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so i don't add a LINE of service and I'm a MORON!

New_2_T-Mobile

Feb 17, 2011, 7:50 PM
I was going to pay full retail and get the iphone for 650,the rep said just add a line for 10 bucks, and it will only cost me 240 over the life of the contract! He insisted on giving me a math lesson, even after I told him no. Is it not 10 dollars plus taxes costing me upward of 20 a month? Closer to 480? What is the real cost of adding a third line on a family plan.
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tipdrill

Feb 17, 2011, 8:34 PM
I was told the same thing at the Verizon store. I was unsure about the taxes and such but I figured it wouldn't be any less than $15 a month. The thing that made my decision final was if I need to switch carriers I don't want to pay an ETF for a line I don't even use.

I chose to buy mine from the Apple Store since both Verizon stores in my area were sold out. It was $599+tax which came out to like $648.
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New_2_T-Mobile

Feb 17, 2011, 9:06 PM
I could actually use a third line just mildly pissed about how they go about it, at the time I told him it increase my monthly bill ( bottom line) and I rather just pay full retail and keep my plan the same... but he insisted this was the best way to go. I would like to know the real cost of the add a line.
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CellStudent

Feb 17, 2011, 9:36 PM
New_2_T-Mobile said:
I would like to know the real cost of the add a line.


Well, I'm no blood-sucking salesman, by I've got a knack for math. It appears that your worst case scenario is:

$12.35/month- and that's at the highest recorded tax rate, Nebraska

http://www.ksefocus.com/wordpress-content/uploads/20 ... »

Page #478 (or 4 of 13, depending on how your computer reads it)

That's about $296 for two years if you don't cancel.

If you cut out at 1 year, you will have paid less than $149 in service charges and get zapped with a $230 ETF, which makes a $379 total cost for the extra line.
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New_2_T-Mobile

Feb 17, 2011, 9:49 PM
taxes, fees, and government surcharges that is more than 12.35. I bet it's closer to 20 bucks.
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CellStudent

Feb 17, 2011, 11:45 PM
New_2_T-Mobile said:
taxes, fees, and government surcharges that is more than 12.35. I bet it's closer to 20 bucks.


I live in a state on the upper half of the table shown (with higher taxes).

My bill varies by less than $5 each month, and on my last statement my tax rate was a little less than 13.5%.

How are you calculating a 100% tax rate?
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youaremyhero

Feb 18, 2011, 3:03 AM
well he just said it himself he's a moron?
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james_ryan_johns

Feb 18, 2011, 11:21 AM
I'm in Illinois and generally if you add 18% you can get a fairly accurate estimate on your actual cost. So $9.99 + 18% Tax/Fees = $11.79. That would put your extra cost over two years at $307.96 ($11.79 X 24 months = $282.96, $282.96 + $25 VZW Activation Fee = $307.96)
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taco50

Feb 18, 2011, 1:58 AM
So you think taxes DOUBLE your monthly bill? With your logic if you signed up for a cell plan that's $60/month you'd actually be paying $120.
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epik

Feb 17, 2011, 11:50 PM
I'll preface this by saying that, in the right circumstances, this kind of a move can work out just fine. But 90% of the time, this is simply a way for the salesperson to get paid. Salespeople on here can fight me all they want, but I've seen this shoddy move dozens of times from coworkers, and in most cases the customer really doesn't understand what they're getting into. In the few cases where I've done this, I've made it perfectly clear what we're doing before proceeding, and I always remark the account to reflect the conversation I had with the customer.

We did a write up on this on PhoneCan:

http://www.phonecan.com/index.php/ask-us-the-switchi ... »

Basically, the rep gets nothing for selling you a phone at the full retail ...
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New_2_T-Mobile

Feb 18, 2011, 12:11 AM
Thank you Epic! I knew there was more to this than what I understood. I feel armed with knowledge and even more pissed about this practice. I don't think some of these sales guys need to be pushing that ( ok mention it once) but this particular guy acted like I'm giving you a gift moron! Can't you see my logic? And in this case I don't have a old flip so I would of got screwed!
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vzwinagent

Feb 18, 2011, 12:23 AM
It doesn't have to be a bad thing. I guess it just depends on the rep. He really could have been trying to help you which just so happens to benefit both of you in the process.

