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Andy Shore

Hugo’s Tacos Woes: A Broken Autoresponder = Customer Disconnect

Feb 12 2013, 06:00 AM by

I enjoy eating. It should come as no shock to anyone that has seen me in person (the camera may add 10 pounds…but animation has been kind). I had a nice Sunday evening planned with friends. Some HBO and Showtime TV, the Blackhawks, the Grammys and dinner at my favorite taco stand down the street. The shows were good, as were the Grammys…it was my old reliable taco stand that threw a cog in my perfect Sunday evening.

Three of us went to pick up food from Hugo’s Tacos. I eat there at least once a week. My friend ordered first, followed by my brother and then myself. All three of us got al pastor. My brother and I received our food, then my friend was called to the window. He was informed they were out of al pastor, despite the fact that he had ordered first. He received nary an apology, nor anything to compensate for the inconvenience. He changed his order, got his food and we headed home.

I opened my nachos al pastor, only to find that they had left the white beans off my nachos. Aside from the honey chipotle salsa (which I would drink if it came in beverage form), those are my favorite part. I was not thrilled (remember…I like eating).

I directed a few angry tweets at Hugo’s Tacos, letting them know my displeasure. I also went on their site and sent a lengthier note to let them know what had happened. I don’t want to stop eating there, just the problems fixed. I clicked Send and was immediately hit with an autoresponder. Except…it was broken:


Autoresponders are an important and effective tool of good email marketers. Having a broken one when you send a message via the Contact form and pick a complaint out of the dropdown menu is a major no no. Not everyone can afford a 24/7 customer support team. An autoresponder should be able to do the initial work for you, without anyone at the office. A simple “we’re sorry for any inconvenience and/or we’ll look into this as soon as possible” would have appeased me until hearing from a real person.

I did receive an apology tweet and a request to email them this morning (I’ll let the fact that they hadn’t noticed I’d already done so slide). I am hopeful to get a response via email at some point today. If not, I may have to find a new favorite taco stand. There is no shortage of them here in Southern California.

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Comments

Andy from Benchmark Email

Feb 13 2013, 02:41 PM

I would like to add that Hugo's GM has since emailed, apologized and offered to send gift certificates. He also said he'd spoken to the employees to ensure the issues wouldn't happen again.

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