Companies Treat Prospects Better Than Their Customers

Today I received a 0% interest on all transfers for the next 12 months from my own bank. I have a small balance that I wanted to transfer from my existing account to a new one if I could get the 0% offer. Ah, but wait. Only new customers can get this deal.

Several weeks ago, my broadband provider was offering 3 months free if I signed up in the next 30 days. I called up asking for the same deal since I never received such an offer. I was a five-year customer who had lived through the initial and sometimes rocky launch of the service. They had never given me anything for remaining a faithful customer.

Do you think prospects are getting better treatment than paying customers?

In all fairness to the broadband provider, they did agree to give me the offer AFTER I complained in writing.

In the case of the broadband provider, there was no mention in the literature that this offer was not available to existing customers. (Frankly, they could have at least taken existing customers off of the mailing list.)

But mentioning that the deal is only available to prospects and not paying customers doesn’t help the situation. It only confirms that the company decided to give prospects a better break than customers.

Is this an imbalance that needs correction? Or am I alone in this perception? How should marketers deal with this situation? Let us have your comments.

Posted on August 17, 2007 and filed under Customer Service.