This is a true story given to me by Les Philips of Index Wealth Management. Thank you Les, much appreciated.
A few years ago Les had two Italian brothers as clients who lived in St Helens, Lancashire and were owner-managers of a very small carpet shop. In the town there were the usual ”big boys” offering discounts and ultimately trying to drive the independents out.
These two brothers had a very loyal customer base, got most of their business through recommendations, received a good deal of repeat business and were easily able to resist the onslaught of their more powerful competitors. In short: they did extremely well for themselves.
Les enquired as to how they had achieved such success in a highly competitive area and their answer was amazing. It turned out they had a very simple way of differentiating themselves from the competition which was also a highly effective and yet very low-cost marketing engine.
Every time they supplied and fitted a carpet, and without additional cost, they would remove all the doors adjoining the carpet, shave the appropriate amount off the door’s, re-hang them and then vacuum up. Then they would return to their shop and handwrite a thank you letter to the customer, thanking them for their business and hoping that they were satisfied with the care, product and service.
They also explained that as a small business they valued their custom very much and stated that referrals were their lifeblood, and if satisfied would they mind telling other people.
There is an old saying that as an entrepreneur you must expect nothing until you’ve created value for others. These guys lived a fantastic life by doing just that!
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