . . . an express ride for
      >current customers out the back door.
      > >
      > > Hugh
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >Yahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >
      >



      Ned Barnett, APR
      Marketing/PR Fellow, AHA

      Barnett Marketing Communications
      Exceptional Marcom Services for Exceptional Clients

      420 N. Nellis Blvd., A3 - 276 - Las Vegas, NV 89110
      Phone: 702-696-1200 * FAX: 702-696-1211
      ned@... - http://www.barnettmarcom.com

      Barnett on PR: http://barnettmarcom.blogspot.com/
      Barnett on Marketing: http://barnettonmarketing.blogspot.com/
      Barnett on Book Promotion/Marketing/Publishing:
      http://barnettonpublishing.blogspot.com/

      BMC - A Sound Investment in Exceptional Success

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • kezia_jauron
      What s that expression, never bet more than you can afford to lose? Never rely on a gadget you can t figger out. My husband buys all kinds of weird techie
      Message 2 of 6 , May 12, 2006
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        What's that expression, never bet more than you can afford to lose?
        Never rely on a gadget you can't figger out.

        My husband buys all kinds of weird techie things, though not usually
        computer-related. (Like the electronc "Weather Station" that shows
        you how hard it's raining in Shanghai.) But he has no patience to
        sit down and learn how to use anything, so every time something has
        to be fiddled with, I have to do it.




        --- In prbytes@yahoogroups.com, Ned Barnett <ned@...> wrote:
        >
        > Kezia
        >
        > If manuals were written in a way that didn't require a Stanford
        > graduate degree to comprehend, I'd be with you all the way.
        >
        > Ditto for online "answer" pages. That stuff is all Greek to me.
        >
        > I need someone to walk me through - absent that, I
        accumulate "stuff"
        > I can't use (my Palm Pilot, for instance) -
        >
        > Recently, I was asked to buy a service plan for ACT! - it cost
        more
        > than twice what the software did, and the software was nearly $200
        > bucks. Decided that Outlook would do just fine ...
        >
        > At 03:55 PM 4/27/2006, you wrote:
        > >Devil's advocate time...
        > >
        > >I was doing PR for a software company during a time when they
        began
        > >charging for live phone technical support after more than a
        decade of
        > >providing it free. Customers and editors were NOT happy.
        > >
        > >The sad fact of the matter is end users usually don't:
        > >
        > >1. Read the manual that came with the product. (Tech workers have
        an
        > >acronym for this - RTFM).
        > >2. Consult the product's help file menu.
        > >3. Check the often ample support resources available on the
        product web
        > >sites, including user chat boards.
        > >4. Use the online contact form or email support, which tends to
        be free,
        > >just not all that prompt.
        > >5. Look for a recent update to the product, such a free firmware
        > >download, that fixes known problems automatically.
        > >6. Have any confidence in their ability to solve the problem
        without
        > >help, nor any confidence in products' tendency to self-heal,
        which often
        > >happens with a reboot and relaunch.
        > >7. Install and begin using a new product within the acceptable
        window of
        > >time when free support is generally provided - 30 or 60 days of
        > >purchase, usually.
        > >
        > >In some cases, certainly, you need help because you can't get on
        the web
        > >to take any of these steps. But frankly, most of us feel like we
        deserve
        > >to have our intensely critical problem fixed NOW if not sooner,
        with
        > >very little effort on our part. And we think we're utterly unique,
        > >meaning no one else would have ever had this problem before, nor
        would a
        > >QA engineer have detected it, so we don't bother to look around
        to see
        > >if the fix is out there already. And Windows computers and
        networks have
        > >become so much more complicated that the majority of us are
        frozen with
        > >fear, so we don't try simple things like restarting, or removing
        and
        > >reloading the program from scratch.
        > >
        > >In my client's case, the vast majority of their support calls
        would have
        > >been eliminated if people would have tried one of these options,
        which
        > >benefits society because it in turn would have cut down on the
        wait time
        > >for the rest of us, who have legitimate problems and need them
        solved
        > >NOW!
        > >
        > >My client decided to implement a three-tiered support package
        that was
        > >as flexible as possible (per incident, annual, or one other
        option I
        > >forget). Within the first 30 days, phone support was still free.
        They
        > >only had about 105 employees total, and they could not in good
        > >conscience lay off people and outsource the task. And like you
        say, Ned,
        > >I found that when I explained these business options - charge for
        it or
        > >lay off truly effective, but overwhelmed, employees - people
        tended to
        > >agree that $12 per call or $60 per year was a better choice.
        > >
        > >I myself just uninstalled a free trial of a program that had great
        > >potential, but no email support available to me during the trial
        period.
        > >Too bad for them. I would have gladly paid for the product!
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >--- In prbytes@yahoogroups.com, hgigante@ wrote:
        > > >
        > > > The sad part is, this is no different than any bank, airline,
        > >insurance company, . . . US companies have found a new way to
        increase
        > >the number of new sales they need each year . . . an express ride
        for
        > >current customers out the back door.
        > > >
        > > > Hugh
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >Yahoo! Groups Links
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        >
        >
        >
        > Ned Barnett, APR
        > Marketing/PR Fellow, AHA
        >
        > Barnett Marketing Communications
        > Exceptional Marcom Services for Exceptional Clients
        >
        > 420 N. Nellis Blvd., A3 - 276 - Las Vegas, NV 89110
        > Phone: 702-696-1200 * FAX: 702-696-1211
        > ned@... - http://www.barnettmarcom.com
        >
        > Barnett on PR: http://barnettmarcom.blogspot.com/
        > Barnett on Marketing: http://barnettonmarketing.blogspot.com/
        > Barnett on Book Promotion/Marketing/Publishing:
        > http://barnettonpublishing.blogspot.com/
        >
        > BMC - A Sound Investment in Exceptional Success
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
      • Ned Barnett
        ... That s axiomatic - which is why people who live in Las Vegas don t gamble (at least not for long) ... Good advice - but since every gadget is beyond me
        Message 3 of 6 , May 20, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          At 04:58 PM 5/12/2006, you wrote:
          >What's that expression, never bet more than you can afford to lose?

