Customer Loyalty is all about Making Unconditional Connections
Most dogs can teach anyone more about loyalty in 10 minutes than all the classes, workshops, books and gurus on the subject combined.
Dogs are intensely loyal. They’re good at it. They know the true secret; it’s unconditional. Because it’s not something you get. It’s something you give.
3 Quick Stories about Customer Loyalty
In business, you can connect with people whether you’re the buyer or the seller. I like to meet people and form a connection even when I’m doing something as simple as buying a pizza. These quick little stories are from my perspective as “the customer”. You’ll see why later.
1. Pop. No Snap, No Crackle
Everyone loves pizza. Half the time I get it delivered and half the time I’ll go out to a pub or something. The third half of the time, I order it and go pick it up. The reason I go pick it up is because I want to know the people there. And I want them to know me.
A couple weeks ago I went to pick up a pizza and the manager says “Hey, take a free pop”. I looked at him puzzled. He replies, “You’re in here all the time. You’re a really good customer”.
No big fanfare or expense. Just a simple gesture. Connection. Mission accomplished.
2. “Bin” There, Seen That
Everyone hates going to the video store only to find all the good movies are already out. Sometimes they’re not. Sometimes they’re still sitting in the return bin. Whenever I run into my local video store I like to chat with the people there. I like to get their opinions on different movies. And I let them know what I thought of this or that movie.
I see a lot of people ask for a particular movie only to be told “They’re all out”. But whenever I ask, I usually get a different answer; “Let me check the bin for you”. Connection.
3. Sock it to ‘Em
If you’ve read my About page, you know that I go out with friends just about every Sunday for a 3 hour power-breakfast. The girls at the Yucca Tree are as much a part of the “club” and the conversation as we are.
Just before last Christmas I called 10 minutes before they opened and thought they were closed. We were disappointed. They were disappointed. After the holidays they had gifts waiting for us. I got socks. I forget what we got them. But again … connection.
Unconditional Means You Go First
These are not big, amazing stories. That’s the point. Connections are small and simple and easy to make.
But someone has to start. Someone has to reach out. Whether you’re the buyer or the seller; for customer loyalty or any kind of loyalty to happen, someone has to go first. No strings attached.
Just ask your dog. He knows.