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The Ineptness Continues -- Insulting Email from Bonvoy

The Ineptness Continues -- Insulting Email from Bonvoy

Old Nov 17, 19, 7:58 am
  #1  
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The Ineptness Continues -- Insulting Email from Bonvoy

I awoke this morning to find an email from Bonvoy with the subject line "DJ_Iceman, You're Not on Track to Renew Ambassador Status" and a big header line saying "TITANIUM ELITE STATUS AHEAD". Here's the text following that: "It looks as if Marriott Bonvoy™ Ambassador Elite status is likely out of reach for 2020 — but as a token of appreciation for your loyalty, Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite status is yours for 2020."


The insulting part is twofold: I am already lifetime Titanium Elite, and also have actually passed the threshold to earn it even if I didn't have the lifetime status. So there's no "token of appreciation for my loyalty" at all!



What's disappointing, but not completely unreasonable, is that I'm currently sitting at 77 nights for the year and $22,240 in spend. I'm at 1,966 lifetime nights in the program. So they're correct that I'm unlikely to reach 100 nights by the end of the year, but wouldn't it seem like a smart business decision to offer to renew my Ambassador status? Wouldn't THAT be a better "token of appreciation for my loyalty"? Oh, well, maybe (even though I find Hilton's program and properties to be a step below Bonvoy's) it's time to focus on earning my lifetime diamond status starting next year...
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:10 am
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You were offended by that?

Wow. Sorry for the hurt feelings, but it's just an IT thing.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:11 am
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Show them who is boss. Do a 25 night category 1 off peak mattress run at the cost of 100,000 points.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:17 am
  #4  
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I think the issue is that they should have programmed this e-mail to go out to those who are on target to qualify for Platinum or below, hence the token of appreciation to give a soft landing to Titanium. That was the misstep. Perhaps the wording is not the most diplomatic but to say it's an insult is quite a stretch in my opinion.

The most important issue is rather whether it would be a good business decision to extend AMB status to those quite close to the threshold particularly in light of their stay history in the last several years. I guess it would depend if you end up the year at 77 nights or at 99 nights (and how far above $20k you will be), but if I was the lone decision-maker then there is probably some level where it would indeed make sense on a case by case basis to extend AMB to those who just missed the cut. They might or might not do so in early January - time will tell. But I don't think they should disclose ahead of time what their intent is for those borderline cases because it will encourage more people to ensure they cross 100/20k and not take a chance.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:21 am
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Originally Posted by ride red View Post
You were offended by that?

Wow. Sorry for the hurt feelings, but it's just an IT thing.
They could have simply said "Congrats, you've qualified for titanium for 2020!" and been done with it--no need to point out the unlikelihood of renewing Ambassador status. That feels like they're rubbing it in. And "an IT thing" is not an excuse here. It was a human decision to send unnecessary e-mails to people explicitly pointing out they're not renewing Ambassador status. I could understand it if there were some sort of offer involved ("pay us $xxx and we'll renew it") but without that, it accomplishes nothing except to point out what someone failed to do.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:34 am
  #6  
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To me it doesn't make sense to assume on November 17th that someone traveling at the Amb level won't do an additional 23 hotel nights during the next sis weeks. It would be different if today were December 17th.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:35 am
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I am in favorite of hardline qualifications because once you made exceptions then it becomes subjective and no standard, and people will start to demand subjective preferential treatment as everyone thinks they have been loyal enough to get.

I do agree with you the email could be better worded, but you shouldn't feel insulted.

It does sound like rubbing it in a bit: looks like you won't make AMB but we'll give you Titanium (that you have qualified for) as an appreciation? I mean who wrote this and who approved this as ok to send? Maybe it was IT fault as it's meant for someone that was AMB but dropped to Platinum but was given Titanium (soft landing) instead, who knows.

Overall, never a bad idea to go for lifetime in multiple chains. I'm going to be lifetime Plat in Marriott and already lifetime Diamond with Hilton, I'm going for Hyatt next just to explore a bit.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:35 am
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I agree with DJ Iceman. Here's my email.

YOU'RE CLOSE

Another year of Marriott Bonvoy™ Ambassador Elite status is within reach. If you stay a total of 100 nights and have $20,000 in eligible spend by December 31, 2019, you'll renew your Ambassador Elite status benefits for 2020. Check your account to make sure you’re on track and reach out to your ambassador directly or email [email protected] if we can help with your final stays of the year.


