OPW Interview - Great Expectations co-CEO - Robert Fisher - Online Personals Watch: News on the Online Dating Industry and Business

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Fernando Ardenghi

"I think both sides, online and offline, are looking for a way to bring all this together. "


I agree and I also see two tendencies for Online Dating!

THE FLIGHT TO ENTERTAINMENT.
* 13_to_25_years_old_persons (teenagers) not interested in serious dating.
They need fun == instant gratification.
"Fun Online Dating Success" is a high level of instant gratification; Big Databases full of profiles where any new member can find the persons he/she is looking for.

THE FLIGHT TO QUALITY.
* 26_and_more_years_old_persons interested in serious dating.
They need professionalism: i.e. quality CONTACTS == compatible real persons, avoid being hurt in their feelings by other persons, confidential treatment of information provided, privacy, code of ethics, background checks, like the contacts provided by OffLine Chains, but at affordable costs (If OffLine charges USD1,500 - USD3,000 then OnLine will charge an amount between USD300-USD800)
Also ISO 9001:2000 Quality Norms: external evaluators that will certify the companies complies with Quality norms will be a MUST HAVE.
"Quality Online Dating Success" same as "Offline Chains Dating Success"; any new member will be matched with compatible real persons.

New quality online dating sites offering more power_calculation and better personality_matching_methods will have a great opportunity to World Wide succeed!


Kindest Regards,

Fernando Ardenghi.
Buenos Aires.
Argentina.
[email protected]

Mark Brooks

Could you explain why an online dating site should consider ISO 9001 please Fernando. I can understand B2B companies undergoing ISO 9000 certifications but I don't think the average single internet dating user will have much knowledge of it's significance.

Mark Brooks
editor, onlinepersonalswatch.com

Fernando Ardenghi

About ISO 9001:2000 Quality Norms == the company is audited by external evaluators.

Shaadi is the Indian Online Dating Site certified by Det Norske Veritas until 2007-10-07
http://www.shaadi.com/customer_relations/faq/iso-certification.php

It is a standardized seal of trust for prospective clients.
A group of quality systems and processes, which will help meeting customer requirements and achieving customer satisfaction!

"If you want to have a quality attitude you must have a quality system. This is what ISO recognizes, and this is why ISO 9001:2000 is important. "

Some ISO 9001:2000 main processes for Online Dating, clauses (in brackets):
Communicate with customers (7.2.3).
Identify customer requirements (5.2, 7.2.1).
Meet customer requirements (5.2).
Monitor and measure customer satisfaction (8.2.1).
Meet regulatory requirements (5.1).

A U.S. & Canada Industry (OffLine and OnLine) as big as USD 1,200 million??? CAN NOT stay without:
- Legislation.
- ISO 9001:2000 Quality Norms.

More on ISO 9001:2000 Quality Norms could be seen at:
http://www.iso.org/iso/en/ISOOnline.frontpage
http://praxiom.com/iso-9001.htm
http://praxiom.com/iso-definition.htm


Kindest Regards,

Fernando Ardenghi.
Buenos Aires.
Argentina.
[email protected]

Teresa Plett

First of all let me say I'm not quite sure if this is the place to post my comment, on the subject of customer dis-satisfaction, but here goes. I recently joined GE in Seattle, and yes the sales reps are well trained. They get the job done, but promises are not kept and I belive there may even be some bait and switch tactics involved. I was told infaticly that the photographer had 18 years of experience with GE and was shown pictures of her work, after having expressed my doubt of getting a good head shot for attracting anyone on paper. When schedualing the photo shoot I was not told she would be on vacation. There after sitting for an hour waiting for the shoot I what posing for her brother a still life photographer!

The room for the videos, a small office where a pocket camer is used along with the microphone in it and with that of course the interviewer is much louder than the client. The lighting either washes out the subject or creats large circles under the eyes. There is nothing profesional about this operation. While waiting for this same appiontment I was called Dian twice by the same girl, not my name!

Reading your column I see there is supposed to be personal contact every 60 days. Not happening here.

The people in the service are supposed to be available and ready to date, this is what they asked of me. How is someone not divorced fit into this catigory? Leagaly separated or not? Talk about baggage!

There are members who are asked to come in to update their photos, what about their profile? I met someone in this service recently who stated 0 children at home. Not only 0 but 5, and 1 more on college break. Stated college Grad. Whent for one year. The screaning prosses is not what is presented at the onset as what seems is nothing else.

I would never recomend this service to anyone, and I will not be a repeat customer. Thank you for you time. Sincerely, Teresa P.

Robert Fisher

Teresa,
I am sorry you have had a bad experience in the Seattle location. I do not own that location but I have sent an email to the owner and have forwarded all your comments from the blog to him. I am hopeful that he will do something to change your opinion of Great Expectations. I have requested that he respond to me no later than this week. I will respond on the blog once I have that.
Sincerely,
Robert Fisher

Jim

What happened in Kansas Mr. Fisher, we seen your interview in the local news remarking that the Attorney General's lawsuit was baseless. Did they get the full $1.1 million in customer restitution they sued for or did you settle for less.
http://www.kansascity.bbb.org/commonreport.html?bid=91020026

A.

I would like to comment on Great Expectations. It is a lie that they talk to each of their clients once every 60 days. I have been a member of the service for more than one year, and nobody has ever called me. Furthermore, the database is lousy, and the service is worse than those who charge you only $30 per month. These people do not care about anybody - they just want to make money.

John Smith

I know Robert Fisher personally and have worked for G.E. in the past. It's a high pressure sale that uses emotional manipulation to get the high prices for the membership. When I worked there it was extremely shady. Many things were promised that never were delivered.

J.S.

Kate Martin

I will second Teresa's note above. I signed up with the Sacramento office. My photo appointment was cancelled twice within hours of the appointment, no apologies. Each time, I was told thye would call me back to reschedule, and never heard from them.

When I had billing and contractual questions, I was referred to Ann Victor, the Operations Director in NH. I have never in my life been treated so disrespectfully or dealt with worse customer service as I experienced with this woman. I am in business, and I am certain that if I spoke to my customers as she did to me I would be fired immediately. She was very rude, very insulting, yelled at me over the phone, and ended our conversation by hanging up on me while I was still talking. I literally called to ask her two questions about the billing process.

Furthermore, I am 28 years old and was told that there were plenty of gentlemen my age who would be good matches for me. I was completely misled and found that my selection was very small, with only 8-10 members under the age of 32.

I am contractually bound to this company for another year, but would rather pay the money and walk away than participate in this hoax for one more minute. I will not do business with a company who does not respect it's clients.

I am very dissappointed with this company and those who run it. In business, your customers are everything. I hope Great Expectations recognizes that it is unacceptable to treat your customers this way if you expect to last another '30 years'.

-Anonymous

Frederick

I can add my own complaint regarding the St. Louis office of Great Expectations, now called Club1, in Maryland Heights, MO. I was grossly misled about the number of members in my age range and about the rate at which new members sign up. Rhonda Bilbruck, the director, and Tiffany, one of the employees, told me that there were 100-125 female members in the age range I specified (24-34) within the St. Louis area, with 4-5 new members signing up each week. In reality, there are only 22 active female members in this age range, and they have less than one new female member in this age range signing up each month!

I have made numerous complaints to their office, and unfortunately they have mostly ignored me. I have now gone through the Better Business Bureau (where they have a C- rating) and the MO State Attorney General's office to try to get my money back. Interestingly, they even breached their own contract which states that in a dispute, arbitration with the BBB is MANDATORY -- they actually declined the arbitration request when the BBB sent it to them! I have never in my life seen a company behave so unprofessionally.

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