          That's axiomatic - which is why people who live in Las Vegas don't
          gamble (at least not for long)

          >Never rely on a gadget you can't figger out.

          Good advice - but since every gadget is beyond me (can you figure out
          how to tune a computer-ignition auto engine?), I can't follow it, as
          I'm not a Luddite nor a troglodyte.


          >My husband buys all kinds of weird techie things, though not usually
          >computer-related. (Like the electronc "Weather Station" that shows
          >you how hard it's raining in Shanghai.) But he has no patience to
          >sit down and learn how to use anything, so every time something has
          >to be fiddled with, I have to do it.

          He must be a hell of a guy for you to willingly put up with that <g>

          Thanks for the insights

          Ned




          >--- In prbytes@yahoogroups.com, Ned Barnett <ned@...> wrote:
          > >
          > > Kezia
          > >
          > > If manuals were written in a way that didn't require a Stanford
          > > graduate degree to comprehend, I'd be with you all the way.
          > >
          > > Ditto for online "answer" pages. That stuff is all Greek to me.
          > >
          > > I need someone to walk me through - absent that, I
          >accumulate "stuff"
          > > I can't use (my Palm Pilot, for instance) -
          > >
          > > Recently, I was asked to buy a service plan for ACT! - it cost
          >more
          > > than twice what the software did, and the software was nearly $200
          > > bucks. Decided that Outlook would do just fine ...
          > >
          > > At 03:55 PM 4/27/2006, you wrote:
          > > >Devil's advocate time...
          > > >
          > > >I was doing PR for a software company during a time when they
          >began
          > > >charging for live phone technical support after more than a
          >decade of
          > > >providing it free. Customers and editors were NOT happy.
          > > >
          > > >The sad fact of the matter is end users usually don't:
          > > >
          > > >1. Read the manual that came with the product. (Tech workers have
          >an
          > > >acronym for this - RTFM).
          > > >2. Consult the product's help file menu.
          > > >3. Check the often ample support resources available on the
          >product web
          > > >sites, including user chat boards.
          > > >4. Use the online contact form or email support, which tends to
          >be free,
          > > >just not all that prompt.
          > > >5. Look for a recent update to the product, such a free firmware
          > > >download, that fixes known problems automatically.
          > > >6. Have any confidence in their ability to solve the problem
          >without
          > > >help, nor any confidence in products' tendency to self-heal,
          >which often
          > > >happens with a reboot and relaunch.
          > > >7. Install and begin using a new product within the acceptable
          >window of
          > > >time when free support is generally provided - 30 or 60 days of
          > > >purchase, usually.
          > > >
          > > >In some cases, certainly, you need help because you can't get on
          >the web
          > > >to take any of these steps. But frankly, most of us feel like we
          >deserve
          > > >to have our intensely critical problem fixed NOW if not sooner,
          >with
          > > >very little effort on our part. And we think we're utterly unique,
          > > >meaning no one else would have ever had this problem before, nor
          >would a
          > > >QA engineer have detected it, so we don't bother to look around
          >to see
          > > >if the fix is out there already. And Windows computers and
          >networks have
