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How to Make Friends (and influence them to be loyal)

From Chris Daffy’s latest newsletter:

“When I’m in Bucharest, which is now almost once every month, I usually stay at the J W Marriott. It’s a great hotel and the people there always make me feel very welcome. Each night, after the room attendant has turned down my bed they leave a chocolate, feedback form and a card with a ‘thought for the day’ on it. During my last stay one of these thoughts got me thinking about customer service and loyalty. It was –

“The only way to have a friend is to be one” Ralph Waldo Emerson

This got me thinking that “The only way to have loyal customers is to be loyal to them”. But that’s not the way most organisations approach it. They see loyalty as a one sided thing and focus on what they can do to make customers loyal to them, but give little or attention to what they could do to show how loyal they are to their customers.

I’m also reminded of one of Stephen Covey’s 7 habits, “Seek first to understand, then to be understood”. This too reflects the theme of give first to receive later. So I think I’m going to create my own First Rule of Loyalty, which is –

‘First demonstrate loyalty to customers; then seek ways to earn it back.’

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