Bad service encounter

Discussion in 'General Mac Discussion' started by arogge, Dec 8, 2002.

  1. arogge macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2002
    I've had a lot of luck selling people Apple machines lately, often putting my PowerBook G4 in a prominent location and letting the laptop sell itself. Today, I encountered two people I simply could not convince. I had previously given them a collection of Apple brochures: Everything is Easier on a Mac, iBook, and Instant Loan. They were looking for a laptop for their daughter, a new science student; looking for something that "just worked," that was under $1,200 and that would not need to be replaced within two years. Just two days ago, they had agreed to go to the Apple Store and see what I was recommending. I not only met the budget with the $1,200 iBook model, but also beat it with a student discount and the bundled software. Today, the mother came up to me and started asking me questions about which of the laptops advertised in the local paper I would recommend. She talked so fast, I couldn't catch all of what she was trying to say, but the encounter went something like this:

    Induhvidual: "What do you have?"
    Me: "Do you mean my PowerBook?"
    Induhvidual: "Yeah, I guess. What megahertz is it?"
    Me: "It runs at 550 MHz and it really flies."
    Induhvidual: "And the thing you showed me (the iBook) is 700 or 800, right?"
    Me: "Yes, it's an IBM G3 CPU. It's pretty good for basic work and then some. I have a Motorola G4 and I really like it! My PowerBook battery life is consistently in the 4.5 to 5 hour range while doing basic tasks. The iBook gets 5 to 6 hours of battery life. It's great for classwork."
    Induhvidual: "The megahertz means it's better, right?"
    Me: "Not quite. You have to look at the system architecture and the quality of the machine. The CPU speeds that you're looking at are cycles per second. You should be looking at operations per second versus battery life."
    Induhvidual: "What about the megabytes? Is more better?"
    Me: "Do you mean RAM? Yes."
    Induhvidual: "I see them with 1.67 (AMD 2000+) GHz and 2.0 (Intel) GHz. The bigger one is better, right?"

    By now I got the impression that trying to compare AMD to Intel and G3 to G4 was pointless, because she wanted an answer within 10 seconds and clearly had no idea what she was looking at. I asked her to at least read the reviews and shop around, but she had to have it right away. Apparently, she has a "friend" that she goes to for advice and wouldn't listen to any sort of reason. I said that I would not recommend any of the laptops she was looking at and that I couldn't help her if she wouldn't listen. I tried to show her the IBM and Alienware systems as well as the magazine reviews, but she would have none of it.

    Induhvidual: "We're not as technical as you."
    Me: "I believe that the iBook solution I recommended will be fine. Did you go to the Apple Store or look at the product offering at another retailer?
    Induhvidual: "Oh, no. I don't want Apple!"

    I figured that saying more was a waste of energy, so I just sat back and listened to the rest of the spew while someone else assisted me with the sale. She then claimed that she was going to install Word and Excel (Microsoft) and when asked if she factored in the cost of the software she had no response. "I wonder if she's pirating MS Office," I whispered. The assistance got no farther, and after about five minutes of the one-sided conversation, she thanked us and walked away. The father was apparently speechless. What did they end up spending? I gathered it was something between $1,600 and $2,000 on a Compaq (HP) or Toshiba, minus several questionable rebates. So, they went farther into debt and got a piece of junk with a battery life of less than the length of half a day of classes. Some people just can't be helped by any reasonable means. I'm at least going to forward a copy of OpenOffice to the student recipient with apologies for not being able to stop her parents from making a terrible investment decision. If I find out that there was pirating involved, her parents are going to discover the true meaning of a Microsoft audit. Did I just encounter the low end of the consumer market, or is this type of ignorant attitude commonplace?
  2. AssassinOfGates macrumors 6502

    Jul 17, 2002
    A cardboard box.
    Re: Bad service encounter

    Trust me... it is. Both at my worksite and out :\ You'd be suprised at how many arrogant snobs I see at the store every day. (shudders)
  3. G4scott macrumors 68020


    Jan 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Some people are so stupid about these things... oh well, nobody's perfect.
  4. Wano macrumors 6502

    Oct 23, 2002
  5. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2002
    Fairfax, Virginia. I have an Apple Store right next door in Tysons Corner. The next trick is to get a commission from Apple on every system sold. I mostly do Apple sales inadvertently. People see my PowerBook and get hooked. It's a great way to sell products.
  6. Wano macrumors 6502

    Oct 23, 2002
    Cool. It would be nice to work in an apple store or in a place that sells apples, itwould be a fun job and the discount would come in handy. I put in a application at the only electronics(in santa fe, nm) store that sells apples, but since I am not 18 yet they didn't hire me. The funny part is, that they have sales men who don't know what they are talking about when it comes to apples, and they hardly know anything about pc's either. I went over there and talked to one of the salesmen and asked him a few questions, and of course he did not answer them accurately.
  7. iJon macrumors 604


    Feb 7, 2002
    You dont get any. we do. are you not apple authorized??

