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‘Sledgehammers’ for loyalty

By - Last modified: April 11, 2013 at 11:51 AM
Dick Cross. Submitted photo.
Dick Cross. Submitted photo.

The two strongest ways to endear yourself to another are to: 1. help them over a fear, or 2. make them feel better about themselves.

Today, more strongly than ever, these two realities are your highest-voltage power tools for driving a continually vibrant top line.

But it’s not a popular idea among many marketers. Or engineers. Because it’s right brain thinking -- not all logical and neatly measurable. And because it’s contrary to nearly everything that’s made them successful in the past.

But societal patterns and cultural norms are changing. Fast. With the combination of immediate access to everything we want to know, and with the realities of our “new normal” global economy. Business as usual is passing away. And in its wake, the specific attributes of what people buy are becoming less meaningful in their purchase decisions than the experience they have in buying it.

So, what does this mean for the person in The Job At The Top?

It means rethinking every aspect of your business according to new standards. Sure, you’ve got to continue offering great products and services. But no longer are those sufficient. Wrapped around what you sell needs to be your obsession with what it feels like to do business with you, whether you help them over their fears or feel better about themselves.

This means new focal points for your attentions. Sure, stay committed to the competitive specifics of your products and services. But for some, only tangentially related to what you actually sell -- and for others, not at all.

My choice of dry cleaner has nothing to do with the quality or the price of cleaning. To me, it’s all about the same.

But it has everything to do with the counter person remembering my name. With a cup of fresh, high-quality coffee on the counter. A pleasant place to sit and chat about town issues with an owner who’s well informed. And owner with a zeal to rush a job -- and deliver to my home -- when I need it. A business that my friends support and that supports charities I admire.

Add in to your time thinking alone, 20 minutes three days a week, how you can make your business as important to your customers as Patriot Cleaners is to me.


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