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Mon Oct 4 2010 15:40:13

Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

By: Ina Steiner

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eBay took an unusual step on Monday when it posted a letter from CEO John Donahoe on its homepage. The letter contains a special message for shoppers informing them of the company's Buyer Protection policy, which covers purchase price plus original shipping.

The letter takes up the entire homepage except for a category list in the left column, and features a picture of a smiling Donahoe, who signs off with a friendly message, "On behalf of our employees and 25 million eBay sellers around the world, thanks for shopping with us."

The home page messaging is part of a multi-million dollar marketing campaign designed to inspire consumer confidence in the marketplace by raising awareness around eBay's Buyer Protection policy. In addition to the special CEO message on the eBay.com homepage, the campaign includes postcard mailers and coverage across the web.



Lynda Talgo, Senior Director of eBay Buyer Protection, told users in an announcement that it was eBay's goal to "make sure buyers, both current and new, know that eBay Buyer Protection has them covered, so they'll have the confidence they need to do even more of their shopping on eBay.com this busy holiday season."

She also said the marketing push "comes at a great time for sellers, as we've announced recent and upcoming enhancements to feedback and eBay Buyer Protection designed to ensure that seller performance ratings truly reflect the great service they provide."

eBay's Buyer Protection policy is outlined on this page.

Update 10/5/10: AuctionBytes conducted a podcast interview with Lynda Talgo about the marketing campaign. She revealed eBay would send 1 million postcards and 27 million emails to buyers informing them of the Buyer Protection program as well as placing advertising across the Web. Also see today's Newsflash article.

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Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Digby

Mon Oct 4 19:11:26 2010

Aside from increasing the sale of plastic buckets that pic of JD is great news fro all the alt sites.

Hopefully it will put more buyers and sellers off ebay.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: whatever.

Mon Oct 4 19:24:01 2010

I especially like:

''WE'LL work with the seller to make it right.''

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Barbara

Mon Oct 4 19:35:13 2010

First we have auctions for FREE; no listing fee!! Unheard of in the past;

Now a message that wreaks with desperation.  PLEASE shop here...

Sounds to me like the Titanic is standing straight up and sinking, just goin down...and Captain John doesn't know what to do. Pack up and leave for a start.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Sarcastic Sally

Mon Oct 4 20:19:02 2010

Dear Former and Soon-to-be-Former Shoppers,

We don't suck as much as we used to. Oh, sure...we still suck, just not as much. But hey, at least we're aware of how sucky we are so we're willing to reward you for your trouble. Just shop here and you can get free stuff, and we'll still get the final value fees. There are plenty of websites that will teach you the finer points of how to effectively complain at eBay, and which complaints will get you an immediate refund with no need to return the merchandise you've claimed to be counterfeit. You get the merchandise and a refund equal to the merchandise purchase price. WHAT A DEAL FOR YOU!

Your pal,
John-Don

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Rich

Mon Oct 4 20:23:57 2010

Ebay was founded on the principle that "most people are good", so Donahue is right about that. But he's an idiot for saying "most people are good" and in the same breath; "we got you covered".  If most people are good then why promote buyer protection? The reason is because after 5 straight years of fee hikes; Ebay can no longer advertise "lowest prices on the web" or "great deals". Each fee hike has forced sellers to either quit or raise prices.  Ebay is not losing buyers due to worries about fraud; they're losing buyers because Amazon has better deals because Amazon hasn't raised fees in 5 years; so Amazon sellers can afford lower prices.  So many people who competitively shop Ebay, Amazon and Craigslist are buying less and less on Ebay.  Amazon is positioned to advertise "lowest prices".  What's better: "we got you covered" or "lowest prices"?  

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Johnny Rotten

Mon Oct 4 20:26:53 2010

A heartwarming letter if you are a fraudster stealing merchandise (and eBay discounts) from small, honest eBay sellers, and then giving out 1 star DSR's.

Wakeup eBay, the pendulum has swung too far the other way.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

This user has validated their user name. by: Mercy the Mingless

Mon Oct 4 20:31:21 2010

Donahoe's favorite tune.  Has it on infinite iPod repeat.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRbp0ZIehk0


'
'Shoplifters
of the world
Unite and take over
Shoplifters of the world

Hand it over
Hand it over
Hand it over''

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: eloozers

Mon Oct 4 20:43:18 2010

Whoooo-weee! It smells desperate.

hahaha

Hey but what about people who got scammed in times past?

Some for thousands and thousands. ebay blamed them for things which are ebay's fault alone. ebay claimed the place was safe and trustworthy all along.

I think they are probably still lying. It's a scam. Doubletalk of some sort.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Dollseller

Mon Oct 4 20:57:33 2010

By pointing out how much they are going to bail out buyers from bad sellers, it does make it sound as though all sellers are out to get them.  Buyers can claim anything is "not as described" and ebay will refund their money, and they do not have to send it back.  How is this fair?  Recently in one month we sold 16 identical stuffed dolls.  15 customers said it was exactly as described and they were happy with their order.  One customer said it wasn't as described because they thought the color was slightly different than what they saw on their screen.  (Screens can have different resolutions.)  We would have been happy to accept a return, but of course, eBay does not even require them to return it, and they will give them a full refund including the shipping we paid to send it to them.  I'm all for giving good customer service, why can't ebay at least ask them to return it before giving them a refund?

