Sunday, 9 September 2012

What's your Obsession?

As you may have noticed in previous posts, I not only blog, but I am a blog follower.  One of my favorites is Seth Godin, who today made an ingenious distinction between two objects of obsession.  The first is when a direct marketer develops a targeted message, mails (or posts) it, and then obsesses over the immediate measurable results.  Direct marketers do things like A-B splits; where they send 10,000 direct mail pieces; half of which will have either a slightly different offer, or maybe a different headline.  Then they obsess over the “open-rate” or the “conversion-rate” of each.  They market so surgically, almost all of their business comes as a direct result of a specific event at a time.

Operating or working in a retail jewellery store has waaaay too many moving parts to obsess over immediately measurable results.  You can place an ad for a loss-leader and see how many you sell, and that can be measurable.  You can promote an event and obsess over the number of people who show-up.  You just can’t have three different advertising media in play and one promotion during the month, and obsess about your monthly sales.  There are too many factors at play.

In something as complex as a retail jewellery store, we should rather obsess over outstanding customer experiences, effective conflict resolutions, add-on sales and continually educated and motivated personnel.  Obsessing over the right things will help build your business, but obsessing over achieving a single number (monthly sales) won’t tell you about the small failures and the small victories along the way.

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