Patrick Muir of Morgan Stanley makes a good point (MW last week) – the credit card industry needs to focus on customer loyalty. But that loyalty needs to be two-way.
The industry – pardon the pun – holds all the cards. They are the ones with automated call centres, staffed by unhelpful, disinterested and inflexible operators. They levy automatic fines for late payment, a device more reminiscent of the Revenue. They hide behind pages of legally dense Ts & Cs. Their post-sale communications are usually so opaque they don’t make it past the first cursory glance on their way to the bin.
A demonstration of loyalty towards the customer would be a differentiator in the card market. But until card companies start to treat their customers with a little respect, invest in the way they communicate post-sale and offer some reciprocal loyalty too, most of us will happily remain rate tarts.