Also, remember to maximize our latest global promotion, Unlock More, to earn even more for your stays. If you don’t achieve Ambassador Elite status requirements by December 31, 2019, you'll have Marriott Bonvoy Titanium Elite status for 2020 to recognize your loyalty.

Even though I have 86 nights YTD (and will likely finish the year close to 100 nights), my spend is just over $7400. I have no idea what algorithm interpreted that as close! My email would have been better suited to DJ. (I also have LT Tit.)
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:40 am
  #9  
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Originally Posted by Cathay Dragon 666 View Post
I am in favorite of hardline qualifications because once you made exceptions then it becomes subjective and no standard, and people will start to demand subjective preferential treatment as everyone thinks they have been loyal enough to get.

I do agree with you the email could be better worded, but you shouldn't feel insulted.

It does sound like rubbing it in a bit: looks like you won't make AMB but we'll give you Titanium (that you have qualified for) as an appreciation? I mean who wrote this and who approved this as ok to send? Maybe it was IT fault as it's meant for someone that was AMB but dropped to Platinum but was given Titanium (soft landing) instead, who knows.

Overall, never a bad idea to go for lifetime in multiple chains. I'm going to be lifetime Plat in Marriott and already lifetime Diamond with Hilton, I'm going for Hyatt next just to explore a bit.
However, Bonvoy shouldn't be promising soft landings in midNovember. For all they know, the person is about to make a bunch of reservations, but if he/she is told now that they needn't worry about whatever elite tier, they'll switch those nights to Hyatt/Hilton/etc.

Basic marketing wisdom would be to delight someone with a discretionary soft landing after the (re)qualification period has ended, not six weeks early.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 9:51 am
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The way it is worded is terrible, but that is all part of the Bonvoy experience, doesn't matter if you do 5 nights or 200 nights Marriott and it's iT still treat you with contempt.

I will say however I don't think anyone who doesn't meet the criteria should be given Ambassador status, the Ambassador service is already over subscribed and struggling to cope with the members who do meet the criteria!
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Old Nov 17, 19, 10:12 am
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Wonder if I will get a “you’re close!” note with my 50 nights, $5k spend, and no active reservations
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Old Nov 17, 19, 10:19 am
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Originally Posted by margarita girl View Post
I agree with DJ Iceman. Here's my email.




Even though I have 86 nights YTD (and will likely finish the year close to 100 nights), my spend is just over $7400. I have no idea what algorithm interpreted that as close! My email would have been better suited to DJ. (I also have LT Tit.)
You are correct the algorithm seems to focus only on nights and completely ignores the spend.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 10:25 am
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Originally Posted by UKTraveller4Fun View Post
The way it is worded is terrible, but that is all part of the Bonvoy experience, doesn't matter if you do 5 nights or 200 nights Marriott and it's iT still treat you with contempt.

I will say however I don't think anyone who doesn't meet the criteria should be given Ambassador status, the Ambassador service is already over subscribed and struggling to cope with the members who do meet the criteria!
Would someone know if the AMB members are going down or up? I suspect downward as SPG doesn't have $20,000 spending requirement, simply 100 nights. Perhaps the $20,000 spend requirement will drop a few AMB to make it more exclusive and personal for those that can make it.
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Old Nov 17, 19, 10:27 am
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Originally Posted by DJ_Iceman View Post
The insulting part is twofold: I am already lifetime Titanium Elite, and also have actually passed the threshold to earn it even if I didn't have the lifetime status. So there's no "token of appreciation for my loyalty" at all!
Originally Posted by margarita girl View Post
I agree with DJ Iceman.
Maybe I'm missing something. Clearly the email was not personalized, contained factual errors, and could have been worded much better, I agree. But insulting? What part did you folks find insulting?
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Old Nov 17, 19, 10:27 am
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Originally Posted by Cathay Dragon 666 View Post
Would someone know if the AMB members are going down or up? I suspect downward as SPG doesn't have $20,000 spending requirement, simply 100 nights. Perhaps the $20,000 spend requirement will drop a few AMB to make it more exclusive and personal for those that can make it.
Personally I hope a lot more than just a few drop down from AMB. I feel bad that my Ambassador always sounds so frantic and I suspect that some have quit due to the pressure of their workloads (on top of all the IT issues).
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