          > > >become so much more complicated that the majority of us are
          >frozen with
          > > >fear, so we don't try simple things like restarting, or removing
          >and
          > > >reloading the program from scratch.
          > > >
          > > >In my client's case, the vast majority of their support calls
          >would have
          > > >been eliminated if people would have tried one of these options,
          >which
          > > >benefits society because it in turn would have cut down on the
          >wait time
          > > >for the rest of us, who have legitimate problems and need them
          >solved
          > > >NOW!
          > > >
          > > >My client decided to implement a three-tiered support package
          >that was
          > > >as flexible as possible (per incident, annual, or one other
          >option I
          > > >forget). Within the first 30 days, phone support was still free.
          >They
          > > >only had about 105 employees total, and they could not in good
          > > >conscience lay off people and outsource the task. And like you
          >say, Ned,
          > > >I found that when I explained these business options - charge for
          >it or
          > > >lay off truly effective, but overwhelmed, employees - people
          >tended to
          > > >agree that $12 per call or $60 per year was a better choice.
          > > >
          > > >I myself just uninstalled a free trial of a program that had great
          > > >potential, but no email support available to me during the trial
          >period.
          > > >Too bad for them. I would have gladly paid for the product!
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >--- In prbytes@yahoogroups.com, hgigante@ wrote:
          > > > >
          > > > > The sad part is, this is no different than any bank, airline,
          > > >insurance company, . . . US companies have found a new way to
          >increase
          > > >the number of new sales they need each year . . . an express ride
          >for
          > > >current customers out the back door.
          > > > >
          > > > > Hugh
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >Yahoo! Groups Links
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > > >
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > Ned Barnett, APR
          > > Marketing/PR Fellow, AHA
          > >
          > > Barnett Marketing Communications
          > > Exceptional Marcom Services for Exceptional Clients
          > >
          > > 420 N. Nellis Blvd., A3 - 276 - Las Vegas, NV 89110
          > > Phone: 702-696-1200 * FAX: 702-696-1211
          > > ned@... - http://www.barnettmarcom.com
          > >
          > > Barnett on PR: http://barnettmarcom.blogspot.com/
          > > Barnett on Marketing: http://barnettonmarketing.blogspot.com/
          > > Barnett on Book Promotion/Marketing/Publishing:
          > > http://barnettonpublishing.blogspot.com/
          > >
          > > BMC - A Sound Investment in Exceptional Success
          > >
          > > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          > >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
          >



          Ned Barnett, APR
          Marketing/PR Fellow, AHA

          Barnett Marketing Communications
          Exceptional Marcom Services for Exceptional Clients

          420 N. Nellis Blvd., A3 - 276 - Las Vegas, NV 89110
          Phone: 702-696-1200 * FAX: 702-696-1211
          ned@... - http://www.barnettmarcom.com

          Barnett on PR: http://barnettmarcom.blogspot.com/
          Barnett on Marketing: http://barnettonmarketing.blogspot.com/
          Barnett on Book Promotion/Marketing/Publishing:
          http://barnettonpublishing.blogspot.com/

          BMC - A Sound Investment in Exceptional Success

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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