Sometimes Logos makes me sad...

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Paul Golder | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Jan 4 2014 3:37 PM

Pardon me while I rant a little.

The sales department that has become the unmovable mountain.

It seems like it started to change when Lifeway acquired WordSearch, it was about that time I started getting "Sorry we can't match any WordSearch prices..."

But lately it's been pretty much anything I ask about. For example, There is a book that I wanted, a book that everyone was selling their ebook version of for around $18.00, but not Logos, the Logos version is $36.00.

So I go online and start up a chat with a salesman, I figured that if he met me half way and gave me 25% off I would buy it. The conversation went something like this:

Me: "What is the best price you can give me on this title?"

Logos Sales: "That's the best we can do"

Me: "Really??"

Logos Sales: Starts the old "extra linking" song and dance, blah, blah, blah...

Me: "But everyone else sells it for around $18.00"

Logos Sales: "Well, I'm sure that everything was considered when we set the price to make it fair, reasonable, and necessary"

Me: "Really? $36.00 is the MSRP on the book."

Logos Sales: "Sorry, nothing I can do"

Anyone that knows me knows that I am not one to complain about retail prices, but this seems disingenuous to me.

Why have salesmen if they can't sell? Might as well just be a computer that I deal with...

"As any translator will attest, a literal translation is no translation at all."

Posts 1051
William Gabriel | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:00 PM

It does feel that way now, even on the phone. I've been presented with the passive-aggressively toned "That's the best price available to you" on more than one occasion (don't feel like calling in anymore...just evaluate the electronic price from now on).

I read in another thread that perhaps sales has a new mandate that doesn't give them flexibility anymore?! If that's true, they're "salespeople" in the Best Buy sense, not the real sense.

Perhaps the forums ruined it? I started calling in when the veterans said you could sweet talk sales and get a personalized offer. If everyone does that now, they're not going to have much in the way of margins.

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Bruce Dunning | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:10 PM

I can understand your frustration Paul. Personally I would prefer that the price listed was the "best price" other than when special sales are offered. Why should people who call in get a better deal than people who shop on the web?

Using adventure and community to challenge young people to continually say "yes" to God

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:12 PM

I didn't know You could negotiate on small purchases. I made a $300 purchase + shipping (different items, including a base-package upgrade (Verbum+)) on December 3. 2013 with no problems. After Christmas things started getting difficult. I was promised a price of $16.xx on phone (can't remember the cents) on December 24. but couldn't pay at once (in the aftermath I should have and could have) so today the quote says $18.71 for the book, and it's public domain and they require me to add another book (so as a reply I just emailed a $70 book) - the negotiation was also about two more books that I had added to the open quote after Christmas. I have to wonder how come they couldn't give the first price anylonger. It's pretty much for a book from the mid-19th century.


Bruce, how often are those who call in going to accept the regular price and still make the purchase? If there would no longer be a way to get a lower price most people who have been negotiating would no-longer buy anything but pre-pub and CP:

Bruce Dunning:
Why should people who call in get a better deal than people who shop on the web?

Aply!
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tom | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:27 PM

Bruce Dunning:

I can understand your frustration Paul. Personally I would prefer that the price listed was the "best price" other than when special sales are offered. Why should people who call in get a better deal than people who shop on the web?

Yes

Posts 6473
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:33 PM

I understand your frustration.  I've had good and bad experiences with sales reps.  Today was a great experience, the guy was helpful and I'll definitely be calling him back in March, though he said he would be calling me to touch base on the particular purchase I wanted to make (that's how helpful he was).

Then there's the other side of the coin, sales rep that are not so helpful for whatever reason (bad day, bad mood, attitude, etc.? lol) and they tell you the line from the movie Taken: "The price is the price..." LOL so either you buy or you don't...LOL...at which point, I ask for the name and I call again and asked to speak to another sales rep except "X" sales rep.  I don't have to give details as to why I don't want to speak to "X" sales rep...LOL...I don't want to get anybody in trouble.

NOW, there's is yet another side of the story.  Logos used to almost every time give 25% off, now they've lowered their discounts to sometimes a mere 10% (or even 5%) on some items.  I guess it has to do with publishers's rules and royalties and what not.  Oh well, so far, I'm happy with what I've got and whatever I need, I know that sometimes it's worth calling sometimes is not, but if it's something I really need, I buy it anyway---after calling several reps to see which one offered me the better deal.

