Recently I was presenting the results of a mystery shopping campaign, and as commonly happens, the issues of capturing accurate contact details and inadequate follow-up were discussed.
Two particular areas of weakness identified were the provision of contact information to the marketing team and failing to confirm costs in writing via an email. Some viewed asking for email addresses and follow-up as an aggressive sales technique, but it does not need to be aggressive and this can be addressed easily through training.
Some commented that it tends not to be a priority when you have enough work on. This misses the point that you may be leaving work on the table. What is the point of investing in a smart website and search engine optimisation, if you do not have a process to ensure such leads are followed up enthusiastically?
So where does the ski jacket come in?
Well, on my way back from the presentation there was a problem at London Bridge tube and so I decided to walk over the bridge and take the train from Monument. This detour proved rather expensive, as it resulted in a visit to Snow+Rock on my way. Spotting the ideal jacket for my holiday, I joined a queue of five people waiting to pay – each of whom, without hesitation, spelled out their email address to the assistant who had politely asked for it when offering to email a copy of their receipt.
These five customers (100% of the queue) clearly had no objection providing their personal contact details when asked, and it will surely be no surprise when they start to receive emails from Snow+Rock.
On hanging up my new jacket at home and removing the labels, I was bemused to find an invitation to join the Schöffel Owners’ Club, promising news, events, competitions and a magazine delivered to my door.
Well, we all know that Schöffel’s objective is to secure my brand loyalty and make sure that I purchase my next item of ski apparel from them too. But the quality of this approach (bringing to mind the Aston Martin Owners’ Club) was certainly appealing.
Whilst many still guard their privacy fiercely, the internet generation take a more relaxed view and expect to be marketed to. They know that you seek their brand loyalty. Failure to ensure you have their correct contact details and to follow-up appears unenthusiastic and uninterested. Is that how you wish to be perceived?
Sue Bramall is managing director of Berners Marketing and advises law firms in the UK and overseas