I’m going to write a more detailed article about this for the Poker Affiliate Bible I think, but while it was fresh in my mind I wanted to touch upon a few key things.
I spend a lot of time reading books, forums, blogs and newsletters in regard to internet marketing. I see people talking about the best search engine optimization methods, the best marketing methods etc etc etc – yet I think everyone ignores the main one, which is customer service. By providing excellent customer service, you are more likely to be recommended by word of mouth, which is one of the strongest marketing methods around.
An example of this was just today, when I went to get my hair cut. I’ve been going to the same barbers for about 8 years now – it’s just one guy that runs his own business. For the past few years, I’ve got a “0” shave on the sides and back, and a “3” shave on the top. However I wear a cap like 24/7 these days, so I’ve just started shaving all my hair off with a razor myself, and haven’t been to the barbers in about 2 months. However I was walking by today and just decided what the hell, I haven’t seen him in awhile, so popped in to get what little hair I had chopped off. As is per usual we sat and chatted for awhile about football, basketball, poker etc.
As I was leaving, he stopped me and asked what age my kids were now. I told him, and he then said “wait a minute”, went and grabbed his jar that was crammed full with lollipops/suckers and emptied the whole thing into my bag. I mean there must have been like 50 of the fucking things. Did it cost him much? No, and considering I paid $14 + $4 tip to spend 5 minutes on my hair, it’s not like he was even giving up much at all. But it was just the fact that he went out of his way to do that – even a small appreciation like that, which will make me go back there every two weeks rather than shave it myself, as well as always recommend him to friends & family. My sons first haircut at a barbers(the wife does that) will definitely be done there too.
That’s why I have a rule these days that I respond to every e-mail within 6 hours. It’s why I respond to every e-mail, IM and PM in a timely manner, and why I take my laptop on vacations. It’s why I have a phone/PDA that can handle e-mail, so that if I am out for the day shopping I’m still able to address anything important that comes up. And you know what? It works wonders. People appreciate it, and people recommend my sites to others, and I get the kind of conversions that all the advertising dollars in the world just can’t buy.