One that used to be good at giving you 25% off if it was available (and he'd tell you if the item had a discount or not) was Mr. Jim Ray.  I remember him denying a discount once and he apologized for not having a discount because he said it had something to do with the publisher.  I think it was a Zondervan product.  He was a great sales rep.  Now I go to Maggie or Darren (or Darrel) can't remember exactly.  They are both good - some times I go to Dave Kaplan - used to go to Santiago, but he's manager now, so it's hard to get a hold of him.

Anyway, patience and call again and speak to someone else...LOL...knock and you might receive.

DAL

Posts 6473
DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 4:45 PM

Bruce Dunning:

Personally I would prefer that the price listed was the "best price" other than when special sales are offered. Why should people who call in get a better deal than people who shop on the web?

I think because they would sell more if people realize they can get a lower price if they call.  Plus, you get to build new relationships with sales reps and they can have a job and get paid too.  I wanted to purchase several books from the American Vision collection one time, but didn't want the whole collection, so I called my sales rep and she added the price of the books I wanted and gave me 25% off the total.  Plus, that was the time when I had purchased the SDA Bible Commentary Expanded Edition for $89 bucks because back then it included the NIV 1984 version (which was no longer for sale since Zondervan asked for it to be replaced by the 2011 version of it).  So it was a good price and I got lucky I managed to get one of the last copies of the NIV 1984 sold by Logos, though I no longer have the Reverse Interlinear that used to go with it. Since then, I think the SDA has gone up in price to $199.95 and it no longer includes the NIV 1984 edition.

DAL

Ps. No, I'm not a SDA, but I read with "Test all things, holdfast that which is good" mentality. 

Posts 2341
Ronald Quick | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 5:00 PM

My first experience with Logos customer service was with Jim-Ray in June 2007 when I bought Scholar's Silver.  From that point on he was the only sales person I worked with.  Now I will sometimes call and other times purchase online.  Just yesterday I contacted sales and was very satisfied.  However, sometimes I have felt like a potential sale instead of a real person.  I never felt this way with Jim-Ray.

Posts 5251
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 5:12 PM

I think the best thing anyone can do is vote with their money. Logos don't match or come close to the price get it elsewhere. Logos is hard to deal with... Moody left them, they occasionally loose books for seemingly unknown reasons. Logos in someways is a master of vapourware. The NIB is a good example, they had it on pre pub for a long time, only to inquire with Abingdon if there was anyway to help get it to Logos and find out they hand't even been in talks with them. Logos gets close to completing their pre pub on the NIB and then after inquiring how many more orders might be needed we are told the project is larger than projected and will need many, many more not a few more. I see people complaining about it not being available, Logos has made volumes of Word Biblical Commentary on preorder for years, blaming Nelson for not giving them the text but at least one of the volumes has not even been published. PrePUB is a great concept, but there are thousands that will likely never make it and offering pre pub for books that don;t even exist when you can't get you hands on the texts that do makes no sense. People can complain about Logos not having this or not offering a good price on that but until enough people go elsewhere Logos will remain complacent.

-Dan

Posts 154
Sakarias Ingolfsson | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 5:22 PM

In terms of capability and selection of digital resources there is no question of how superior Logos is to all the competitors. Same goes for the digital quality of the resources they produce. Furthermore there are now a lot of resources: Books, databases, video content, audio content and so on, which are exclusive to Logos. The company is no longer simply a provider of content, but a large scale publisher and educator as well. As an example, just look at what Logos is doing with their new Mobile education. I am completely amazed. 

Having said that, Logos is not superior in all ways. The desktop software is way too slow if you do not have the cutting edge hardware (although the mobile software is coming along nicely). Publishing bible translations in foreign languages do not seem to be a priority at all, even though this is by far the most important book in any theological library. Promised features take years to arrive. Users are badgered to by upgrades all the time. And I could go on. Most importantly, Logos is really expensive, compared to many other companies in the same field. For example a different company is now selling the NICOT series for $350, compared to $900 in Logos.

Here is the bottom line: If you are not satisfied with this, you are free to use some other software - at least legally, and in theory. But for most of us, not in practice. I can not afford to re-purchase every resource I have ever bought in Logos. (And I am really a little guy in this game, some users have spent a real fortune.) Well, I guess that I could make a switch, and then just purchase the resources that I actually use, and leave the rest behind. But I would still have had to make a considerable purchase. That is just not going to happen. I am almost irrevocably invested in Logos, and that is a weapon that can be used against me. Right now I really do want to stay with Logos anyway, because Logos truly is superior, but at the same time I recognise that I am not really free to consider an alternative. That nullifies the rules of free market competition.

