Apple Could Really Learn Something From Dell's New Service

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by MICHAELSD, Aug 11, 2008.

  1. MICHAELSD macrumors 68040

    MICHAELSD

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    NJ
    #1
    Today Dell launched "Dell Perks", a new service that gives anyone that owns a Dell system great deals on anything and everything. Most offers last until the end of the year and into 2009. A few examples would be:

    $500 off every major car brand, $2500+ off Mercedes Bens
    $75 off an iRobot
    80% off a Costco membership
    Walt Disney World - Buy 4 days - Get 3 Days FREE
    Home Decorators Collection - Save 10%
    Target - Save 10%
    GNC - Save 15% + free shipping
    65% off $25 restaurant gift certificates at restaurants.com
    Private shopping events for Dell customers

    From Dell:

    As a valuable Dell customer, Dell Perks gives you access to:

    A personalized shopping service
    Exclusive savings, in-store events, limited time offers
    2,000 well-known name brand retailers and manufacturers
    It's free and easy


    And the list goes on and Dell says that they'll be new offers daily, it's really impressive stuff. Just another reason why Dell offers great deals, and great computers. You've got to admit, having great discounts almost everywhere you go on almost everything is really cool.

    Check it out here:
    https://perks.dell.com/

    I could really see Apple offering a service like this that could be better than Dell's really impressive deals. It would be sweet if Apple could create some kind of membership card for Mac owners that you could carry around and would you get some great offers at a lot of places (stuff like 20% off Starbucks, 10% off BestBuy, etc.). What do you guys think about Dell's new service and should Apple do something similar?
     
  2. idyll macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 5, 2007
    #2
    Wow, some of those deals are pretty good and possibly worth getting the cheapest Dell for..
     
  3. souldawg macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2008
    #3
    Yes but you would have to own a Dell. Sorry, bad experience with an inspiron I owned during college. Crash after crash led for me to wait 2 hours on the phone for useless service. I still can't believe I ever owned one of those heavy, useless bricks.

    Dell is losing money and looking for incentives to get customers. Good idea. However, for me, I see it as slightly cheapening the brand. I'm not buying perks, I'm buying a computer.
     
  4. aaquib macrumors 65816

    aaquib

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    #4
    Apple's strategy for selling computers:

    - Make reliable, efficient computers with awesome service.

    Dell's stratgey for selling computers:

    - Make it cheap, and give some discounts on cars!
     
  5. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    #5
    Apple could do with giving stuff away? Dell are only doing this because the ship is sinking. Apple's service is actually very good, they replaced my 1.83 GHz MacBook Pro a month outside of it's warranty (because there was so much going wrong with it), whilst Dell wouldn't even offer me any over-the-phone troubleshooting when my Dimension 8300 was a month outside of it's warranty, which for a 13 year old to have spent £1.4k on a computer, and then not receive any support only a year after they bought it is poor to say the least.

    They guy actually said something along the lines of: "Sorry sir I can't help you unless you're willing to pay for the hotline."
     
  6. Xavier macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2006
    Location:
    Columbus
    #6
    If the computer wasn't the selling point...

    ...make customers think they can now afford a benz.
     
  7. OscarTheGrouch macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2007
    Location:
    G' Vegas South Carolina
    #7
    I was thinking this is a great way for them to make up for producing inferior computers :)
     
  8. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2002
    Location:
    Location Location Location
    #8
    What can Apple learn from this new service? You want free stuff. Everyone does. All consumers do. What exactly is there to learn from this? That customers want free stuff? That Apple can sell you a computer and give you ONLY a computer in return?

    All this means is that buying a Dell computer worth $1000, giving them $1000 for it, and receiving a $1000 computer from Dell is not enough.


    If I pay $1000 for a MacBook, and I receive a $1000 MacBook, I'm happy. What a difference.
     
  9. nbs2 macrumors 68030

    nbs2

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2004
    Location:
    A geographical oddity
    #9
    Wow. The derisivenes with which this Dell program is being met is surprising. The idea of "total ownership experience" among high-quality brands is not new. I think that an experience program launched about 5 years ago would have made more sense than now, as the ownership experience programs tend to focus on brands with limited marketshare. To argue that this type of program is worthless or demonstrates a lack of value on the part of the purchased product seems presumptuous, when mfrs that Apple considers itself to be in the same league with offer these same programs.

    Dell has admittedly presented it in an unattractive mass market manner and it appears that anybody can sign up for it (I suppose the "premium version" is for Dell owners). Could implementation have been better, with perhaps the program being part of a new or otherwise dedicated line (XPS?) of more luxurious models? Yes. But the move doesn't indicate lack of Dell value so much as the idea that Dell products can open up new opportunities. I'd like to see where this goes.

    Or do you guys think that those who provide little benefits that exceed the exchange in provided for in payment for a product or service are dealing in worthless goods?
     
