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  • Writer's pictureNanci Brown

Great Customer Service Tip #1: Answer Your Customer Support Email

Updated: Mar 29, 2019

While I normally talk about project management and business process improvement, I'm also a bit obsessed about client and customer service. It's such a great opportunity to establish and strengthen the customer-to-business relationship, don't you think? A recent experience made me think of something my old friend Aviv used to say:"To understand good quality, you need to see shit quality first." So here's a post about shitty customer service, and how to fix it.

Some family members and I have been using the popular language app, Duolingo, off and on for a few years. Overall, it's a good tool y aprendo mucho español et beaucoup de français. In fact, I like it so much that I finally paid for a subscription.

Herein lies the problem. When you use a free app, your expectations of support assistance are probably pretty low, and rightfully so. You're getting an application for free, after all, you freeloader. So, when a problem arose with Duolingo, as a paying customer I expected a prompt response.

First, it took some digging around to find their support info. What is it about web companies who purposely hide their contact details so that subscribers won't contact them? And of course there's no phone number, because calling support is like, so old-fashioned. This is a HUGE pet peeve, but I digress.

Anyway, finally found their contact info and sent them an email. Got a response that they were looking into the issue and would follow up. And there, the trail goes cold. No further communication was received, even after sending multiple repeat inquiries.

Then, when looking through an online forum, my husband found the solution: Turns out, Duolingo changed the way their app functions, but without formally communicating this change to their users. Crazy, right? Especially since this change made it appear as if the app was malfunctioning!

Ironically, my husband's subscription has expired, and he very much wants to keep using the paid version of the app. But how can one in good conscience pay a company that doesn't just provide shitty service--it quite literally ignores its customers? What would you do?

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