The following was posting in misc.activism.progressive by
Boycott = Masses of Bad Customers
A new boycott pressure tactic takes 1/3 fewer participants
and is 3 times faster in achieving the political demand.
This new boycott pressure tactic is: being a bad customer.
Masses of bad customers.
Profit = Revenue - Costs.
A bad customer boycott focuses on raising costs to deny a
business a profit. A bad customer caters to a business
while raising cost so high that the business loses money.
A bad customer consumes time and waste money without making
a profit for a group.
A regular boycott denies profit to an organization limited
to what you normally spend. If you normally spend $200
annually on a boycotted group, they will lose just $200.
A bad customer boycott can create limitless losses until a
group meets the demands.
Here are some bad habits of masses of bad customers.
BUY/RETURN on a weekly basis. Return an item at another
store across the city. Too shy? Have a friend return it!
BUY OUT ITEMS ON SALE / RETURN THEM AFTER THE SALE. This
bad habit takes the products off the shelf so that other
customers cannot buy them on sale. This bad habit is really
annoying during Christmas. Masses of bad customers buy out
a store in mid-December. All the items are returned after
Chrismas. Buy everything in a store on Friday afternoon and
return them on Monday?
COMPELLED DISCONTINUATION - Masses of bad customers
buy/return a particular product for a long time. The store
owner loses money, and he or she discontinue selling the
product at all. If the boycott target is a service like a
vacation, make the customer rep do the sales pitch a
thousand times without a sale. Then the service will be
FLOOD OF SHOPPERS JUST BROWSING WHO REQUEST CUSTOMER SERVICE
AND INFORMATION - Masses of bad customers just browsing
consume all the time and waste the money of employees by
asking for customer service and common questions like: What's
your return policy? What are your store hours? Please give me
directions to the store. Can you show me how this product
works? If the group puts up signs answering the questions,
ignore the signs and ask anyway. Don't you just hate to shop
in a crowded store? Asking for detailed information is
especially good while calling on a toll-free 800 number (you
don't pay, but they do!)
HIGH EMPLOYEE TURNOVER - While bad customers make the employees
miserable these workers suddenly encounter better-paying job
opportunities by chance. It is in human nature to take a
better-paying job if your current job is lousy. Of course,
people make an effort to find these employees better-paying
HIGH COST OF HIRING AND TRAINING NEW EMPLOYEES - Masses of bad
customers can also apply for a job just to consume time and
waste money. Imagine how much money it takes to review 500
applications for every job opening! Who knows, you may be such
a good applicant that the manager showers all the attention on
you while mistreating an applicant who would have gotten the
job if you had never applied. If you get the job and have the
time, take the job! Do the expensive training and quit!
MOVE MERCHANDISE AROUND - Fill a cart full of merchandise. Leave
it in the aisle for an employee to waste 1-2 hours putting all
the merchandise back. Imagine masses of bad customers doing this
50-100 times a night. Maybe you could also go through the check
out line, wait until every item is bagged and then realize that
you forgot your checkbook! Darn! I hate it when that happens!
RUIN THE INTENDED ATMOSPHERE - A place of business tries to
create a particular social atmosphere. Bad customers ruin the
intended atmosphere. They converse in a foreign language. They
dress in inappropriate clothing (wearing too little, too much or
geeky clothes). They could be senior citizens always shopping at
a store targetted at young people. They tell raunchy stories (an
overheard conversation - "My spouse and I and the neighbor were
taking a shower together last night ...") They bad mouth the
FORMING LONG LINES - Masses of bad customers form long lines
during rush hour (like lunch or after work). Busy customers will
walk out of the store to patronize another establishment. These
bad customers may buy very little. They may just ask a common
question like: Can you give me directions or what are your store
hours? They may just buy a cheap cup of coffee with a friend and
occupy a table for 1-2 hours. They may try on 5-10 clothes without
buying anything. Pay with pennies or a large bill. A $20 bill for
a 99 cents purchase sound good.
WASTE WHAT'S FREE - Toll-free 800 numbers. Call them daily to get
information. Free brochures and production information. Take a
handful to give to friends. Request a free catalog for 20 friends.
Get your friend's address from the phone book (postal regulation -
catalog mailing list must be 100% real addresses). Mail those
business reply cards where you don't have to pay the postage; the
business will pay the postage. What a horribly big telephone bill
a group would get if masses of bad customers call a toll-free 800
number! Get on a mailing list, and let the group spend $100/year
sending you catalogs you recycle immediately.
SCHEDULE AND CANCEL MEETINGS / HOTEL ROOMS / RESERVATIONS - Be late
30 minutes for a 1 hour meeting and still insist on meeting for 1
hour (Total time wasted is 1-1/2 hours)
ADVERTISE E-COMMERCE WEBSITES WHERE CUSTOMERS CAN BUY BOYCOTTED
PRODUCTS CHEAPER OR FREE - Ebay.com sells everything cheaper for
some reason. No revenue, no business.
MAKE THEIR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES FREE - Create a way to make their
business or service free and obsolete.
BAD MOUTH THEIR BRANDS - Distribute millions of bumper stickers
that say "THIS COMPANY SUCKS" or "I had a horrible time at ..."
The art of being a bad customer involves being low-key to avoid
complaint and using perfectly legitimate customer habits to waste
all the time and money of a boycotted group. You are an expert bad
customer if you can do it for months without any complaint from
the employees (in fact, you are a bad customer guru if the
employees wait on you hand and foot despite your bad habits!) Keep
in mind that you are a real customer that the group must provide
good customer service. You do buy a product. Of course, you will
also return it because it does not suit your needs. However, that
is your right as a customer. The customer is royalty!