Thursday, August 7, 2008

OT: How to lose a customer

Here's a new ISP moneylosing scam and I can vouch firsthand that it is in use in Australia.

Step 1: Sell a broadband service to a customer then install the connection on their premises and take their money for a couple of years.

Step 2: When the customer calls with a technical question about the connection and/or hardware provided by that ISP then tell them that those kind of calls are considered 'Premium Support' and need to be answered by a Third Party service provider who will regretfully need to charge the customer an additional service fee just to provide information about the work done by that ISP.

Step 3: Respond politely but uselessly to every email from the incredulous customer. Use terms like 'sincerely regret for any inconvenience or frustration that you may have experienced...' and '...We are not a software/hardware support company...' and '...falls outside our support boundaries.'

Step 4: Refuse to engage in any meaningful conversation such as "What do you want to achieve?" or "How can we help you?" that might have convinced the customer to upgrade their service with that ISP.

Step 5: Watch the customer spend ten minutes to download and use a freeware software tool to obtain the information anyway, thus showing how little work was involved in answering the original question.

Step 6: Watch the customer change their ISP.

I did get mad but now I'm getting even.


Tony Palmer said...

Just don't get me started about TPG. I've been waiting for over three weeks for an email response to a question about a change to a DNS record! It seems as though changing ISP is the only way.

Graham Dodge said...

Just to clarify, my problem isn't with TPG.

Any willing to recommend an ISP in Australia?

Anonymous said...

Internode is worth a look

Anthony said...

I also agree, have a look at Internode.

They are very open and committed to quality. The one time I logged a support call, their response stunned my with its thoroughness. Compared with my experience with that ISP named after a large lake, the difference was like chalk and cheese.

Also: they've had the courage to place their user forum on Whirlpool, a site dedicated to comparing Australian ISPs. Their technical support people regularly read the forum and contribute. It takes some guts to put your discussion forum on a site where people are evaluating and discussing competitors. Internode can't censor the forum: and that doesn't worry them.


Peter said...

Graham, I can also recommend Internode. They have been great with service and support and have dropped prices and upped bandwidth twice in the last 18 months I have been using them. I selected them based on the feedback on the whirlpool forums.

Cheers and keep up the great blog...