Are your marketing dollars building another's business?
Recently, my wife and I decided it was time to replace the storage shed
in our backyard. It had obviously been there since long before we moved
in 16 years ago. It had become quite shabby looking on the outside and
the inside had been taken over by varmints making it their winter home.
We had a few likely places to go to compare pricing and features,
including the big do-it-yourself warehouse-style stores. But, we
anticipated that the most attractive options would be available from a
well-known local firm that specializes in nothing but sheds.
As we drove up to the "local's" place of business, our expectations were
exceeded. A large display sign clearly announced a 10% off sale that
ending "tomorrow" and their grounds had a vast number of sheds. The
parking lot was full of anxious consumers wanting to get started on
their first outdoor projects of spring.
We were promptly greeted by a helpful customer service / sales
representative eager to learn what we were looking for and who showed us
several viable options, all within the price range we were targeting.
Now that we had the pricing and options, we simply needed to select the
size of shed we wanted and pick the features to include. For that, we
needed to go back home, take some final measurements, select colors and
discuss the optional features. The sales person gave us a high quality
brochure and price list, and we indicated we'd be back the next day to
finalize the deal. So far so good, right?
The following day, we were the first customers in the door. We were
greeted by one of the owners who was pleased to hear that we were
returning from yesterday, ready to place our order. He cautiously asked
"did anyone mention the delivery schedule?" We had to answer "no, the
delivery times were not mentioned." At this point, I thought we may have
to wait a few weeks for our new shed. The owner then indicated "we are
currently quoting delivery dates of mid-July." You are kidding was my
reply. After learning that they would take our order, with no deposit,
we admitted that we'd be willing to place an order but would also be
looking elsewhere as we want a shed now (at least in the next few weeks)
and didn't want to wait 3 months.
As we drove away all I could say was "mid-July?" in disbelief.
Before we were 2 miles away, we had gone online and located 2 other
(less well-known) shed specialists in the area. And, we visited one to
see a display model. We observed that the shed's design, materials and
features seemed to be an exact match with the well known firm's. Soon
after, we had an appointment with this firm to come by our house the
next day to scope out the site, review pricing and options.
During our meeting with the representative from the second firm, we
shared our experience working with the well-known company. His response
was "yeah, happens all the time. They do all that crazy marketing but
can't keep up with demand. People then come to us. We do very well."
After further review, we confirmed that the designs, features and
materials were in fact the same AND the pricing was less than the other
firm's sale price. The final question was delivery time. We were happy
to learn that we could have our new shed installed in 2-3 weeks!
To be clear, the owner of the second firm understands the value of
marketing. He just happens to be getting great value from the marketing
dollars of the other firm.
The moral of the story is to be sure that your delivery capacity can
keep up with customer demand and your marketing. Otherwise, if there is
able competition, you are actually helping to build THEIR business.
Serving Those in Need…Again
Members of the
Customer Centricity team and the First Baptist Church of Hudson, NH are
again headed to the Gulf Coast of Mississippi, to build and/or refurbish
homes with Habitat for Humanity. This year the team is traveling during
NH school vacation (week of April 25) to enable teens to experience the
blessing of helping others in need through hard work.
slammed into the Gulf Coast on August 29, 2005, destroying property and
killing hundreds. Less than a month later, on September 24, 2005,
Hurricane Rita also made landfall on the Gulf Coast, extending the
devastation even further. All told, more than half a million homes were
damaged or destroyed.
Six years later
Habitat for Humanity still engages coastal Mississippi families
struggling with run down temporary shelter and poor housing conditions.
If you are
interested in supporting the cause or would like to learn more,
click here. The team of volunteers and, more importantly, the people
in need thank you in advance for your support.
Customer Centricity to help us increase business and launch our newly
expanded building and property management services. I was very impressed
from the start as they had us take a step back and provided an objective
perspective and approach to meet our challenge. From our “kick-off”
meeting through completion, they walked us through a step by step
approach, always being very responsive and available for consultation.
We looked at our customer base in a manner we hadn’t before which
helped us understand how our customer base could be harvested from
within as well as approaches to effectively acquire new customers. The
implementation of their approach was very successful and we couldn’t be
more pleased. I highly recommend Customer Centricity.