  8. LethalWolfe macrumors G3


    Jan 11, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Yes, people can be that dumb or just dense, and you have to dumb things down for them.

    When I talk to the non-computer literate about mhz and what not I simply say that Macs use more efficient procs than PCs so, for example, an 800mhz Mac would be on par w/a 1.6ghz, or 1600mhz PC.

    I know things aren't this simple, but sometimes you have to dumb things down and/or generalize. If you start talking about system architechure and clock cycles you can see their eyes glaze over and you've lost them.

  9. medea macrumors 68030


    Aug 4, 2002
    Madison, Wi
    I get the feeling he doesnt actually or "work" in the apple store and by work I mean isnt on the payroll, he may just try to influence people into buying one, thats just what it seems like to me though. And yes sadly many people are misinformed on Apple as a company and like lemmings flock to Windows.
  10. arogge thread starter macrumors 65816


    Feb 15, 2002
    Exactly; but what really worries me is that these lemmings are everywhere, and Apple is probably fighting the Megahertz Myth less than AMD. The lemmings that I failed to convince had no conception of market activity, important things like how AMD and Intel are two separate corporate entities, and how HP acquired Compaq. If some people still haven't grasped basics like these, how can companies hope to talk to consumers about technical details? Some people don't believe in Apple even when the product is staring them in the face. I had one guy look at my PowerBook and its desktop interface and he finally asked me: "Isn't that the new Sony?" I hear a lot of these two comments as well: "Apple sucks" and "I heard they have a lot of problems." How does this ignorant mentality get seeded in the minds of consumers whereas Microsoft does not get the same reputation? Imagine, after being abused by Microsoft's software for years, to have someone say:
    "This (Office) is from Microsoft, so you know it's good. Sun? Who are they?"
  11. yzeater macrumors regular

    Oct 19, 2002
    Hey! I'm from Fairfax (well the county at least) as well. What store do you work at (I've prolly been there)? Do you know how our Tysons 1 Apple Store compares with others throughout the country? It seems to be pretty good. A lot of mac users are from our area it seems. BTW, my name is Stephen
  12. Gus macrumors 65816


    Jan 1, 2002
    What's even worse is when the ignorance is rampant throughout your own family. Two of my uncle's were looking to buy computers (they are both non-computer literate and "too old to learn"), and they asked me what they could get for what they wanted to spend. They wanted to spend about $800, and they only need it for IE, e-mail, light games, etc. I recommended a refurb iMac (I believe in refurbs), and had it all set up for them to buy for $699.00 from SmallDog. So what did they do?

    1 went to CircuitCity and bought an advertised Compaq/HP for $599.00 What a deal! Until he got it home and realized he didn't read the fine print where it said "No operating system installed"/ Back to the store and dropped another $99.00 on XP. Also, it only had 64MB RAM-Back to the store for 128MB RAM. Another $30.00. Total=~$740.00.

    The other bought a machine from a "friend" who assured him he got a great deal at $299.00. Pentium II@333Mhz, 64 MB RAM, 4 GB HD and a pathetic video card. This is the uncle that had gone out and bought $150.00 in games-none of which he could play on his machine now.

    No matter what I said or tried to help, they HAD to have a PC. It's been this way since Windows 95, I personally think. When Apple looked like it was tanking in the mid-90's, there were so many "Apple is dead" stories, that the average Joe just put Apple out of their minds, and it hasn't changed a whole lot since then in perception. I think that if Apple really wants to get back in the public eye, they need some ads that show what the Mac can do, not just how great it looks. Show someone doing tasks on their Mac side-by-side with a Windows machine, and getting the same things done, but better. That, I think would help. Not just a bunch of people explaining why they have "joined the flock".

    Wow, sorry that this was so long.

  13. Nipsy macrumors 65816


    Jan 19, 2002
    My new favorite tool for the MHz happy is:

    Which has more power, an Accord or a school bus?

    Which will get you to you final destination quicker?

    Which will be more comfortable parking, driving, servicing, fueling, etc.?

    If there are 60 people in the school bus, and 5 in the Accord, does that mean the school bus is the "place to be"?

    Okay then, which is going to be the one you wanna drive for the next couple of years?

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