Monday, August 20, 2007

Ouch! This email depressed me for days.

I got an email last week that I am still not quite over. My feelings were so hurt that I actually almost cried. Okay, I'll admit it - I DID cry. Before I paste it here, though, I should give a little background: recently, I decided to try a different pricing structure at my spa...a very pioneering one, I might add. I decided to separate pricing into "Peak" and "Off-Peak," to reflect the difference in demand for services during traditionally slow times like Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursdays before 5pm (these I designated as OFF-PEAK). All other times are considered PEAK times, because people want to come after work and on weekends.

So, in order to arrive at the prices, I took most massage prices up by $5, and all waxing services up by $1-2. I left body treatments, facials, advanced massages, nails, make-up, and soul therapies all the same (and some services, like advanced massage and nails, don't have an off-peak option because they are performed by only 1 or 2 people on my staff). These were the peak prices. Off-peak is actually 20% off the peak prices. With that said, here is the malevolent email from D.S. that I got, and I am not censoring it, so be forewarned that he drops a couple of F-bombs:

"You guys are a fucking joke. "off peak"...So you keep your prices the same call then "off peak" then raise the price on everything 30% during the only times NORMAL fucking people go, and call yourself a business....

You can consider yourself a rip off and just lost a half dozen customers."

My first reaction was, "Holy cow, what did I do to deserve your wrath?" My second reaction was, "Wow, I am completely underwhelmed by the quality of your upbringing, as evidenced in your imaginative use of the English language." And my third reaction was, "If you're going to cuss at me, then at least get your facts straight! What you're saying is simply not true, not even the smallest bit." And then finally, "You are not fit to lick the spittle and scum off the bottom of my shoes."

But of course, none of these things can be said to a "customer." I wrote him back and very politely explained what I had actually done with the pricing structure, and offered to send him pricing lists from last year and this year so he could make a more accurate assessment. And then I was still so bothered that I wrote him again and actually attached two .pdf versions of my price list from 2006 and 2007 so he could "compare for himself." What do you know, I got no response.

But my goodness, the tone and hostility in the email still has me smarting. Generally our customers are extremely happy, and even when they call to complain, they don't use any vulgar language. But this guy, who has set foot in my spa exactly ONE TIME, to buy a measly $55 gift certificate, has the nerve to blow up at me for trying to revamp my pricing structure so more price-sensitive clients can come visit us???? Give me a break!!!!

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