EXCLUSIVE: Foxtel, who are desperately trying to hang onto subscribers as several companies start offering IPTV services and free to air TV networks crank up new channels, has resorted to offering big discounts to consumers who want to cancel their existing service.After reading on a recent trade web site that consumers were deserting Foxtel in droves we called the Foxtel subscription line to cancel a service that was costing over $120 a month. Immediately we were offered a discount.
A Foxtel employee writing anonymously on a forum web site recently said: “We have an internal policy stating that if someone calls and asks to ‘disconnect’, the Foxtel staff member is automatically authorised to provide at least 1 month’s free service to the customer, up to a maximum of 3 months” they said.
They added “Next time you speak to them and they ask to put you on hold while they speak to a manager, you know that they are just sitting there to make their offer seem ‘special’ and only for you”.
A Foxtel subscriber wrote: ” I phoned to cancel my subscription and they offered me a discount on the monthly fee of 1/3 for 4 months. It didn’t extend the contract, so I can still ring up and cancel anytime (which I think I’m still going to do). The staff member probably gets a little commission when they retain a customer wishing to leave, but hey, that’s business”.
Another Foxtel staff member wrote “If you push the issue, and speak to a supervisor and tell them how unhappy you are with the selection of channels they may be willing to upgrade for free too!
Another Sydney Foxtel customer wrote: “I called to cancel my Foxtel as I never use it. I was paying around $99 for pretty much the full package. I was first offered a watered down package for $39 which was useless….almost every channel was unavailable. So I called and said, please disconnect as advised. They called me back a few days later offering to give me everything I had in the $99 package for $39 if I stayed. I think the key is that you have to be prepared to walk….let them stew over it for a few days….. Note: Even at $39 i will probably still disconnect as there are more ads on Foxtel than free to air!”
Patrick Delany, Executive Director, Sales and Product Development said “I am not prepared to comment”.