I actually had a customer ask about this for his own situation a couple days ago. He had no upgrades and wanted a droid. Rather than paying over $500 for retail he asked about adding a line. I was like yeah, duh, I should have thought of that. It's been a while since anyone did that. But for him he could get the Droid X for $149.99 that way and then pay $10 a month for 2 years which is $240. Even if you say $13 with taxes that's $312. That $312 plus his $149.99 is still close to $100 cheaper than paying retail plus it's a lot smaller amount over a longer p...
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 12:32 AM
I always hesitate to mention dummy ESNs. I've done them, too, I'll readily admit. But I've also had them come back to bite me - twice - when the owner of a random ESN I happened to duplicate tried to make changes with their phone. I got nasty emails and disciplinary actions on both of them. Ironically, I've also had to deal with the other end of this problem a few times over the years when some ESN was typed in as a dummy placeholder somewhere.

The only safe dummy ESN is one you KNOW isn't in use and won't be in use in the future. And as you know, you can't just make one up out of nothing, it has to have some resemblance to a valid ESN or MEID to work, which means there's a chance - sometimes slight - that you're going to cause a pro...
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vzwinagent

Feb 18, 2011, 12:35 AM
I've been using one I found on a line one day and wrote it down. It comes up as moto test device but always seems to work.
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Mikey C

Feb 18, 2011, 1:15 PM
what is it? dont be stingy.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:25 PM
Oh THAT one. Tech support uses that one a lot.
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mycool

Feb 18, 2011, 9:49 AM
epik said:
The only safe dummy ESN is one you KNOW isn't in use and won't be in use in the future. And as you know, you can't just make one up out of nothing, it has to have some resemblance to a valid ESN or MEID to work, which means there's a chance - sometimes slight - that you're going to cause a problem for someone else down the road.


Wrong. There is a standard dummy ESN that Verizon uses that is NOT linked to any account. It shows up as a Motorola device, but there is no actual phone linked to that ESN. I've used it before when I worked for Verizon.
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 10:09 AM
Yeah, I haven't had that ESN for years. Or at least, I haven't found record of it. It was always used more in customer care than retail anyway.

Besides, that Moto ESN isn't in use. It still qualifies under my criteria of "won't be in use in the future." Not only is it impossible to use the phone, MTAS isn't going to have an error with the number.

I was referring more to the random scenario of guessing a valid ESN only to find it was still active, or one where someone tries to activate it later on. Outside of Verizon, I also sell old phones on Ebay (phones from 2006 to 2010). It's not something I've run into, but it's still possible that someone made up an ESN somewhere that just happens to match one I'm selling. I don't check ESN...
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mycool

Feb 18, 2011, 10:31 AM
I guess you could call it a placeholder ESN and explain that no phone is linked to it.

I'm sure someone on this message board remembers it and can give it out. It's not any super secret.
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johnnyb0810

Feb 18, 2011, 12:05 PM
I could access it right now, giving it out is something I'm not willing to do but it is under dummy esn in the intranet
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:24 PM
I have a few dead phones laying around. One is a V710 my ex threw at me. A few LG VX-8100s that snapped in half.
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 12:27 AM
Like I said, this works just fine for some people. But it has to fit your situation. Adding a new line simply to get the best deal isn't always the best deal FOR YOU.

I've been in the business a long time. It's paid my bills for many years. I've made my share of mistakes. But I would never pressure someone into such a senseless move. If it made sense for them, sure. If the customer CAME IN asking for a new line, and had a phone to activate on it so they could get the new phone, I'll be more than happy to do it. If during conversation, the customer takes that possibility of adding a line and makes it work for them, I'll double check they understand what they're doing, and help them. But simply switching you from full retail cost t...
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johnnyb0810

Feb 18, 2011, 9:58 AM
At the customer service level, it is a mere mention. Customer asks about their options for the new phone and I alert them that it is a possibility but most times a cpo with no contract will satisfy all the needs of getting through the rest of the contract.

