Yes. It has been a long time since I visited with my second least favorite telecommunications company, Vonage. Quite frankly the reason was I get a little bored with the subject and move onto something else. However, day after day I receive visits from people searching on subjects like "vonage complaints site" (today), "vonage pop-up ad" (12/26), "vonage marketing complaint address" (12/25), and etc - you get the idea. The people have spoken (or searched) and who am I to disappoint my fans.
So, what have been holding back? A lot. First off, this moronic, idiotic commercial with the pretty blonde getting hit on the head with a Vonage box. Yes. It has been around for a while but it still bugs me. Why? Well clearly they are making her out to be dumb, but even after she gets hit in the head with the box, she still acts stupid by running into the water to play with the sharks. Seems to me the shark playing blonde is a metaphor for all the Vonage customers who got swindled when they bought into the Vonage IPO. I think the ad is more insulting to these customers than to blondes everywhere in the world.
Next up, I've been noticing that Vonage has been cutting back on their online advertising spend. Back in the day, they were the number one waster, err I mean, spender in online advertising. One would think that with the ROI potential of online and the fact, that their service works with, umm, broadband customers, that they should be able to manage their marketing spend. As this chart shows courtesy of TNS by way of ClickZ, they have cut their online marketing spend to 55% over a year ago. So, with that chart, you'd think they were reducing their cost per acquisition, right? Wrong. These marketing geniuses saw their cost per subscriber go UP by 6% over 2nd quarter to $254. I can tell you one thing as someone who has managed plenty of marketing campaigns in the telecom world is that when you starting trimming your budget, your CPA should go down; the last piece you should cut are good performing programs. Oh by the way, their churn also went up by 13% to 2.6% due to this lame reason "The increase is attributable in part to the rapid growth in subscriber lines throughout 2006 and resulting impact on customer care." Nice.
See tomorrow for Part 2 (yes it is already written). BTW, if you are looking for the Reagan/MSN post, scroll down to about the middle of the page or hit this link