No Contract Required
January 2, 2013 1 Comment
Now, No Contract Required
Good news for 2013—Direct Communications in Eagle Mountain will not require a contract or term commitment for new customers signing up for telephone or high speed internet service.
Contrary to some reports, we actually have never required a contact for internet customers. New customers could always choose to forgo a contract term. However, very few people ever chose to sign up without a contract because we have always offered free installation with a 1-year commitment. We previously required a $185 broadband installation fee if new customers did not want to sign a 1-year commitment up front. This was largely dictated by FCC requirements for telecommunications and broadband companies like us. Recently, these regulations have changed to give us more leeway in deciding how to set contract and installation terms.
Our 2013 policy for new internet customer installs will be that no contract is required, and we will only require a $75 broadband installation fee if a new customer wants to be free of any commitment.
For customers who know they will be in their homes for a while, and are willing to sign a 1-year commitment, we will continue to offer FREE installation. Plus, we of course will also give you the first month free if you are using our refer-a-friend program, or in other words, if you were referred by a friend.
One qualifier, which will not change is we will still require a $25 phone activation fee for new accounts, which is mandatory for us to charge, and has always existed as part of our Utah State Public Utilities regulation. This is separate from broadband installation fees.
Why are we doing away with contracts?
Over the past couple of years, our non-customers in annual focus groups have told us that the thing holding them back was our contract terms. Many people did not want to sign long-term commitments various reasons—some did not feel secure in their employment and feared they might not be able to pay for service in a few months; many said they were looking to move out of Eagle Mountain sometime in the coming year; others said they just don’t like contracts as a matter of principle. We agree—people should stay with us because we offer the best, most reliable service in Eagle Mountain, and not because we have them locked into a contract. However, until recently, our hands were essentially tied because of NECA and FCC regulation.
Last June, we tested this feedback from non-customers, and during Pony Express Days, instead of offering a sweet electronic toy like an Xbox as a promotion, which would also require long term commitments, we simply offered free installation with no contract and no obligation, and a couple of months of free service so they could demo our superior internet product risk free. While the number of new customers taking advantage of this promo was not quite as high as the years we offered a free Xbox or Wii, the results were still good, and, even more encouraging, as we tracked these customers over the next following months, we found they were just as likely to stay with us than people who had signed a contract. They stayed because they liked the service and found it to be better than any competitors service in Eagle Mountain. This is what we want.
So, we decided to make this no-contract offer our general policy, with a few adjustments. We want to make it easy for people to switch to us. We want to be easy to do business with. We hope that a $75 install charge, with no contract required, would be low enough for most homeowners in Eagle Mountain to afford without requiring anyone to go without shoes for the month. $75 does not nearly cover our cost for an install—we have to pay for the tech, the truck roll, and most expensive, the new fiber electronics to be installed on the home. Together these amount to several hundred dollars. However, we feel confident that once a customer has experienced our faster streaming fiber optic broadband, they will never go back to a wireless internet service provider. Our customers tell us: You simply can’t go back from fiber.
Of course, we expect most people will still choose the no upfront cost, free install, with one month free, that comes with a one-year commitment. This is not a promo—this is our everyday pricing. But, for Eagle Mountain residents who don’t like contracts, this $75 upfront option is built for you, and we hope to see you soon. Haven’t you ever wanted to know what your internet experience could be over fiber optic cable? Try it—you will like it.