top of page

Double Dipping:  Is It All About Money?




I really like ice cream.  It might even be my favorite food.  And double dip ice cream cones are one of my loves.  But when companies double dip to earn more revenues, at my expense, I usually stop doing business with them.


I just finished reading an article in the paper about a new "product" that AT&T is introducing. 


As with all "new products" that are designed to earn additional revenues for a company as the only goal, without actually bringing any additional value to the customer, the initial marketing message tries to hide this intent. However, once the customer realizes what is going on, you end up with one irate customer, and in fact people who are not customers becoming irate as well. What is this AT&T announcement?


AT&T has announced a new “1-800” service for wireless data. This service is for businesses. So, the way it works is that a business subscribes to the “1-800” data service which they pay AT&T for. Then whenever anyone (in the AT&T network) accesses that particular business website, there is no “charge” against that person's data allotment. So they surf that website for “free.” Free! Wow! Everyone likes that word!



Sounds good at first, doesn’t it, until you dig a little deeper, or think a little more about it. Given that consumers who are AT&T customers pay for a “bucket” of data every month and that very few of them ever, ever, go over, this really has no benefit to the surfing consumer. And therefore the consumer has no incentive to search out sites that offer this "free' access.  


The business gets no additional benefit because this policy will not encourage more people to go to their website as they originally might have hoped. So, all it does in actuality is generate more revenue for AT&T without delivering any additional benefit to anyone.  


You might think that there might be some favor granted to sites that “buy” this new service, but in order to stay in compliance with the good ole FCC “net neutrality” rules, which mandate equal treatment of traffic, there can be no favoritism. Letting the carriers charge more or less money to reach certain sites is discriminatory, and not allowed. So, who wins???? Only AT&T. They not only get money from the consumers as they always have, but now get money from businesses too.  And probably only the larger businesses since small businesses will not be able to afford this extra service.




And I personally am outraged that AT&T would even try and dupe us this way. Business policies that irritate the customer (see my article on Hidden Charges) drive customers away. So once again, the moral as I see it, is that there is nothing wrong with looking for and creating new products and new revenue streams. But there must always be strong value attached to it – strong value you are delivering. And big benefit to your customers. Always give value.


For more help on pricing products, creating new revenue streams, and on all of your marketing needs reach out to us for a free consultation at

bottom of page