Don’t advertise your weaknesses…

Everyone is trying to jump on the Social Media bandwagon, right? Sure they are.  You hear “join us on Facebook” and “Follow us on Twitter” regularly, even outfits you’d never expect.

That said, if you’re considering a move to/on FB/Twitter, make a move.  Don’t pull a false start.

I’m a bit of a coupon hound and appreciate good marketing.  I use Groupon, City Coupons, Amazon Deals, etc., but one way I think is particularly relevant is on Twitter.  You have chosen to follow me because you like what I’m doing and want to stay informed.

The other day, I was sitting in the car watching my 1 yr old while my
I jumped on Twitter looking for anything that might be out that day. That’s when I saw a HUGE hole in SK’s business strategy.  This is what it looked like – My wife ran into Smoothie King.  Being the coupon lover that I am, I spotted this poster right in the front window directly in front of my car.  Down in the right corner (get past the sexy woman you’ll be if you drink smoothies) you’ll see the FB/Twitter advertisements.

Note the last Tweet – 179 days! 2,878 followers and no Tweets for 179 days!

No, it’s not ONLY that they aren’t active on Twitter, it’s that they are asking people to go somewhere they aren’t! No SM strategy = no business strategy…here’s why:

They spent thousands, no doubt, developing advertisements, printing posters, sending out communication to their stores, and otherwise investing in getting out the word that they were going to engage customers.  Then, without regard to the implications, they weren’t there when the customer came to see them.

What if they tried that with a Brick & Mortar location? They’d be carted off and told to drink the energy additive that “Helps increase energy, brain function and mental alertness.

Do you know why we capitalize the word Internet? Because it’s a place, not a thing.

What does this tell you about their marketing strategy?  About their customer retention strategy?  About their customer interaction strategy?

Don’t tell everyone where your weaknesses are.  Make them figure it out on their own.

What weakness are you advertising?  People skills? Anger management? Leadership? Don’t draw attention to something you haven’t worked on. I’d love to hear what you think.

Customer Service: used car salesman?!?

There are millions of stories about bad customer service, especially in the used car industry.

Setup – I’m frugal when it comes to car shopping…okay, cheap.  I set a target price and don’t buy new cars.  Sorry, Detroit, Dave Ramsey said.  Anyway, I often go to numerous lots and see numerous cars before taking the plunge, usually from an individual.  The experiences are always the same.

Don’t get me started on the  “no haggle pricing” strategy (that’s just American’s being lazy and avoiding confrontation).  Even when I hear that “Dealer X is super-duper fantastically customer focused,” I know they’re really all the same…right?

Wrong!  I met George, a salesman at Chevrolet’s 2nd oldest dealership by accident when I stopped in to look at a vehicle I spotted on the internet.  At the time, the car wasn’t there and I told him I’d return that night to see it on my way home.  I didn’t show.  He called me the next day and told me he had the vehicle back on the lot if I was interested.

Two days passed.  I dropped back by there on my lunch break and George had just returned from taking a woman to the courthouse to apply for a tag (how weird is that?).  The car had been moved to the other lot the dealership has across town.  He told me it would be back this evening.  No problem, I was in a hurry anyway.

At 3:30, George called me and said he had the vehicle.

“Alright,” I thought, “I’ll come by if I get a chance tonight,” or whenever…

THEN…George tells me that he personally went across town and got the car.  He was bringing it to my work so I could see it.

What an amazing lesson for salespeople.  He over-delivered and totally caught me off guard.

When’s the last time you wowed a potential customer?  How about a current one?

Have I bought the car? Not yet.  My wife needs to see it…

I’ve talked to about 15 dealers in the last week.  Guess who just jumped ahead of all of them?

By the way, before you think “I’d go get a car too for a $40k sale’s commission,” this car is less than $10k.  Makes it even better.

FTR, I know, shame on me for stereotyping.  I hate it when people say government employees are lazy and don’t care.