Spending

A Business That Penalizes Its Loyal Customers

Tfb’s recent post “A Business That Punishes Its Largest Customers” prompted me to write this post to relate my experience with a magazine subscription.

I have been a subscriber of PC World for a few years. It came up for renewal last month but I didn’t renew it immediately because I thought the renewal price was much higher than what I paid last year.

Anyway, the cover page of my last issue was screaming “This is your LAST ISSUE. Hurry! Renew today! Save 80% off the newstand rate with the 2 year term!”. The renewal rates were:

  • 12 issues for $19.97
  • 24 issues for $33.97

I didn’t send back the renewal card. And I am glad I didn’t because earlier this week, I received another letter from PC World:

  • “As a qualified professional you are entitled to renew your subscription at up to 88% off the newsstand price. Bonus: Mastering Windows CD-ROM — FREE with paid renewal.”
  • 12 issues for $9.97
  • 24 issues for $19.97

By waiting for the subscription to “expire”, I get 50% off from the first subscription offer, plus a bonus free CD-ROM. If I had renewed immediately, I would be paying double for the subscription.

Such is an example of a business that penalizes its loyal customers.