Episode 125 – An Experience to Remember

Join us as we discuss getting people to come to court, when the custom clothing experience just doesn’t measure up, and a remarkable birthday celebration at a car dealership.

Summons, Suits, and Surprises – Oh My!

Referenced in the Show

• “Behavioral Nudges Reduce Failure to Appear for Court” – by Alissa Fishbane, Aurelie Ouss, and Anuj K. Shah in Science magazine

image courtesy of Shimkat Motors
image courtesy of K.C. Coleman
image courtesy of K.C. Coleman

• Shimkat Motors – Fort Dodge, Iowa

Host Contact Information

Email Dan: Dan@dangingiss.com

Tweet Dan Gingiss: @DGingiss

Email Joey: JoeyC@JoeyColeman.com

DanGingiss.com

JoeyColeman.com

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Episode Transcript

Download an unedited transcript of Episode 125 here or read it below:

Joey Coleman (00:05):
Welcome to Experience This!

Dan Gingiss (00:08):
The podcast that celebrates remarkable customer experiences and inspires you to stand out from the competition by wowing your customers.

Joey Coleman (00:17):
Each episode, we bring you a healthy dose of inspiring stories, funny interactions, and practical takeaways. Marketing and customer experience thought leader, Dan Gingiss…

Dan Gingiss (00:30):
shares the mic with customer retention and employee experience expert, Joey Coleman, helping you to get people talking about your business.

Joey Coleman (00:40):
So get ready because it’s time to Experience This!

Joey Coleman (00:49):
Get ready for another episode of the Experience This! Show!

Dan Gingiss (00:53):
Join us as we discuss: getting people to come to court, when the custom clothing experience just doesn’t measure up, and a remarkable birthday celebration at a car dealership.

Joey Coleman (01:07):
Summons, Suits, and Surprises – Oh my!

Joey Coleman (01:15):
There are so many great customer experience articles to read, but who has the time we summarize them and offer clear takeaways you can implement starting tomorrow, enjoy this segment of CX press, where we read the articles. So you don’t need to,

Joey Coleman (01:33):
Have you ever been summoned to go to court, Dan?

Dan Gingiss (01:37):
Wow! What a way to start off a conversation.

Joey Coleman (01:41):
I’m leading into the episode strong.

Dan Gingiss (01:43):
Yeah. And I’m not so sure I should answer that question. Do I need a lawyer?

Joey Coleman (01:47):
Well, fair enough. Fair enough. But as most of our listeners know earlier in my career, I was a criminal defense lawyer, which is why I was very intrigued when I came across an article in Science magazine that will serve as our CX press article in this episode. The article was titled “Behavioral Nudges Reduce Failure to Appear for Court,” and the introduction explained the situation quite well so I quote, “[e]ach year, millions of people in the United States are required to appear in court for low-level offenses. Many defendants miss their court dates. Criminal justice policy often uses punitive sanctions to deter these failures to appear. For example, when defendants fail to appear, arrest warrants are issued, which draws defendants further into the criminal justice system. These policies presumed that defendants pay attention to those penalties and weigh them. When deciding whether to appear in court. In this study, we explore a different possibility for why defendants might miss court: simple human error. Although defendants are given all of the relevant information they need, they might be insufficiently aware of the information, it not be salient enough, or the defendants might forget it.”

Dan Gingiss (03:03):
In other words, they might be human?

Joey Coleman (03:06):
Exactly! A misnomer in the criminal justice system, I think for a lot of folks outside of the criminal justice system, who kind of presume that if you’re supposed to be in court, you must have some level of guilt, which of course is not at all the way it works – at least here in the United States. What I thought was interesting about this article, Dan is it described two large scale field studies conducted in New York city. And these studies explored ways to make defendants more aware of their court information. Now in the first study, the team redesigned the summons form that defendants receive for low level offenses to start with the old summons was labeled “Complaint Information. The People of the State of New York versus.” The new summons is labeled “Criminal Court Appearance Ticket.”

