Thursday, March 24, 2011

When does the buying experience end?

You walk into a dealership. The salesperson seems smart, honest and engaged. Long story short, you buy the expensive product, in part because you like the salesperson. You sign on the dotted line. Then everything changes.

Before you take delivery, there are few small details that the dealer has to fix to make the product right, no big deal. That should take a day or so and then you get that exciting product to take home. Except...

You come back to pick it up and some of those little things aren't done. The salesperson acts different, almost aloof, distracted. It's now a different experience. You're no longer as important to the dealer as you were a day ago. Finally, you get what you want, although it takes more pushing than it should have taken. You leave with your brand new product. The salesperson sees you leave and assumes all is good. It is not.

Yes, you leave with what you bought, but you take something else with you: a bad taste for the experience. You no longer are excited to help him. You planned on sending more people to him to buy, but now he's blown that. He's now just another salesperson or maybe even a little worse than that: a salesperson who blew it with you.

Next time, you'll shop around with no loyalty to that dealer. The dealer and salesperson may then think of you as a disloyal customer. By that time, they'll have repeated this scenario numerous times with other customers.

The buying experience doesn't need to end when the customer signs on the line.

Barry LaBov
LaBov & Beyond

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