The Financial Incentive to Providing Bad Service
Once you’ve got the expectations low, you can do a few things to make sure your competition can’t end-run you now that you have cheapened things. One is to snag exclusivity with another big partner. But that can backfire. Everyone knows that if AT&T, which diligently bricks some 36 million bricked smartphones nationwide, didn’t have the benefit of years of exclusivity for the iPhone, it would have hemorrhaged customers.
Exclusivity can be expensive, too, since it dings your potential market. After all, if Pepperidge Farm licenses the recipe to the intergalactically awesome Australian cookie Tim Tam , but it only sells them through Target and refers all customers to Target to buy them, then everyone in Manhattan, where there is no Target, will suffer without Tim Tams. This makes bearded travel writers extraordinarily testy, so as you can see, exclusivity can backfire on you.
But there is a second, more lucrative thing you can do once you have subtly gotten Americans to accept your downsized, diminished, flimsified product. That magic money-maker: the add-on fee that makes it whole again.
Jason Cochran (@bastable on Twitter) always seems to get the travel rant just right.
"Airline collectors are a dying breed, but if you go to any shows, the strangest one I’ve ever seen is a guy in a bright yellow baseball cap that says, ‘I buy barf bags,’ " Kitt said. "Here’s a guy who just collects motion-sickness bags, including the first ones from the 1920s."