Golden Tickets, golden relationships
There is a facinating story buzzing the media right now of the man who bought a Golden Ticket from an airline for 250 000 USD (or more). It entitled him to a lifetime of air travel - that was back in 1987. Since then the man has reportedly clocked up travel costing the airline over 20 million USD - and they drew in the Golden Ticket, saying they had discovered fraudulent use.
I don’t want to go near the rights or wrongs of this case and others. The most important thing is that the business environment changes, usage changes, costs change (the airline in question filed for Chapter 11 a while ago, and whilst their situation can’t be blamed on Golden Tickets I can understand them wanting to review their revenue situation). But there’s a contract in the picture here. I think the whole idea of loyalty needs to move towards a suite of products and customer relation rather than the ’big deal’.
I have an ‘unlimited’ mobile calling and data plan - in practice that means a limit of 10GB per month. For me right now, that is as good as unlimited because I have no desire or need to turn my phone into a video streaming server, and I can cover all my needs without thinking about how close I am to the limit. I am happy - for now, but what happens when my needs change - or the operator’s for that matter?
‘Unlimited’ usually can’t be - because almost everything has a limitation. A life without boundaries. Relationships work within boundaries, need boundaries and can evolve beautifully to meet an ever-changing future. A ‘gold membership’ or ‘gold relation’ sounds like it could be the basis of something future-proof. You keep paying for services above let’s say €40 and the operator makes sure those services are covering your needs - say (at least) by clicking on some relevant radio buttons in a survey each month.
Will my network operator follow up my usage and come with a really attractive offer when my phone contract is up for renewal? I don’t know. I’d like to talk about it with them in the meantime. That would be shining in the right direction.