1. I don't want to transfer you because I'm not an operator and my number of transfers are bad enough. If you request a line I have no problems at all.

2. I want to be the one who solves your problem. Sorry I'm just stingy like that.

3. Most times it does not work out to the benefit the customer as much as they may think.

It's all on a case by case basis, but its hardly something I would ever harp on.
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 10:18 AM
It's a case by case scenario that I see abused and twisted almost every day. I had one on Tuesday, where a customer wanted to AOL their line from their bankrupt employer. Everything was authorized and ready to go. But she thought a retailer would be able to help her, and she could skip the busy corporate store. The rep there sold her a new single line, new phone, all the bells and whistles, and sent her to us for the AOL. It was obvious from talking to the customer that they had trusted the rep that this was the right thing to do, when in fact, it was not.

She ended up having to return the device and cancel the line (which wasn't easy, since the retailer didn't want to cancel service), then she came in and did an AOL.

I hate to sa...
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johnnyb0810

Feb 18, 2011, 11:32 AM
This is why (and sorry to offend anyone here) I hesitate to recommend the indirect agents... I've seen far too many errors and had to listen to very angry customers as I tried to decipher and then solve their issue through the profanities.
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OrionsVantage

Feb 18, 2011, 1:17 PM
johnnyb0810 said:
This is why (and sorry to offend anyone here) I hesitate to recommend the indirect agents... I've seen far too many errors and had to listen to very angry customers as I tried to decipher and then solve their issue through the profanities.



Rolling Eyes

Really, buddy? there are jerkoffs in every level of customer support for verizon. I'm an indirect and i've spent countless hours trying to fix both Customer Service and shady Corp reps mistakes. I've also done a lot of work fixing other retailers mistakes as well.

But to insinuate that all indirect agents are shady and not verizon knowledgable is COMPLETELY false and unfair to the guys like Menno who has built a reputation of being...
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 1:53 PM
Exactly.
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OrionsVantage

Feb 18, 2011, 1:59 PM
Thats one of the few things that gets me quite riled up. I've only been in the industry for 16 months or so, but i've made it a point of pride to know as much as i can about my craft and that included Verizon rules and policies. If i don't know i'm real quick to find somebody who has the answer (like my post asking about the Nationwide Messaging plan). I've put a lot of work into this and to hear somebody offhandedly dismiss my particular channel gets me fired up.
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 2:13 PM
Menno and I have had dozens of conversations about this. not all indirects are bad. I wish mine locally were half as good as the ones I hear about on the internet.
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OrionsVantage

Feb 18, 2011, 3:17 PM
Unfortunately its impossible to uphold a high standard when there are so many people in the business. Hell, i have seen instances of entire stores in my company being let go due to shady business ethics (we had one store that whenever they could would trick people into adding lines instead of upgrades and not disclose anything to the customer. that entire staff has since been given the opportunity to pursue other means of gainful employment.) But again this applies to all channels, not just one.

I had a business customer once activate 10 lines with me, 7 smartphones, 2 mifi and a netbook. the netbook was a CLNR that my company had purchased and was selling for DIRT cheap. I told the customer about all of this and even made some rid...
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 3:29 PM
Damn right on going in to talk to the manager of the corporate store. It's one thing to have a specific instance of a problem, but another to blatantly insult your store and personnel for no reason. In either case, the manager should know better, and if they don't, all power to you for pointing it out.

Locally, most of the bad indirects have gone away. They shot themselves in the foot by treating customers like crap when they weren't in for something commissionable. The good ones still exist, but just like Verizon corporate retail, they have a few losers working in sales.

