The Subhiksha Business Model
Subhiksha is a company that claims that they offer the lowest prices on mobiles in any city. I wanted to verify this and i placed a call to 60607777. This is the number listed on their web site and flashed every other minute on TV advertisements. The call was connected immediately, but i was forced to wait for 1 minute and 10 seconds as i listened to one of their ads. Just as i was about to hang up, a sales representative (Jagan) came online. I asked him if was their corporate policy to force an ad down the throat of every unwitting caller. He offered what can best be described as a half hearted apology. I let it go and i asked him the price of a Nokia E65. He put me on hold for a few seconds this time(thankfully). Imagine my suprise when he told that he would tell me the price only if i would provide him my contact details which included my phone number. I told him that i was not ready to divulge my contact details only to have annoying marketing calls. He told me that it was company policy that they would provide price details only if i was willing to provide my personal details. I asked him how it would be if retail chains adopted this policy for every customer visiting their store. He didn’t see my point and after 4 minutes and 38 seconds i hung up none the wiser. I would think ten times before i venture into a Subhiksha store the next time and certainly would not recommend it to a friend who asks me for buying advice. A company that forces would be customers to part with personal details to provide public domain information has to rethink on their corporate policy with respect to the customer experience. Well, maybe…. Subhiksha has a tie up with mobile service providers where they assure them of a minimum amount of talk time for every call a customer makes to their well advertised number in return for a fee that helps offset thier lower prices… just maybe….