I woke up this morning to my cable modem having all its lights flashing. Not good. Indeed, I was offline, so I called Comcast, my cable modem network provider. Well, first off, they must have the most annoying and convoluted phone system I’ve suffered through in a while. I am sure I went through at least 10 levels of menu options before I got into the wait queue for an operator. Blech. That’s SOOOOo customer unfriendly, but companies don’t seem to care any more.
BUT, back to topic. Yes, Comcast was aware that there was an outage in my area and were working on it. “Okay, I’d like a credit for the outage, please.” I asked. “You’ll need to call back after the outage ends.” they respond…
So I’ve thought about this all morning (finally, obviously, I’m back online) and I have to give the Comcast folk a Dubious Business Tactic Of the Day award for this one: a cool company that cared about its customers would automatically have added me to an ‘outage credit requested’ pool, and then when the system came back online, automatically credit me the value of that time on my bill. It’d be a breeze to add to their billing system, and you know that they have an exact figure of how long an outage is, right?
Now, a massively cool company would automatically credit everyone affected by an outage without having to call in, but that’s going to have more of an affect on the bottom line than the few dozen folk such as myself who have the energy to call and wade through their miserable phone system for a measly $0.80 credit on my next bill.
And I won’t talk about how, in a perfect world, cellphone companies would automatically move you each month to the plan that minimized your bill for services used. Because that perfect world is a long, long way from where we are now, and I understand why. (ironically, I realized just about a week ago that I’d been paying $5/month on my Verizon cell phone bill for web access, something I’ve never used nor requested. They’re reversing it back, thankfully, but it’s very annoying!)
Enough of a rant. What do you think about this sort of business tactic?