Blockbuster Service

(Let’s see if the people who monitor online mentions at Blockbuster catch this. I’ll make it easy for them, and tag it. In fact, they can just cut to the chase.)

I took my daughter to the video store this afternoon to let her select a couple of movies for the week. While there, I was going to see if I could get my hands on a copy of ‘300’. 300With nothing on the shelf, I asked the manager if there were any in the return bin. 42 copies at that location, and 42 of them were checked out. No luck. I let Laura browse every movie in the kid section just on the off-chance the delay might bring one back. I took my time perusing the new releases, and begrudgingly picked up a copy of ‘Smokin’ Aces’. Nothing I would have snagged on my own, but seemingly better than anything else there.

Not having a card, during check-out I gave the manager our last name to look up in the system. “Diane?” he said. “Um, no – my wife is Brenda. She used to be a Dianne, but gave that name up when we got married.”

It took a few minutes to get cleared up. With our address and her driver’s license number, we had the problem diagnosed. They had misspelled our name. (1 G, 2 T’s for those at home keeping score. P-i-g-o-t-t.)

click to go to BlockbusterWe grabbed the movies and started for home, pleased that the helpful manager had been patient and worked everything out for us. On the way home, Brenda called me. “Blockbuster just called, and said a copy of ‘300’ just walked in – they’re holding it for you.”

I looked up the number on the box, and called the manager immediately to tell him I was on the way. “No problem,” he said. “If it hadn’t been for the confusion over the spelling of your name, I wouldn’t have remembered it.”

The Chase

The store is a Blockbuster franchisee – ID #94597.

If you’re with Blockbuster’s PR team, and you’d like to know the name of the employee and his ID#, please e-mail the request to inbox {at} occamsrazr (dot) com. Also, I ask you to comment here. As quickly as possible. I’m curious to see how often you scan, and I know positive feedback is hard to come by.

[tags]Ike Pigott, Occam’s RazR, rentals, movies, movie rentals, Blockbuster, Blockbuster Video, 300[/tags]

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  1. This will be interesting to follow, Ike.

  2. Still ticking?

    It really was a nice piece; I have noted that different companies have different monitoring practices and negatives tend to be tracked faster than positives.


  3. Big Daddy Terps says:

    If I were to bet, I would say you will not hear back, unless word of mouth spreads quickly or slowly. You could hear back in a year.

    but I do know one thing: some companies do not care about blogs, they do not monitor blogs, or they have no idea how to monitor them.

    Was that the test, by the way?

    signed—-GarretT Anderson (SNL)

  4. You know how I like to rail on bad customer service, so I will attempt to restrain myself.

    I had the opposite experience at Blockbuster involving a movie I had returned. I dropped it in the basket and went home. You don’t receive a receipt or anything when you bring a movie/game back, you just drop it in the return hole and figure you’re done.

    A few weeks later I get this phone call from my local Blockbuster indicating that I would be charged for the movie because it was missing in action. I called to tell them I had returned it. “We don’t have it sir.”

    There’s not much I could do, right? Wrong. I demanded they look for it, which they did. Nothing found and the store still planned to charge me for it. Another automated phone call informing me that I was being charged for the movie.

    This time something wonderful did happen. I went to the store and asked to speak to the manager that had called me. He was gone, but the assistant agreed to listen to my story. Turns out she had seen the missing movie a few days earlier when another customer had returned it outside of its box. It seems the movie had been separated from its case and was loose in the store. Somehow this other customer had taken it home and that is how it had turned up missing; it had never been checked into my account (Incidentally, he must have gotten a free rental, and somehow still felt compelled to return it).

    I was upset at first by the one-sided conversation, but must admit that once I explained the circumstances she knew exactly what had happened and was smart enough to put together the clues.

    In the end, the phone calls stopped, the charges were removed, and surprisingly, I haven’t been back. I’m now renting from the local Red Box located next to the Coke machines at Wal-Mart and watching first-run movies for a $1 rental per night. But if I was asked to rate Blockbuster on service, I doubt I would give them the “F” I was considering before an assistant manager agreed to help me solve my mystery.


  1. […] The clock is ticking since my post about my wonderful experience at Blockbuster video. […]

  2. […] and blogs to see what people were saying about them. If they had done so, they might have noticed something very nice I wrote about them some TargetDate = “8/11/2007 8:19 PM UTC-0500”; BackColor = “white”; ForeColor = “black”; […]

  3. […] too late anyway. I know that Blockbuster isn’t listening to blog entries. I wrote a very glowing review of my last experience at a Blockbuster, where an employee was quite helpful. I wanted to know how I […]