Phil Dourado

On Lipstick and Pigs: Sales Promotions and Customer Loyalty

Steve Yastrow, over on the Tom Peters site, asks if a bribe can lead to loyalty and whether 'loyalty programs' can deliver loyalty. Well, Duh, as you Yanks like to say (I prefer 'D'ohhh' a la Homer Simpson, but not quite the same meaning,...

Customer-Centered Lessons From the End of the World

So, to state the obvious, we're still here, then. But, it did generate a wave of human energy, didn't it, all the media coverage about what might happen when the particle accelerator at CERN was turned on this morning (Swiss time). Did you notice...

The Bank That Changed Its Customer’s Password

Steve Jetley, a customer of Lloyds TSB bank, was unhappy with the service he received. So, he set his online banking password as "Lloyds is pants" ('pants' is UK slang for 'useless'). A mischievous employee altered it to "no we are not". So, Jetley tried...

Don’t Make People Wait. In a Downturn, Use Time to Show You Care

I read a great article in Tyler Brule's column in the Financial Times over the weekend. Apparently making people wait for a meeting to show how important you are has gotten out of control in the US. And it shows a culture that simply...

How to Use Twitter for Customer Service

Interesting slideshare here. Skip to slides 89-95 (-ish) for examples of how Southwest Airlines and Zappos use Twitter for customer service. Micromedia, small interactions building to have big effects - it's important to be aware what you can do with this stuff in customer...

The One Good Thing About a Downturn

"Good timbers do not grow with ease; the stronger the winds, the stronger the trees..." - Williard Marriott The one good thing about a downturn is that it makes you stronger as an organization. Or, at least it should. Most organizations just cut mindlessly, in…

How to Keep Customers in a Downturn

Keeping Customers In Tough Trading Conditions Here's some ammunition to convince the boss or the finance director (or you, if you are the top boss or finance director) that customer-facing resources deliver profit and need to be sustained, not cut back, in tough trading conditions.…

The Secret of Happiness Is …

...low expectations. When you have no choice your expectations are lower and 'pretty good' can be pleasantly surprising. (Also, when you are disappointed, the world/supplier is responsible, not you. So you can at least externalize your dissatisfaction). When you have 100s of choices, your expectations…

Beware of Leaving Frontline People With Only Negative Power

When your trading conditions turn down, the knee-jerk reaction is to start to re-centralize again. In a bid to control costs, power is pulled back from the front line, and decisions moved up. Big mistake. Front line people. as relatively low earners compared with...

Customer Service Is the New Marketing

I've become addicted to Slideshare. I like this (the Slideshare, below), though I think the title doesn't do it justice ('Customer Service is the new Marketing'). I particularly like 'The Secrets of The Concierge', which you can find on Slide 21. They are: 1. Put…

How to Inject Personality Into Automated Customer Service

Jim Sterne, one of my favourite/favorite (that's UK/US spelling BTW) web people (author of Customer Service on The Internet, among other things), got this confirmation email when he ordered a CD from CD Baby: shows you can inject a little personality into the...

All the World’s a Stage: Team Psychology and Performance

I just heard a psychologist talking about how people perform better when they feel they are being watched or 'on show'. It reminded me of Pine & Gilmore's book The Experience Economy and the notion that all business is now theatre and your people...

The New Golden Rule

I first learnt this from Ken Pasternak. We're always told to treat customers as we would want to be treated. It comes from one of those fundamentals of life, the classic Golden Rule. The Golden Rule is 'Do as you would be done by' or,...

If Jack Nicholson Were Your Customer

I heard the late, great Fred Newell once talk about a Jack Nicholson exchange with a waitress in the movie Five Easy Pieces that illustrated how rules or company policy can generate conflict with customers instead of giving them what they want. Here's the dialogue...

Disney’s Service Principles; What Are Yours?

1. Pay fantastic attention to detail 2. Everything you do walks the talk 3. EveryONE walks the talk 4. Customers are best heard through many ears 5. The competition is anyone the customer compares you with 6. Reward, Recognize and Celebrate 7. Everyone makes a…

Heathrow Terminal 5: When Things Go Horribly Wrong, Sometimes Even the Best Service Recovery...

Yesterday, London's Heathrow airport opened its multi-billion pound Terminal 5. If you're not in the UK, you can read below what happened. I'm not going to comment, as it's a bit like shooting fish in a barrel, apart from to say that it's just as...

Lessons From Toyota in Moving From a “Push” to a “Pull” Economy (in Memory...

In the Pull Economy, you respond to customer 'pull' forces, rather than rely on old-fashioned Supplier Push. The market isn't made and shaped by a supplier driving demand through advertising (the old post-war model), but by customers and suppliers together shaping the market. I...

Innovating for Customers: Adjacency Innovation

Lee McEwan in his Serendipity Book blog spots an interesting approach to innovating for customers. This is a simple variant of what Vijay Govindarajan at Tuck Business School, currently seconded to help GE with their innovation, calls 'adjacency innovation': Take two unrelated things and...

Starbucks’ Organization Chart

Brand Autopsy's John Moore, who used to work at Starbucks, reminds us that this is the real organization chart. No matter what your over-complicated existing one claims to be, this is more helpful in focussing people. Starbucks used to use this as their organization...

Co-creation: Turkey and Cranberry Soda

Co-creation has been an emerging theme in recent years – where customers move from being passive receivers of your product or service to actively engaging in the production and creation process. Here's the latest example of it: At MyJones soda, you upload your own picture...

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