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Sharp Practice or Good Business?

Sharp Practice or Good Business?Imagine the scene.

Your car insurance Renewal Notice comes through the post. They tell you it is going to be £391.14 and they'll renew it automatically.

This is much more than last year.

You phone them and discuss the large increase in price. They tell you that the traffic density where you live has gone up and that lots of people in your area have had accidents. You say you've just moved from the outskirts of a major city to a rural location where regional traffic density is about much lower. You also say you can see no reason why you need to pay for the accidents other people have had as your licence is clean and you've not had an accident in over 20 years.

So, as a gesture, they offer to drop the price to £365.30.

It still seems a lot of money compared with last year so you say, "Don't renew this automatically, I'll think about it."

Then you check online and find that exactly the same insurance, from the same insurer, is only £263.94 for new customers.

You are livid.

After calming down you phone the company and they say that online prices are cheaper. They say that, even though you are an existing customer, they will now offer you that price irrespective of you whether it is bought online or by phone.

You ask why they didn't offer that price when you phoned before and they don't really have an answer!

You could now rant about the injustice of it all. You could, understandably, think you'd been conned and the automatic renewal, at over £100 more than new customers are being charged, is outright extortion. You could feel pleased that you'd sussed a loophole, whereby the company are happy to let you pay much less, if you are bright enough to research the prices.

But I have a question for you.

Will you ever trust this company again?

Indeed do you trust them enough to buy from this now?

Will you tell all your friends this story?

It's True

Sadly the above story is perfectly true. It happened to me a few days ago.

Of course I'm not going to broadcast to the world the name of the insurance company. Despite the fact that after over 20 years as a customer they feel they can charge me more than someone that have never done business with them before. I'm not going to explain that I think loyal customers, of over 20 years, deserve better treatment by a company that can't be found on any direct comparison site .. that needs to be contacted online or by phone via a direct line! Perish the thought.

Your Customers and Suppliers

Clearly these situation lead to a lot of emotion. If loyal customers are expected to pay more than existing customers they are going to feel upset when they find out.

The experience isn't solely the domain of insurers. Banks, utility companies and others have been accused of the same lack of ethics.

So how do you deal with it. As a customer do you walk away? Perhaps to another company with the same lack of values?

As a business do you treat customers in this way?

Whether customer or business there are lessons to be learned here. Today it is easy for people to see when they have been treated badly. It is easy for people to move their business elsewhere. It is also easy for them to write articles, post on social media and let the world know.

Treat loyal customers badly at your peril.

PS - Don't forget to check out my new Amazon bestseller, Creating Business Growth, it has been an Amazon best seller in eight countries- CLICK HERE.

Get my previous book, Advertising Secrets, on Amazon .. it has been a bestseller in five countries.

W: www.StefanDrew.com | www.ProviderMasterMind.com | www.CollegeandTrainerMarketing.com

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