Friday, December 16, 2011

Your Goodbye Is Your Customer's Hello

It's been a long road getting here. Product development, testing, market research, production, scalability never seemed to end. But now you've made it. You have a product ready for your customers (and hopefully the world) to enjoy. 

Now the real work begins. 

Sure, you're certain the formulation is safe, cost-effective, consistent, not subject to temperature swings, and countless other factors, but what have you done to ensure an ideal first experience?

A few days ago (I'm not joking), I strayed from my usual lunches and had one of those single-serve Greek yogurts. The first thing I noticed when I peeled the top was how the yogurt had been drizzled in an intricate pattern. It was classy and enticing, and I couldn't help but smile (and eat!). 

Their goodbye was my hello. 

They could have easily left out that pattern. No doubt, it added valuable pennies and seconds to the production line. Margins would be higher, yields as well. So why do something to your product that couldn't possibly even help sell it on the shelf?

My hello. 

Go back to my description of opening the container. Notice anything important? I was smiling about their product before even tasting it!

Before. Even. Tasting. 

What can we all learn from their example? That perceptions, obviously, matter, but not only the ones you slave over for days, weeks, months, maybe even years. You cannot forget the little things, those that "seal the deal" for your customer's satisfaction. 

Would I have eaten the yogurt if it had just been poured into the container? Sure, but it wouldn't have been as memorable. Which brand will I get next time I'm at the market? I think you can guess. 

Once again, the Beatles said it best, "You say goodbye and I say hello."