Customer Retention: Don’t Worry, Be …
8. Have some fun. It never hurts to allow your customers to have some fun when shopping with your company. You can play Tic Tac Hoof with Gurt the Cow on the Stonyfield Farms’ Web site, or exercise your imagination at Pottery Barn’s Web site by browsing its Style House for ideas and how-tos.
At New Pig, spend a few hundred dollars and get a Bad Little Piggy T-shirt. There’s fun, and there’s funny. Ask to be put on hold while on the phone with a New Pig rep and the song “Kiss a Swine” will come on.
9. Use a little guilt. Napa Valley vintner Manfred Esser has coined his customer care strategy as “guilt marketing.” He explains: “You treat your customers soooo well that you create a sense of obligation for them to come back for more. They actually feel guilty if they forget about you.”
Naturally, the guilt strategy only works if you really do lavish attention on your customers. But it can work. The skin care company DHC sends me so many catalogs with cool little samples of skin cream enclosed (the stuff is great and fits flat in the single, one-quart plastic bag you have to take on the plane these days) that I’m about to place my first order — I feel guilty since they treat me so well!
10. Challenge the status quo. You either create the future or it creates you. Too many companies spend their time fighting fires
and plugging up holes in leaky dams. We get instant rewards from reacting to “urgent” affairs. Too few companies have a rigorous process in place for examining what the late, great management guru Peter Drucker called the “Theory of Business.” It’s an examination of the assumptions on which an organization has been built, along with an assessment of whether or not they still fit reality.