Your Customers are your friends, make them your family

I heard a story about a well-known Singapore hotel.

Any taxi driver taking a passenger to the hotel, who manages to get the passenger’s name and radio it in before they arrive, gets a discrete five dollar tip. Central command then researches the guest. On arrival the hotel staff (who all wear earphones and are on a radio network) greet the passenger by name as they approach reception, and recall they visited the hotel in August three years ago.

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“How nice to see you again,” they say as they check in, and as they are going up to their room another staff member double-takes and says “Mr Jones, I just have to say my family loves your business, we buy your biscuits all the time.”  Now this is manipulative and it is contrived, and the guest realises it perhaps, but the point is – they love it!

I feel there is nothing more truly artistic than to love people.

Vincent van Gogh

My first YO! Sushi business plan was peppered with what I called Desired Customer Response. Things like “I went to this amazing place in Soho where the food comes around on conveyor belts and robots talk to you. One of them told me to move my fat arse ’cos he had a job to do. There was a queue down the block. I’m not surprised.”

I had postcards printed with the same message, pre-stamped and posted by us for people to send to their friends. Word got around pretty fast and I realised that word of mouth is the best advertising of all.

Come on in! The water’s lovely
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