March Madness – A Hundred Million Fans

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This month, sports fans everywhere are plastered to the screen watching THEIR team scrap it out on the hardwood.  From the perennial favorites to the Cinderella teams, die-hard fans display the type of fanatical devotion that companies wish for in their Customers.

How do they do it? What is the secret to getting Customers to camp out for days in anticipation? How do you get to the level where your Customers are your biggest marketers?

It’s not just sports teams that create this environment. Just take a look at the fever that erupts around every Apple product release, hot video game and blockbuster movie.  What do they have in common?

1 – They are entertaining. Everybody who like to be bored, please raise your hand.  Now look around.  is anyone raising their hand?  Look in the mirror. Are you?  I didn’t think so. 

For many companies, this is relatively easy. From online forums to in-store displays and use of video and technology. we see companies using gamification and other tools to engage their Customers and promote their products in new and exciting ways.

While I don’t expect insurance, banking or lumber yards to start cranking out an X-box and PS3 release yearly, it is possible to run promotions and use video to make your old, dry products seem hip and trendy.  Look at how Geico has taken a very boring product (insurance) and become a household name forever lodged in pop culture. Think it takes a lot of money to do this? Think again. What did this commercial cost? A few hundred bucks?

2 – They engage the Customer.  Sports teams and, specifically, the players, know exactly who pays for the seats, the commercials and the merchandise.  How often do you walk into a store and are ignored?

If you can’t think of the last time, try going to your local bank to see if that jogs your memory. It’s not terribly hard to look at each Customer as a revenue stream, and then treat them as such.

From the moment of first contact, through to them leaving your store or website, contact with the Customer is key. Good companies understand this and do it right.  They get that Customer Engagement is not the sole responsibility of the Call Center, the front line clerk, or even the Manager. It is the responsibility of every employee, from the CEO to the newest employee.

There’s lot more, this should get you started. 

Thanks for reading, see you at the game,

Brandon 

 

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