In case the professional artwork above isn't clear, I turned the Spotify logo into a sad face with three frowns. I'm so original.
I'm not one to usually whine and bitch publicly but a recent customer service process I had to deal with was particularly horrendous so I think it deserves to be known. Ideally, someone at Spotify can review the case as a whole, rather than separate support staff members viewing it individually. Hopefully it's viewed as constructive criticism and they improve their current processes towards the goal of providing a much better customer service experience. Spotify likely concentrates on supporting current customers, but also helping people that aren't active customers who could potentially even be prospective customers should also be high on their priority list.
I noticed that someone had used my credit card number to open two Spotify accounts about a month ago. After disputing the charges with the bank (which was extremely easy to do by comparison), I went to contact Spotify to let them know about these fraudulent charges so someone wasn't continuing to get free music and bandwidth that they could use on a rightful paying customer. You'd think this would be something that they would care about and want to fix immediately.
So I did what any person in the 21st century would do, I went to their website to find a customer service phone number or email address I could contact to speak with someone and get this handled in 10-15 minutes.
Only problem is there isn't a number or email address clearly listed. Keep in mind that Spotify wants to be a world class corporation, some recent numbers I've heard are that they're currently valued around $5 billion and have 40 million customers, of which 10 million and paying customers. Pretty impressive growth for a company that fills the a role once dominated by free services (replacing empty silence with music, as in the radio) and now which has many different competitors offering up similar services for similar prices. You'd think that one way they would want to stand out from the different options would be excellent customer service.
Once again, no clear answer as to how I'm supposed to talk to someone about this. There is a reference to their customer support Twitter handle though, @SpotifyCares, hence the title of this post. It just sucks that instead of having a private conversation with somebody about my problem, I have to broadcast it across the entire internet (since the entire internet is my 56 followers). Plus what I don't get is that you'd think a company would want to keep this private as well but, once again, you're wrong.
Don't be fooled by highlighted link for a contact form, you have to be an existing Spotify customer or sign up for an account to contact them. I guess this is going public and that is how we're forced to handle things. My apologies to the 56 people who quickly scrolled past my tweets during this whole ordeal.
Here we learn that there is indeed no phone number to call to talk to a human being. Think about that for a second, a company supposedly worth $5 billion and has 10 million people that pay them every month does not currently offer telephone support. I mean I get running lean and optimizing your resource's time is important, but sometimes the most efficient way is talking. For both parties involved, the customer and the provider.
Even worse, the link they sent me to use to contact them instead of by phone was the same one that REQUIRES you to have a Spotify account. And if you're not a current customer, well damn, you're shit out of luck, you have to sign up. I think it was at this point in the "What the fuck?!?" stage of the the whole process that I reached peak frustration levels.
Out of principle and because it's the dumbest thing I've ever heard of, signing up to hopefully quickly solve this problem was out of the question for me. They have my email, they can contact me to fix this. I think I still had a sliver of hope they would do the right thing and make this as easy as possible for the customer at this point.
It was at this point that a friend chimed in, equally confused and surprised that a company that wants to portray themselves as a world class organization is failing at the basic of customer support. See, one other person knows about this shitty scenario, this is going viral! [Insert internet sarcasm emoticon] Only after tagging their Twitter handle again and making up the completely unoriginal hashtag #spotifydoesntcare did they reach out again. Unfortunately, it was via Twitter again and they followed me and wanted me to send them a DM to give them my email address to have someone contact me. Meaning they didn't even read my earlier tweet giving my email address.
Again as a reminder in this point of the bitching to remind everyone that this could've been solved in 5-10 minutes of talking. I just like pointing that out.
Following this is another Twitter exchange in public view instead of privately.
Finally a fucking link to a contact form! Maybe that is their plan all along, to make a prospective customer so frustrated that after 3 days from initiating communication you're provided with a way to accomplish a really simple goal and you're very happy. They make you hate them before answering your first question.
I don't know if "V" and "Z" ever talk to each other, but I'm going to do all of their jobs for them by posting the link to this hidden contact form that for some unknown reason wasn't clearly marked on their website.
So they email me back, meaning finally I can have a "private" (Hi CIA!) conversation. Ahhhhh, only thing is the email just says that they received my contact form. Well hopefully they get their shit in order and figure this all out. I mean, there's no way that this will continue to drag on, right?
Two more days go by with no answer, so my politeness is wearing thin but I reach out via Twitter again to get their attention. "T" tells me she just assigned my case to someone, something "V" or "Z" should've done 5 days ago. What the "F"!
Finally it looks like someone is giving me actionable items to get the ball rolling. "J" is by far my favorite customer support rep thus far in the process. Another problem arises as getting this BAC number from the bank isn't very easy either, but is handled in 15-20 minutes.
I guess "C" isn't too bad of a support rep either, he probably would be number 1 in my book but it took him 6 days to get back to me. So I'll put him in a tie for first. Again I want to point out that this could've been solved in 5-10 minutes of talking. At this point in the story we're 12 days into the process.
What the fuck "C" I thought we were boys??? My name is in every email, just look at it when you're referencing a prospective customer. Fine, you're definitely not tied for first anymore in the "Spotify Customer Support Staff" rankings. But finally this horrible, horrible customer service experience is resolved.
I don't think I need to remind anyone of how long it should've taken to fix this problem in my eyes, but in the end it took over 14 days. I hope someone at Spotify reads this and sees how bad they look and fixes their support system. I mean I was never really considering signing up for a Spotify account but I for sure will never consider it in the future. And maybe the 3-4 people that read this post will second guess it themselves.