How to Irritate Your Customers Without Even Trying

Evernote is an innovative service that allows users to clip webpages and other files, tag and store them centrally, and then search and access from anywhere. I have been a paying user for a long time and am generally pleased with the service. But, two problems make it inconvenient for me to use the service in certain situations.

I tried to get evernote’s attention to these problems multiple times, and received no acknowledgement, until today when I posted the following on one of evernote’s facebook threads:

“Two questions, 1. when will pdf clipping from safari return? and 2. when are you going to fix the stupidity that focuses on the notebook’s top when moving a note from the middle? This makes organizing information tedious and annoying. I am a paying customer using the mac client, and I find that evernote’s service is non-existant. I have been asking these two questions for a long time and never received a response or even an acknowledgement. Too bad to see excellent technology being undermined by dismal management practices and too much success too quickly.”

The response came a short time later:

“Sorry for your frustration. We are definitely hearing all of the feedback and try to acknowledge all of it as it comes in. Regarding your specific questions. 1. We don’t have a date on this, unfortunately the recent Safari updates has caused some issues with our extension. For a more in depth discussion and explanation you can check out our forum. 2. This feature requested is noted, thanks for passing along. We appreciate all of your support, I assure you we are hard at work continually improving Evernote.”

So, what’s wrong with this response? Many of us have written similar ones over the years. Well, I am glad you asked:

  1. Evernote say they try to acknowledge all feedback. Well, either they don’t, or they fail miserably at that. In any case, not a word about doing it better in the future
  2. Sending users to their forum with no pointer to a specific discussion or record. If there is information in that forum that’s relevant, please post a link, or better yet, summarize it here. After all, forcing customers to switch channels to get a response is one of the poor practices discussed in my previous post
  3. There is no indication of any timeframe or intention to solve the problems
  4. despite this, they end with an assurance that they “are hard at work continually improving Evernote”. Employees’ hard work is between them and their management. Customers pay for functionality and service, and could care less if they are delivered by people sitting by the beach on a tropical island while sipping drinks with little umbrellas

So, evernote, you received some free advice. Will you do anything about it?

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