Barnes & Noble's response

Freshness Warning
This article is over 16 years old. It's possible that the information you read below isn't current.

I received a response to my letter to Barnes & Noble today.

Dear Mr. Kalsey,

We do respect your privacy and are very concerned that you received promotional emails when you had requested to opt out of this feature. We take this matter seriously and will investigate further.

We will forward your inquiry to our leadership responsible for the emails. A business manager from that team then will respond to you within two days.

Within that time, there is a remote chance that you will receive another promotional email while we are conducting our investigation and taking
action to rectify the situation. Final closure of the investigation will
ensure that this does not continue.

With regards,

W. Marco Graham
Customer Relations Advocate
Quality Assurance

That’s six business days from the time I sent the letter. It took over a week for BN to respond to a concern from a customer that is already unhappy with them. Here’s a lesson: if you have an unhappy customer, tend to them immediately. If you delay, they will only become more angry and your delayed response only serves to remind them that they are upset with you.

I do appreciate a personal response. People recognize form letters and responding to a complaint with a canned answer is never a good idea because it’s easier to be angry with a faceless corporate entity than a person with a name. Sending a personalized email can quickly disarm a customer service problem because it makes the customer feel like somebody cares and is thinking about their problem.

John Keys
December 27, 2002 1:23 AM

Well, I guess BN are working with a different definition of time to the rest of us, since you haven't posted their promised follow-up ("in two days") yet? Rather looks as if they don't take their e-customers particularly seriously.

Adam Kalsey
December 27, 2002 10:31 AM

After two weeks I did get a terse email mentioning that the reason I received that message was that my privacy settings indicated I wanted to get marketing mail. I pointed out to them that this wasn't the case and I had never received one before, so obviously something had gone wrong. After another couple of weeks, they admitted that the company that manages their email for them screwed up. The texts of those emails weren't posted here because they contained a notice that prohibited redistribusion.

Robert Andrews
January 4, 2006 1:33 AM

Don't you have a life? Get a grip and find a hobby or something.There are better things to do than nitpick about your menial "annoyances" in life. (That wasn't sarcasm.)

March 30, 2006 3:13 AM

I kind of agree. Everyone gets spam, and there is nothing you can do about it. At least BN was good enough to remove you from their list. As for BN Shiva, if you are so unhappy with BN, then stop going! I personally do not love BN, I used to like going to study there, but it has gotten far to noisy with a slew of classless customers. Fair is fair, lets not needlessly bash on them for reasons that are purely ridiculous.

carm maxson
July 20, 2006 7:52 AM

I usually receive offers from Borders with their latest books also with discount coupons. The problem us that were I live B&N is the only bookstore. I would like to know if you have a similar program and if I can be added to that mailing list. Thank you carm

Your comments:

Text only, no HTML. URLs will automatically be converted to links. Your email address is required, but it will not be displayed on the site.


Not your company or your SEO link. Comments without a real name will be deleted as spam.

Email: (not displayed)

If you don't feel comfortable giving me your real email address, don't expect me to feel comfortable publishing your comment.

Website (optional):

Follow me on Twitter

Best Of

  • Rounded corners in CSS There lots of ways to create rounded corners with CSS, but they always require lots of complex HTML and CSS. This is simpler.
  • The mouse and me Not only is the mouse very destructive, but it's evaded all attempts to capture or kill it so far.
  • Embrace the medium The Web is different than print, television, or any other medium. To be successful, designers must embrace those differences.
  • Let it go Netscape 4 is six years old.
  • Newly Digital Newly Digital is an experimental writing project. I've asked 11 people to write about their early experiences with computing technology and post their essays on their weblogs. So go read, enjoy, and then contribute. This collection is open to you. Write up your own story, and then let the world know about it.
  • More of the best »

Recently Read

Get More

Subscribe | Archives


Product Manager Career Ladder (Aug 19)
What are the steps along the product management career path?
Building the Customer-Informed Product (Aug 15)
Strong products aren't composed of a list of features dictated by customers. They are guided by strong visions, and the execution of that vision is the primary focus of product development.
Assumptions and project planning (Feb 18)
When your assumptions change, it's reasonable that your project plans and needs change as well. But too many managers are afraid to go back and re-work a plan that they've already agreed to.
Feature voting is harmful to your product (Feb 7)
There's a lot of problems with using feature voting to drive your product.
Encouraging 1:1s from other managers in your organization (Jan 4)
If you’re managing other managers, encourage them to hold their own 1:1s. It’s such an important tool for managing and leading that everyone needs to be holding them.
One on One Meetings - a collection of posts about 1:1s (Jan 2)
A collection of all my writing on 1:1s
Are 1:1s confidential? (Jan 2)
Is the discussion that occurs in a 1:1 confidential, even if no agreed in the meeting to keep it so?
Skip-level 1:1s are your hidden superpower (Jan 1)
Holding 1:1s with peers and with people far below you on the reporting chain will open your eyes up to what’s really going on in your business.

Subscribe to this site's feed.


Adam Kalsey

Mobile: 916.600.2497

Email: adam AT

Twitter, etc: akalsey



©1999-2019 Adam Kalsey.