There’s only one computer magazine that I subscribe to, and I’ve been a subscriber for 12 years: Maximum PC (which started life as boot). I think the magazine is fantastic, and I trust the coverage I read in it – there are too many magazines on the market today that do little more than re-publish press releases with a few words changed. If the gang at Maximum PC tells me something sucks, there’s a really good chance it sucks. I think so highly of the magazine that I someday hope to write an article for the magazine as well (it’s a little dream I have).
My goodwill toward the magazine was tested the other day when I was filling out my subscriber card to renew, like I do every year, and I decided to check their Web site for some reason to see what the normal online price was. Below is my subscriber card (after some heavy use of the eraser tool)…$34.95 USD is what I pay for a year’s worth of the magazine, and this is the renewal price for current subscribers.
So imagine my surprise when I checked the site and saw that someone getting a brand new subscription was paying $5 less than I was…and if they signed up for two years, they’d save $20. When I renew my subscription, I don’t even get an option for two years! So it seems that I shouldn’t be renewing, I should be buying a new subscription each year. Amazingly, this isn’t an online vs. offline thing: when I checked my renewal rates using the Web site, I was offered the same “great” deal: $34.95 for a one-year renewal, and $54.95 for a two-year renewal.
Ultimately this isn’t big money, but it goes to show you that you shouldn’t blindly trust when a company is giving you a “good deal” as a “valued repeat customer” – check into it, and you might be surprised…