Poor ReputationA few months ago I was approached by a company that was in a sales slump and needed help.

Sales were down and the owner felt that better marketing would be the answer.

What I discovered is that this company had a problem, but it wasn’t their marketing. It was their reputation. They were perceived as having a poor quality product and unfriendly staff.

They didn’t have a marketing problem, they had a customer experience problem.

Before we could help grow their customer base, and increase their sales, we needed to fix their customer experience problems.

Here’s why…

  1. If you don’t fix the problem you will be marketing to angry ears and riling up a crowd eager to vent their grievances.
  2. Word of mouth is one of the best forms of marketing, but it’s not always positive. Remember that stat – an unhappy customer will tell 10 more?
  3. Your fancy marketing isn’t going to fool customers anymore than spraying your bathroom with a floral-scented aerosol.

And really, why would any company not want to have happy customers?

After changes have been made, marketing comes into play because it’s time to show people that you’re different, and tell a new story.

The Reinvention of Domino’s Pizza

A great example of a company that reinvented themselves after enduring a bad reputation for years is Domino’s Pizza.

For years Domino’s had been know for their fast delivery, and 30 minute guarantee…but they were also known for having pizza that didn’t taste great. In fact, in 2009 the pizza chain was tied for last in taste, among major pizza chains.

Their sales were suffering as a result.

No amount of marketing would help Domino’s Pizza if most of the people hearing it thought the pizza tasted awful. Domino’s needed to get back to basics and reinvent their pizza. And that’s what they did.

Take 4 minutes to watch this awesome video clip about their reinvention. It captures just a small part of what they did (http://youtu.be/AH5R56jILag):

As a result of Domino’s reinvention, sales were up 14.3% in the first quarter of 2010, a jump unheard of in the quick service industry.

If you’re in a similar situation, and your company is ready to tackle the problem head on, please contact us. We’ll discuss it and I’ll explain how we’ve helped other companies fix their customer experience challenges, and how we can help you.