Articles with Innovatively Adding Value

Time to Clear Out Customer Service Winter Blues

While you are putting away your winter clothes and cleaning out all the accumulated dust from winter, make sure to take time to do some spring cleaning around the office or business too. Here are six top tips to revitalise the experiences that they have:

Ten Lessons About Service

After twenty five years in the world of customer care, I have come to the conclusion that getting it right doesn't take too much. Here are ten lessons that you can start with.

The Big Gorilla Sits Wherever He Wants To… Or Maybe Not

Large businesses can make a big difference to society at large - but the way they treat customers leaves a lot to be desired. In fact, service is often appalling. They can learn a lot from smaller companies

The Essence of Sales - Woody Martin

How often have you heard the phrase "sell the sizzle, not the steak"? Well, here is a true story about Woody Martin, a cigarette salesman who sold a box of matches for a dollar - in the 1960s. He did it not by focusing on the matches, but on something much deeper that all customers love.

To Use Customer Loyalty Programmes - or Not

Customer Loyalty Programmes usually create more problems that they solve, and are often seen as a silver bullet to solve problems with marketing or service. This is not always a good strategy

Top Tips for Creating Customer Experiences

To create unbelievable, personal, memorable and newsworthy experiences for customers is not hard. Here are some ideas

Turning Ducks into Eagles

We all know that the best customer service has little to do with systems, processes, loyalty programmes and similar unless you first get your staff on board. The biggest challenge facing you is how you get every person in your company both able and willing to take care of customers. The job of all managers is to turn ordinary people in customer champions – in spite of the fact that dealing with customers is often very hard.

Twelve Quick Ways to Build Customer Loyalty – a Key Account Management Approach

There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of ways to build customer loyalty. Here we look at it from the viewpoint of a typical key account management approach, and look at the lessons from the way a typical KAM would interact with customers.

Value Innovation and Blue Ocean Strategy

In a world where everything we buy just seems the same, some companies have used innovation to give their customers amazing experiences – and create long-term loyalty. This article discusses how W Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne recommend you approach the topic of value innovation.

Waiting for the Next Hit That Goes Viral

How does a video go viral on YouTube? In this article we look at a number of ideas that will help you to stand out from your rivals by being interesting rather than invisible - and managing your own "virality."

What Do You Give Someone Who Has Everything?

Creating special, magical, personal and memorable experiences for your customers doesn't have to cost a fortune - but you may change their lives - and their loyalty - forever.

Where is Your Next Whack-on-the-Side-of-the-Head Going to Come From?

With "shadow banking" now responsible for 25% of the whole financial services industry activity, short-sighted executives did not see that customer frustration would move them to seek other alternatives. But is this also happening in your industry?

Why you need to work as hard to keep your customers, as you did to get them

When a business opens its door for the first time, its main focus is getting customers. But what is equally important, and often neglected, is developing a strategy to keep clients.

Would You Tuck Your Customers Into Bed One Night?

Even though some customers are really unlovable, love them anyway. After all, if Richard Branson can tuck them in at night, why not you?


With only a couple of weeks to go until Christmas, shoppers are starting to feel a bit stressed by the insane nightmare of mass advertising, crowded shopping malls, overstretched banks, and businesses that never seem prepared enough. As a retailer or store-owner it’s one of the busiest times of the year and a hugely important period that provides the perfect opportunity to give your customers memorable shopping experiences that make their lives easier and spread Christmas cheer. Here are a few little service treats that you can include to get your store ready and get your customer service team into gear to spread some love – just for the sake of it!

10 Golden Rules of Delighting Customers

Of course it is impossible to write 10 rules that will apply in all businesses, but this is a good start. What do you need to do to Delight Your Customers?

2016: Year of the Consumer Snitch

Never waste a good crisis… this advice to business leaders was bandied about during the global financial meltdown and subsequent recession. Well, another crisis is on the way and winners and losers across our economy will be determined by whoever seizes or wastes the opportunity.

82 Ways to Add Value for Customers

Adding value for customers - continuously, and innovatively - is essential for creating customer loyalty, but it doesn't have to cost you a lot. Here is a (longish) summary of all 82 ideas

Advertising is the Price You Pay for Being Unremarkable

Jeff Bezos made this quotation in his report to shareholders in 2009, and it is more true today than ever before. Why don't companies use the power of referrals and recommendations to keep customers loyal? versus the World

No-one will argue that has changed the way customers buy things forever, and in a very positive way for customers. But what can traditional retailers like Exclusive Books do to prevent a total meltdown for their business? In thei article we look at the alternative choices for traditional retailers, but there are lessons for all businesses too.

