Recently JP Morgan Chase rolled out a new branding campaign called “Chase What Matters”. They’ll spend $70 million in the first three months of this effort to persuade customers that Chase gives them what matters.
They’re making a mistake.
Like so many companies (especially big consumer brands) they still don’t understand. You don’t build customer loyalty with a big fat ad campaign. First, most people don’t pay attention to ads. People are busy and they really don’t care what a company says about itself. They care about what a company can do for them.
That’s how it should be.
So, when a big company publicly pats itself on the back for spending a lot of money on ads saying how great they are, well, forgive me if I remain unimpressed. They could have invested that money in their employees and realized a much better return.
For $70 million dollars, they could have spent $1000 on training for each of 70,000 employees. Currently JP Morgan Chase has about 168,000 employees. So, this ad campaign could have trained 41% of their entire workforce. I don’t know how many Chase employees are involved in direct customer service, but 41% would have been a great start.
Chase says they did the research and they know what customers want from a bank. If this is true, they should focus 100% of their efforts in making sure they deliver. They should do everything possible to make sure every customer contact, every policy and every procedure serves the goal of delivering what their customers want.
An ad campaign doesn’t help deliver what customers want.
To deliver what you customers want, you need to know what they want. Then decide what you can and will do, within the context and resources of your business. Then you plan how to help your employees do what needs to be done to help your customers get what they want. You provide the resources and skills your people need to be successful in serving your customers.
Then you need to measure and monitor. And you keep measuring and monitoring. It’s a non-stop process.
When you do this consistently and well, your advertising will come free. It’s called word of mouth and it’s much more powerful than a slick ad campaign. When you consistently give your customers what they want, they notice. When your employees, policies and procedures are customer-friendly, they notice. When every contact a customer has with your company goes beyond what they expect, they notice.
This is where you want your company to be. Get here and you won’t need advertising. Your customer loyalty will be a thing of beauty. And you’ll be virtually immune to the pressures of competition. You want a better business? Invest in people, not advertising.