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Verizon To Boost Sales With Promotions After Losing Customers In First Quarter

May 5, 2015 - Written By Cory McNutt

Verizon, who once refused to offer any incentives to join their network, are now finding out that one should never, say never.  A new report from Wave7 Research, which is in the business of tracking the offers and promotions that national carriers offer, says that Verizon is clearing testing out different promotions in various parts of the country to determine which promotion is most effective.  This comes after Verizon (and AT&T) lost customers during the first quarter of 2015.  Although, thanks to LTE smartphones and tablet sales, Verizon was able to increase 565,000 retail postpaid customers, they lost 374,000 3G smartphone customers and 385,000 featured phone customers in the first quarter.

T-Mobile has long been offering big incentives to switch to the ‘Big Magenta’ uncarrier, but mostly attacking Sprint – who started their own campaigns – and AT&T.  Now even Big Red is under attack with T-Mobile’s new “#NeverSettleForVerizon” campaign that is exclusive to Verizon Customers.  Verizon never took the bait as AT&T did as they started countering and matching some of T-Mobile’s incentives on their own network.  Verizon always maintained the attitude – if we build the network, the people will come.  Slowly, but surely, Verizon started to crack and throw users a crumb here and there – for instance, if you are a prepaid customer and sign up for auto-pay, Verizon will give you an extra 1GB of bonus data each month.

The Wave7 report noted,  “It is likely that Verizon is feeling pressured, given its losses of phone subscribers in 1Q15, and is now doing a ‘bake-off’ to determine which promotion works best in advance of a larger national push.  In the aftermath of Sprint’s revised pricing launch in August 2014, Verizon did a similar ‘bake-off’ of promotions in various regions.  The ‘bake-off winner’ was a $200 port-in credit that Verizon ran for the remainder of 2014 and the credit later became a $150 credit and then a $100 credit.” Verizon continues to offer a $100 bill credit for customers that port over from another carrier to its Edge program.  In addition, if a customer purchases a new Samsung Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge or HTC One M9, they will get an additional $100 for any working trade-in, although Verizon said this is set to expire on May 10.

Verizon has a promotion in Texas (sans Houston and El Paso) and northwestern Louisiana that is now offering $300 to new customers – $100 bill credit and $200 trade-in on any working smartphone – and will throw in an extra 10GB of data for customers that initially choose 10GB or more data plans.  In New York City, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Chicago, Cleveland, and the Washington, DC, area, Verizon will give you $200 if you port your number over and on the radio in Chicago and Cleveland, they will pay $300 if you choose to purchase the new Galaxy S6.  In Los Angeles, Verizon is offering $150 or $200 for a Galaxy S5 and in April they promised customers $300 that switched to Verizon and traded in a Galaxy S5.  Similar deals were offered in San Diego and Atlanta and Nashville.  Verizon spokesman David Samberg told our source that “Verizon has always offered regionally focused promos at different times across the country.  This isn’t anything new.”