I sat across the table from Satmetrix boss Richard Owen the other day and got an earful about the difference between a satisfied customer and loyal one. You want to cultivate the latter. Aiming merely to satisfy doesn’t cut it anymore. In fact, it never did. Loyal customers will lead your cheers. Evangelize on your behalf. Sing your praises to friends and family. In the parlance of Owens and Satmetrix, they will become “Net Promoters”. Best of all, they’ll be back, more often, to buy more. That’s what I’m talkin’ about. A satisfied customer? Meh. May not even return. “Satisfaction” is a low bar. Satisfaction is unsatisfactory. Zappos knows how to create loyalty.
Apple, of course, has done it repeatedly for years. Best way I can describe it is to strive to offer the kind of experience you want everytime you’re shopping for something. Anything. What kind of experience would it take to inspire you to tell a close friend how cool it was?