Some free marketing ideas:
On Friday I wanted to make a reservation for a game of tennis for today. It wasn’t possible… because they accept reservations only on the same day. I called somewhere else and they were happy to take my reservation. The ‘sales sabotage department’ of the first tennis centre was successful. They might have lost a client who would spend thousands of euros there over the next five years. Years ago I frequently played tennis, I always had season passes for various courts, and now I’m thinking of starting to play seriously again. [More]
You’re not going to believe this. A major Slovenian company has ordered two books from us. The price total is 125 euros. They sent us a fax, with a filled in order form, accompanied by five pages of “General Purchasing Conditions” in small print.
These five densely printed pages of “General Purchasing Conditions” apparently explain how they make their purchases. Something like this might be sensible if you’re buying a tunnel or buying a nuclear power plant – but for a couple of books…
Every company has what I call a ‘sales sabotage department’. These General Conditions clearly came from such a department. Why? We just shipped them the books, and there were no problems on our behalf.
But five densely printed pages can’t make a good impression, no matter where the company makes its purchases. The impression that stays is that they lack common sense and that they are complicated bureaucrats. They didn’t gain our trust either. One can’t but think that there must be something wrong – after all, they may not pay the invoice – if they accompany an order with five pages of small print.
I’d really like to know if their boss knows about this stupidity. I’d really like to know if their CEO has ever tried buying anything from his/her own company.
Every contact with a potential customer counts. And these five-page purchasing conditions make a bad impression, which is ultimately damaging to the company’s reputation, sales and profit.