For More Information….

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How often do you dial those 1-800 information numbers that are on just about every product? The Frau pulls no punches.

If she thinks there’s something dumb about what you’ve made or how you’ve packaged it, believe me, you’re going to get a call.

She recently phoned a major pots and pans manufacturer to ask them how the hell you are supposed to extract the stainless steel egg holders from their six unit stove top coddler without scalding all the digits on the operative hand. (Which I did) The person on the other end of the line told her to use a fork. Not good enough. Not nearly good enough. You’re not getting rid of The Frau that easily.

Then I heard her berating a coffee producer because it is virtually impossible to open their new resealable package.

I wish they’d told her to use a fork. That would have been comic symmetry beyond measure. But, no, the response you usually get from someone at a corporate info line is that, though your complaint is invariably isolated, they will take it under advisement. Sure they will. What they’ll do is end the call, turn to the co-worker at the next cubicle and start a sentence with, ‘Get a load of this….’.

By the way, packaging that does not take into account the growing number of ageing consumers is becoming a big issue. If you really want to annoy people just make it difficult to crack the envelope of your product. Seal it for freshness, if you must, but don’t force already highly agitated people to reach for something sharp.

[picapp align=”left” wrap=”true” link=”term=cheese&iid=8391560″ src=”a/8/e/c/Mouse_sitting_on_b127.jpg?adImageId=12986079&imageId=8391560″ width=”234″ height=”159″ /]   It is possible to abuse the product help line. I actually knew someone who would deliberately search the grocery shelves for moldy products and then phone the complaint line once they got the stuff home to complain about the fact that it was moldy. This takes a fair measure of cojones, not to mention a dubious sense of entitlement. But the result was always the same. A truckload of cheese (or something similarly perishable) was dispatched to the complainant within hours.

Sometimes, though, there is an obvious question that just begs to be asked. There’s a 1-800 number on the lip balm I currently carry in my pocket. I want the back-story about the warning that says you should not put it in your eyes !


2 Responses to “For More Information….”

  1. Don’t even get me started on trying to get a CD out of the package.
    Hey, what about the microscopic print on medicine bottles that only those over 50 would ever need, usually in the middle of the night.
    I’m with the Frau.

  2. Kudos to your wife, someone has to keep the companies honest!

    Speaking of dumb packaging, note the latest Coors Light commercials hyping their “shivering can” contest – look for the shivering can inside a case of their beer. The fine print says “No purchase necessary”…. huh? So this means I should be able to run rampant thru the liquor store ripping open cases of Coors beer? No purchase necessary, so…

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