Online Store Franklin Goose Angers Customers Over Store Credit

posted on 26 May 2014 01:36 by plantshoe5810
Franklin Goose Cancels Store CreditA start-up online natural baby store wants to advertise via viral marketing. So instead of spending money on advertising, it promises parents $5 per review for honest reviews of any of the products it has in its inventory. Naturally reviewers told their friends, who told their friends, and so on and so forth. By the end of the promotion, March 31, 2010, Franklin Goose had paid out almost one million dollars in store credit. Sound too good to be true? In most cases it was.

The Beginnings of Franklin Goose

In March 2010, word came out that Franklin Goose was paying users (mostly mothers) $5 per honest, legitimate review of any number of products offered for sale on their website. Examples of products available were cloth diapers, wooden teething toys, organic cotton clothing, glass baby bottles, and other green baby and child products. There were hundreds of items for sale at that time, and no limit to the number of reviews, so some mothers earned hundreds of dollars in store credit.

The problems started happening before the review period even ended. Some mothers began complaining of delayed orders or incorrect items received. On March 25, 2010, FG posted on their blog that they and their suppliers were having trouble keeping up with the number of orders. Credit card orders were being given priority over orders using only free credit. They reminded store credit-holders that their credit was good for at least two years, so there was no rush to use it up right away. By postponing ordering, it would allow Franklin Goose to catch up on orders. Of course, it was at the customer's discretion to postpone ordering.

The next day, March 26, FG made another blog post regarding the review promotion. They asked reviewers to consider "banking" their store credit. By essentially agreeing to put it on hold for 6-12 months, Franklin Goose would reward mothers with up to 20% additional credit. FG appealed to reviews by stating that this would greatly help out the company by giving them more time to complete orders and approve reviews. Again, this was at the customer's discretion, so they were free to disregard this offer and use up their store credit.

Once October rolled around, mothers who banked their credits began inquiring about using their store credit, including their bonus credit. They were eventually told about a mandatory freeze until the following March. A blog entry on The Saved Quarter has the text of the email about the freeze that was sent to reviewers. Come March, many reviewers began emailing again about the status of their store credit, but received no response from the company.

No More Store Credit

On March 18, things became clear. Franklin Goose sent an email to all reviewers who had outstanding store credit. They were retroactively changing the terms of their review program. All reviews would be deleted, existing store credit orders would be canceled, and reviewers with outstanding credit would be issued a one time use 40% off one purchase coupon. Of course reviewers were angry. Some mothers still had hundreds of dollars in credit, so they were not happy to have to spend a lot of their own money in order to realize the same amount in the form of a discount. FG claimed that they hadn't anticipated such a huge response to the promotion, and that they didn't have the time or resources to continue going through to validate the reviews. A company strategy is the backbone of every opportunity, whether it is a tiny family members run business or a large corporate home. Correct preparing is significantly important to make sure survival and growth of any business.They claimed that many of the reviews were too short, fake, or that the reviewer had not even - Viral Marketing used the product and therefore ripping off the store for the $5 credit.

Reviewers were stunned and outraged. They had many questions. Why did it take Franklin Goose over a year to decide they couldn't fulfill the terms of their promotion? They had already approved the reviews within days of the promotion's end, so why did they claim they could not keep validating them? And, perhaps more importantly, why did the company keep asking mothers to bank their credits to help out the company and then end up taking them away? The only ones who benefited from this situation were the reviewers who immediately used up their store credit and received the correct orders, and the store, which became popular in search engines, blogs, and forums.

Reviewer Backlash

Since the cancellation of the review promotion, there has certainly been a backlash from affected reviewers. Many bloggers have posted entries calling out Franklin Goose for their supposed bad business practices. There are a few Facebook groups dedicated to spreading the news about Franklin Goose, and encouraging other affected mothers to take action and file complaints.

The real question is whether or not Franklin Goose did anything wrong. Were the reviewers volunteering to write reviews, or were they performing a service for payment? Can reviewers take any legal action. First off a word of care. Never configuration any kind of unrealistic goal, or else, you might be frustrated very soon. Setup your goals that you assume is possible. If you have actually merely started your company and definitely do not have so much concept concerning just how much it can generate, then atleast try to run your opportunity at break-even factor within 3 to six months of beginning. The majority of the little opportunity venture experiences an untimely death given that they intend at as well higher in a very brief period of time.against Franklin Goose? Obviously someone who has only lost a few dollars of credit wouldn't, but someone who has lost several hundred might consider it. Conversely, if enough bloggers or forum posters write negative things about Franklin Goose, can they take legal action against the writers? Might FG lose business because of this, and be able to sue for libel? If enough people are not satisfied with the conciliatory offer of a 40% coupon, would Franklin Goose make another offer?

Franklin Goose has claimed that the promotion was started under old management, and new management has realized it would not be possible to fulfill the terms. Considering reviewers did not sign a contract, they probably do not have any legal recourse. While the cancellation of the promotion may have alienated some customers, Franklin Goose probably really had no other choice. Hopefully they will not lose so much business that they have to shut down, and hopefully other companies will learn not to offer such an extravagant promotion. Maybe Franklin Goose should have stuck with the old fashioned method of advertising.