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Discussion Starter #1
Somewhere in a thread a long time ago, the ups and downs of
belonging to the BBB were discussed. I searched for it but couldn't find it.

I had expressed interest in joining, but decided not to do so when
I was informed that I couldn't use their name or logo anywhere on my
documents, signs, website, etc. I mean, what good is it if you can't advertise it, right?

A few of the members here disagreed, saying they thought you could use that stuff. Well, since i had been going back and forth about joining, I somehow got on their mailing list. This is an email I received yesterday. I will try and copy/paste the contents here.

For Immediate Release



Contact: Michelle L. Corey, (314) 645-4636 (unlisted) [email protected]
Scott C. Thomas, (314) 645-4636 (unlisted) [email protected]





June 29, 2005



American Locksmiths, 8619 Manchester, St. Louis, Mo., has been expelled from membership in the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for violations of the BBB's membership agreement.



The BBB's Board of Directors took this action on June 22, 2005, at the recommendation of its Ethics Committee.



American Locksmiths was notified on numerous occasions between Jan. 24, 2005, and May 4, 2005, requesting the removal of the name “Better Business Bureau” from its Web site. The firm did not respond to these requests.



BBB members must refrain from exploiting or using commercially the name ‘Better Business Bureau,’ or its emblem, either in advertising, selling or in any other way. Failure to adhere to this policy is considered prejudicial to the best interests of the BBB.



No representative of this company attended the May 25, 2005, hearing before the Ethics Committee.



Consumers are urged to contact the BBB at (314) 645-3300 or www.contactbbb.org for a report on a firm's customer experience record before doing business with the firm.



-30-
 

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Back from the dead...
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Discussion Starter #2
To add to this, I think its a total scam. They only contact you if they are getting calls inquiring about your business, but no complaints. So if they are getting calls and no complaints, then you probably don't have a problem and don't need their 'arbitration' services or whatever they offer.

Plus, I am getting their monthly newsletter. I see anywhere from 50-100 new companies are signing up each month, all at $350 and up to be a 'member'.

But if you have no problems, and can't use the membership for your benefit, whats the use of it? These guys are making tons of money for nothing.

Hmmm :confused:
 

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Pro, I couldn't agree more. A total waste of good money.
 

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...jammin
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Don't know what's in the old thread but...

You do get a nice little postcard when they have recommended your business
It doesn't say who they recommended, so you can't really follow up on it, or know if the recomendee ever called you
Ther'e no way for a business to know if the BBB is just sending them a postcard every once and a while

They do contact you over complaints, (most of which are ridiculous), because your business name is now listed in the BBB directory with a complaint pending

You then have to show the BBB that the complaint was unfounded, or that you addressed the complaint, they contact the consumer and check if they are satisfied
The BBB then removes the complaint pending from your business' listing
Or if they think the consumer has a legit beef, they ask you to please try and resolve it

That's as far as I've had to deal with them on a complaint
Apparently if the dispute is not resolved as far as the consumer is concerned, and they side with the consumer and think you are in the wrong, they will list you as having an unresolved complaint
There must be a max limit on those, but the list contained several members with a dozen unresolveds last time I saw it, that was just on the one page
I'm guessing they don't want to stop collecting business' money

Most consumers think the BBB is a Gov't agency or has some actual power
Most consumers do not know the BBB can't do a thing unless the business is a member of the BBB, nor does it occur to them that businesses pay to be in the BBB, and the BBB might not want to kick them out and lose money

Most consumers do not contact the BBB until after they've had a problem

The BBB's complaint listing system leaves a lot to be desired
I mean that your business name can be listed with pending complaints long after they have been resolved
Often a consumer will file a complaint with the BBB before contacting the business, the consumer complains to the business and the complaint is handled swiftly and appropriatly by the business, but the complaint pending shows up on the BBB list long after the complaint has been resolved...and can stay there for 3 months

I did have one instance where they backed me up on an unreasonable complaint, but mostly it made more busy work for me
Possibly because the business handled complaints very well in the first place
(Yeah that was one of my jobs in that company)

Now that I'm on my own I would not join the BBB based on my direct experience with them
"A total waste of good money"
 

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The first guy I ever worked for in construction, - - who was the biggest 'scam-artist' I ever met, - - his own father nick-named him 'rip-and-run', - - belonged to the BBB, - - every time he got a complaint, - - he would just pay them off, - - then go right back up to the top of the list, - - I witnessed this several times, - - by 'witnessing', I mean hearing the whole conversation from the next room, - - the boss knew I was there, - - the BBB guy didn't.
 

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This topic is partly why I came to this site.

There seems to be little value organizations offer contractors. They seem to become unmotivated consulting types, justifying their existence by preaching to the choir.

