Remember that post about gratitude in marketing, and its impact on customer loyalty?
Well, I have just seen it into action.
My daughter e-mailed the owner of a small business that offers rabbit boarding services, asking whether they could look after her pet rabbit while we are on holidays. This is the reply that she received:
Hi [daughter’s name] & [rabbit’s name]
I am more than happy to take [rabbit’s name] again as he is a lovely bunny.
I am pretty much full [on dates mentioned] but will buy another hutch to accommodate [rabbit’s name] as you are good customers and I like to keep repeat customers.
First, how great is it that she addressed the message to the rabbit, as well as its young owner?
And second, how brilliant is it that, effectively, she invested in the relationship with this customer, offering to buy another hutch so she could accommodate the rabbit?
She could have simply said no; or she could have bought the hutch without telling us. Maybe she was already thinking of buying another hutch, anyway, and this was just a minor step in a long process. Out of all the options, she chose the best one: a) she helped us get exactly what we wanted and b) we now feel extremely grateful that she went the extra mile to help us.
The thing is that we are not even that good as customers. We only got the bunny earlier this year, and this is only the second time that we are using her services. Obviously, it is easy for her to see that, unless something dramatic happens to the rabbit, we could be using her company’s boarding services for a few years to come. But she has no idea what our family’s travelling habits are, or whether we have referred her to anyone, yet – we didn’t, but will surely do that. This lady knows how to run her small business 😉
Have you come across great examples of relationship marketing recently?
3 thoughts on “Relationship Marketing in action”
Wonderful example, Ana. Recently, my wife signed up for a ‘VIP-club’ (not exactly sure how they call it in this case) from the local Kiehl’s cosmetics store. I think you saw my photo on Instagram from our visit, the one with Mr Bones in it. Anyway, this VIP-club, or whatever they call it, is one of those schemes to keep you informed, etcetera. They have some standard tricks for these programmes, like sending you a card on your birthday. Often, you’ll find these to be the output of smart CRM-systems: a nice gesture, but without real human intervention. Not in the case of the Kiehl’s club. A few days after signing up, my wife received a hand-written card welcoming her to the club, with a phone number indicated on it, that she could call in case she has any questions. The fact that it was handwritten and very personal made us feel that they really want to put effort into their relationships with customers.
Ah, aren’t handwritten notes such a treat? I have grown to appreciate them more and more (since you sent me that wonderful postcard).
What I like most in your example, though, is the personalisation of the message. It is easy to set up a rule that a particular person in that club would write a note to the new member – but what is actually written requires the right attitude, and that what makes customers grateful.
Thank you for the example.