Our broadband/phone/TV provider, Virgin Media (might as well name and shame them), were driving us up the wall, so we decided it was time to switch.
As soon as I spoke to my wife about it, I threw one name into the hat: Plusnet.
I’d fallen for their advertising, hook, line, and sinker: the affable Yorkshire chap, the focus on good service, the decent deals, the line ‘we’ll do you proud’.
I checked out other providers (oh the fun I had…), but knew I wasn’t interested in any of the ‘big 3’ – Virgin Media, Sky, or BT. And Vodafone have just finished bottom in a customer satisfaction survey.
The other thing is, Virgin Media, BT, and Sky all mention each other, as competitors, in their ads: ‘and unlike BT’… ‘with faster speeds than Virgin’.
It’s all very unseemly, and, as I was once told: never slate your competitors in your own ads – it makes you look desperate and/or scared of competition.
If you listen to/watch a Plusnet ad, not once do they mention their competitors (although I’ve since found out they’re now owned by BT – bit miffed). They simply focus on their own service, how much they care, and not raising prices mid-contract.
It’s also worth noting the straplines of the major broadband providers:
BT – Be There… other than using the initial letters of BT, what does that mean?
Sky – Believe in Better… again, what does that mean: that Sky are better, or that I should just believe in the word ‘better’?
Virgin Media… don’t appear to have a strapline.
Plusnet’s strapline, as mentioned earlier, is ‘we’ll do you proud’. Not only is it warm and chatty, it means something: we care, we do what we do really well, we’ll make you glad you chose us.
And this carries through (based on my limited experience) to their call centres. I’ve called three times and each time I’ve spoken to someone with a broad Yorkshire accent, who was warm and friendly.
It also carries through to their customer service emails. The one I received to tell me ‘you’re up and running’ had an image of their poster boy doing an ‘okay’ sign with one hand.
Overall, the deal we got from Plusnet was a good one, no costs were hidden, the set-up was a doddle, and they promise no price rises during our 12-month contract… something Virgin should consider.
Plusnet were top of the list when we went to search for a new provider, and it’s their advertising what done it.