  10. és: macrumors 6502a

    és:

    #10
    Cheap, tacky and pointless. A bit like Dell's computer offerings.

    Seriously, I don't want to have free days at Disneyland if I pay for a flight to Florida and 4 days there. I want a computer, not a small percentage off of a car that I'll have to pay 70k for if I want to redeem the offer.

    Stick it.

    You're right, though. Apple can learn a lot from this - don't copy Dell.
     
  11. TXCraig macrumors 6502a

    TXCraig

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    #11
    Dell needs to do this stuff becuase their hardware is so crappy. Apple does not have this problem! :)
     
  12. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #12
    How bout Apple putting toys in Happy Meals.

    Special SJ action figures, fake iPods and iPhones would be great for the brats.
     
  13. zioxide macrumors 603

    zioxide

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    #13
    Apple's service is ****, and it's the one place where they could learn from Dell.

    1. CompleteCare... it costs like a hundred bucks more than AppleCare but covers any type of damage (even if you cause it) to your computer (drops, spills, etc).

    2. Apple's repair service takes forever. It usually takes at least a week, and sometimes 2. I had a Dell before that had a problem with the motherboard. Since I was still under warranty, Dell had DHL come to my house the next day to pick up the computer, overnighted it to their repair center (halfway across the country), and then overnighted it back. I was without the laptop for less than 2 days. Apple takes like 7 days.
     
  14. MacTraveller macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #14

    Wow. So Dell is generously providing all this great stuff.... in order to entice customers to purchase undesirable Dell PCs? Makes perfect sense.

    This is exactly like Ford and General Motors giving away thousands of dollars of incentives so that ANYONE... ANYONE.... ANYONE will be desperate enough to buy unwanted gas-guzzling trucks or Hummers. No thanks. Ford and GM know that if they continue with their billion-dollars losses, they will be soon out of business anyways. So they need to sell off their unsold inventory of cars.... and they will give customers every incentive to buy them.

    Hey pal, wanna buy a Hummer? We'll throw in a year's supply of free ice cream! We promise the ice cream tastes great!! But we just can't promise that your Hummer will get anything more than 10 mpg! Just buy the Hummer please. Please help us stay in business!! We'll also throw in a free Ginsu knife! It dices, it slices, it can cut your fingers in two!

    Apple items sell themselves, based on their own merits, or on the merits of accompanying software. Yes, it would be nice for Apple to also give away occasional bonuses and freebies, and I'd like a few free stuff too when I purchase a Mac. But at this time, Apple can do just fine focusing on just creating solid products, rather than distracting customers with "freebies" and gimmicks.
     
  15. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #15
    This brings up a question for everyone.

    A couple of people I know went to see Michael Dell give a talk in Michigan in late 1999. Dell's net worth was about $21.6B at the time. The jist of the talk was that Dell put up on a board 3 Cs. He said that to have a successful Internet-based business you must have these 3 Cs:

    Content (website);
    Commerce (stuff and means to get your stuff to your customers), both of which he had; and
    Community (people who are loyal to the product or products you have).

    He said that he didn't have the 3rd C figured out yet, but anyone who does would rule the Internet, as far as business is concerned. What it sounds like he's doing, is he is still trying figure that out by offering incentives for people's loyalty. Which brings me to my question.

    What makes everyone here loyal to Apple? and why? If what SJ said was right ("Pretty much, Apple and Dell are the only ones in this industry making money. They make it by being Wal-Mart. We make it by innovation.”), for the general consumer, they're going to go where they can spend the least amount of money. That doesn't appear to be Apple, so what keeps you loyal to them?

    I'm really curious to know.

    BL.
     
  16. TEG macrumors 604

    TEG

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2002
    Location:
    Langley, Washington
    #16
    1) Complete Care is like Insurance.

    2) It depends on the problem. I have never been without my system when sending it out for repair for more than 6 days. I would often ship it out on Thursday or Friday and get it back on Monday or Tuesday.

    TEG
     
  17. ZiggyPastorius macrumors 68040

    ZiggyPastorius

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2007
    Location:
    Berklee College of Music
    #17
    Funny how I've had the exact opposite experience from you. I've had to send in Apple products three times. One time was their fault (Macbook case cracking), and the other two were my own. I explained the situation each time, and had my iPod replaced, or my computer fixed, within three days of making that call. All three times. They were spaced out, too. One was in 2005, when I smashed my iPod screen, once in 2007 when I dropped my Macbook and broke the disc drive (nothing else was damaged on the concrete floor), and once in 2008 when the case started cracking. My mom's Dell, besides running like a piece of ****, has no service from Dell (they tell me they can't help when I call them to ask about how to solve a problem with their goddamn machine), and I've never had a single good experience with their customer service.

    Both of our stories are anecdotes, and hold no objective evidence to the quality of their care. I'm just going by the fact that Apple is consistently rated as having the best customer service. Ah, well.

