Complaint Letters Work

When you have a bad experience with a company's service or product, writing a complaint letter can be a highly productive way to vent your frustration and often get something for free that you'll actually use. Here are some examples of things I've received in response to complaint letters I've written.

Gap - $15 gift card
Luna Bar - Six Luna bars (total value: $7)
Amy's Organics - Coupons for free items of my choice along with a few $1 off coupons (total value: $16)
Apple - my computer fixed for free and a Pro Care membership (total value: $375)

Calling can also be effective, if that's what you prefer, but I find letter writing to be both fast and effective--there's no bouncing around automated systems, holding, or pleading to speak with a manager.

As someone who regularly writes complaint letters, I also make it a practice to write compliment letters whenever I have a particularly good experience with an employee or a company. It just seems like a good idea to maintain that sense of balance and to try to appreciate things at least as often as I moan about them.

Photo by heatherrrrrrr

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think it depends on what company you complain to and what you are complaining about. I'm a manager at a call center for a pharmacy. We get some ridiculous complaint letters and those strictly get shoved aside. We read them once and send an “I'm sorry” letter right back. But that's all they get!

If it sounds like a valid complaint, we will research the matter fully before we call the member. However, that is all they get is a phone call. We do not randomly throw gifts and money at the people who complain.

So yes, complaint letters work, but you really should have something to complain about before writing a letter. Remember that these people have jobs just like most people. It’s one thing to complain about a specific person, another thing entirely if you are just complaining to get free stuff.