Dear Director, Loyalty & Retention (The Globe and Mail)
Thank you very much for your letter and 2017 calendar thanking us for our 25+ year loyalty as subscribers to the Globe and Mail. As my husband John reminded me, “I’ve had a longer relationship with the Globe than I’ve had with you.”
As in any long-term relationship, every once in a while, one should look up and ask, “Am I still excited to wake up to this person every morning?” And you know for many years retrieving the G&M from our stoop was reason enough to bound out of bed. Now it often remains curled up in its sad little elastic for days at a time, looking old and shriveled. Listen, I’ve been married since 1989 so I know it’s no easy task to keep the magic alive.
I feel though that you have started to take us for granted and that’s the death knell for any relationship. First off, how hard would it have been to address your letter with a more personal salutation than “Dear Subscriber”? We’re not expecting flowers and Godiva chocolates (not that we don’t love the calendar), just something that makes our heart beat a little faster for a couple seconds. “Dear John and Sue” would have been a start.
But that isn’t the real reason we’re packing our bags. Here’s the hard truth. We just don’t trust you as much as we did way back when or find you as exciting. And while we are not proud to admit it, our eyes have been wandering and we’ve been “cheating” with other publications. You can’t claim (as you did in your letter) that “…we are still investing heavily in the best and most exclusive journalism” when there seems to be less and less proof of that. This is like me telling John, “I’ve slaved all day to make you this scrumptious romantic dinner,” and then hiding the empty tins of Wolfgang Puck. Just saying.
There have been some nagging relationship questions we’ve been grappling with. We’ve tried telling ourselves, “The G&M is just going through menopause and we need to cut it some slack,” but the reality is that those sensible shoes are not going back in the closet anytime soon. So, those nagging questions about the G&M remain:
-Does it make courageous decisions like persevering with potentially litigious stories (e.g., Rob Ford) rather than pat itself on the back when it follows others’ hard work?
-Is it willing to break up with columnists who are getting sloppy in their writing and research but continue to take up valuable real estate when fresher, hungrier journalists could make us feel young again? (I’m not naming names but surely you’ve heard the word on the street.)
-Does it value the arts and culture by providing us more than the bare minimum on music, theater and literature? And what happened to the restaurant critic? I’m holding you 100% responsible for John looking like a deer caught in the headlights when I asked him, “Where are you taking me for our anniversary?”
Break-ups are hard. We could have fed you a line like, “It’s us, not you,” but we thought you deserved more honesty given how long we’ve been together. It is very much you.
Photo credit:Flickr-Canadian Pacific
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