Dan Gingiss (03:54):
Yeah, that’s a little clearer!

Joey Coleman (03:56):
A little clear, a little less legalese. It’s pretty obvious what we’re dealing with here.

Dan Gingiss (04:03):
It’s just a little bit shy of get your “beep” to court.

Joey Coleman (04:07):
Let’s just say it’s right on the edge there. It’s pretty straightforward. The old summons had the court information far down the page and listed the date of the required appearance, and the location of the required appearance, in two different places on the complaint. The new summons moves the court date, the time and the court location to the top of the page, right underneath the defendant’s name – so it’s literally the first thing they see on the page after seeing their own name. And finally the old summons made passing reference to the consequences of failing, to appear for the court date, whereas the new and improved summons clearly States in bold typeface on the front of the form that missing the assigned court date will lead to a warrant being issued for your arrest.

Dan Gingiss (04:52):
You know, I can’t help, but think about the discussions we’ve had on this show about user experience, which of course is generally considered a digital term because it talks about the ability to navigate a website for example, or find what you’re looking for. But user experience can be everywhere. It can be in physical products and certainly it can be in a court summons. And I think that’s what they’ve done here is they’ve basically taken the most pertinent information and put it up front and made it clearer. They’ve boldfaced things that they want you to pay attention to. And they’ve used language that is simpler to understand, and those are all user experience things. So I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that this study resulted in more people showing up to their court appearances.

Joey Coleman (05:39):
Well, Dan, you may not have spent a lot of time in the criminal justice system. Good on you. Good law abiding citizen! But your instincts about the human condition are spot on. And they were proved out once again, in the criminal court system in New York, the result of using the new summons was pretty impressive as failure to appear. Rates went from 47% down to 40%. Now this 7% reduction avoided 23,000 warrants from being issued.

Dan Gingiss (06:13):
Wow. And if this were a business, you would start to calculate what’s the cost of issuing 23,000 warrants, and sending them out, and having the police follow up on them, and scheduling a new court date, and everybody’s time and all that sort of stuff. It must be substantial in terms of what the city was able to save from eliminating that many warrants, not to mention that people don’t really like it when they have a warrant out for their arrest. And if all you had to do is show up for, um, uh, what seems like a minor offense, it seems like it also provided a better experience if you will.

Joey Coleman (06:49):
Well, it provides a better experience. I think for everyone, for a couple of reasons, number one, this is keep in mind friends. This is a low level offense, these aren’t major crimes. Okay. So the fact of the matter is we don’t need to escalate to a warrant being issued for someone’s arrest. And in fact, we’ll talk about this later in the segment, but lots of times people miss their court date for really common reasons, but there’s this presumption that it’s nefarious because it’s criminal. So not only have we created a scenario where when they do come to court, everyone’s presuming that they must be bad because they didn’t come when they were supposed to. And we had to issue a warrant for their arrest, but imagine what it feels like to be the defendant and to be showing up in court in response to a warrant for your arrest and having a summons. And now you have two issues to deal with the original issue that the complaint was for, and on top of it, a warrant for your arrest for failure to comply with the complaint. So it gets pretty messy, pretty fast. But as if the results of this first study, weren’t impressive enough in a second companion study, the design team, augmented the form by sending text messages to highlight critical information in the week, leading up to the scheduled court appearance. So anyone who is willing to provide their cell phone number would receive a text message a few days before reminding them of the date and the time and the location of their appearance. And then another one the day before and defendants who didn’t receive text messages, fail to appear about 37.9% of the time in the study with text messages, those numbers dropped to 29% resulting in over 7,800 warrants being avoided on top of the ones that were already avoided by failure to appear because they didn’t know where there was supposed to go. So between the two impacts, we see double digit reduction in the number of warrants being issued and the number of people who are actually showing up as they were supposed to.

Dan Gingiss (08:53):
Well, it let’s back up a second here because you kind of glossed over something that I thought was pretty interesting in the studies. The city hired a design firm to design these letters, right? And that seems like a small thing. And yet look at what happened by focusing on, again, the user experience, all of the clarity of the letter or of the, of the text messages, but you wouldn’t necessarily think that a design firm would be needed for something like this. And I want to have, I want to challenge our listeners to think about places in your business, where maybe you do need a new set of eyes and you need somebody with some communication skills or different communication skills to come in and redesign. I don’t know, a welcome letter, an offer letter, a contract, something that may be causing confusion in your business, that, with simpler language highlighting the right things may eliminate that confusion.

Joey Coleman (09:52):
I couldn’t agree more Dan in your you’re absolutely right to be candid. I’m not exactly sure whether it was that they hired the design firm or the design firm was working with the scientists who were conducting the study, so I’m not exactly sure there, but what we do know is there were design elements that were enhanced in the printed summons form and improved on. And then they added the technological piece of the text messages, and then they ran a controlled science experiment to see what would happen. So this was not just a, Hey, this might be interesting to see what happens. No, there was actual data here. And what’s also fascinating is the impact it had in terms of people’s thought process. And I alluded to this earlier, but in some associated laboratory experiments, they ran at the same time that they were doing the tests – now, mind you, they did these in the lab, these weren’t with people that were actually receiving the summons – they kind of brought in groups to study their reactions. The researchers examined a lay persons and an experts belief about whether failures to appear were intentional or not. So they lifted a variety of lay people, a variety of experts from the criminal justice system and asked if somebody doesn’t show up for court when they’re supposed to, is that intentional or not? What was interesting is that study participants believed that failure to comply in criminal situations was more intentional and less accidental than in other domains, like missing a doctor’s appointment. If somebody was an expert, if they operated in the criminal justice system, they actually had better understanding that mistakes happen and that sometimes people just don’t show up. So what was fascinating is the lay people were actually harsher on the criminals or the alleged criminals in this case, then the actual people who worked in the criminal justice systems and the final findings showed that the people who saw the new forms were able to identify the court information more quickly and recalled it more accurately when asked about it later, which suggests that a meaningful portion of the defendants who fail to appear aren’t intentionally skipping court, but it’s really that they’re just unaware of the requirement to be in court.

Dan Gingiss (12:03):
Yeah. And this gets to the fundamental, I guess, argument in business that we think our customers know all that we know about our products and services, and yet we live and breathe them every day. So we are of course the experts in them and our customers often don’t have all that information. And that’s why self-service has become such a popular thing. The fact that we even have to self-serve sometimes is frustrating. But heck when we do, we want to be able to find information, don’t assume that your customers know everything about your business, how it operates, what you want them to do, how you want them to do it, and when you want them to do it. And I think that’s what the court system figured out was that just because it all made sense to us, does it mean that it made sense to in this case, the most important person, which is the person that we’re requiring to show up?

Joey Coleman (12:55):
Absolutely. You know, what can we take away from this? We recognize friends that the majority of you are not involved in the criminal justice system, but in almost every business on the planet, there are behaviors that your customers are doing that you’re not happy about. They’re not showing up. They’re not completing forms fully. They’re not putting the right signature. They’re not giving the data that you need so that you can continue to deliver on the service. They’re not doing these things that you think are pretty basic. We have a tendency as humans to presume that that’s because the other person is just not complying or they’re not respecting us, or they’re affirmatively deciding to go against our wishes or they’re not smart, or they’re not smart when the reality is it may be our fault. We may not have expressly stated what needed to be happened. We may have not presented it in a way that was clearly understood to your point earlier, Dan, which I absolutely loved. It’s time to look at the aspects of your business, where you’re not getting the level of customer compliance and participation that you want and ask, could we design the experience to be better? And as a result, get a better experience for our customer.

Joey Coleman (14:13):
You listened to us, nNow we want to listen to you. By visiting our website and sharing your remarkable customer experiences with us, we can share them with a broader audience. Now, sit back and enjoy our Listener Stories.

Joey Coleman (14:29):
Congrats are in order, Dan. But I think I should let you share the big news instead of me sharing the big news here.

Dan Gingiss (14:38):
Oh, thanks buddy. I really appreciate it. Well, uh, on February 14th Valentine’s day, I got engaged and I’m super excited to have, uh, found the love of my life. And, uh, our listeners, our astute listeners may know that, uh, this is my second time around, but that’s just because we had to, we had to practice first to get it right. And, and now, now we’re going to get it right this time. So super excited.

Joey Coleman (15:03):
I love it. I love it. So excited for you, Dan, so excited for your lovely bride to be. She has definitely found a fantastic guy and in the spirit of joyous celebration, but with a tinge of a cautionary tale, as you begin to think about what has preparations, I have a little story. One of our loyal listeners, Cody Wales is the Manager of Consumer Experience Design at Advent Health. And he had a frustrating experience recently, as you prepared for his wedding. And he reached out to tell us about it, here is Cody sharing what happened:

Cody Wales (15:40):
So I have a customer service failure that I wanted to share. Uh, recently I went to a made to measure suit and dress clothes company for my wedding for to get suits from myself and my groomsmen. Uh, we drove down to Miami, which was a three plus hour drive, to their showroom so that we could have their tailors and their team measure us to reduce the probability of any miss measurements. It was a great in-store experience, but then when it came time for the suits to arrive and for us to try them on, we found that my, one of my groomsmen’s sleeves were four inches, too small. So immediately I reached out to the customer service team and they said, yep, we’ll make a remake, you know, shipped by this day and three to five day shipping. It’ll be there in plenty of time. That time goes by and I’m following up multiple times, haven’t heard back and suddenly they reach out and say, we’re sorry, it’s not going to ship until the day before the wedding. Obviously this is a huge issue. And they said, yep, sorry. And that’s it. I got ” we’re sincerely sorry,” via email. Uh, nothing else still working on resolving the issue, but what a failure of making it right. They could have gone above and beyond for such an emotionally important event and made me a customer for life. But now it’s the opposites opposite experience that I’m telling everyone not to use the service because they let me down on my big day.

Dan Gingiss (17:09):
Well, obviously Cody didn’t go to Gingiss formal wear. That was the first problem. I love it. You noticed? No, it was not the family formal wear business. No, I know it wasn’t cause it isn’t there anymore. So I can say that with some confidence, but man, I, that, you know, that definitely sounds annoying. And I know my dad who was, is definitely listening now would say that one of the biggest challenges in this industry is that you really only have one chance to get it right, because the wedding or the graduation or the prom or whatever it is, the big day happens once. And if you screw up the clothes for the other, for the customer, you don’t get a second chance. And so it has to be perfect. And in this case, it seems like it was far from it.

Joey Coleman (17:57):
Absolutely. And you know, weddings are high stress as is. And to your point, they’re operating on a fixed deadline. So if you operate in any business, forget the wedding industry, any business that is high stress with a fixed deadline, you must be ready for last minute resolutions and realize that missing the deadline is just not an option. You know, sometimes you’re in a business where, you know, if, for example, if I’m ordering a book online and the book arrives two weeks from now, as opposed to two days from now, it may be annoying, but it’s probably not a major crisis unless I needed to read that book and write a book report on it, or unless I was, you know, doing a podcast about the book and needed to read the book before we had the conversation. But again, if you’re in this business or you can envision scenarios where your customers might be in high stress, fixed deadline scenarios, you’ve got to be ready for the last minute craziness.

Dan Gingiss (18:56):
Yeah, for sure. And I think what’s also interesting here is that Cody had a couple of choices. He could have measured himself and his groomsmen and submitted the results online, which is convenient, but understandably, maybe a little nerve wracking that you might not know how to do it correctly. You might mess it up. So he drove those three hours to the company’s show room and said he had a great experience doing that. But if the customer goes out of their way to reduce the chances of error, that it would seem to me that the company should go out of their way to, uh, reduce the chances of error or at least to resolve things when an error happens. And obviously one of the other challenges here is that he couldn’t call customer service. There was only online options and those online options weren’t helpful. And I think about, uh, when people ask me how available they should be on social media, do they have to, you know, be around 24/7 to answer customer comments and complaints and I always say, it depends on what business you’re in, right? If you’re an international airline. Yeah. You bet you’re going to have to be there 24 seven. If you’re a mom and pop grocery store, no, you don’t have to, you can be there during business hours. But man, if you’re a company that provides people with clothing for their wedding at, which is a high stress and time sensitive situation, and you’re not there to answer their questions or to provide customer service, you’re not going to keep customers very long. And I do want to point out that at the end of Cody’s recording, he talks about how he’s telling everyone not to use this service. Right? And, and, and the reverse could have been true. He could have been talking about how great it was and how they have a customer for life. But instead he is telling people not to. And this is, this is the difference folks. This is the difference between having a happy customer who tells other people and creates more customers for you or having a disgruntled customer who tells other people and keeps new customers from coming to you. It seems like a simple choice.

Joey Coleman (21:00):
It’s it does seem like a simple choice, Dan, but you know, we wouldn’t have careers and a show. If everybody got this and behaved accordingly, right? This, the fact that things are going to go wrong is not what we’re trying to prevent, because things will always go wrong. There’s always the chance that something is outside of your control or mistakes happen, or situations arise that create scenarios that we’re not happy about, or that our customers aren’t happy about. But how we respond to those scenarios is what changes the story. And in fact, you can actually hear it in Cody’s recording. You know, he, when the suit arrives and the, it doesn’t fit, it’s like, Oh, okay. I reached out right away to let them know so that hopefully we could get things taken care of. And they’re like, Oh yeah, we’ll get to work on that right away. Up until that point in the story, if they actually delivered, Cody would probably be singing their praises. And would, even though there had been the misfire in the mistake, you would probably be like, you know, it didn’t go as well as I would have wanted on the first try, but man, they hustled and they got it done. And we were able to still pull off the wedding with no problems. The issue. I think if we really listened to the story that he shares, is that he didn’t feel that there was a proper level of empathy or apology for what happened. And I think the secret here is you need to quickly evaluate the significance of the problem when something comes up for your customers. And it’s not about how bad you think it is as the provider is the business. It’s about how bad the customer thinks the situation is. And if you are going to fail, you got to make sure that the apology is both sincere and significant.

Dan Gingiss (22:39):
Absolutely. I mean, I would have liked to see this company drive those same three hours from the showroom to the wedding location to deliver the suit, rather than putting it in the mail and depending on some shipping service to get it there on time as well! So there are things that you can do. And again, you know, you want to avoid the problem in the first place, but if you have a problem, how you react is going to go a long way to determining what customers do next and who they tell about it.

Joey Coleman (23:07):
Now, as you’ll notice, we didn’t mention the name of the made to measure suit company during this segment, because we have a policy here on experience, this of avoiding any brand shaming for bad experiences, but guess what? Customers don’t have that same policy when something goes wrong, they do name names and they are happily telling everyone they know not to do business with you because of the result of their bad experience. Now, if you want to make sure that customers are singing your praises, you need to make sure that you have systems and processes in place to make sure that when things do go wrong, like they did with Cody sued, you do everything to make it right. And speaking of spreading the word about remarkable customer experiences, if you’ve got an amazing customer story to share, or even a story of an interaction gone bad, we’d love to hear about it. Just visit the Contact Page at ExperienceThisShow.com and you’ll be able to leave us a voice recording and share your story. We’re excited to hear about your experiences and hope you’ll make the time to share for our next listener story.

Joey Coleman (24:11):
Almost everyone has interacted with chatbots, but all too often, it’s been a bad experience. In MythBusters – presented by Solvvy – we explore a common myth about CX chatbots and see how the right technology can create a positive experience, every time.

Joey Coleman (24:35):
Today’s myth about chatbots? It’s hard to measure the ROI of a chat bot. You might be thinking about adding a chat bot and automation tool to your website or your app, but it might not be a hundred percent sure about making the business case for adding this type of technology. Perhaps you’re concerned that proving the return on investment will be too difficult.

Dan Gingiss (24:57):
But the fact of the matter is it’s very easy to both measure and report on the value you get from a next gen customer support chat bot. The easiest way to make the case is by looking at how many customer questions, a chat bot resolves all on its own versus how many questions need to be resolved by contacting your customer care agents. Each instant resolution equals time and cost savings for your team. Often measured internally as cost per ticket or a similar metric add up instant resolutions and you can see how many tickets aren’t being created and how much agent time you’re saving straightforward.

Joey Coleman (25:32):
That’s simple ROI math to me, Dan! But you don’t even have to do the math next gen chatbots come equipped with intelligent dashboards that very quickly give you this information and tons more right out of the box. So it couldn’t be easier to explain and demonstrate the savings you’re getting immediately. Now there are other benefits to chat bots of course. Customers will love getting their answers quickly. Agents will love not having to field simple, repetitive questions all day. And when something goes wrong, like I don’t know a wedding suit that doesn’t fit properly. Your chat bot can make sure to properly escalate things, saving you time, money, and your reputation. The ROI for adopting better next gen chat bots and automation tools is easy to calculate once you project and then quickly prove the huge savings you’re getting.

Dan Gingiss (26:20):
And that’s another Myth Busted thanks to our friends at Solvvy – the Next Gen chatbot.

Joey Coleman (26:28):
We love telling stories and sharing key insights you can implement, or avoid, based on our experiences. Can you believe that This Just Happened?

Joey Coleman (26:42):
One of the best things about my recent move to Iowa with my family is that I’m getting to spend more time with my nieces and nephews. And recently my wonderful niece, Charlotte, had a memorable sixth birthday experience. Now my brother, KC, who is Charlotte’s dad, explained what happened in a post that he wrote about on Facebook. And I’m going to quote his post and then kind of interject as we go to explain some of the things for our listeners.

Joey Coleman (27:10):
“Over the course of the last year, our family outings have been rather limited due to COVID. That being said, riding to town is frequently a highlight for our cabin fever country kids. Charlotte would consistently get excited as we drove past Shikmat Motor Company, and would profusely express her need to drive over the new Stonewall display at the corner of their dealership.” Now friends and listeners, I need to interject here to explain this wall to people who don’t live in my local community here in Iowa. At Shikmat Motors, they recently installed a large rock wall display. (You can see pictures in the shownotes at ExperienceThisShow.com). But when I say large, I mean five to six feet tall, 10 to 12 feet wide, and about 80 to a hundred feet long made of stone. Now the wall actually has a ramp running along the top so that the folks at Shikmat can drive cars up the ramp and then park them on the wall for a nice display. Well, let me get back to the story my brother KC is telling. “Charlotte wanted to do this so badly that she asked every time we drove past and may or may not have suggested that we quote “sneak in at night when they’re all sleeping to drive over the wall.” This is Joey. Again, to be clear as my niece’s official legal representation, we do not admit to that allegation. Okay. Sorry. Back to the story once more. “On Friday, Charlotte got her chance as she turned six years old and the team at Shikmat made her birthday extra special. Not only did they let her drive the Shikmat golf cart over the wall, but they also greeted her at the door with a happy birthday and a logoed Jeep duffel bag filled with balloons and car themed presents waiting for her. Our family was so impressed by the team and their willingness to make our little girl’s day. We can’t thank them enough for a memory that will last forever. This was such a simple but special win, and it is utterly refreshing to see a business go out of their way to do something so selfless. If you are thinking about a new vehicle, the team at Shikmat is truly amazing and they’re more than willing to do whatever it takes to provide a great “future” customer experience. Happy birthday to our sweet little girl and thank you Shikmat Motor Company for making her birthday wish come true.

Dan Gingiss (29:27):
All right, now I have to ask Shikmat Motor Company know about uncle Joey?!

Joey Coleman (29:34):
They don’t that it’s the crazy thing about this. They do not know anything about me. They do not know any of the things. Let me give a little more background story. So this literally I’ve heard about this for months. My niece is constantly talking about this, but I didn’t know what my brother had done. So one day he’s driving by and he’s like, you know what? I’m just going to go in and see if I can make something happen. So he drives in, in his Ford pickup, to a dealership that sells Dodge, Ram, Chrysler, and Jeep brands. And he asked the salesman, Hey, would it be possible to arrange somehow for me to be able to drive over the wall with my daughter for her sixth birthday, right? I mean total craziness, but the salesman says, you know, that’s totally fine with me, but I should probably check with a manager. This salesperson was willing to go the extra distance to ask to advocate and guess what they said, yes.

Dan Gingiss (30:41):
I think that’s amazing. And I’m sure that Charlotte, and KC, and you will never forget that experience, which is awesome. And again, we mentioned this in a previous segment. I want to point out that your brother ended his post by saying, if you’re thinking about a new vehicle, let me recommend the folks at Shikmat, even though he’s not a customer.

Joey Coleman (31:03):
He’s not a customer, but I will tell you, what’s interesting. I asked him about that that night. I said when, when they taught week, cause she came over for a birthday and of course my niece was raving about you just driven the wall at Shikmat and had this amazing experience. And I asked him and he said, you know, when we buy our next car, that’s where we’re going. Like it literally changed their purchase decision. And as you know, Dan cars, not the cheapest investment, like this is a major impact in terms of the bottom line at Shikmat, because not only will my brother buy his next vehicle there, but I gotta tell you, I’m sitting here thinking when it’s time for me to buy a vehicle, I want to go there as well, as does my family as does a lot of people in our community that are hearing this story.

Dan Gingiss (31:47):
Absolutely. And that’s why, whatever it costs them to do this, it was worth it. Now I do know that you’re the recovering lawyer on the show, but I, I got to say, I was a little bit worried about maybe the insurance implications of this.

Joey Coleman (32:01):
You know, Dan, you are not a lawyer, but you could play one on TV with that type of question. I love it.

Dan Gingiss (32:05):
Or at least on a podcast!

Joey Coleman (32:05):
At least on a podcast. So for insurance reasons, they couldn’t have my brother, or a six-year-old for that matter, drive my brother’s truck or one of the showroom models over the wall. But the team at Shikmat got creative and what they could allow was them to drive the golf cart that they have on site to like try people around the dealership. So it allowed them to avoid any insurance concerns. And my six year old niece, Charlotte got to sit on my brother’s lap and actually steer so she was quote unquote the one actually “driving” the golf cart over the wall.

Dan Gingiss (32:44):
Well, that’s fantastic. And I can tell you as a parent of two teenagers, golf carts are very, very appealing to kids. Like the coolest thing ever. I’ve actually been asked. No joke. When I was asking my 15 year old son, what he wanted for his birthday, he said, can I get it golf cart? And I was like, what are you going to do with that? So I love it. Yeah, clearly is a lot of fun. And I think it’s such a great story. I love that they added the, the Jeep swag. I think that made it more special. So she had something to take home. And like I said, this is an experience she’ll never forget. And it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with selling Jeep vehicles. Although as you noted it eventually will connect to selling Jeep vehicles.

Joey Coleman (33:33):
It absolutely will. And here’s the interesting thing. Not only did the folks at Shikmat not know that I had a customer experience podcast, but they didn’t ask my brother to tell this story now, to be clear prior to him posting about it on Facebook. And prior to us recording the show, he asked them, is it okay if I promote this and tell this story? And they were like, yeah, we’d love that. But you don’t have to. Here’s where it gets really interesting. So since the birthday surprise happened, my brother of course has shared it in dozens of conversations. And so have I, and now of course, we’re talking about it on the podcast. So tens of thousands of people all around the world, they’re going to be listening to it. He also did a Facebook post that within 48 hours had received 245 likes and over 40 comments, which is pretty amazing engagement. But what really caught my attention is over 20 people shared the post and these are people that live in the community. Now I’m not going to call out Shikmator any other type of auto dealership, but let me tell you, I’ve spent enough time on auto dealers websites to know that it’s pretty rare that they do a post on Facebook that gets 245 likes over 40 comments and 20 shares. So the moral of the story here is when your customers are raving about you, that’s marketing, you can’t buy, but you can generate that kind of marketing when you’re willing to do things that are unique and unexpected.

Dan Gingiss (35:03):
Absolutely! Creating positive experiences gets people to share. We know because we’ve shared the shared the research here on the show that people are more willing to share positive experiences than negative ones. It’s just that we don’t have enough positive ones to share. And so when we actually have a positive experience, we want to tell people about it. I’ve done this survey tons of times to audiences. When I’m doing a keynote speech, I’ll ask the audience, raise your hand. If you remember the last time you were wowed by a brand and you couldn’t wait, tell people about it. And two, three, maybe four hands go up. And then I say, now raise your hand. If you remember the last time you were disappointed by a brand, every hand in the audience goes up. I mean, and that’s why I do it right? Cause it works every single time. We don’t have enough positive experiences to share, which is why, if you’re listening to the show, one of the tens of thousands that you referenced, creating positive experiences can become your best marketing because when other people are talking about how great you are, it sounds better. It’s more credible. It’s more genuine. If I say that, Joey is a fantastic keynote speaker. That sounds a lot better than Joey saying that Joey is a fantastic keynote speaker, right? And I know he is because I’ve seen him speak. So that’s more credible. And you know, I’ve never heard of this car dealership before, but I can tell you the next time I’m driving through Iowa, I’m going to determine if I need a car right then and there. Cause I want to go see these guys just because of a story that you’ve now shared.

Joey Coleman (36:36):
I love it, Dan. So what can we all learn from this story? Even those of us that aren’t involved with a car dealership? Other than my little brother, KC, who is clearly a rock star dad… when you go above and beyond to create remarkable experiences, people want to talk about it. I have to imagine that the team at Shikmat Motors in little old Fort Dodge, Iowa never expected a prospective six year old customer would want to drive over their new stone wall. But when they realized they could make a birthday celebration, that won’t soon be forgotten, they leapt at the chance. Now I’m guessing that’s why they’ve been in business for 70 years now, and will probably be in business for at least another seventy years.

Joey Coleman (37:16):
Thanks for joining us for another episode of Experience This! You’re the best listener ever.

Dan Gingiss (37:28):
And since you listened to the whole show…

Joey Coleman (37:29):
Yay you!

Dan Gingiss (37:31):
Were curious, was there a specific part of this episode that you enjoyed the most? If so, it would mean the world to us if you could share it with a coworker, a friend, or someone that just loves listening to podcasts.

Joey Coleman (37:41):
And while you’re in the sharing mood, if you felt inclined to jump over to iTunes, or wherever you find your podcasts, and write us a review, we would so appreciate it. And when you do, don’t forget to let us know as we might have a little surprise for you.

Dan Gingiss (37:57):
Thanks again for your time and we’ll see you next week for more,

Joey Coleman (38:00):
Experience

Dan Gingiss (38:00):
This!