Cablevision, AT & T Offer Rewards

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Cablevision Systems Corp. and AT & T Corp. said last week that they plan to launch their "Something Extra" rewards program to consumers in the New York metropolitan area who take both video services from Cablevision and phone service from AT & T.

The cable operator plans to drop direct-mail pieces to its customers over the next eight weeks describing the benefits of the program, starting with its largest group of customers.

"Each customer tier gets something different," Cablevision New York metropolitan-area president Joe Azznara said, adding that any customer who subscribes to both Cablevision and AT & T will get some form of reward.

For example, Cablevision's "Family" tier customers will receive Showtime and Disney Channel at no additional charge. And the operator may add Cinemax or The Movie Channel to "Optimum" package customers, depending on the cable system involved.

And since the "Optimum Gold" package already includes most of the premium-movie services, Cablevision will reward those customers with a portfolio of gift certificates toward movie tickets at Clearview Cinemas, purchases at The Wiz, or events at Madison Square Garden or Radio City Music Hall, Azznara said.

Cablevision hasn't ruled out the possibility of creating other rewards programs for customers outside of the AT & T subscriber base. "We're considering offering similar benefits to our Optimum Telephone' customers," senior vice president of product management and sales Pat Falese said.

Cablevision currently offers telephone service in parts of Long Island, N.Y., and Connecticut.

In addition to direct mail, Cablevision plans to use television, radio and billboards. AT & T will also market the Something Extra promotion as part of its all-distance service package, Azznara said.

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