Don't Miss a Thing
Free Updates by Email

Enter your email address


preview  |  powered by FeedBlitz

RSS Feeds

Share |

Facebook: Seth's Facebook
Twitter: @thisissethsblog

Search

Google


WWW SETH'S BLOG

SETH'S BOOKS

Seth Godin has written 12 bestsellers that have been translated into 33 languages

The complete list of online retailers

Bonus stuff!

or click on a title below to see the list

all.marketers.tell.stories

All Marketers Tell Stories

Seth's most important book about the art of marketing

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

free.prize.inside

Free Prize Inside

The practical sequel to Purple Cow

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

linchpin

Linchpin

An instant bestseller, the book that brings all of Seth's ideas together.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

meatball.sundae

Meatball Sundae

Why the internet works (and doesn't) for your business. And vice versa.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

permission.marketing

Permission Marketing

The classic Named "Best Business Book" by Fortune.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

poke.the.box

Poke The Box

The latest book, Poke The Box is a call to action about the initiative you're taking - in your job or in your life, and Seth once again breaks the traditional publishing model by releasing it through The Domino Project.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

purple.cow

Purple Cow

The worldwide bestseller. Essential reading about remarkable products and services.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

small.is.the.new.big

Small is the New Big

A long book filled with short pieces from Fast Company and the blog. Guaranteed to make you think.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

survival.is.not.enough

Survival is Not Enough

Seth's worst seller and personal favorite. Change. How it works (and doesn't).

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

the.big.moo

The Big Moo

All for charity. Includes original work from Malcolm Gladwell, Tom Peters and Promise Phelon.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

the.big.red.fez

The Big Red Fez

Top 5 Amazon ebestseller for a year. All about web sites that work.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

the.dip

The Dip

A short book about quitting and being the best in the world. It's about life, not just marketing.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

the.icarus.deception

The Icarus Deception

Seth's most personal book, a look at the end of the industrial economy and what happens next.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

tribes

Tribes

"Book of the year," a perennial bestseller about leading, connecting and creating movements.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

unleashing.the.ideavirus

Unleashing the Ideavirus

More than 3,000,000 copies downloaded, perhaps the most important book to read about creating ideas that spread.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

v.is.for.vulnerable

V Is For Vulnerable

A short, illustrated, kids-like book that takes the last chapter of Icarus and turns it into something worth sharing.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

we.are.all.weird

We Are All Weird

The end of mass and how you can succeed by delighting a niche.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:

whatcha.gonna.do.with.that.duck

Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?

The sequel to Small is the New Big. More than 600 pages of the best of Seth's blog.

ONLINE:

IN STORES:


THE DIP BLOG by Seth Godin




All Marketers Are Liars Blog




Blog powered by TypePad
Member since 08/2003

« Don't Shave That Yak! | Main | Expectations Matter (Part 1 of my visit to Apple) »

Treat different customers differently (part 2 of my visit to Apple)

My friends Jackie and Ben (church of the customer)  will probably agree with me-- here goes:

Apple forgets that all customers are not the same. They make the common mistake of believing that every pair of feet that walks in the door is worth just the same as the feet before and the feet after.

My negative Apple store experience last night was the sort of thing that any of my esteemed readers could troubleshoot in less than six minutes.

Problem 1: The geniuses at the Apple bar treat ipod owners like g5 owners. The guy in front of me in line had not one, not two, but three machines with him. He was shlepping $10,000 worth of hardware. That doesn't include the fact that a heavy Mac user buys a new machine every year or two, and if she runs a company, buys 20 or 200 at a time. An iPod owner, on the other hand, has an expensive toy that he can certainly live without for a day or two.

Why is a genius spending his time wisely when he futzes with an ipod for fifteen minutes while the guy with three Macs just sits there?

The trivial solution: Envelopes! Give anyone with a broken iPod a postage-paid padded envelope. Have them fill out a form online (see my idea below) and drop it in a mailbox. The mail takes the broken ipods to cheap locations where they are quickly triaged and replaced.

Problem 2: For a computer company, Apple is doing a lousy job of using a database to track their very best customers. In order to get on line to meet a genius, you need to type in your first name into a queuing system running on all the machines in the store. Shouldn't the system where you reserve your slot with the genius be able to figure out who you are and treat you accordingly?

Aside: As long as we're talking about consumers and treating people with respect, it's essential to remember this: people don't remember how long it took them to get service. They remember what the wait was like.

If i were running the genius bar, I'd keep the people waiting superbusy. First, I'd use one (or more) of the many Macs in the store to have people type in their serial number, name, problem, etc. This is all currently done by the genius, which wastes everyone's time. More important, it would make the customer an active part of the repair process, which would make everyone more engaged and happier.

For iPods, I'd go a lot further. It turns out that there are only three or four things that are wrong with 99% of all the iPods. So why not have a computer-assisted diagnostic station that people could use to reboot or diagnose their iPods with no help at all? Sort of like self serve gas. If, at the end of the process, the machine agrees that the thing is dead, it would print out a receipt and boom, you get a new one.

Apple's going 90% of the way but more often than not, alienating the very people they were hoping would become engines of postive word of mouth. Matt, the aggressive guy with the iPod, said this when he found out his player was dead, "What! I have to wait a week? Can't i just pay the difference in the price and upgrade right here to a new model?" The answer, "We're not affiliated with the retail people. You have to wait until we mail you one."

Huh?

Not affiliated?

Have to wait?

Won't take more money?

The Genius Bar is genius. But it needs a whole bunch of tweaking. Sort of like the way you treat your customers?

Moral: Every customer touchpoint needs to be actively reavaluated.

"Could we treat our best customers better?"

"Can we change the story people tell themselves in between the time trouble starts and the time it's gone?"

"What are we doing that we've always done, instead of what we should do?"

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d83451b31569e200d834581fda69e2

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Treat different customers differently (part 2 of my visit to Apple):

» Seth on Experience Expectations and Apple from Digito Society
Seth relates the good and bad of his Apple retail experience. With afterthought, he distills some principles and solutions useful for expeerience managers. Bottom line: segment customers according to (a) their value and (b) their needs. Customers w... [Read More]

» May the Force e With . . . Your Customer from smallbusinessbranding blog - small business marketing
Seth Godin: [Read More]

» Air Battle in the Blogosphere: Boeing Blogs Down Airbus from Cyberlibris blog
Who should be afraid of Randy? Don't know who Randy is? Well, until a few minutes ago I did not know either, that is until I read a piece from Spiegel On-Line. Randy Baseler is vice president of Marketing [Read More]

» Making the Genius Bar Better from joe mullins dot com
Seth Godin wrote up a little post on his web page talking about his experience at the genius bar and some things he'd like to see changed. As I spent almost 3 years behind the bar, I thought I would... [Read More]

» Brand Architecture: The Mac is Back from Strategic Name Development Product Naming Blog
It appears as though Apple is moving towards a revised Mac-orientated masterbrand (also spelled master brand) architecture with its new brand names starting with Mac. I agree with this new nomenclature. The PowerBook G4 laptop now sports ... [Read More]

» Brand Architecture: The Mac is Back from Strategic Name Development Product Naming Blog
It appears as though Apple is moving towards a revised Mac-orientated masterbrand (also spelled master brand) architecture with its new brand names starting with Mac. I agree with this new nomenclature. The PowerBook G4 laptop now sports ... [Read More]

« Don't Shave That Yak! | Main | Expectations Matter (Part 1 of my visit to Apple) »