Sakarias.

PS. From these forums I get the feeling that it is immoral not to be grateful to everything Logos has done for us. Either we are not showing brotherly love or we are attacking the right of Logos to make a living from this business. That may be well and true, but I feel that Logos should be grateful to us, the users as well. We have spent a lot of money on the software, as well as brought new customers to the company, and ultimately we are the ones who have made this all happen.

Posts 1837
mike | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 5:32 PM

I too will share my unpleasant experiences.

I used to call to make purchases in early 2013 and was getting warm responses.

Now ..it is super difficult to get discounts on books AND upgrading from a package to a higher package also a pain .. I've told them that I've purchased books that's included in the higher package i'm planning to buy .. but they can't consider those into the calculation... I was like ..whaaat?

and few others ..

so now I dont call anymore because its unpleasant, though they they're trying to FISH us with doing sale-phone only.. If I do make purchases, it'll just be online.

plus, I just try to look resources outside Logos first.. cheaper.

Posts 2038
Unix | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 6:15 PM

I completely ignored the latest phone-only sale because I'm tired of hearing lists of commentary sets and such, expensive author sets etc. - why can't Logos use the information from the big user survey they made earlier in 2013 - I told that I'm not interested in commentaries (even so I have been buying commentaries after that, but that has been at my discretion).
Individual volumes are much more interesting. If I'm for example looking at a commentary set or author set, I practically always go for one, two or three individual volumes. Individual volumes are extremely rarely on phone-only sale or weekly sale with coupon-code. They do show up in monthly sale and volumes from some sets show up in daily twitter deals with coupon-codes.


I have another software: Accordance. But they offer so few things that I only make a purchase about once a year. Their regular prices were not the reason why I bought it, I bought it because I got a set used really cheap. Later Logos offered that set on a sale twice. It would have been +/- 0 to just stick with Logos and buy the set on one of those sales, but I would have missed out on two items that are offered only by Accordance.
I will however look and see whether Logos or Accordance will be the better option for New Testament Greek work, and buy BDAG and NA29 or UBS5 in the best software of the two. Accordance seems to have BDAG on a sale more often - but there's not much price difference compared to Logos:

mike:
so now I don't call anymore because its unpleasant, though they they're trying to FISH us with doing sale-phone only.. If I do make purchases, it'll just be online.

plus, I just try to look resources outside Logos first.. cheaper.


I'm sure Accordance isn't cheaper than Logos, but I'm not looking for the cheapest platform and store. I don't think there are more options if You want to use the best platform. And extremely few items are not sold by neither Logos nor Accordance but by some other competitor!

Aply!
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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 6:47 PM

Paul Golder:
Me: "What is the best price you can give me on this title?"

If I were to rant, the need to even ask this question is what irks me. I would much rather be able to order 24-hours a day online and get the actual best price ... and not put up with sale after sale making it necessary to wait for something I want now.

Paul Golder:
Why have salesmen if they can't sell?

Good question but I'd prefer to skip the sales person entirely ...

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 6:51 PM

Unix:
Bruce, how often are those who call in going to accept the regular price and still make the purchase?

Depends on the person ... I don't call for the pleasure of bartering. I call because (a) I know a discount is available or (b) I want to the payments to merge into a current payment plan. I'd much rather simply order as I do for Amazon.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

Posts 1674
Paul Golder | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 6:52 PM

When I first started with Logos I had a great sales rep, always willing to deal, and would barter back and forth just like I was in an old fashion book store, the mom and pop kind of place where you knew the owners, and the sticker prices were just a starting point. I'd leave a message for him, let him know when I was available to talk, and he would call me back when I wanted. More often than not I would end up buying more than I had planned, and be pleased about it.

But then he got dismissed, and I was contacted by my new sales rep. Not a bad guy, just very pragmatic, and quite aware of the sales department's profit goals.

But I guess things change. When you are a privately owned company, that grows to have lots of employees, and big downtown office buildings to pay for, profit becomes the primary goal.

But it just doesn't make sense to demand MSRP for a product when no one else in the market is.

"As any translator will attest, a literal translation is no translation at all."

Posts 2825
Michael Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 7:02 PM

Bruce Dunning:

I can understand your frustration Paul. Personally I would prefer that the price listed was the "best price" other than when special sales are offered. Why should people who call in get a better deal than people who shop on the web?

