I remember when you used to be rewarded for staying with a company for a long period of time. You paid your bill on time and established a payment history the company appreciated and could count on.
That doesn’t mean shit anymore!
If you are a current customer they couldn’t give a fuck about you. Companies are only interested in acquiring new customers. They’ll offer new customers all the best deals they have to offer … while raising your bill!
I was in the market for a new cell phone. I saw they had a “Buy One, Give One” deal so I figured the wife and I could both upgrade for the price of one phone.
“We’re sorry. That offer is only available to new customers.”
Oh, I’m sorry … I’ve only been a loyal customer who pays my bill on time for 15 years. I was fucking stupid to think that deal might be for me!? (I don’t want to name names, so I won’t tell you that it was AT&T with that bullshit move … oops! … I guess I named names.)
What’s going on!? Am I just that outdated in my way of thinking? Don’t companies want to build relationships with their customers and take care of the ones who pay on time? Apparently not.
Let me use an example that we’ve all had the pleasure of dealing with. The cable company. You finish your contract and the rate has naturally gone up from what it was at the start of the contract. You recently spoke to your neighbor and found out they are getting the same channels for way less than what you’re paying. You call the cable company to complain about how much your bill has gone up and ask them to lower the price. You tell them you’ve spoke with your neighbors and they are getting the same channels but much cheaper.
“They’re a new customer … so they are on a different pricing structure.”
Well, what the fuck can you offer me!?
“I can’t give you that pricing but let me see what specials are available that I can give you.” … (long pause … the sound of typing … the sound of more typing) … “I’ve been authorized to give you Showtime for free … for 3 months.”
That’s it! Bitch, I’ve got an idea! Why don’t you fucking authorize me for the deal my neighbor is getting. Obviously you can give the service away that cheap if he has it! You used to be able to threaten leaving and they’d knock the price down a little bit … but now that shit doesn’t work. They call your bluff and thank you for being a customer and then … your TV goes black.
You call the other guys and get a better deal than you had … but have to go through the hassle of the set up and all that headache! Once you’re done with the contract with the “other guys” and complain about how the price has gone up … they give you the same bullshit. So, you go back to the first company. Now all of a sudden they’re happy to have you back as a customer and give you the pricing you were asking for before! Fucking assholes!
Why couldn’t you just give me that pricing when I asked for it and you could have kept me as a customer!?
Shouldn’t the existing customer get the preferred pricing structure? Wouldn’t it seem like that would be an incentive for a customer to stay with a company to finally reach a tier that’s cheaper. Apparently not! Now the incentive is to leave and eventually come back. I’m just really baffled by the business model they are following.
There is AAA though! They get it. When I call, they thank me for my 20 years of service … and I even have a card that says 20 year member. I know you’re probably thinking …big fucking deal …and normally I would be saying the same thing. For some reason though, those little words … even though they are just words … make a difference. It makes me feel like they appreciate my business … which is a rare feeling these days. Other companies should take a page out of their book.