One of the quickest ways to tamper with a company’s reputation is to raise prices.  Netflix is experimenting with that now.    The company has apparently decided after doing its research to live with the outrage of customers who are swamping its call center.  From this distance, it is impossible to say whether Netflix’s decision was the right one, but it was instructive for communicators.  Never raise prices without thorough grounding of key customers into the reasons why.  Today, especially, customers have many avenues for expressing dissatisfaction and for organizing to pressure a company.  Perhaps it would have been better had Netflix given advanced warning of what it was planning to do and why, but on the other hand, the company might have reasoned that it would stir opposition before it had a chance to act.  I would have “set the table” before making the pricing announcement, but then, I don’t have Netflix’s information.

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