Sound Communication: The Holdcom Blog

Customer Service Lesson from Groupon


Groupon has been dominating the social mediaverse with their brazen rejection of a Google takeover, as well as smoothly “expanding reach by 2,500% to over 50 million visitors spread across 35 countries” – in only three years.

Except for this recent New Year’s debacle in Japan, which resulted in “CEO Andrew Mason posting a personal apology video to customers.” The featured restaurant, Bird Café, was faced with a flood of orders to prepare and deliver thousands of osechi, or traditional New Year meals. According to Mason, “[the restaurant] deliver[ed] food late to many…and in terrible condition to others.”

Groupon accepted the consequences gracefully, and instead of passing the buck, announced their mission to “educate its representatives on how to properly process orders so that a merchant doesn’t end up selling more Groupons than it can handle.” The video is sincere, and progressive, in addressing its audience directly.

No business is perfect – inevitably problems arise. For Holdcom, we are often placed in time-sensitive situations where a great quantity of high-priority programs needs to be written, produced, and fulfilled by day’s end. It is easy to succumb to the pressure, but Holdcom has outlined protocols that not only smoothly handle rush orders, but also give advice for our employees to mentally prepare themselves for these tasks.

The ability to communicate directly with clients, to shift priorities on the fly, and to be confidant in your work is the ingredients for building a relationship of trust. For Groupon, this “ripple” may have had a positive effect after all – showcasing a loyal customer base.

Tags: customer service