For example, why would a concrete supplier who is successful, knowledgeable and caring of his clients need to belong to any trade organization? Answer is, to play a game. These organizations work feverishly to gain credibility so they can hold contractors hostage to a perception of need they hype-up with the public. The millions of contractor association dollars spent on lobbying Congress hasn't made OSHA more practical or jobsites safer.

Forums like this can be as powerful as your own company's best form of advertising. That is, word of mouth.

Was that a rant, hi-jack or both? :rolleyes:
 

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Painting Contractor
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I started that other thread about the BBB and because of the replies I got from some of you guys I decided not to join. I did decide to do some further research into joining the National Alliance of Painting Professionals though. It seems, espesially for contractors, going with an industry specific trade organization could be a very useful tool and they allow you to display thier logo.
 

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Most of you know that I'm a firm believer in your local builders assocn. Ours covers 3 counties and lobbies on the local, state and national level with pretty good results. The staff and members are a great group and have something going (golf, fishing, BBQ's, dinners) nearly every month. Most are family oriented and proceeds go to charities. 2 :Thumbs: :Thumbs:
 

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I was a member the first 3 years I started my business, mainly a marketing ploy so I could tell customers I was a member and they felt "safe". It hit me a few years back, WHY!! I'm throwing away $355 for a "status", most all of my work comes from referrals which most of you are in the same situation so the BBB does'nt mean sheeot to me.

I once did a check on a local business with city wide known shoddy practices, under their business it stated "usual amount of complaints asssociated with this type of business", it did'nt say complaints, some other fancy word, but it was loud and clear to me, the BBB is NOT going to say too awful much to the business for fear of losing their annual dues.

The BBB is a scam, much like most insurance companies are LOL. Dont waste your money, especially if your established, there's much better ways to spend that $350 than with them.
 

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I plan to join, but only as a marketing ploy. If it's only $350 a year and brings in just one extra job it's money well spent. Other than that.... it's totally worthless.

I know in my area you are allowed to display the logo, therefore it can be used as a marketing tool. If they said I couldn't display their log I would expidite the end of the conversation with a dialtone, or a finger wave pointing to the door.
 

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I would have to agree, they are nothing but a group that attempts to work out problems you may have with a customer (if you are a member)

If you are not a member, then they take your business name in place it into a log as ( under notice )

What I would like to know is under whos notice ?

I have talked to a few of the guys that were "under notice" and they have confirmed that they are not members of the BBB.

If you really need to join some type of network, why not join Dunn & Bradstreet.

BJD
 

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Actually...

ProWallGuy said:
To add to this, I think its a total scam. They only contact you if they are getting calls inquiring about your business, :
Actually, that's their schtick, they cold call you from your advertisements and falsely claim that they have been getting inquiries. Totally deceptive marketing ploy... The BBB is a very transparent scam.
 

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DGR,IABD
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I totally agree with Teetor, in that membership with the local builder's association has 10x more merit than membership in the local builder's association. At least the builder's association has "real" policing of their membership. The drawback is that the general public thinks that the BBB is such an organization as well. People don't realize that you buy your way into the BBB's good graces, and their recommendation isn't worth 2cents. If $350, or whatever the fee is in you area, is just a drop in the bucket to you, it might be worthwhile to join anyhow (like Grumpy) just to keep up appearances. While your at it, you might as well pay the $2200 bucks and get the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval too.
 

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...jammin
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mdshunk said:
... If $350, or whatever the fee is in you area, is just a drop in the bucket to you, it might be worthwhile to join anyhow (like Grumpy) just to keep up appearances. While your at it, you might as well pay the $2200 bucks and get the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval too.
Hey I have both the AAFA seal and the endorsement of the BAF*
$200 a pop
I'm just like the Ionic Breeze man







*the Seal of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America and the endorsement of the British Allergy Foundation, two laughably ridiculous "organizations" that put their "seal of approval" on Sharper Image's highly profitable line of air cleaners
I was just kidding, but I could... anyone who sends them a check gets it
 

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Sharper Image just had a lawsuit against Consumers Union dismissed for lack of evidence on their part.

The judge saw scientific testing on one side and unsupported claims on the other. OUT it goes! And it's only 5 payments of $69.99 with the Bathroom Breeze AND the Car Breeze! LOL
 

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yeah ,$350 for a 12 x 12 room .( or something like that) so, that's what? three grand for an average house? (sorry, i can't get off the couch to help you, theres no ionic breeze in the kitchen honey...) talk about a ripoff!
 

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I don't remember exactly what we were and were not allowed to do after we joined the BBB (only did it for one year because it was a total waste of money) ... but I think we paid extra to be able to put the BBB logo on our website ... and we also had to have a privacy statement that was approved by them before we could do this.

Consumers don't realize how much of a joke the BBB is ... if they make a complaint, all a company has to do is respond ... not resolve it to the customer's satisfaction.
 

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Here, here.

BTW, I picked up a pure white frangipani today.
 
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