Wednesday, 25 January 2012

The secret life of the Dell press office

Spot the contact details
I do a bit of consumer/technology journalism, which means I'm frequently in touch with technology press offices and PR companies. There was a time when you relied on a little black book of contacts, but these days you just zip onto the net and type in Company X Press Office and the details pop up. Unless you are trying to contact Dell. Their press office is so well hidden it verges on farce.

Go to their News Room press office contacts page and you are told the following:

Dell UK and Ireland Press Office
Dell Computers
Innovation House
Cherrywood Science and Technology Park
Cherrywood, Loughlinstown
Dublin 18
Ireland
Note no phone, no email. Yes, the press office of one of the world's leading computer companies only provides a postal address. Snail mail. Nineteenth century at best.

Admittedly they do then go on to give a telephone number for 'UK Head Office Contacts' followed by a Bracknell address. Ah ha! Got em. But no. The phone number is for their (Indian) call centre. Who don't have any phone numbers for anyone. At all. But they do have an email address for the Marketing department. Excellent. If you can't get a press office, the marketing department is the next best thing. So I zap off an email. And get this reply:
Thank you for your mail. Please note this mailbox is used for outbound messaging only and therefore checked very infrequently. If you are internal to Dell, please contact the relevant member of the Marketing team to answer your query. Kind regards UK Marketing
For crying out loud! Dell Marketing or Dell Press Office - if you are monitoring this (and it's not impossible, I have had companies getting in touch as a result of my blogging about them), PLEASE drop me an email at brian@brianclegg.net so I can contact you. I want to write nice things about your computers. In a large circulation national magazine. But I can't if you hide. Come out, come out wherever you are...

P.S. A journalist contact has told me who their PR agency is (Axicom), so I'm fine. But this cloak and dagger stuff is still bizarre.

5 comments:

  1. Dell are absolutely awful on customer services .. computers not bad when they work but india cs dept are the worst ever encountered ...why good press them ??

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  2. I'm not sure in what sense this is 'good pressing' them - IT journalists need to contact Dell and I was merely pointing out how difficult it is.

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  3. Snap!

    Like you Brian I have been struggling to get in contact with Dell's mysterious PR department.

    Your blog has just made me and a fellow colleague giggle, as we've both experienced the same thing.

    We've also noticed that a number of big IT firms are unwilling to let the receptionists give out names of PRs too.

    Are these firms so jaded by the press that even when we want to write nice things about them they go into hiding?

    It's bloody ridiculous.

    Thanks again Brian.

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    Replies
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