I had a great consumer experience this Black Friday weekend.
On Wednesday I purchased a Motorola Moto X cell phone from Amazon.com. The price of the device was $50. That was approximately half of the typical price I found around other retailers. With Black Friday approaching I knew there was a chance of the price dropping even further. That being said, I went ahead with the purchase with the thought that the price could really only go down an additional $50 (i.e. free).
Low and behold, only several hours later, the price of my Moto X dropped to $0.01. Yes, a penny.
I have to admit, knowing this was a potential outcome, I also thought that if I was proactive and emailed Amazon explaining the situation that I might be able to get them to honor the new price. They did. And, boy, was it simple.
I heard back from an Amazon customer service rep within 4 hours of sending my message. With no further questions asked, I was refunded.
As I briefly pointed out in my initial message to Amazon — I am a loyal Amazon customer (Prime member and Amazon credit card holder). Without saying so, I made the representative understand that keeping me happy is, in the long run, good for business. And I truly believe that to be the best way to run a consumer business.
I couldn’t tell you exactly what the customer acquisition cost is when running national television commercials. Given the expensive price tag, and in my opinion limited effectiveness, I can speculate that it’s a lot.
On the other hand, this $49 and change refund is a clear cut investment in my continued use of Amazon and it’s various services. It’s easy to see that this small expenditure will, in the end, be a profitable branding opportunity if I continue to spend thousands of dollars on Amazon products and services.
Companies should do more to keep current customers rather than rely on the crap-shoot of typical advertising mediums to acquire new customers.
Disclosure: Rory has no professional relationship with Amazon and was not compensated for this post.