Category Archives: Marketing

Marketing

What Have You Done 4 Me Lately?

Thanks for Your Business!

I recently took my dog Dexter to the vet for a routine visit.  We could not have been more pleased with the service at East End Veterinary Medical Centre, and after receiving the “Thank You/Welcome” card (to the left) it got me thinking…

What Have YOU Done For ME Lately?

More specifically – What has your business done for its customers lately?

Veterinary offices seems to do a good job, in general, of keeping in contact with their customers in a seemingly genuine manner.  A simple Thank You card, a visit reminder, or similar note goes a LONG way in my book.  Especially when the communication let’s me know that I am a VALUED customer.

Imagine that – Your Customers like to be Valued.

How can you take this further without being totally obnoxious?

10 Ways to Value Your Customers and Add Value:

  1. Genuinely THANK your customers for their business – IMMEDIATELY…DO IT NOW
  2. Take time to LISTEN to your customers’ needs and wants
  3. Make relevant suggestions; ensure TRUST in the relationship
  4. Update your customers on what YOUR business is doing in the community/industry
  5. Participate in Community/Conversation (Online and in Real Life!)
  6. Make it easy for customers to give feedback and participate in the Community/Conversation
  7. Give your customers the tools to be your WOM advocate
  8. Make it right or Apologize – Immediately
  9. Make your customers the Rock Stars
  10. Do something Unexpected and Amazing

Now, I know these are all Über Basic and non-specific, but just think about them a little.  Have you thanked your customers lately?  I mean REALLY thanked ’em. And what are you doing to extend or enhance the customer’s experience BEYOND your immediate interactions?

I’ll give you some examples of what else a vet could do (for dog owners):

  • Sponsor dog owner/Meetup groups
  • Create map of local dog parks
  • Create list of local groomers, trainers, pet supply stores and pet friendly businesses
  • Sponsor community dog friendly events
  • Start opt-in mailing list highlighting dog health issues, events, and CUSTOMERS
  • Partner with key local business to provide discounts or incentives for customers
  • Encourage the writing of reviews and blogging of experiences

This by no means an all-inclusive list.  I’m sure you all could come up with 20 more things to add.  Oh, and did I mention your business still has to provide a great product or service?

Just always keep in mind:  Value Your Customers and Add Value.

Thoughts?

Negative-to-Positive & Winnie da Pooh

Flickr Credit - hagner_james

This week, I learned that almost ANY negative can be turned into a positive, and that Winnie the Pooh is wise beyond his years.

Gary Vaynerchuk (of WineLibrary.tv) had to react quickly when one of his sites (Cork’d) was hacked by a friendly porn site. TechCrunch picked up the story immediately. Gary, without waiting for advice, posted a Seesmic video to TechCrunch explaining the breach. The response was overwhelmingly positive because people appreciated his honesty, integrity, brevity, and genuine nature displayed in the video. Gary’s general approach to the “crisis:” Don’t wait for situation to escalate, take responsibility, take action and reassure audience/customers. Plainly – Don’t let it get out of hand and be genuine!

Negative is the New Positive…huh?

How did this become a positive for Gary and Cork’d? Gary posted multiple times on Twitter for help form developers. TONS of loyal, qualified followers replied, a respected Marketing Guru responded, and he effectively promoted Seesmic (others). This all lead to the positivity surrounding Gary’s response to the hack, AND fans getting a chance to help in the process. SO much more for US to sink our teeth into when we know the man in charge actually cares.

[Be sure to watch Gary Vaynerchuk’s video]

The positive PR and word-of-mouth that followed Gary natural reaction are priceless. All because some porn affiliate was hacking off.

What does Winnie the Pooh have to do with this?

Flickr Credit - disneyandy

Well, Pooh doesn’t have anything to do with the above situation explicitly, but James Chartrand at CopyBlogger brought up Winnie’s brilliantly simple approach to Life/Blogging. Keep it simple; keep it positive; get out and go to people; be patient; please your friends and love your honey…literally. How does this relate to Gary Vaynerchuk’s situation? Gary kept it simple with his video response; he didn’t focus on the negative aspect of getting hacked; Gary focused on his CUSTOMERS first and he didn’t let this ruin his “honey.”

*We all have a lot to learn from Gary and Winnie the Pooh. I know I’ve learned my share this week.

What Have You Learned This Week?