Retail Marketing: Ask For Endorsements

By Bob Phibbs

retail marketing tips

Retailers often ask me for the magic bullet; that one thing that will make them a lot of money.

In a word, it is being remarkable. 

Remarkable is doing a job so well your customers have to talk to someone about it.

They engage their friends and describing their exceptional experience, are marketing your business in ways you can’t imagine. That is the power of being remarkable.

Case in point, when I was in Mexico, I discovered Explore Cancun Tours offered an all-day bus tour from Cancun to the Yucatan peninsula. They provided onboard snacks, lunch at a local restaurant complete with local girls dancing native dances, expert narration, ice-cold Coronas waiting for us as we re-boarded the bus all with a hospitality and graciousness rarely seen.

It was remarkable.

At every turn the expert tour guide recommended books by title and author, writing one down for me specifically noting the similarities between the Egyptians and the Mayans. He knew his stuff and could explain it in four languages.

On the way back from the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza, he asked if we had a good time. All 53 passengers enthusiastically clapped. “Great,” he said. “Now we’re going to be passing out evaluations, please let us know how we did and leave in your seats. If you did like us, can you do me a favor? Can you tell your other friends staying at the hotel about us? Can you tell anyone you see in the elevator about the great time you had? When you get home can you tell your other friends about the trip to the Mayan ruins with our company?

Wow, if all businesses had that much pride and concern in making custoemrs feel special, I wouldn’t have a job any more!

Store owners, when was the last time you went out of your way to ask for a referral, a recommendation or a review of how satisfied your customers were with you?

Are you afraid of what they might say?

See also, Never Make Assumptions About Your Retail Customers Again 

An endorsement is golden. It doesn’t cost anything and it pays big rewards.

Just ask for them.

If a customer really likes you, ask them if they would mind tweeting their 140 character rave review or posting to your Facebook Fan page – make it easy for them to crow about you.

One retailer I know has his own #800 line so you can call in your testimonial. How's that for easy?

Provided you did a job you are proud of – customers will be more than happy to tell their friends.

Customer referrals are a litmus test of whether your service is truly remarkable or forgettable.

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