Word of mouth marketing is huge, and its getting more and more important as consumers become more aware, empowered, confident etc.
Some international MNCs, NAMELY STANDARD CHARTERED BANK (in Pakistan), just dont get it.
This isn’t really a post, this is a rant. This is a public call for everyone to run away from Standard Chartered for banking services.
The part to think about is WHY the bank would drive me to actively spend my time writing rants and trying to convince everyone to run away — why spend that time?
Well, because you drove me up the wall. Here’s how you did it.
Well first of all, you’d hire ego-centric over-zealous fresh kids with absolutely no sense of professional selling.
Next, you’ll give them absolutely no training, and make a payment structure for them that PAYS them for FILLED FORMS, not for ACCEPTED FILLED FORMS (more on that later).
Next, you’ll hand them a cold-call list with ONLY ONE ENTRY — YOUR NUMBER. Your phone number will be in atleast 72 font size on this paper with big RED arrows drawn with a marker pointing to it with scribbles saying “Call” in the manager’s handwriting…. such is the depth in which training and guidance should be provided.
But it doesn’t stop there.
Next, you’ll integrate your IT systems with the SMS network but WITHOUT integrating that with your CRM so you can actually measure which message has already been delivered to which customer.
Next, you’ll outsource the “scheduling algorithm” for this SMS delivery feature to the cheapest vendor possible. The vendor will implement the following logic: “Every one hour, go through the entire set of people on the COLDCALL list and SMS them”.
Except, lets not forgot, ONLY YOUR NUMBER WILL BE ON THE COLDCALL LIST.
Finally, you’ll pat your marketing manager on the back and give him a raise.
After all, look at what’s he’s managed to do! It’s amazing!
These enthusiastic sales people will be calling you 3 times a day to talk about packages you ALREADY HAVE BOUGHT FROM THE BANK, especially the “fun” phonecall you’ll get from t hem at 830pm right in the middle of dinner.
Next you’ll start receiving 6-20 SMSes per day — especially the “fun” one at 630am that also serves as an alarm clock for you.
I mean heck, with so much promotional information going out there to that customer, the customer is BOUND to buy from you right? Even if not, heck look at the BRAND OUTREACH that is taking place here.
[Marketing guy:] Yes exactly! I know its a good strategy because [leans in style] I have an MBA which says I’m right…
[Manager also leans in style:] … and I have 15 years of experience doing this and have a company car… so I’m right too. Good job marketing!
Meanwhile, back in the customer’s house, conversations like the following can be heard frequently throughout the day….
[Overzealous sales guy] : Sir, I’m calling from SCB. You applied for a credit card from us…
[Customer]: Yes, what’s the status of it?
[Overzealous sales guy] : Heck, I dont know, but why dont you apply for another card while you’re waiting for that one?
[Customer]: But I’m already going to get that one.. why would I need another?
[Overzealous sales guy] : … because its amazingly different … ITS MASTERCARD!
[Customer]: … but I already have a master card from you guys…
[Overzealous sales guy] : well get another! It doesn’t hurt right…
[Customer]: … err… no.
[Overzealous sales guy] : You dont have to think about it… you just sign one form, and I’ll get my cut, and you can always cancel it!!
[Customer]: [utters a phrase in ancient swear-word-language that roughly translates to “err..no”]…
If that doesn’t get him to sign, there’s always the SMSes.
Go back and read the whole post — its probably the silliest post I’ve ever written but its evidence of literally driving your customers mad! Argh!