I was surprised with my encounter on Tuesday, as I hadn't had an indirect to blatantly screw with the customer in a long time. Normally, what I see is somethin...
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:37 PM
Why wouldn't they just direct fulfill a phone they are out of stock? When I was in sales, I hated other people touching my customer because then they became THEIR customer.
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johnnyb0810

Feb 18, 2011, 7:16 PM
What I said was not intended to be an attack. I hesitate on transferring to financial services, I hate giving up responsibility to anyone else. No matter who it is. The fact is that 1 drop of poison can be enough to kill. No personal attacks just that I don't recommend it actively. But do not have I'll words abOut any channel to any customers.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:34 PM
Oh no. Rolling Eyes

Not channel wars. Stop it right now. Stop it I say!
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 1:52 PM
Unfortunately, it's corporate reps, too. My latest example from earlier in the week was indirect, but I've seen more corporate reps do this than indirect reps over the years.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:31 PM
When I was at Alltel one could be terminated for this sort of thing so I generally refused to do it.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:28 PM
"I'm sorry that you got a lousy and deceptive rep. Most of us are not like that"

I don't know epik. You're not a sales person. You're management. I'd say commissioned sales rep it's probably half and half.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:20 PM
The most successful sales people have a bit of jerk in them. Seriously, anyone willing to sell an Eskimo snow just to show it can be done is going to be a tad bit conceited, yes? I always felt dirty just standing close to some of our better sales people.
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mycool

Feb 18, 2011, 10:28 AM
No. It truly is about the math of it all.

- It is not about whether or not the rep is benefiting from this at all. If the customer is coming out ahead, who cares?

- It is not about having equipment to put on that 3rd line or not. Verizon uses a standard dummy ESN if you truly did not have a basic handset to put on that line to avoid the data charges. This dummy ESN is not associated to any device.

- It is not about whether or not you actually need or will use that 3rd line of service.

Now, don't get me wrong. I do think that it should be clearly transparent what the rep is suggesting. Also, I do agree there are only a few circumstances that this would work out on, but not for the reasons you stated. Instead, purely on the math of...
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epik

Feb 18, 2011, 10:57 AM
mycool said:
- It is not about whether or not the rep is benefiting from this at all. If the customer is coming out ahead, who cares?


I'll ask that to my next pissed off customer who feels ripped off and let you know. Not EVERY situation is a customer coming out ahead.


- It is not about having equipment to put on that 3rd line or not. Verizon uses a standard dummy ESN if you truly did not have a basic handset to put on that line to avoid the data charges. This dummy ESN is not associated to any device.


I assure you it is NOT standard practice to offer to use a dummy ESN on a new line so the customer can get a good price on a phone for an existing line.

I just polled s...
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Mikey C

Feb 18, 2011, 1:25 PM
I want this dummy ESN
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:41 PM
The point is that this should be something the customer asks for not something that the rep browbeats the customer into doing.
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OrionsVantage

Feb 18, 2011, 6:57 PM
Browbeats no, but offer as a reasonable solution, yes.
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Azeron

Feb 18, 2011, 6:40 PM
I disagree. If a customer actually has the good sense to purchase a phone full retail and thus avoid any chance of an ETF then that is one wise consumer. They should not be discouraged.
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mycool

Feb 19, 2011, 9:49 AM
Azeron said:
I disagree. If a customer actually has the good sense to purchase a phone full retail and thus avoid any chance of an ETF then that is one wise consumer. They should not be discouraged.


The ETF is moot because the whole point of adding the line was to ride out the contract so that you pay less over that period of time.

Let me ask you this. If you went into a restaurant and were given the option of ordering a burger for $10 or the SAME burger and a pepsi for $8. Which would you choose?
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Azeron

Feb 20, 2011, 5:30 AM
I'd ask what the catch was. We know what the catch is in this example and maybe a bit of disclosure from the waiter that his boss pays a bonus for pushing the Pepsi on me would be appropriate as well.
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mycool

Feb 21, 2011, 12:12 AM
Azeron said:
I'd ask what the catch was. We know what the catch is in this example and maybe a bit of disclosure from the waiter that his boss pays a bonus for pushing the Pepsi on me would be appropriate as well.


Ok, but you didn't answer the question: Which would you choose? $10 burger or $8 burger/pepsi combo?

I get your point. You want disclosure, which I agree with. It should be there. But, after things are explained it wouldn't make any sense to NOT pay less for what you truly wanted (the burger) even if you didn't want a pepsi.
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Azeron

Feb 21, 2011, 6:40 PM
If you insist upon an answer then I choose C. I am a vegetarian.
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epik

Feb 21, 2011, 10:55 PM
Laughing
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youaremyhero

Feb 19, 2011, 2:25 AM
F Verizon. If you have to type all that to explain pricing difference, F Verizon.

