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Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

I'm on the verge of leaving. Tried long useless bot chats and several long phone calls including the I'm leaving call and found no-one seems to care. The Bigger M200 bundle £44.99p/m is part of the current Black Friday Virgin advertising campaign. It includes BT sport, V6 box, 213 Mbps etc. £2.01p/m cheaper than my current deal which ends in early January 2021 but much better. Been with this lot for 4.5 years at my current address and several years at my previous. The Geordie at the other end of the line said I could have the same package for £68p/m?? Said I would rather leave and his response was basically do what you want. Where is the sense in getting new customers at the expense of existing or am I out of touch?

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Message 2 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

you're not a "new" customer.
it's called churn, for every customer that leaves there will be at least 1 that joins.

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My Broadband Ping - spgray

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Message 3 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

But how does that help them? If I leave and a new customer takes up the deal then they have the same number of customers but receive £2.01p/m less
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Message 4 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

well not really, as you would only be staying if you got the same deal that is £2.01 less than what you currently pay? correct?

they've essentially called your bluff, if you are willing to leave over £2pm then they are saying OK.

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My Broadband Ping - spgray

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Message 5 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

@Willywombat But how does that help them?

It's a complex calculation.  Any service supplier doing "customer acquisition pricing" like this knows that X% of customers who join will leave as soon as the deal expires, Y% will stay but demand a discount of some sort for a further contract period, and Z% will roll onto the undiscounted standard tariff where they'll remain, but churn out to competitors at N% per year.

When VM's propositions team do the sums and discount the cash flows over a five year forecast, because of the spread of X, Y, Z and N values an average new customer is worth more to VM than you or I would be if we were offered the same new customer pricing.  I'm not defending the practice, I'm explaining how it works.

Also, one of VM's key metrics is "average revenue per user", and that sits at about £50.32 or somewhere round that - it is quoted in quarterly results to investors.  So somebody on a big package might get new customer pricing because they're still going to be paying 50% more than the average customer.  Whereas if you were offered new customer pricing, not only are you less valuable to VM than that average new customer, but you'd also be diluting the ARPU number. 

Even so discounts vary - you might still be able to wangle new customer pricing but it depends on which agent you speak to, how you engage with them, when you speak to them (end of a calendar quarter is probably better than early or mid quarter) and whether they think that you will in fact leave.  Experience tells VM that the majority of customers who threaten to leave don't, so it's a game of chicken - the agent gets a bonus for retaining customers if need be for a discount, but there are some (variable) limits on what they can offer, and they'll also be looking to offer the minimum discount they can.  If they retained 100% of cancellations but only through new customer pricing, then they'd get the sack.  So you'd need to get your ducks in a row, as well as being clear in your mind if you would leave.  In that earlier link, the chappy cancelled, and VM then rang him with an "outbound retention" call.  It does happen, but DON'T rely on that happening.  If you cancel and they don't ring you, and then you have to crawl back and say you don't want to cancel, you may not be able to negotiate any discount, and may lock yourself in for 18 months at that price.

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Message 6 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

also, every time a customer calls and ends the call with "i'm leaving then", that will be recorded on their sytem and they'll know if you actually did leave or not.

next time you try the same trick they'll know you've tried it before and whether you actually did leave (or not).

when you hang up the phone there is a lot more that goes on that then simply ending the call and taking the next call. a LOT of metrics are recorded which are then used for and against you depending on what you're calling for. this is basic call centre stuff.

so 9 times out of the 10 when they call your bluff they will know what the likely outcome of it will be. and it they get it wrong then there will be new customers anyway.

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My Broadband Ping - spgray

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Message 7 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

Experience tells VM that the majority of customers who threaten to leave don't.
the Op can't leave they are still in contract until jan 2021 so that may be one of the reasons the agent doesn;t want to give an early discount.

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Message 8 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

good point, the contract still has 2 months left, so there is nothing to negotiate at all at the moment.

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My Broadband Ping - spgray

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Message 9 of 9
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Re: Loyal existing customers barred from "new customer" deals

VM will have mystery shoppers who'll know what the competition's up to (roughly) anyway... 100Mb vs 38Mb IIRC, (30 being "superfast")... and to qualify as a new customer you actually have to leave (VM) for a period of time.







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