Sometimes it doesn’t take much for a company to lose some of its loyal customers; often a mere 30 RMB will do the trick. I don’t think they completely think their plan through enough on how much repeated business they will lose in the process and how fast word-of-mouth travels. Such was the case with me at Hooters Hongqiao Branch last Wednesday evening.
My husband misses Hooters’ wings so we went for their Wednesday promotion for 1.99 RMB each, with a minimum 50 RMB spent firstly. He ordered a 120 RMB pitcher of Carlsberg, probably the first of many as usual, reviewed the menu and went to ordering breaded wings. The problem Appeared, breaded wings would cost the Regular price, ONLY the naked wings were at the discounted price (and they are the SAME price at normal time)!
Nowhere in the promotional advertisements on the table, on the flyer, or even on their website http://www.hooterschina.com/en/tbyh_sh.html did it mention that Only Naked Wings were at that price. Needless to say my husband loves the breaded wings, and the naked ones just don’t hack it.
As a marketing professional for lots of clients with different industries including client in XinTianDi, I made my effort to communicate with Misia, the General Manager of Hooters Hongqiao Branch, and ask her personal favor. Misia was adamant and real quick to point out that Hooters reserved the right to change the policy on any promotion, with a bit rude and unyielding attitude.
My husband is a nice guy, and tried to explain to her that he’s been living in Shanghai and often bringing guests to Hooters, and he’s been Hooters worldwide, and always getting hospitality and services that achieves excellence.
Well, here in this Hongqiao branch, everything was going terribly wrong, and the G.M. Misia obviously didn’t care in the least.
Later, some other confidential sources proved that it was not the first time that people had complained about Hooters with this MISLEADING promotion.
Finally, we paid 120 RMB with an additional 10% service charge for just beer and left with the knowledge that we reserve the right Not to go back should we Not want to.
Still being hungry, both of us headed over to Bubba’s for some Texas BBQ. Even after we arrived 5 minutes late for happy hour, Mark the manager ‘extended’ happy hour for us by 5 minutes for the first (of many) drinks. He was so nice and sweet and saved us from the nightmare at Hooters. That’s a manger understands hospitality and fits well into the F&B industry.
You would think even a manager would have the authority, or at least the common sense to simply bend the rule for a frequent customer, if not to keep a satisfied customer then at least to quell the situation and go on to other duties. There are some Big Differences!