The Argos product range is immense – which in turn means our customer base is wide. Working in the Argos customer service team, no two days are ever the same – although one particular customer interaction sticks out!
Argos launched an advertising campaign for Christmas 2011 featuring a family of blue aliens – Mum, Dad, children Rufus, Astrid and baby Blue. The adverts were well received and ran for several months. However the campaign came to its natural end, and we moved on to the next thing – sadly dropping our aliens.
When the first ad of the new campaign aired on TV we discovered how loyal some of our customers had become to our blue alien family! We received the following email from an Argos customer:
“Please can you tell me what’s happened to the Blue people on the television adverts. I was watching ITV this evening and the Argos advert came on and, to my great disappointment, no Blue people. For goodness sake get them back, say sorry for sacking them, give them more money or a new dressing room. I’m really fed up. Please help!”
After some thought, we decided to reply in the same style…
Subject: They Phoned Home.
Thank you for your email regarding our new advertisement and the farewell to our Alien Friends.
I am so sorry that you were disappointed that our Alien Friends have said Goodbye to Argos, we were all very sad to see them go.
We tried our best to get them to stay – pay rise, Argos Gift Vouchers, Discounts and as many trips back home as they wish, so long as they agreed not to permanently leave us.
With all that being said, it turns out that their Visa was due to expire and we couldn’t get them extended, so unfortunately they had to leave. We were all very saddened to see them go – as are you.
I do hope that their departure will not deter you from shopping with Argos in the future and, if you can provide me with your address, I will happily look into trying to obtain an Alien Doll for your keepsake.
I hope you understand we had no choice in this matter, and that you wish them well- as do we.
The customer finally responded in corresponding good humour:
Dear Kimberly Howell
Thank you for your Email. I was glad to hear that the Visas had expired for the blue people, that there was no funny business going on, and that they are safe. If by any chance you find a stray one kicking his/her heels looking for a good home send them to…..
We sent the customer one of our blue alien dolls as a keep sake – they are still available at Argos today even though they haven’t been used in the Argos marketing campaign for some time. The legacy of the blue aliens lives on for Argos – not only for this particular customer but they still have a following of devoted fans – they even have their own Facebook page!