Friday, September 7, 2007

The "CAM Factor" -- Consumer Anger Motivates (C.A.M.)

I've coined a new term today -- CAM, an acronym for Consumer Anger Motivates. If the CAM Factor is high, you buy something else! Let me explain...

Everybody has consumer nightmare stories. Told afterwards they are often pretty funny. The old adage of "big problems make good stories" does apply. It's not too funny when it's happening though! I've suffered through a horrendous customer service experience with AT&T in the last few days, including several very frustrating phone calls, long delays on hold, hang-ups by the automated system, multiple transfers within the organization, frustrating attempts to do it myself on the web, and after all that -- still not the desired result. A comedy of errors and it really made me mad.

Saturday Night Life or Second City could really have fun with this!

I was simply trying to terminate service on my old phone, having transferred service to a new location with them. I'd been told the old number could be terminated as part of the transfer. However, it didn't -- and I continue to get bills on my old number. They've clipped me for a nice chunk of dough, in spite of many attempts to resolve the matter. AT&T now has a very high CAM Factor for me!

It has wasted so much of my time I had to think of something positive and creative in order to compensate. Okay -- I'll do a blog entry! Here's my takeaway from the experience, a simple consumer buying insight: customer service problems make people ANGRY and inspire new buying behavior. How high is your anger on a 10 oint scale? That's your CAM! My CAM with AT&T is 10!

As of today, September 8, 2007, I am officially motivated to find an alternative phone service. I will find something and I will switch and I'll do it even if it's a bit more expensive, and if it takes time to get it done. I might even go so far as to go totally portable and not have a standard phone line. If I can do it practically I will.

CAM -- you read it here first folks.


Penny van der Lith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Penny van der Lith said...

While we are on acronyms, how about T.I.F. - The Idiot Factor? This is a measure of how subbornly dull-witted the customer service rep on the receiving end of your C.A.M. was. Sounds like yours had a T.I.F. of 11!

Gregg Fraley said...

I'd like to blame it on one person, but really, it's the system that had the high Idiot Factor. Most of the time I spent on hold or trying to get resolution trough the automated system. It's a week later and I'm still peeved!