The Yogurt Marketer…

July 5, 2011

When I travel, I have basic needs. IMG_20110615_065002

A bed/bath, an exercise room, and free wi-fi (because I hate feeling nickel and dimed). Outlet extensions are bonus.

On a recent trip to Redmond, WA, my admin found a place called “The Redmond Inn” and booked me there.

Now, this is not a high-end hotel, but a solid place with a coffee bar and some breakfast bagels available in the morning.

On my first morning there, as I made my way past the Reception area, the guy behind the desk told me that he also had brown paper bags, pre-packed with a container of yogurt and a can of orange juice so people could grab it and go as they headed out for their day of business.

Now, here’s where it gets interesting and it goes to the importance of both Making Everyone A Marketer (see eBook) and the power of every single touchpoint to create a remarkable moment which IN TURN creates a human, emotional connection.

And, when you’ve done that, you have built your brand.

And then, you’re not a commodity.

How Yogurt Became A Touchpoint

On the first day, I took a container of yogurt (I love yogurt) on the way back from the gym.

On day two, I also asked for and received a container of yogurt.

On day 3, I came back from the gym and was about to ask when, lo and behold, Tom pulled out…a container of yogurt.

No big deal, you might say, but you’d be wrong.

What he did in that moment is showed me that I was not just a paying customer, I was a person whose needs he could anticipate.

And I felt appreciated.

And I felt a connection to the Redmond Inn. It was a “human” organization.

I was so inspired, I asked Tom about why he did this. Here’s what he said in the video .

And How Yogurt Made Me More Forgiving.

Now, when I got back to my room and jumped in the shower, I was surprised to discover that there was NO SHOWER CURTAIN.

I have NO idea what happened, but I do know how I felt.

I felt that Redmond Inn was a place full of people just trying to do their best and what probably happened was that some well-intentioned housekeeper had decided to change it/clean it and innocently enough had forgotten to replace it.

They are a “human” organization and humans make mistakes. So I said, “ok, no biggie. I’ll make it.”

Now, contrast that with what normally would have happened…

If you return to a room and see that there is no shower curtain, you are pretty ticked off.

“What kind of 2nd rate place is this?”

“I’m never staying here again!”

You assume the worst.

But, because Tom was a “Maya Angelou Marketer” and focused on making me FEEL like a valued guest, I instead assumed the best.

No harm, no foul. No tweets about lousy service.

Instead, a blog post and a video telling everyone how great I think the Redmond Inn is.

Positive Word of Mouth instead of negative Word of Mouth.

That’s the ROI on creating a culture where Everyone Is  A Marketer and where there is an appreciation that every customer touchpoint matters.

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