SWhy should I renew membership??

David Lynn

136 posts

Have just had a renewal reminder form in the post, which included a small line to fill in if I decided not to renew so that I could explain why I was leaving the club. But have decided instead to post an open letter to the club on the forum in the hope that it creates discussion so that the club realises the extent of the problems and hopefully decides to adress them and make membership an attractive proposition again.

So current benefits are:

1] 10% discount on Corgi website items. OK, but several online retailers sell at about the same prices, so not a decisive argument to continue.

2] 3-4 magazines a year. Glossily produced on good paper, and content is slowly improving, but there's far too much padding/filler/self-promotion/junk content and the-one-size-fits-all scope is too unfocussed - I collect cars, so articles on planes or trains do nothing for me.

3] ..... um ... that's it, unless I've missed something.

Compare to what membership provided a few years ago:

a] club exclusive models

b] 8-10 well written and focussed magazines a year, with good content and articles which were significant accounts/stories

c] free mailout of catalogues during the year

d] sporadic offers for interesting stuff such as promotionals/export specials etc which were otherwise difficult/impossible to buy normally.

Basically the club in those days seemed to anticipate what us collectors might want and would then try to help. Like a club for enthusiasts should.

Compare also with what the Oxford club offers for much the same cost - club models, 8-10 magazines a year, email news updates, good website discounts, and an annually updated models guide.

I've been a member of the various Corgi and Vanguards clubs for over 15 years, so my loyalty to the cause is there on the table for you to take advantage of. But because the club has become such a pale shadow of its former self without any real incentive to justify my annual fee, I'm likely to break the link now. It seems from various other forum comments that many others have reached the same conclusion and left.

So Corgi Club organisers, what do you think you offer which makes membership attractive or worthwhile in real terms? Do you think you offer enough to make members want to renew? Do you take this situation seriously enough to rescue the club while there's still time?

Tiggerty Boo

136 posts

 I left in December 2016 for reasons you've listed, as there was no incentive to rejoin.  I'd also add that it's almost impossible to buy Corgi models other than online now or at shows and other online retailers offer discounts greater than 10% inc p&p.  For me, the Collectors Club needs to be a two-way thing and whilst I understand and accept that Corgi want to cut costs, it seems backwards that they have been so effective at rejecting/distancing themselves from their core/loyal supporters.

Andrew_D

209 posts

I can only but agree with the previous two posts, that there just isn't enough incentive left in the Corgi Club for me to be a member.  

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Losing the club exclusive model was the deal breaker for me, so after I had received my Vauxhall Astra Leather Edition (the last exclusive Vanguards model) I didn't renew.  I understand that these models require minimum quantities in order to achieve a particular price point, but I would have been prepared to pay more for something that was exclusive.

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Online retailers undercut the "RRP less 10%" prices, so there's actually no incentive in those member discounts, as already mentioned.

DCR

6 posts

I used to be a club member but like others here I gave up a a few years ago. The main attraction was the club models. My interest is in aviation models so I don't know if the following is applicable to cars, buses etc. but club models could be done quite easily by varying some of the main releases but with variations and with a lower run number. As an example, the first release Meteor was a 616 squadron aircraft of WWII vintage. It would have been easy to produce a second version as a post war aircraft by changing the serial number, adding a white rose to the tail and perhaps adding the ventral fuel tank.

I would have renewed my membership for that reason alone but another incentive would be to make the club discount at least the same as dealers offer along with the free postage.

Smithy15

80 posts

David Lynn sums it up perfectly, ye olden days were the best, I used to look forward to receiving my vanguards magazine which would be packed full of interesting articles, details of promotional releases, competitions etc, the yearly club model was a joy to own, the corgi catalogue that used to arrive on the post mat free of charge - now we get a club magazine with 'at best' two or three pages to do with vanguards and aload of info on planes, buses, trucks etc that I don't collect and doesn't interest me, not forgetting about the kiddies section with a colouring section (serioursly??????), no club model and no free catalogues.  I didn't renew my membership after Corgi altered the catalogues and judging my the lack of traffic on this forum I think the collectors are deserting Corgi in their droves - no response from Corgi admin to defend their decisions - poor very poor..........

David Lynn

136 posts

So, after my post a month ago, 4 replies all pretty much giving similar reactions to my comments. Nothing from the admin or the club themselves to give any sign that these concerns are being taken seriously. Which is both a pity and somewhat ironic, as I've just realised that I missed out a benefit in my initial list of a £15 voucher - an element which makes membership reasonably cost-effective after all. 

 

It is disappointing that no-one from Corgi realised my omission and jumped in with what would have been a valid correction - to me at least it seems indicative of what appears to be an all-pervading apathy about the club itself and about engaging with the points raised by forum contributors (Sorry Admin - I know you jump in quickly every so often, so not aiming this directly at you - more that despite your frequent assurances that all points are taken seriously, nothing appears to change higher up the chain).

 

And there sems to be a small but perverse twist to the £15 voucher - apparently it can not be used in tandem with the 10% member discount, only for a full price purchase.  As the voucher is not available to non-members, this restriction is illogical and means 10% of £15 is therefore lost compared to a member's non-voucher purchase so its real value is only £13.50. So Corgi, please either (a) be honest about the actual voucher value and amend your descriptions to £13.50 or (b) - preferably - remove the restriction on its use alongside the 10% discount.

 

One final point about the 10% discount. Folk have commented that it's not enough to make a difference, as cheaper prices easily found elsewhere. I guess Corgi may well be unable to offer anything more due to arrangements with retailers - if a manufacturer selling its stuff direct with big discounts becomes the cheapest source for buyers, then the retail networks might as well give up. So in the long run,. I'd love the member discount to be 20% for the sake of my wallet, but can understand that the current level might be the best balance between conflicting pressures. 

Tiggerty Boo

136 posts

 Hi David, I agree, but with one caveat.  If it isn't possible to use the 10% Corgi member discount when the £15 voucher is used, the voucher must be off the price of the model rather than the voucher itself.  Given the cheapest Aviation Archive is around £50 (I'm not incuding the one-off Sixtieth Anniversay ones), then the loss would be £5...getting worse, as the model price increases.  It has the horrible feel of giving with one hand and taking with the other.

PR Enis

32 posts

 I am disappointed with feedback from Corgi. We are keen collectors and wish to make this a vibrant forum by discussing ranges. If Corgi do not wish to do this then I have to ask, what is the point? Next catalogue will be out soon but lately there has been little or nothing new for Vanguards, nothing for the increasingly popular 1/76 scale, 1/50 trucks have gone (I have no interest in modern trucks but just observing) although Aviation has seen some big projects released or announced with varying degrees of success. maybe Collector models for subscribers is out of fashion and takes too much moitoring but some models made especially for members would surely encourage many to take up membership?

Smithy15

80 posts

ha ha I forget about the £15 voucher, no matter how hard I tried to buy something off the Corgi website the voucher would not be accepted, I contacted Corgi who were of no help whatsoever, they basically said that I must put zero's at the start of the code rather than just the numbers, but when i explained that the code was all numbers and that I couldn't put zero's at the start I was met with no response, I spent about 2 months trying to get it resolved in the end I gave up so for me another reason not to renew...

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