DEMANDING DISCOUNTS ON YOUR TELEPHONE & CELL USAGE

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Sep 03, 2009 9:34 PM GMT
    Now this is pretty odd. My business phone line bills had been increasing and I'd finally had enough. I called and told AT&T I wanted to either

    1) Move my service to a new provider (I'd done my homework and knew what could be done)
    2) Cut back a phone line
    3) Want a discount to keep my business

    What I learned is phone service is almost like buying a car... they took almost $50.00 off my phone services (per month) to my company to retain my business (its a promotion for a year). When the year is up, I have to call back and "renegotiate".
    I just called them about my house phone. I was offered a $5.00 discount just for calling.... and as odd as this sounds, if I combine my landline phone and internet access, the WHOLE bill would be less for 6 months (then there is a price increase).. but after quizzing the dude, he admitted, just call again after 6 months and they'd give me a new discounted rate.

    I have to admit, I find this kind of odd.. and mad at myself that I hadn't explored this before. Next: my cell phone provider.

    Have you "negotiated" for phone rates? If not, its time.
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    Sep 03, 2009 11:19 PM GMT
    It depends on how much money you bring to them. Most phone and wireless companies are willing to negotiate, if you spend x amount of money per month on their services.

    If you're just a common Joe Schmoe using the cheapest calling plan, they won't give you much wiggle room. They'll probably go ahead and tell you to switch to another provider.
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    Sep 04, 2009 1:14 AM GMT
    Handsm is right. That's why the telcos all have "customer retention groups". They're trying to maximize the length of your time with them so once they've made a fair bit of money or time from you, the rest is gravy so they'd rather discount than see you leave. It's true that the more you've spent the more likely they are to send you to their customer retention group but even the front line staff often have a little bit of leeway. I've called in and had them change my calling plans and back-date them months to save me hundreds of dollars.

    Try it! Never hurts to call and ask!
  • jrs1

    Posts: 4388

    Sep 04, 2009 1:29 AM GMT

    AT&T/Cingular ... it's hard to begin as to how awful they are. Then again, I don't pay attention to cell phone culture. I'm, admittedly, apathetic concerning cellular devices. meh ...
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    Sep 04, 2009 1:31 AM GMT
    Yes and it works with cable companies too. Just mention Satellite tv and they'll lop a decent chunk off your bill for 6 to 12 months with a promo rate. All you have to do is remember to call in again when it's up.
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    Sep 04, 2009 1:35 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidNow this is pretty odd. My business phone line bills had been increasing and I'd finally had enough. I called and told AT&T I wanted to either

    1) Move my service to a new provider (I'd done my homework and knew what could be done)
    2) Cut back a phone line
    3) Want a discount to keep my business

    What I learned is phone service is almost like buying a car... they took almost $50.00 off my phone services (per month) to my company to retain my business (its a promotion for a year). When the year is up, I have to call back and "renegotiate".
    I just called them about my house phone. I was offered a $5.00 discount just for calling.... and as odd as this sounds, if I combine my landline phone and internet access, the WHOLE bill would be less for 6 months (then there is a price increase).. but after quizzing the dude, he admitted, just call again after 6 months and they'd give me a new discounted rate.

    I have to admit, I find this kind of odd.. and mad at myself that I hadn't explored this before. Next: my cell phone provider.

    Have you "negotiated" for phone rates? If not, its time.


    I do it all the time.

    In your case, if you don't have digital service (ISDN / D1), or VOIP, you should.

    I typically can cut small business bills in half.

    I do the same on my tv, too.

    I have Verzion Customer Retention, and Verzion Executive Customer Relations in my CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system.
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    Sep 04, 2009 1:49 AM GMT
    ks_dusty saidI just had a difference of opinion with my phone company as well. They have been a total service account with bundle packages for local phone service, long distance service, internet provider and cable TV service. Our phone company is a member owned company meaning we recieve capital credit dividends each year, based on the useage.

    Even though I know it will affect my dividend, I dropped all my services with them, went to Dish Network for cable and dropped the internet and have found a wonderful option to the internet through my cell phone provider. I have a high speed connection that plugs into the USB port of either my lap top or desktop computers and is costing less than the phone company had. It will also be nice as I can take it with me on my phone plan which offers 50 states with no roaming. Like Chris, I wish I had checked into some options a long time ago!


    Just watch your bandwidth usage, there are usually upper limits to data services after which they charge you exorbitant fees.
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    Sep 04, 2009 5:54 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan said they took almost $50.00 off my phone services (per month) to my company to retain my business


    You need to put that in perspective; how much were you paying before? $70/mo? $400/mo?
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Sep 04, 2009 12:55 PM GMT
    NakedDevil said
    HndsmKansan said they took almost $50.00 off my phone services (per month) to my company to retain my business


    You need to put that in perspective; how much were you paying before? $70/mo? $400/mo?



    My business bill was about $140.00... its going to be about $100.00 now for 2 phone lines. Another almost $10.00 off my landline at home.

    Great input here, thanks! I hadn't thought about the cable bill, so I'll try the satelight approach and see what happens.
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    Sep 04, 2009 1:29 PM GMT
    I ended up getting a discount on my cable to keep me as a customer. I had had the lowest possible level of cable -- essentially, a cable transmission of the broadcast stations and a handful of others like TNT -- because that was required for my cable internet. I upgraded to a low level cable package when I had someone renting my spare room, and when he moved out I called the cable company and told them I just don't watch cable enough for it to be worth paying that price by myself, rather than splitting it with a renter. We went all the way through scheduling a technician to come out to my place to turn it off, before the customer service rep finally said "Well, would you be willing to pay for your current cable package if we lowered the cost to..."

    When they realized that I was serious about turning off the cable because it was too expensive, they concluded that it would be more profitable to keep me as a customer at a reduced rate than it would be to send someone out to install the filter at the branch point and have me paying even less per month. My impression, though, is that they were testing to see how serious I seemed about the disconnect before they'd offer a discount.