Is your voice still not being heard? Is the company giving you the run around or maybe even ignoring you? Is the system they have in place leaving you in limbo? Have you now done some research and realized the company you are dealing with has a poor track record when it comes to making their customers whole? Have they been flat out accused of being scammer? It’s time to bring out the big guns. You may want to enlist the help of consumer advocates and/or media representatives.
Remember to always try to get satisfaction on your issue by going through the standard support channels. Give the company the benefit of the doubt, but when things start to go sour and you have given the company opportunities to correct the issue, you need to escalate further.
In some cases the threat of enlisting a consumer advocate or going to the media is enough for companies to pay attention.
In other cases, carbon copying an individual on an email or letter will prompt the company into action. However, having someone with clout argue your case, when you can no longer progress will likely get results.
Do some research on consumer advocates in your area. Also find out what newspapers or TV stations run segments on consumer protection. Find their contacts and send them a concise and well documented story. With my contacts, I can certainly help make your case and put pressure on companies who are unwilling to make you whole. I have been inspired by the best.
Among the best is Ellen Roseman. You can read her Moneyville blog or her original blog. She is a consumer advocate and a Toronto Star writer. She has contacts at many companies, and takes on many customer complaints (probably more than she should).
Ellen is tough but reasonable. If she sees a customer that is plainly in the wrong, she won’t take up the case. If a customer is being mistreated by a company, she steps up to the plate and evens the playing field.
I have been following Ellen’s blog and columns for quite some time and have only good things to say about how she has helped so many people who were stuck with no resolution to their problem. Sometimes these individuals were out of pocket thousands of dollars, or the issue had dragged on for many months before she stepped in.
Readers: Have you ever had to go this far with a company? Tell us your story. Are there any other consumer advocates that have been particularly helpful?