Brookstone Replaces Broken Electronic Thingy, Delights Skeptical Customer

Reader Deejmer had a lovely experience at Brookstone that he couldn’t help but share. He writes that he received a wireless speaker as a gift and grew to love it. When the device died, he couldn’t produce the receipt, but his local store was happy to exchange it out for him. Yay!

Hello mighty Consumerist….I have written a few times with things I wanted to call out about companies because I have been wronged (although never published, but hopefully this time is different). But this time I have one of the stories I love reading on the site….when companies do RIGHT by the consumer.

In June of this year, I was given an indoor/outdoor wireless speaker and transmitter as a gift for Fathers day, sold by Brookstone. (http://www.brookstone.com/indoor-outdoor-wireless-speakers.html?his=2~46337~2~root_category%40kwd~speaker&bkiid=searchResults|C4CategoryProdList1FDT|7141633)

Now, let me first say I’ve never thought I’d want anything from Brookstone….I’ve always thought it was all gimmicky electronics and stuff that served no real purpose. And when I opened the box, I thought it to be an odd contraption (as you can see in the photo). But after using it, I realized it sounded amazingly great for its size, was portable when needed, and looked kinda kewl with the blue LEDs doing their thing. I actually liked it! That is….until I lost the A/C power adapter. :-(

I had put batteries in it after losing the adapter, and worked fine. I fired it up last week after having not used it in a while, and no power…ugh. I figured the batteries were out of ‘juice’, and instead of investing $4000 in 8 D batteries, I thought I’d call Brookstone to get the A/C adapter replaced. I dropped a few bucks on it, and when it arrived I discovered it actually still did not work, and instead when I turned it on it just made that acrid smell of burning electronics. I was instantly saddened.

Well, I called the local Brookstone at a mall near my house (West County Mall in St. Louis, MO), and talked with a friendly store manager, Eric. He asked if I had a receipt, and had to say “no” because it was a gift. I even confessed that I never keep the boxes for these things either. He said “You know, its outside of our policy….not even a way for me to do this in my computer system”. I thought, oh here we go. I’m stuck with this broke thing and there’s nothing I can do about it. Despite the fact I’m calling him on a lazy Sunday, he then volunteers “You know, let me call my district manager to see what can be done for you….I’ll call you right back”. Again, being a skeptical Consumerist reader, I thought: 1) yeah right, he’ll never call back 2) if he does call back, its all a front to pretend his boss said ‘hell no’.

To my surprise, about an hour later I get a call saying “Hi there, this is Eric up at Brookstone. Just bring the speaker up and we’ll be happy to replace it”

Wow.

I went up there an hour later, went to see Eric, and I handed him the old swag. He pops open a brand new speaker, gives me the new device and all the components (he had to keep the box to send the defective one back) and sent me on my way. He didn’t have me sign anything, didn’t ask for my SSN, fist born’s blood type or anything! I shook his hand, and informed him that he just made himself a Brookstone customer for a long time to come. Thanks Eric, I’ll be seeing you again!

Note: I’m also CC’ing Brookstone Customer Support as well, to let them know what a fantastic employee they have working in their store, and a district manager who cares enough to follow through. I hope that they are recognized for representing their company well.