I have learned the power of social networking today. While we were dealing with the Apple Store stuff on Friday, SuperDad tweeted about it. Later, I noticed someone retweeted his post and went to see who it was. I saw it was a Twitter account devoted to all things Apple Store. I tweeted my blog post and put an @mention to them. Apparently things snowballed from there. I started getting comments, some nice, some “do you kiss your mother with that mouth?” bad and some very helpful. (You won’t see the worst ones, those went in the trash where they belong.)

Apparently, some people sent it to Matthew, the manager at the Mall of Georgia Apple Store. He read the blog and commented. And then, he called. His simple apology was exactly what is missing in customer service today. He acknowledged that things went poorly. He said those two little words that hold SO much weight with someone who feels they’ve been wronged: “I’m sorry.”

At that, I was satisfied. That was all I really wanted. He did offer to replace my phone, but just the night before, SuperDad had listed it on eBay and within a minute it was bought and paid for. The purchase price covered the cost for an upgrade to the 4S, so I was happy with that.

I explained that we had sold it and my plan to upgrade and my hopes I could get through the reservation process this evening. My attempts at that on Monday evening were futile. Matthew asked what kind I was wanting, called his store and had them set aside one that was in stock for me. I really appreciate him doing that for me.

We are on our way to the store now. I’m actually posting this from my cracked phone, which we ship off tomorrow to the eBay buyer. Matthew, by just acknowledging the issue and apologizing, made things right. He went above and beyond by setting aside the phone for me. I have a very real expectation that other customers at his store will be treated with more respect now.

Edit: Wanted to add that I was treated very well by Brooke and Monica when I was in the store to purchase my upgrade. (Monica gets bonus points for complimenting my glasses.) I’m hoping my experience on Friday was just a one off thing and it won’t happen to another customer again.

The lesson retailers should learn from this? Treat your customers with respect. Learn how to say no without being rude or condescending.