Simply say what's cheaper. God.

Write an essay about price differences? God.

Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
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Ishamael

Feb 21, 2011, 7:46 PM
Why are you using 'God' to answer all of your questions? Is that why you're so confused?
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youaremyhero

Feb 21, 2011, 8:46 PM
Because I am God?
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Ishamael

Feb 21, 2011, 10:52 PM
You should have little problem deciding what phones to buy.

That does, however, explain all of those entirely unbelievable benefits you obtained.
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youaremyhero

Feb 21, 2011, 10:56 PM
I may be God, but there are Godly factors I need to think about. You won't understand. You're not on my level.
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Ishamael

Feb 21, 2011, 10:59 PM
Actually, I understand all too well, and your postion would qualify as a jaded self-perception, and not true God-hood.

Else, omnipotence would allow you to concern yourself with everything at once with ease, right? That is part of the packaged deal.
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youaremyhero

Feb 21, 2011, 11:03 PM
Wrong again. You can't understand. You are limited to your 5 senses. 6th if you can see dead people. And no, I am not omnipotent. I am still God, though.
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Azeron

Feb 22, 2011, 2:49 AM
Ah, one of those pagan pretenders, eh? Eh? Alright, spill it! Which are you Dionysus? Ganymedes?
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youaremyhero

Feb 22, 2011, 2:51 AM
Nope. I am the real deal.
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epik

Feb 22, 2011, 2:01 PM
I'd bet on Dionysus or Poseidon. Which is it hero, D.P, or other?
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youaremyhero

Feb 21, 2011, 11:15 PM
Do you know another God somewhere? Have you met him or her? I am most likely the first.
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Ishamael

Feb 21, 2011, 11:17 PM
Well, there are records, and they're pretty clear for those parts where they aren't totally vague.
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youaremyhero

Feb 21, 2011, 11:21 PM
rrrrrrriiiiiggght. You're gonna believe old records, when you're messaging a God right now telling you the truth. How do you know those records weren't just "text messages" from a crazy person thousands of years ago? This convo is over. Drooling Drooling Drooling Drooling
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Ishamael

Feb 21, 2011, 11:25 PM
Prove your Godhood.
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youaremyhero

Feb 22, 2011, 2:52 AM
Don't need to. Drooling Drooling Drooling
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Azeron

Feb 21, 2011, 10:43 PM
Here, here!
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Kittles

Feb 19, 2011, 3:45 PM
"But 90% of the time, this is simply a way for the salesperson to get paid. Salespeople on here can fight me all they want, but I've seen this shoddy move dozens of times from coworkers, and in most cases the customer really doesn't understand what they're getting into."

If you believe what you wrote here you are not giving your customers the best options. Adding a line for 9.99 to get contract pricing on a phone and saving your customer money is a good thing. [example] Would you rather pay $600 today or pay $500 for the same thing over 2 years. I would hope the choice would be easy for you. This is not a shoddy technique to make money. In fact, as an indirect for a premium retailer we make almost the same amount for just selling the...
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epik

Feb 20, 2011, 12:54 PM
I'm not sure how everyone is misunderstanding me on this.

1) I myself have offered this to my customers.
2) I fully understand the "cost savings."

Here's my issue:

1) Presenting this without full disclosure of the facts is misleading the customer.
2) I see this presented in the misleading way all too often.

I get it. I'm saving my customer money, at least over two years including the initial startup. As I said, I've presented this option many times. But I always present it as an option among other options - not as the ONLY option. The customer almost always has multiple options. Anyone who pushes this as the only option is misleading. Period. THAT is what's shoddy about presenting it that way. That was what as shoddy ab...
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Azeron

Feb 20, 2011, 3:18 PM
I think the OP deal was that the rep acted as though he were an idiot for not jumping at the opportunity to sign a new two year agreement to get a discounted handset (AND more importantly to put some cash in that rep's pocket) rather than pay full retail. We should be weaning the customer off of the something for nothing model now that the carriers have whittled the competition away and are going to the take it or leave it model.
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