Steal This #3 – Zappos VIP Service

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Welcome to the first edition of my new weekly blog series, Steal This. Each week I’ll highlight a marketing activity that a company is using and suggest ways that you can model it and make it work for you. Last week’s topic was – Sell the Emotion like Apple.

Today’s topic is: Zappos VIP Service

Zappos is world renowned for their customer service. The service they offer is so good that it’s become the main marketing utility for the company. It starts at the top, and filters down to everyone hired. You must love the company and want to help customers, otherwise there is no place for you at Zappos.

Everything they do is designed to make for a better customer experience. And they take it a step further for their most loyal customers. They created a secondary website (I’ll not share the URL here) that they offer to customers over the phone who have a problem or that are frequent shoppers. This alternate website is identical in almost every way to the original, except that all checkouts are automatically upgraded to free next day shipping.

Loyalty programs are good. But this goes above and beyond, and does so in such a unique way that its sure to wow customers who are granted access.

So how can you steal it?

You can create a unique experience for your most loyal of customers. Whether it’s a discount, free gifts, better offers, exclusive products or experiences, it doesn’t matter. The key is the onboarding of this “special offer”. Don’t just send a generic email that many people may miss. Call people up, thank them, and present this opportunity. Or wait for them to call you and keep it in your sales or service teams’ back pockets as a bonus offer.

The more “exclusive” it is, the more likely those granted access will spread the word. In a world where you can’t go anywhere without someone telling you about a bad customer service experience, one of the greatest things for your business might just be someone sharing a good experience about it.

As always, tell me what you think of this week’s idea and suggest other marketing programs to “Steal” in the comments below.