Letter To Target CEO Gets Newlyweds Registry Discount, Gift Card, Apology

After the wedding has passed and gifts are all opened, married couples who has registered at Target receives a coupon for 10% off any items on their registry that they didn’t receive. It’s a nice promotion that gives happy couples a break on that eighth place setting, and maybe the Kitchenaid mixer no one wanted to drag into the reception.

Readers and loyal Target shoppers Alexander and Gwendolyn were promised this coupon, and patiently waited for its arrival. And when we say “they waited,” we mean they’ve already celebrated their first anniversary.

They finally resorted to contacting Target CEO Gregg “If you squint, I look like Alec Baldwin Tom Bergeron” Steinhafel.

Dear Mr. Steinhafel,

I am very sorry to bother you with what I feel should be a minor issue, however, I want you to know about the complete lack of customer service I have received from your company. I was engaged to be married in August of 2008, and when my now-wife asked where we should register, my first response was Target. I am a loyal Target customer, and have used your stores to buy for many friends who are now married, I have always enjoyed the experience. We registered several months before our wedding, and enjoyed scanning our items in the store, and adding items online. She was also happy about the fact that we would receive coupons to use in the store, and online, to purchase items we did not receive.

On July 25th we were married, and went off on our honeymoon. On August 5th she received an email indicating our 10% off coupon would soon arrive in her email. She anxiously awaited this email, but it never arrived. As soon as we returned from our honeymoon we searched through our mail, and had not received the expected in-store coupon either. She called our family members, since their addresses were also listed on our registry, and they had not seen anything. Finally in late August she called the Club Wedd help line and explained the situation. Unfortunately they were not helpful at all, and simply said we should wait longer for the coupons to arrive. In the meantime she continued to receive other emails from Club Wedd.

We waited and waited, and finally this weekend she called back to ask again. While waiting for help she was browsing our registry on your website, looking through the items we had hoped to buy from you. Once she spoke with someone they explained that the coupon had shipped in July, and if we had no received it they would do nothing to reissue it, unsatisfied with this answer she requested a supervisor, who repeated this information, then also stated that our registry was now expired. Immediately after saying this my wife switched pages in the browser and found our registry was now deleted. Not only would they not help us, now they were going to punish us!

Having worked in the telephone support industry, I explained to her that she should try again on Monday, since the weekend staff may not be actual Target employees, and maybe they cannot do anything to help us. I explained to her that we had to give Customer Service every chance we could to help us out. She tried again on Monday (10-26-09) at 11am and spoke with Darwin, who again stated he could do nothing about the discount we never received, but did manage to pull up a list of our registered items which he emailed to us. She then spoke with his supervisor Bruce, who also stated he would not reissue the discount, and then as she started to cry he simply hung up on her.

Today (10-27-09) I placed a call to your general support line and spoke with Victor, I explained the situation, and described why I did not want to speak to Club Wedd support, but simply general customer service. Victor was helpful but since he was not in that department he could not do much, so he transferred me to Stephanie in Refunds. I repeated the above to her, and she flatly stated that they would not do anything for me. I explained that I understood she probably could not help since she is in Refunds, and was not the department I requested. I repeated my request for a general customer service department. At the point Stephanie would simply repeat that they could not reissue the registry coupons since they were no longer in the system. I explained to Stephanie that I already had a copy of the registry, and this point all we needed was the discounts we had been promised. She simply repeated herself every time in response to me. At this point I explained to her that I have no interest in shopping in your stores until this issue is resolved, and I do not want you to lose me as a loyal customer over this, so please get me to someone who can help. She again repeated herself, so I told her at this point I would be escalating my story to any executive who will listen.

I am sorry about the length of this email but I wanted to provide you with all of the information I have. I have avoided your competition for almost 10 years now, and do all non-electronics shopping that I can in your stores. I would like to continue my relationship with your company, however, my wife and I are very upset with the way we have been treated. We have tried to follow all of the proper channels laid out by your company, and simply want to get what we were promised.

Thank you very much for your time,
Alexander and Gwendolyn

One day later, Alexander wrote back to Consumerist to tell us that the company had followed up:

I was pleasantly surprised just now to receive a phone call from Greg at Target, who not only arranged for my wife and I to visit a local store and get our 10% off, but thanked me for attempting to use proper channels first. They are also sending me a $25 gift card for our determination in getting this issue resolved.

Beautifully done! Enjoy your hard-earned 10%.

Have any other readers experienced issues getting or using their 10% off remaining registry items coupons?

This Target Coupon Is Made Of Lies
How Can We Determine Who Gave Us This $250 Wedding Present?
Target “Lied To Me, Yelled At Me,” And “Treated Me Like Crap”

(Photo: stephen.butler)