Just the Fax, Ma’am

I don’t know about you, but I am notoriously bad at cancelling unnecessary subscriptions in a timely fashion. I find the process of having to call, being asked for information I can no longer find, and listening to attempts to persuade me to change my mind aggravating. As a result, I often procrastinate or simply block the thought from my mind until some critical amount of wasted money pushes me into action.

I recently reached that critical amount of money with eFax. There was no option for cancelling my account on line, so I rang. I waited on hold for a few minutes and was greeted by a pleasant young lady who immediately launched into a series of questions requiring answers before she could cancel my account. So, here’s me: feeling silly for having wasted so much money in subscription fees. Feeling annoyed that I can’t simply click a button on their website to close the account and have the whole thing be over & done. Feeling harassed at having to answer a bunch of questions when I just wanted to cancel my account. As I always do when faced with this sort of task (this goes back to CD “clubs” in the 1990s!) I am annoyed and frustrated because I have more important things to do and I just want this done.

After I answered all of her questions, the very friendly young lady confirmed that my account was closed and I would receive confirmation via email within 48 hours. (Hooray!) I then asked about getting my most recent payment refunded. She put me on a brief hold then, much to my delight, told me that as a “gesture of good will,” I would receive a refund of TWO months’ fees! Needless to say I was well pleased with this result and my lasting impression of eFax is not just positive but glowing.

I think the most important lesson to be learned here is: Even when a client relationship is moving to the next phase, you have the ability to strengthen that relationship.

What do you think of giving someone back more money than they asked for? What do you think is the biggest factor in deciding how to handle a client who is moving to the next phase of their journey with your product/service? How does your company handle someone who is ending a subscription, and why did you decide on your particular policy?

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