Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Marriot's Holiday Party Rewards Promotion: Anyone In the Loop?

Just when i thought Dell (DELL) took the cake for customer service, Marriott (MAR) steps into the abyss.

You have probably all seen the advertisements for it. Book your Holiday Party at any Marriot and you receive 50,000 rewards points. Great!! Not so fast..

Being Marriot rewards members we call the Marlboro/Westborough Courtyard to inquire about the details (here is where the fun begins). We get transferred to the necessary person who is not is so we get voicemail. The system will not allow us to leave a message so we go back to the operator. "Let's try it again" she says so back in the loop we go. No luck and back to the operator. After convincing here this probably just is not going to work they connect us to another person who tells us "I can't help you, you need "x"".

we inform them that "x" is not in and that the voice mail is not working and say "can we get someone else in sales"? Sure and we go another sales person who says "what are you talking about?"

"You guys have been advertising a 50,000 rewards point program for holiday parties for several months now" we reply.

"We are not doing that" she replies

"But it is a national promo!?!" we retort..

"Well, I have not heard about it" she says incredulously.

"But, it has been on TV and in the local papers all fall" we reply..

"Don't know about it"

"Could you go possibly ask someone else" we say thinking maybe she is just new (she wasn't).

"Hold on" she says in a huff

After several minutes she returns and says "I talked to my GM who said we are actually doing it and she is going to talk to our sales manager because she/he did not inform us, but I do not have any details to give you."

"Do you really expect us to book a party with you when no ones knows about the program?" We ask

He we go.. ready????????

"No, I wouldn't book it with us either if I was you"... Goodbye..

A few hours later we called back and actually spoke to the GM who passed the buck and blamed the sales manager up and down so efficiently that we think she may have a wonderful career in politics ahead of her. This begs the question, what does the "general" in her manager title actually mean if she does not know about a national promotion? She must approve the ads they have been running for months, right? So after this we said, "so can you send us information so we can make a decision?" The reply will stun you....

"Your not still interested in booking the party with us are you?"

Uhhh.. Not anymore..

WOW.... you can't make this stuff up!! We called to give them business not once but twice and we essentially told to go away. I will look more into this over the next few days and get back next week but this one is real hard to believe.

Dell corporate in the end did the best they could to make an awful situation right. If anyone at Marriott wants to give me a buzz and explain this one, I'd love to hear it.

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