By Guest Blogger, Mary Schmidt, Marketing Troubleshooter
The bathroom is for family only.
They can't park in front of your house. If they do, they'll be towed.
They can't have a replacement for the dropped fork. Sorry, now they'll have to eat with their fingers.
It's their fault they can't figure out how to use the fancy-schmancy wine opener. Sorry, they'll have to go without.
(making sure you say the sneering "sorry" as sarcastically as possible.)
That they violated their guest "contract" by not making the bed, so now you don't have to give them breakfast.
Their visit time has expired. (Well, okay...maybe ever so politely...)
Yet, businesses often treat their paying customers this way.
Hmmm...maybe it's time you took another look at your customer service policies. And, check out how it all actually works (or doesn't, since it only takes one person to ruin a customer experience.)
P.S. While you're at it - look at your employee policies. They're people too. And, what goes around, comes around. I've stopped eating at one parking-challenged restaurant because of their treatment of employees. They actually posted a sign (where customers could see it coming in?!?) "Employees: DO NOT park in the back lot; the spaces are for (insert names of owners) ONLY. If you do you will be towed." Wow. What a happy, happy place to work...and these people are making my food??? (In fact, any sign or document that begins with "DO NOT" in all caps sets a negative, adversarial tone for all involved. I mean, really. Unless you're managing a nuclear or bio-weapons facility, you really don't need the Nazi fear language.)
So, you've read all the way down here and wondered what the heck this has to do with marketing to women? Well, here's that tip: Women hate to be dissed - and unlike (most) men who will grump a bit and simply never come back - we'll get on the phone, online, on twitter, on the mountain top, on the street corner...and tell one and all about our bad experiences (just as I'm still telling people to never, ever have an event at the ABQ museum as long as the single point of failure works there.)