    As for Dell's promotion, it's just a ploy to sell more computers. As has been said: It'd be nice to just get free stuff for everything, but when I buy something, I want it to be worth it...not it + everything else in the world.
     
  18. MacTraveller macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #18

    See. Bribes don't work. Bribery is a short-term enticement, it's only good for the short term. Bribing anyone for their long-term "loyalty" is an oxymoron. It doesn't work that way.

    What Dell is trying to do is try to bribe his customers with freebies and gimmicks (and using freebies and gimmicks that have ABSOLUTELY NO RELEVANCE to the quality of Dell products to begin with). That's plain idiotic with regards to building long term brand trust and brand loyalty. The bribery might work to boost Dell sales in the short term. But as soon as Dell drops those freebies, or realizes they can no longer afford to give out those same freebies or incentives... then Dell customers will have zero reason to stick around. Everyone already got their free lunch (at Dell's expense), and they moved on.

    Also, let me add: giving away extravagant and over-generous 'freebies' and incentives will mostly attract the lowest common denominator. It will not attract the kind of "brand-loyal" customers that Dell wants. Instead, these freebies will attract the most parasitic people in the world. The kind of people who want everything drop dead cheap, preferably free. These are people with the "I want something for nothing" mentality. These are parasitic people. These people are professional cheapskates. They are the expert bargain hunters of the world. They want to get tons of stuff, and expect to pay very very little for it. They do not value quality. They only value the quantity of things they can get away with. Dell is desperate to have this kind of clientele?
     
  19. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

    Joined:
    May 18, 2008
    Location:
    Hartford, CT
    #19
    so dell has to go to these lengths to sell there crappy hardware??
     
  20. MacTraveller macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2008
    #20

    See. Bribes don't work. Bribery is a short-term enticement, it's only good for the short term. Bribing anyone for their long-term "loyalty" is an oxymoron. It doesn't work that way.

    What Dell is trying to do is try to bribe his customers with freebies and gimmicks (and using freebies and gimmicks that have ABSOLUTELY NO RELEVANCE to the quality of Dell products to begin with). That's plain idiotic with regards to building long term brand trust and brand loyalty. The bribery might work to boost Dell sales in the short term. But as soon as Dell drops those freebies, or realizes they can no longer afford to give out those same freebies or incentives... then Dell customers will have zero reason to stick around. Everyone already got their free lunch (at Dell's expense), and they moved on.
     
  21. bradl macrumors 68040

    bradl

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2008
    #21
    Oh?

    Car dealerships offer you rebates and cash back and 7 year long warranties for buying their cars.

    Airlines offer you free flights and upgrades to Business and First class for flying with them.

    Hotel/Casinos offer you free stays, free trips to the buffet, and comps to their lounges and shows for staying with them, playing with them, and referring business to them.

    And even more than that, your job offers you money for staying with them for 8 hours, and even more money if you stay with them longer and do a good job.

    You can't say you haven't been one or more of them.

    Seriously.. Bribes, or brand loyalty? Call it what you will, and it may not work for you, but it works for the consumer.

    See the above. It works. So how about this.. please read my post again, think like a general consumer, and if you have an objective response, by all means, please post. I'm just looking to see what keeps people loyal to being repeat customers for Apple.

    BL.
     
  22. wadejc85 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    PA
    #22
    Same here. I remember spending hours on the phone with Dell for each of the following:

    • Hard drive crashed
    • Hard drive crashed a second time
    • Hard drive crashed a third time
    • Notebook screen went black
    • DVD drive stopped working
    • Hard drive crashed a fourth time

    The people at Apple were very nice and had no problem replacing my iPod when the headphone jack went awry. I was on the phone for 15 minutes max.

    (Just so you know, this was several years ago. I will NEVER buy Dell again.)
     
  23. wadejc85 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2008
    Location:
    PA
    #23
    Don't overlook the fact that these offers are on what you are currently buying, not *another* product costing you *more* money. If they were offering deals on their computers, that would be different.

    Hypothetical situation: If I'm currently buying a car, one dealership offering me a rebate or longer warranty will catch my attention over another dealership not offering anything. Dell offering me $500 off a car I don't need right now is useless.
     
  24. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2008
    Location:
    Britain
    #24
    You've obviously had a bad experience, but anyone will tell you Apple's customer service is better than Dells.

    Look at the statistics:
    Dell CS: 79% Satisfied
    Apple CS: 83% Satisfied.

    In fact I will go out on a limb and say Apple's CS is too good, to the point where they are replacing products out of warranty, and replacing them over the stupidest little thing.

    My teachers Blackbook was out of warranty, battery had died, they gave him a brand new one free of charge. My friends Macbook had the cracking issue, he gave it to them, went and got a coffee, they'd fixed it.

    Unless you are a business user, with Dell you will be transfered to India most of the time.
     
  25. Mindflux macrumors 68000

    Mindflux

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Austin
    #25

    Impossible. you just stated it got shipped overnight twice, that's 2 days in itself not including repair time.
     

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