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Yesterday, I was out to pay the bills for my ISP (Internet Service Provider) subscription and along with me was a feeling of excitement that since my account has turned two years old, I’m eligible for their retention program which would entitle me for a free gift in the form of a rebate, an HP all-in-one printer, or a mobile phone unit.
I was at the Telco’s service center branch at a local mall near us where I spent more than two hours just to get to a service agent. When it was my turn, the service person told me that I can’t avail of the retention freebie because I got a disconnection notice last November 2009 and said that I can only apply for their retention program and get a freebie if I don’t have any disconnection notice within the last six months.
Okay, yesterday was the 30th of April, Philippine Time, today is the 1st of May. The female service agent wanted me to come back in May. I wonder what she’s thinking when in fact, the next day would be a new month. Sounds confusing, right?
I have no outstanding balance and the bill for this month will not be posted online until May 15th. Maybe she was trying to tell me that I have to be back in June after paying this month’s bill.
I had given up complaining and ranting about getting my bills in the mail because they never do it. The last time they did it was time immemorial. I wonder if they’re even paying the local courier to deliver the mails on time.
Given the fact above, I still think that the service agent should have been considerate about the issue. That time when I got a disconnection notice, I was trying to search for a better ISP but couldn’t find any so I stayed with the service.
I wasn’t able to sign up for the retention program that my local ISP was bragging so much about but I’m not sour graping in this case, I even realized that it’s useless after all.
And why did I say it was useless? Talking for a while with the service agent, I was informed that even if I would be eligible to sign-up for the retention program which would basically lock my account with them for another two years just to get a freakin’ freebie—a cheap mobile phone without Bluetooth or an HP all-in-one printer. There’s no promise that I can get any of these mentioned items because according to the lady, they still have to request those from somewhere else, perhaps order them from China or refurbish some trash from industrial dumps. I don’t know.
She even added that applications in March for these freebies haven’t arrived to this date! What more if I apply in June?
But whatever the reason is, why would a loyal customer like me had to apply for their retention program just to get a cheap freebie coming from nowhere when there’s not even a single probability that I would get any of the mentioned stuff?
Loyal customers should be a priority no matter what and the fact that at this point, I still haven’t informed them that I’m extending my contract, they’re continuously profiting from my business!
What’s so hard with searching the database just to get the information on old accounts? Imagine if there are ten thousands of two-year old accounts and there are only a thousand units of cheap cell phones or printers to be given out. They are giving their loyal consumers a false hope.
Retention programs are designed to basically keep a loyal customer base into your business but placing them in a situation when it seems that they would have to be stressed out just to get a freebie that’s not even worth their loyalty is insane and utterly ridiculous.
This applies not only to ISPs but to all businesses in other industries. Do you have the same experience as mine? If so, let’s start talking.
Category: internet tools