Over the past week or two I have repeatedly seen commercials about Dairy Queen´s Cheeseburger lovers special – two single cheeseburgers for $2.22 or two double cheeseburgers for $3.33. Being 66 years old now and no longer 25, I honed in on the two singles and while salivating, I decided to look up where the nearest Dairy Queen was that served up these greasy burgers. In reality, they are not that greasy, but a little grease goes a long way and I wanted to partake in two single cheeseburgers – and soon.
So, I got on the Internet and used one of my trusty search tools and keyed in “Dairy Queen locator”. Much to my surprise I got a bunch of sites returned, but chose the one with the heading “Store/Restaurant Locations – Dairy Queen”.
I knew where some DQ´s were but I wanted to be sure the one I visited served burgers, as some of the DQ´s are not set up for food – just ice cream. I made a mistake visiting the Rohrerstown, PA location looking for a burger, fries and a coke and ended up leaving hungry instead of enjoying their Hunger Buster.
While using the locator, I noticed a clever little “burger” icon so one could narrow the search to only those DQ´s that also serve food… and voila, the results came back with a half dozen DQ´s within a 25 mile radius that served burgers. Problem solved…. or so I thought…
I wrote down the address, got into my car and turned on my trusty GPS. My charming German accented direction lady asked me where I wanted to go and I gave her the address – by city, then street, and then street number. She confirmed the address, returned the directions and I was off to the races. My mouth was watering for a pair of single cheeseburgers, an order of fries, and a diet soda to go with all those calories, of course.
The directions were perfect and I pulled into the DQ lot in about 20 minutes. The parking lot was about half-full. I was sure others had the same idea – burgers, fries and a coke, the only difference was that some of these people would also top off their burgers with some kind of ice cream item for dessert. Not me, I was the only weird one not getting ice cream at DQ, or at least I thought that was how it was going to play out.
I entered the mecca of tasty burgers and got into line. Looking up, I saw all the signs for milkshakes, sundaes, and other various ice cream products but I could not see any banners or the like showing their delicious burgers, fish sandwiches, fries, or even onion rings that were starting to make me salivate.
I stepped out of line and approached a middle-aged woman who had just picked up her ice cream order and said quietly to her, “Please tell me that they serve hamburgers and other food products at this Dairy Queen”. She humorously said to me, “If you want me to lie, I will do so, but they do not serve food at this location”. I felt a big thud in my stomach and realizing I was not going to have my burgers today, I thanked the lady for sharing the bad news with me and I reluctantly left – without saying anything to anyone behind the counter – after all, it was not their fault that they did not serve food. The fault rested with either the IT staff at DQ headquarters, or their marketing department that collected information about each restaurant and provided that information to the web development people who put that cute “burger” icon on their website so starving customers could quickly find out which DQ´s served food in addition to ice cream.
On the way home, I reluctantly picked up a salad bag at a local grocery store and returned home to make a fairly nutritious salad. Obviously, the salad was the better choice but my stomach thought otherwise.
After finishing the salad I decided to get back on my trusty computer and try to find out where I goofed up. I got back into the DQ website and repeated my search, with the same results. I could not believe that DQ did this to me. Surely, someone at DQ headquarters tested out their cute little “burger” icon. The web people should have as well as their marketing people and / or their regional sales people.
I found the “contact us” link and I fired off a medium length blurb to DQ about my fun experience with the “burger” icon as well as my trip to the Columbia, PA Dairy Queen, down to the lady who gave me the bad news about no burgers at this location.
I thought I might not get a reply, either by email, phone, or in the mail but I did.
I wrote them not to receive anything in return. I just wanted them to know that their “burger” icon logic either had a glitch in it or DQ Headquarters really did not know who made burgers and who did not.
Carolyn Kidder, what a name for a Consumer Relations Manager, was very kind. She was apologetic and advised me that she personally tested the “burger” icon and got the same incorrect results. In addition, she took the time to give me detailed locations of the three nearest DQ´s that serve food. I was very pleased with the personalized attention to my recent experience.
Surprisingly, in addition to the letter, was a DQ card preloaded with $6.00 for me to spend at the DQ of my choice. This was a very thoughtful gesture on their part and it did not go unnoticed or unappreciated.
I am writing this blog to let others know that there are companies that really care about experiences that customers encounter and if these comments lead to the company in question improving their services then it is all the better for all parties involved.
Many companies will not acknowledge a website error like this, they will usually say that they will look into it and thank you for writing them.
DQ deserves this little bit of free advertising because they cared enough to acknowledge their website error and let me know they cared enough about me as a customer to rectify the situation while providing a DQ card to encourage me to remain a customer.
from a long-time satisfied customer