Red Robin Brand Save!

Some of you will recall a detailed customer service rant about an experience my family and I had at the couple month old Red Robin here in West Des Moines called The Power of One Bad Experience.  I’d like to share with you what’s happened since then. 

  • I wrote the piece on Monday October 30 and sent it into RR corporate at 10:05AM.
  • I received an email from Corporate that was copied to a list of additional managers and higher ups at 12:58PM same day, October 30 expressing deep sorrow and regret for what we’d gone through.
  • I received a call from the RR manager at 3:30PM that same Monday 3:30.  Juan Salinas handled this situation as expertly as possible. 
    • He made no excuses
    • Expressed his extreme embarrassment over what had happened
    • Made no attempts to explain away what happened (people calling in sick, etc.)
    • Offered to win us over again and to show us what Red Robin is really all about at our convenience
    • Offered to send us gift cards but encouraged us to come back as a family to be his guests
    • Gave us his cell phone number so he would be sure to be there when we came in
  • We were finally able to schedule our visit for last night the 17th of November.  We arrived and took our booth without telling anyone that we were "the ones here to see Juan". 
  • We were served perfectly by Kristina and introduced to Juan.  He continued to take full responsibility for what happened, explained how he used this as a team building and learning experience, and most importantly…didn’t overdose on the "love" giving since he knew it would have come off as "make up love".
  • Finally, the real professionalism and customer service recovery came near the end of our meal when Juan provided us with gift cards and asked that we come back, totally unannounced (undercover) and then report back to him in case our viewpoint was "tainted" by the extra attention we thought were getting on this night.

Now that’s fantastic.  Bravo Red Robin!  Let’s break this down in simple economic terms…devoid of emotion:

  • Value of a lifetime RR customer:  ~$3k-$15k depending on family size and booze consumption
  • Cost of Recovery for Mitchell’s:  $100 (aka the freebies)
  • Net economic gain to RR over lifetime $3k-$15k – $100 = CHA CHING

I would highly recommend that you visit this establishment and please ask for Juan.  Tell him that  you read Doug Mitchell’s blog experience and are now certain that Red Robin gets it!  You made a big deposit in the Red Robin brand today Juan and Kristina.

I wish that Bankers Trust would have had a chance to read my post here before my buddy Drew McLellan posted his piece on what a $115 dollar "duh fee" charged to a loyal client can do for your  brand image!  Bankers surely would have understood the economic "lifetime value" of a client…right?

Do you think that Red Robin and Bankers Trust are a bit more interested in what blogs can do to support your branding?  Doing a Google search on Red Robin customer service yields 4th place for me on my original rant. I’m just ahead of a very nice announcement touting Red Robin’s use of Six Sigma through partnership with GE Capital to improve milk shake quality.  I didn’t try for that or expect it…but it’s happening.  I hope this post ranks even higher. 

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