I did not pay for the following subscription period so that I would end the subscription; the company certainly "reached out" to me then, with collection notices and emails! I spoke with someone and told her I would gladly pay AND renew, IF she would guarantee I would receive the gift card. She did, as did the supervisor that got on the line to verify the order. That was in the beginning of August and my subscription was to start the 2nd weekend of the month.
The weekend arrived but no papers appeared. The newspaper has a subscription line to call and report no paper...if you manage to catch the limited window of hours available to call. I used the website to send an email but got no response and, when another weekend came and went with NO PAPERS again I took to twitter, thanking them for the scam to get customers to sign up! (hey, I was really mad!) I did get a twitter response within hours with an email address, to which I sent the requested information. The person on twitter told me I'd hear from someone by the next day (which was last Monday). I finally got a call on Wednesday and the gentleman took my information, apologizing and explaining there was a new carrier that was working the route now but that he would forward my info to customer service. Thursday a voice mail was received by me and I was a bit too annoyed to return the call. The woman said that the gift card promotion required me to sign a premium form and, since they "still" had not received that from me (implying it was all MY FAULT!) they would send a new form to me and get my subscription straightened out.
Hey guess what--that's right, nothing in the mail and no paper on Saturday. This morning I got a Sunday paper: laying on the sidewalk, no plastic bag, no special Sunday sections, no comics, no inserts, and NO COUPONS. I left the woman that called earlier in the week a voice mail and have tweeted. This is ridiculous and unacceptable. Where is customer service? Where is the thinking that "the customer is always right"? I understand that there are loads of people that stretch the limits of customer's always right and they have made things difficult for legitimately dissatisfied consumers; however there comes a point when a company representative needs to be able to look away from the computer screen and try a human response! I am taking to the electronic option since this seems to be the only way to get their attention. I hope I have reason to update this entry with a positive outcome.
PS At this point do they still really believe that a $10 gift card is going to fix everything??