Kenneth Cole: Overpromising and Underdelivering. Are you doing the same?

Kenneth Cole WarrantyI recently ordered this Kenneth Cole bag from ebags, and I love it.  It’s a nice-looking bag, and very functional.  One of the items that convinced me that this was the perfect bag for me was the 10-year warranty, so I knew my investment was safe.

I got in the bag, and discovered it was actually a lifetime warranty – even better!  That was, until I actually read the warranty.  Can anybody tell me what use a warranty is if it doesn’t cover normal wear and tear?  At least it wasn’t hidden in legalese – they very clearly tell me “We don’t cover jack. Good luck.”

Overpromised and Underdelivered

How many times does this happen?  You come up with a way to differentiate your offering that perfectly fits your brand.  But then your company backs off, turning your substantive offering into marketing fluff (I apologize to my marketing friends).

It’s easy to see how this might have happened.  A staff member suggests you can gain market share by creating a lifetime warranty to highlight the quality construction in the product.  Then somebody gets concerned about the costs of supporting such a warranty, and throws in language to gut it. It’s certainly not the first time this has happened. But how customer-centric is such a warranty? And how much would the company actually spend to stand behind their product?

What’s ironic is that a true lifetime warranty would perfectly fit the Kenneth Cole brand. But I guess that even in the best brands have a hard time truly focusing on their customers.

3 replies
  1. Justin Fennell
    Justin Fennell says:

    I purchased a KK leather case. They last about 6-8 years and wear out. I just take it back to the store and they send me a new one in about two weeks. I’m actually on my third bag. I paid too much for the first bag but to have lifetime replacement has been great for me.

    Reply
  2. Charles Albon
    Charles Albon says:

    Same here. Bought first bag in late 90s, paid at that time à lot of money. All bags wear out. Zippers stop working. Because of the weight and abuse, the strap connectors break. Once they break, that’s not wear and tear. It’s a laptop bag, gonna get heavy. But leather is full grain and tough, handles are rivoted, and bumpers protect leather. Put it this way, if it wasn’t so welll made, it’d break much sooner. Warranty process has been easy. Replaced in 08, and replacing it this year. Will be 3rd one. So two bags in 20 yrs. Use it every single day and beat it up. If not for lifetime replacement, would buy another. Highly recommend full grain leather bags. So I do send business their way. Imagine that pays for the great warranty. Plus 70 of people never actually go through the process of return

    Reply
  3. Rob
    Rob says:

    Well the lifetime warranty is useless if you purchase one of K.Cole’s hard case luggage pieces. On the first time trip it was dented in the top corner on the side that the do not have reinforcements. I missed the 4 hour Jet Blue claim window. Thought I could go through manufacturer but not so since it states that the warranty will not cover any carrier damage.They should at least let you send a photo any decided from there. Funny did not see any other hard cases with dents like mine. Will not buy their luggage or recommend it. Will save up for a Tumi case.

    Reply

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