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Pet Product News Editorial Blog:

September 27, 2012

Giving Back to Customers Is Good For Business

By Patrick Donston


Create a social concept where everyone wins. Wow! What a clever idea. It’s a strategy used by many companies in today’s business environment, although the concept is not new. I read a book a while back where Arthur Guinness of the 1700s believed in giving back to his community—his customers. He said: “How can we expect our business to stay healthy if we do not help our customers prosper?” Later known as one of Ireland’s best philanthropists, look at where the Guinness brewery is now.

Giving back
Pay it forward. The key is to make smart choices when offering something for a later return benefit. Be creative with products or ideas where you receive profit later and your customers get satisfaction now. The old way was to value a customer and receive money. Projectors and experts now say the game has changed. The new way is to pay for the customer and receive value later.

I’ve been working this way for years and it seems to be paying off. Some ideas or things we have done:

• Offer free aquariums, livestock or product with setup purchases.
• Free testing
• $10 coupons on all brochures. Placed by aquarium setups we put into our community, such as salons, movie theatres, restaurants, etc.
• Support charities and community projects; offer sales and discounts, club cards or VIP donations.

We’ve raised thousands of dollars over the past years for conservation funds and humanitarian aid organizations. Customers love the cause and get savings in return. We’ve noticed our sales and customer counts have steadily risen over the past five years.

Wow! What a clever idea.

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