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Friday, November 12, 2010

No Royalty for Loyalty

Our first guest post, courtesy of my brother:

There’s a scene in the Wall Street based move “Boiler Room” where the main character, Seth Davis, gets a phone call from the NY times rival paper, The Daily News, offering a deep discount on a subscription if he signs up now.  Seth starts cracking wise, and responds, “So, basically, everybody who already has a subscription is getting fucked on this one? Alright, I can live with that.”

Fast forward to the Home Depot this past week, where for the umpteenth time, I was offered a 10% discount, if I only signed up for a credit card. And it got me to thinking. I’m at the Home Depot at least twice a week. Jimmy from plumbing knows me by name. Richie, who looks like the guys from the Spin Doctors, routinely helps me lug heavy shit out to my car. Genene at register 3 is always asking about my dog. Everybody knows my name. If they had a liquor license, it would be Cheers. But after check out, my receipt always shows full price. So where is my 10% discount?  Why is my loyalty not rewarded?

Let’s take look at other industries. The other day I got a $50 gift card to Men’s Wearhouse for spending over $500 at their store. If I fly a few more miles on delta, I earn a free flight. If I eat 6  more nasty sandwiches from Subway, I get a freebie. But I routinely spend 2/3 of my paycheck at the Depot, and you’re giving 10% to a guy with no money, empty pockets, but has a smile and a signature? I have cash. I can finish this transaction right now. Not $14/month for 18 months. Can you imagine the uproar your first class seat was given to a first time flier trying out the airline you’ve been loyal to for 10 years?

The point is, the people signing up for these 10% credit cards; they’re never gonna pay. There’s a good chance they’ve already been denied by Visa, AmEx, Discover and Mastercard. While you can dream of that first default payment  resulting  in a jacked rate up to 35%, keep dreaming. Where there’s smoke there’s fire. You were never going to collect that $100 anyway. When you’re bread and butter spends hundreds of dollars regularly, helps your cash flow by….(get ready)…paying for the goods and services, is it too much to offer a bonus sale, limited time prices, or coupon? Toss me some perks, and some benefits. Make me feel like I matter. Because, in my opinion, if I’m saving, I’m going to keep doing. Allegedly, that’s the power of the Home Depot.

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