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Doing the right thing

One of my favorite services is unsubscribe.com. It’s a gmail plug-in that with one click lets you rid your inbox of unwanted newsletters. I recently analogized newsletters to tending a garden. You have to stay on top of the weeds or they get out of control. Unsubscribe.com lets you do that.

With this as a backdrop, I was pretty surprised to receive the following in my inbox last week:

Thank you for being one of our paying customers, your trust and support helped propel us to where we are today.

With that being said, I’m excited to tell you that beginning yesterday, August 4th, 2011, we have made our full suite of products (Email Unsubscribe and Social Monitor) completely free, which means we owe you the pro-rated amount of $9.62 and have discontinued any further billing.

Please fill out this quick form on your Account Settings page so that we can send you a refund check. We would like to simply refund your card, however that is not something we can do with our current payment processor so we will instead have to send you a physical check, sorry.

Thank you again and we look forward to keeping your inbox clean and your social networks secured.

Team Unsubscribe

I was blown away. Here was a company that was deciding to stop charging for it’s product. That’s not all that uncommon (although see my post with some thougths on free models here for a few ideas on pricing). But giving back my pro-rated unused account balance? Now that’s really taking it to another level. Here was my response:

Hi. You guys rock. Seriously. I love your product. I think it’s great that you have a model that will now allow you to offer the unsubscribe product for free. I think it’s even greater that you decided that if you were going to make the product free that you should grandfather in existing customers (even though we all signed up with no expectation that we’d receive a later discount). I’ve personally received much more value out of the unsubscribe.com service than I realized I would at the time I signed up (I’ve even tweeted about my love of unsubscribe.com a few times!). You’ve saved me countless hours either deleting emails I never had an interest in reading or trying to navigate the labyrinth of dozens and dozens of companies “unsubscribe” processes. Please keep the balance on my account. I couldn’t be happier with you guys and I couldn’t possibly accept anything back given the tremendous value I’ve received by using your product.

I love it when companies do the right thing. Even if I’m not planning on taking them up on their offer…

August 11th, 2011     Categories: Uncategorized     Tags:
  • http://www.aaronklein.com/ Aaron Klein

    I sent the same reply back. It was worth every penny. What a class act of a company.

  • Anonymous

    Truly impressive on their part, and your blog post has no doubt gotten them a ton of new users (with me at the front of the line)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=658237029 Steve Orenstein

    Awesome story!

  • http://twitter.com/spencerrascoff Spencer Rascoff

    I’ve heard good things about unsubscribe.com for about a year, and hadn’t gotten around to signing up. Your post put me over the edge. 

    • http://www.sethlevine.com sethlevine

      let me know how it works for you, spencer. i’ve got a post coming talking about a few things i’ve done that i feel have really increased my productivity. ruthlessly using unsubscribe.com is one of them – i’ve probably gotten rid of ~75 emails a day (maybe more) that were clogging up my inbox, keeping me from seeing the important stuff, and – even though i was generally just deleting them right away – were causing me to slow down materially as i was running through my email.

  • Michael Tupper

    I also had heard good things of this service, but I wasn’t enticed since it was a pay service and I instead decided to invest a little bit of time to setup some filters in gmail.  I realized later that I was still inevitably managing all these subscriptions that I at one point might have thought could be useful but aren’t (modern day version of my grandma the packrat, digital version of Hoarder).  After the post I decided to check it out and was blown away by its simplicity and utility.  The social utility is insightful as well as it allowed me to see all the leacher services that I don’t really approve of, at least not anymore.  I don’t mind feeding them my info if I get something from them, but the majority I had never used or even knew they were latched on to me.  Phenomenal.