I recently cancelled an online service. It was a monthly subscription. A great service. It’s just that my needs had changed and I no longer needed it. I might have in the future, though, and figured I’d go back to it “if and when.”
After checking the box that cancelled the service, I was pushed to a page that made me a “one-time” offer.
Re-activate my subscription immediately and I could lock in a monthly price that was less than what I’d been paying. The same screen also told me this was a one time offer that would go away and never come back once I clicked away from the screen.
I was confused. Why would this solid company with a good product treat a departing customer better than a loyal user?
The same strategy is used by phone service and credit-card companies. You call up to cancel and they say, “oh wait a minute, will you stay if we lower your rate?” The tactic was so well known that many people would call automatically after a few months of usage and claim they were going to cancel simply as a vehicle to ensure they were getting the best rates available.
Note to businesses of all sizes, when you do things like this and what you are doing becomes public, it can make people question your intentions and make your loyal customers feel unappreciated.
Treat your best customers the way you’d want someone else to treat your mom (making some assumptions here, lol).
Give them the best you have to offer once they’ve demonstrated their loyalty, without having to threaten departure.
Instead of offering a 20% discount to a customer who threatens to leave after a year, offer a surprise 20% reduction to a customer who’s been with you for a year. Talk about fueling word of mouth expansion. Do that and you’ll create an army of super fans and evangelists who’ll pre-sell everyone they meet with a killer story about the company who did them right and they’ll stay with you forever.
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