This story will change your thinking about marketing

A few years ago I bought a toaster. It cost me $60 with free postage from an online store. It was a good toaster, well so the reviews suggested.

But, it turned out to be pretty average. I as a bit annoyed but I put up with it, as you do. I was busy and couldn’t be bothered to follow it up. I thought, I’ll use it for a little while and when I get really annoyed with it I’ll just buy another one.

But then something happened that surprised me.

Three months later I received an email from the online seller asking me how I liked my new toaster. Yes three months later the company emailed me to see if I was happy with my purchase. So I briefly replied, letting them know the few things about the toaster I thought were not so great.

To my surprise, I received a reply within 24 hours asking me what I would like – a new toaster or my money back? I emailed them back kindly letting them know that I no longer had the receipt or the box, so not to worry about it.

They replied, “That’s fine Darryn, we trust you. Just let us know what you want and we will send it to you.”

“Press pause for a moment. When was the last time this happened to you? Never right! This is how easy it is to standout, no matter how cluttered the market.”

I replied, “Ok. A new toaster would be great thanks.” I sent that email at 3.45pm on Tuesday.

The next day at 8am there was a knock at my door – a friendly delivery man with a new toaster under his arm. I was impressed.

Who do you think I went to when I needed a new appliance?

In fact, this is what I bought from them over the next 24 months.

  • 2 fridges
  • A washing machine
  • A clothes dryer
  • Coffee grinder
  • Kettle
  • Fan

Over $6,000 worth. Pretty smart investment don’t you think?

I have also recommended this company to a large number of people. I’ve told this story when I’ve spoken at conferences, I shared it with my family and friends, and my neighbours. I posted it on social media, and so on … it’s a great little story.

At least 2000 people would have heard me talk about my toaster experience. That’s the power of word of mouth.

I wanted to see how deep the rabbit hole went, so I did a little research.

This is what I found out.

My family and friends started to buy from them as well. From my recommendations I know that 9 people bought an appliance from them. I calculated their purchases and it came to …. $7,750! Add that to my $6,000 and you get a total of $13,750.

And that’s only the people I know bought something. I’m sure there were many more. The online seller probably spent around $200 in replacing my toaster. That’s a pretty good return on investment.

“I don’t ever need to see another ad from this company. They have my loyalty. All because they gave me a new toaster.”

This is without a doubt, the best form of marketing, no matter what industry, no matter what size. People love great customer service, generosity, value … these things never get old.

I hope this is helpful



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