Well, I suppose because they go to the trouble to call in and to negotiate.  It is called capitalism.  Rarely does a seller list the lowest margin of profit he will take as the regular price.  You see this most often in the automobile market, but it is pretty much true in many markets.  Regular customers are often given a better price.  It usually produces more business, and is a way to build loyalty.  A seller is under no obligation to give a one time buyer the same price as a regular customer, and is not too wise if he does.

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

Posts 179
Matthew Langlois | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 8:11 PM

Michael Childs:
Well, I suppose because they go to the trouble to call in and to negotiate.  It is called capitalism.  Rarely does a seller list the lowest margin of profit he will take as the regular price.  You see this most often in the automobile market, but it is pretty much true in many markets.  Regular customers are often given a better price.  It usually produces more business, and is a way to build loyalty.  A seller is under no obligation to give a one time buyer the same price as a regular customer, and is not too wise if he does.

You, sir, speak much sense.

Posts 943
Everett Headley | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 8:22 PM

Sakarias Ingolfsson:

In terms of capability and selection of digital resources there is no question of how superior Logos is to all the competitors. Same goes for the digital quality of the resources they produce. Furthermore there are now a lot of resources: Books, databases, video content, audio content and so on, which are exclusive to Logos. The company is no longer simply a provider of content, but a large scale publisher and educator as well. As an example, just look at what Logos is doing with their new Mobile education. I am completely amazed. 

Having said that, Logos is not superior in all ways. The desktop software is way too slow if you do not have the cutting edge hardware (although the mobile software is coming along nicely). Publishing bible translations in foreign languages do not seem to be a priority at all, even though this is by far the most important book in any theological library. Promised features take years to arrive. Users are badgered to by upgrades all the time. And I could go on. Most importantly, Logos is really expensive, compared to many other companies in the same field. For example a different company is now selling the NICOT series for $350, compared to $900 in Logos.

Here is the bottom line: If you are not satisfied with this, you are free to use some other software - at least legally, and in theory. But for most of us, not in practice. I can not afford to re-purchase every resource I have ever bought in Logos. (And I am really a little guy in this game, some users have spent a real fortune.) Well, I guess that I could make a switch, and then just purchase the resources that I actually use, and leave the rest behind. But I would still have had to make a considerable purchase. That is just not going to happen. I am almost irrevocably invested in Logos, and that is a weapon that can be used against me. Right now I really do want to stay with Logos anyway, because Logos truly is superior, but at the same time I recognise that I am not really free to consider an alternative. That nullifies the rules of free market competition.

Sakarias.

PS. From these forums I get the feeling that it is immoral not to be grateful to everything Logos has done for us. Either we are not showing brotherly love or we are attacking the right of Logos to make a living from this business. That may be well and true, but I feel that Logos should be grateful to us, the users as well. We have spent a lot of money on the software, as well as brought new customers to the company, and ultimately we are the ones who have made this all happen.

Ditto.

Posts 543
Glenn Crouch | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 9:29 PM

I think the "phone only" sales are very biased against us non-US people - not only is it expensive but the time differences make it very difficult...

I used WORDSearch for many years but switched to Logos back in May - as I wanted the Lutheran resources - and I am quite happy. For WORDSearch only about 1 out of every 10 emails were answered - and this is from someone who is manages support for one of the libraries they use in their Product! I have had every email sent to Logos answered promptly...

So I don't know what the phone sales people are like - as I prefer to do all my dealings online - and I am very happy with that. Yes I would like cheaper prices - who doesn't ;-) But I am also happy to leave some things on my wish list and hope that they get included in a Twitter discount or a sale :)

Pastor Glenn Crouch
St Paul's Lutheran Church
Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Western Australia

Posts 126
James Milne Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Jan 4 2014 10:01 PM

It is notoriously difficult to make money selling Christian books - just ask any author of Christian books (many donate the small cheque for royalties they receive to funds for teaching student Pastors - John Stott was a good example of this). Logos Bible software is unquestionably the "Rolls Royce" of Bible software systems. They have a good team that works hard to provide us with an excellent service. Their technical support team is outstanding. They deserve a decent wage and a sense of job security. As with anything else, you get what you pay for, and I for one do not mind paying a little extra for an excellent product. I wish them all God's blessings, and hope they achieve all their business targets in the year ahead.

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