Boost your business this Spring

Spring has sprung, (at least in the southern hemisphere,) and it's time now to take a fresh look at refreshing and re-vitalising your customers' experiences.

Breaking the Rules

Entrepreneurs know what they need to do to succeed - and a lot has got to do with the way they treat customers. They are unfettered by "the rules," and indeed relish the thought of doing something innovative

C.R.M. Can Be Really Magical – When It Works

Companies spend fortunes on expensive CRM systems, but more often they are used to save money rather than make the lives of customers better. Here's how to make sure it pays off.

Customer self-service

Customers are not always rational, but canny businesses will know exactly what to do to make them come back by giving them amazing service experiences

Diamonds May Be Forever - But That's Not What YOU Sell

Most managers believe that they need to differentiate their brand by offering something that is unique and distinct, but unless you get the basics incredibly right, no amount of "fancy" stuff will keep customers loyal.

Does Showrooming Mean Death to Your Business?

"Showrooming" is the practice used by customers to physically examine and compare products that they want to buy - before ordering the same products online probably for a lot less. Does this spell the end of traditional bricks-and-mortar businesses? Not if they do their best to add value and give customers great experiences.

Easter the Time to Get Cracking On Service Improvements

As we approach Easter and the beginning of winter, the time to create warmth and spread good news with little things is ripe. Here are some examples.

How Do You Keep the Excitement Going?

Whenever a company embarks on a process to create a culture that delights customers and creates loyalty, we usually recognise four very distinct phases in the process: Awareness, evangelical, frustration, and performance.

Customer Management Strategy

They’re here, a whole new generation of ‘Teens’ and ‘Tweens’, the 15 to 25 year olds of today, making up around 24% of the population, who will change the face of retail shopping and already demand a high level of ‘customer care’. Mostly not yet salary earners, these young people nevertheless, through their parents, exert a massive influence on retail spend and their time is coming soon as the primary spenders themselves. 16 to 34 year olds in Africa today will contribute to over $400 billion in total consumption growth in the next ten years!

How Hard Can It Be?

Some businesses seem to go out their way to make things hard for customers, causing endless frustration for customers - and their staff. How hard can it be to identify and analyse the "dumb things" that your company does, and implement projects to remove these permanently?

If you think customers were fussy in 2013...

If you think customers were fussy in 2013, wait until you see what's coming in 2014! In this article we look at 6 trends that you will need to respond to in 2014.

Is 2015 Going to be About Many Black Fridays?

Where are businesses going in 2015 in creating loyal customers? In this article we look at 15 irreversible trends that you must respond to - or fail.

Lobster Was Once a Prison Food!

It's always amazing how customers perceptions of value influence their purchases. You can influence these in a very powerful way.

Marketing Lessons from a Cretan Wedding

Weddings can be incredibly expensive events, but people don't seen to mind paying a lot of money for the event. But that is changing, and the world of marketing is doing the same.

No, You CAN'T Have It All

In today's turbulent times, many companies are cutting back on quality and service. If customers think that prices don't show the same decrease, you will get into trouble.

Of Airplanes and Things

How do you respond when you have a better experience for a much cheaper fare on a flight? After initial trepidation, I booked on and got a lovely surprise. The people were delightful, I laughed a bit, the ‘plane got there on time, and I saved myself a fortune. South African Airways, on the other hand…

One-Stop Shopping in All Businesses?

In a world where customers' lives have become very complicated, some businesses take the trouble to create convenience and simplicity for their customers. Here we share some examples... and dream about some more possibilities.

Pink Jerseys and Pearls

We all have some special little weakness that seems to be a great turn on. (In Aki's case it's women who wear pink jersies and pearls.) What if we were able to tap into our customers' deepest needs?

Romance Your Customers

Most businesses insist on using the "spray and pray" approach to marketing, which is the equivalent of marching up to all the women in a single's bar and proposing marriage. Those days are over, and it's time to learn the new rules of engagement.

Rugby on Saturday Is Just Not Enough

Managers sometimes really have to rack their brains to come up with new ideas to add value for their customers - and keep them loyal. In fact, there are at least 82 ways to do this.

Same Old, Same Old... And I Love It

Sometimes in this complicated world we need to give customers products and experiences that are consistently the same as they always were.

Sometimes Self-Service is the Best Service

The world of customers seems to have become awfully complicated, but there are lots of ways in which you can reduce their effort and simplify their lives.

Should I Stay or Should I Go?

How to deal with the inevitable delays and queues that keep customers waiting in frustration