In the last month, I’ve received no less than 15 phone calls from the telemarketing arm of a publication I subscribe to. It’s gotten to the point where I recognize the phone number and ignore all of the calls from these people.
I understand the need to remind people to renew their subscriptions, but in that case one or two phone calls and a voice mail is more than sufficient. The interesting thing is I was wavering on whether or not to renew this particular publication, and the ongoing badgering from their sales people is not helping their cause at all. There is absolutely nothing they can say to me on the phone that is going to influence me positively and their ongoing consistent calling makes me want to give the whole thing up just to get rid of them permanently.
If that’s not bad enough, several years ago I decided not to renew my membership in a professional organization for many reasons. Again, I got emails and phone calls asking me to renew and I told them I wasn’t interested. Then I got on the “Lost member contact” list, and I started to get calls from their board members to interview me about why I had chosen not to renew.
I really had no interest in this–all I wanted to do was have them go away quietly, but this was not meant to be. When I got a personal message from the president of the national association insisting that he had to talk to me to convince me why I was making a mistake in not renewing, I’d had enough. I told the local membership person that if all contact from the organization didn’t cease and desist immediately (this had gone on for several months), I’d consider it harassment and take legal steps. That did the trick.
We all want to keep our customers, and we want to find out why customers defect. That makes sense. But badgering people who obviously are not interested in responding, doesn’t. For one thing, it makes me wonder if the organization in question is so desperate they can’t afford to lose a single subscriber or member. For another, my behavior tells you what you want to know. Asking the same question again except slower and louder doesn’t make me any more responsive. The problem is not that I didn’t hear you–it’s that I’ve chosen not to respond.
Even worse, the bad experience I’ve had with these two organizations will stick with me for a long time–much longer than they’d want, if they thought about it. And I’ll warn others about them as well.
Is that the way you want your customers to think about you? Think about this from the customer’s perspective. No badgering allowed.