Content Marketing

Verizon: Please Stop the Madness

I received a text message from Verizon today:

Free VZW Msg. Verizon Wireless is now offering a FREE V CAST Video software upgrade. To upgrade and dramatically improve your VCAST Video user experience, go to Get It Now –> Get PIX & FLIX–> Get New PIX –> Get New App –> Entertainment –> V CAST –> FREE Upgrade. To opt-out of future msgs, reply with ‘X’.

razrv3m lgIf anyone is counting, that’s a 7 step process to upgrade the VCAST application.

The instructions sent were actually incorrect. I do not have a Get PIX & FLIX menu item in Get It Now. Verizon sent the wrong instructions to me even though my account accurately shows what phone I have.

Not only that – to follow the instructions, I would have to write them down or memorize them because I can’t navigate to the download without navigating away from the message. Replying with an ‘X’ was so much easier. Anyone think there’s an opportunity here for Verizon to improve their platform?

Douglas Karr

Douglas Karr is the founder of the Martech Zone and a recognized expert on digital transformation. Douglas has helped start several successful MarTech startups, has assisted in the due diligence of over $5 bil in Martech acquisitions and investments, and continues to launch his own platforms and services. He's a co-founder of Highbridge, a digital transformation consulting firm. Douglas is also a published author of a Dummie's guide and a business leadership book.

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  1. When I was with Sprint they would often do the same thing. Refer to menus that don’t exist or give really long drawn out directions. A simple link to the .jar file usually suffices for upgrading software.

    I know at MOSH when we have an important software update we simply roll it out on the MOSHpit. We don’t bother with an annoying and costly text message and instead because it is the first thing that loads before you surf the Internet or when you hit the left side button to get online we ask our users to upgrade. Over 85% of the time that is all it takes.

    It doesn’t get lost in the sea of text messages people get and forget about that way either.

    Could it be better? Of course.

  2. Actually the msg you are receiving is a default message, it gives the basic instructions on upgrading, however, if you have a new software version, or one of the phones that launched with in the last 2 or 3 months well then duh, it will be different. But then again if you are familiar with your phone and how it works then you probably know the short cuts. However, if you don’t use the vcast program then there is no point in upgrading, also u really aren’t doing yourself any favor unless you have access to the vcast video program ($15 vpak or $3 24 hour access) and if you do then you know as soon as you try to launch the vcast video it upgrades automatically, so long story short, no it’s not that insane of an idea to send free sms to customers to let u know of updates, but then again if we didn’t how many of you would call in and get mad because you weren’t alerted to the updates?

    And in response to the instructions being incorrect for your phone? With at least 54 million active customer accounts, and at any given time 600,000 of you will call in a single day for assistance with some issue or another, if each call, assuming you don’t have to be transferred, costs $7 then you have to realize it’s not exactly economically feasible for verizon to send personalized sms is it? Besides just log into your account and change your text messaging alert settings and you will never have to worry about it again.

  3. Truthfully, by the time I receive those messages I’ve usually already seen/installed the update. However, if the text is too complicated for you to memorize temporarily for navigating to the correct location, then you likely don’t use your phone to it fullest potential anyhow and should just ignore the free sms and continue in your mammoth clubbing.

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