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Bozo

Mon Oct 4 21:17:44 2010

I thought it got hacked
I remember 10-12 years ago peoples hacked web sites to put their gril friends photo.

The good news is that if he gets in politics we'll get someone else.
Meg'a gona need a vice president when she runs for president of the dumbs.

I can see this as a new web trend.
Bill gates will put his Xmas letter on Microsoft.com ?
Branson putting pictures of his bimbo on virgin.com ?

I can't wait for alibaba to make an hostile take over buy!

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Meg Witchman

Mon Oct 4 21:19:11 2010

When Meg was CEO, didn't she say there were 60 million sellers?

At-a-boy Donnie!

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Mr Obvious

Mon Oct 4 21:22:30 2010

Confidence trick
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confidence_trick

Any questions?

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Rupert Pupkin

Mon Oct 4 23:09:35 2010

Donothole no more believes people are basically good than the man in the moon.

You don't treat basically good people like peons and criminals.

On the other hand, there is an ever increasing number of members who believe that eBay is now basically rotten.

I count myself among that number.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: whatever.

Mon Oct 4 23:28:11 2010

@Bozo:
''I can't wait for alibaba to make an hostile take over buy! ''

Actually there's been some speculatation (and depressingly persuasive arguments) that Donahoe wants to ''partner'' the U.S. eBay.com site with Jack Ma's alibaba.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: On Lies and Secrets This user has validated their user name.

Mon Oct 4 23:32:53 2010

This must be a make or break holiday season for Donahoe.  As many have observed, this campaign smacks of desperation.  Any time you see a big mug shot of a CEO and his signature splashed all over an ad - look out. Donahoe looks about as convincing as former BP CEO Tony Hayward did when he ran those ads apologizing for the oil spill in the Gulf.  Given the current climate of  malfeasance by large corporations with outsourcing of jobs and taxpayer bailouts, I wonder why any  CEO thinks an average consumer would have any confidence in him/her.  Using the likeness of a CEO (particularly one that is not well-liked) is the wrong way to market any message to consumers if you are trying to inspire confidence.

The ad is poor and the message is even poorer.  IMO, the icon for the program is stupid - there are so many shields, ribbons and junky symbols all over the site that it conveys little meaning and is just more visual noise.  If most consumers saw that symbol all by itself, I doubt few if any would know what it meant.  It is just more dumb, meaningless iconography cluttering the site.  

The other major problem is the name of the policy.  ''Buyer Protection'' as a phrase seems to suggest that there is significant peril for buyers on the site.  As many have observed, this is a losing premise from which to engage customers.  If customers haven't been warned off by bad word-of-mouth, the suggestion from ebay corporate that consumers need ''protection'' will certainly get them to have doubts about ebay.

After years of changes that were supposed to drive bad sellers from the site and restore confidence in the marketplace, why is there even a need for ''Buyer Protection'' now?

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: Smitty This user has validated their user name.

Tue Oct 5 00:14:58 2010

@ A to Z guaranteed
     
''Good luck inspiring confidence in the countless buyers who got ripped off on eBay all those years!''

I'm sure you're aware that ebay solved that problem years ago. I'm referring to about 2006/2007 when the volunteer members of the trust & safety board were daily reporting thousands of fraudulent listings;

EMAIL ME @ FOR THE BUY IT NOW PRICE etc.

At that time, ebay decided they had to do something about the problem and they did.

They forbid anymore discussion of the fraudulent listings and the problem disappeared. There were a few posters who continued posting item numbers of rip off listings but ebay NARUed them, to prove they were serious about fighting fraud.

Smitty

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by: @smitty

Tue Oct 5 01:33:27 2010

They didn't stop there. They harassed and stalked folks who were critical of them across the internet and did things you wouldn't believe.
That black budget stuff? IMO, ebay spends more on that than they do on real customer service.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

This user has validated their user name. by: Ed Gadfly

Tue Oct 5 01:50:44 2010

Sniff... sniff.

I thought I smelled desperation but it's just the smoldering pants of a liar.

JD's lying mug is on the front page because Internet Explorer users can't load the other pages.

People are basically good. If that's the case why do you lie to them and cheat them John?

Everytime I see JD and The Quaker Oats Lady I taste vomit in my mouth.

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

by: SleepyTime

Tue Oct 5 05:30:56 2010

That's funny.  Johnny D. did not mention the new feature coming up where the sellers can report a scamming buyer.  So now the feedback pendulum has gone far enough the other way where we are now in need of a secret dossier on buyers.  I'm still trying to understand how Ebay thinks the secrecy is going to help with anything.

Suddenly, the old, tried-and-true version of feedback is looking pretty good.    

Perminate Link for Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing   Homepage Letter from eBay CEO Kicks off Holiday Marketing

This user has validated their user name. by: Philip Cohen

Tue Oct 5 06:31:13 2010

This nonsense is straight from the eBay Dept of Spin. I would doubt "Turkey" Donahoe even knows that his mug shot is being used.

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