Monday, June 14, 2010

Are You Doing Enough to Wow Customers? - Part 2

Last week, I proposed the hypothetical the purchasing director at your largest client has set up a meeting with the marketing director and you’re not invited. Here are the different scenarios.

Scenario 1:
The marketing director replies, "Who would be allowed to bid?"
The purchasing director taps a file. "I have twenty names of potential vendors. Right now, we get three bids. Reverse auctions automate the bidding process. We post specs and suppliers submit quotes, making it easy to shop for lower prices without investing additional time.”
The marketing director says, "It works for me. Our current vendors do a good job, but I can’t say any of them has wowed me and I’d love to save money on print.”

Scenario 2:
The marketing director hears the purchasing director’s plan and says, “I would like to save money, but I’m happy with our current vendors.”
“When you look at the product in the box, does one printer stand out?” the purchasing director asks.
“Not really. All our printers meet our delivery schedules. Now we provide print-ready PDFs, so we’re making their job easier. Even so, the idea of adding new vendors makes me nervous. No matter what a printer promises, you won’t know how they’ll perform until they do a job."
The purchasing director strokes his chin, thinking. "Not every job is critical, right?" The marketing director nods to answer. "Why not try reverse auctions on jobs where quality is average and the delivery schedule is flexible? We can bring new vendors on board without risk.”
"That works for me," the marketing director says. "Let’s give it a try."

Scenario 3:
The marketing director hears the proposal. She held up her hand and says, "I don't even want to consider that. Currently we have several vendors, but one stands out. They get the bulk of our work and they’re worth every penny we pay them. Quality is fantastic. They always come through on tight turn-arounds and service is exceptional. They give me new ideas to grow our business and save money, and I can’t risk losing their services.”

We all want to be the valued supplier in scenario three. To gain that coveted position, we must wow our customers. More on the WOW tomorrow.

No comments: