Recently I figured out that I wasn't listening to my Satelite Radio in my car that much. I would listen to Howard Stern, but kept finding myself hearing the same 90 minutes over and over. If I wanted to hear the whole thing I would have to listen online, and that didn't work in my house (as I wonder all over). With the economy the way it is, and now saving for a wedding (mine), I decided to make some budgets cuts. I decided after listening to Howard Stern every morning since he first appeared in Cleveland (so at least 20 years), I would cancel my subscription. This is where things get interesting as it took four weeks to cancel.

First I called in, and they couldn't find my account (while my account worked fine to listen online). The phone person told me to call back in a few days as they were having system issues. I did, and that person had the same problem. I even gave them the number off my radio. They could somehow find part of my information, but not enough to cancel my subscription. They gave me  case number 18309227 so I wouldn't have to jump back through the same hoops. Every time I went through this I would be asked to call them back in a few days or a week. I explained that if I was charged again, I would reverse the charges. They said they understood (they did, and I didn't).

Finally this week I called back a little more “cut the crap” forceful. I got someone on the phone who said, “That's weird I found your information right here.” He asked why I was canceling, and then passed me over to the cancellation department where I waited on hold for 28 minutes. I was very close to hanging up. Keep in mind I'm only saving 12 bucks a month, and the process of canceling was getting expensive.

The Cancellation Department

When I got on the phone with the cancellation department I explained how I was cutting back. I have no gripes against them and think they put out a good product. However, I basically have it to listen to Howard and I never caught all the show. Then things got interesting.

“How about if we put your account on hold for two months?” (suspend payments). “No Thank you,” I said.

“How about if we add two free months (a total of four months then).” “Um, I appreciate the offer but no thank you.”

She continued, “OK, Mr Jackson you had said you switched cars and you need a new antenna?” Yes and I don't want to put out the money for the antenna or the installation.

“What if we sent you a new antenna and paid for the installation?” I was surprised. “Um, well…. I do appreciate the offer, but I'm still going to have a monthly payment… so no thank you. ” I said.

“What if we gave you a new radio as well?” she asked.” “I have a radio already, but what kind of radio? Now you have my attention. Is this one of those portable jobs that works indoors with Wifi? If so, I may have to think about this (as those go for 200 bucks). “No, its for your car.” she answered. “In that case no thank you.”

So to keep me on board they were willing to give me

4 free months
1 radio
1 antanea
1 paid installation of equipment.

What would've kept me?

A Howard Stern Podcast.

Put me in control of the content. Let me decide to sleep in and listen when I want, where I want. Rush Limbaugh, Jim Rome, Dave Ramsey all are syndicated nationally and all have podcasts that you pay for (some give away portions for free). Sirius should not think of themselves as a “Satellite Radio” company but an “Information” company and deliver the information in whatever way their listeners want it. Are you going to tell me the bandwidth bill would be more than launching a satellite into space?  Mel Karmazin are you listening? There are tools like that will help you sell your podcast. THis is surprising as Howard is such a brilliant businessman, and really truly understands radio. Howard Stern started a popular genre of podcasting. There would be no Dawn and Drew, no Keith and the Girl, if it wasn't for Howard Stern. He was the first to put it all out there. He talked about his personal life, he let his emotions flow, and he was as real as you can get.

Now the power of a time shifted podcast is putting a squeeze on Sirius as they were willing to pay me at least 200 bucks to stay. I'll miss you Howard. Call me when its time to set up your podcast.