Do you know how your customers like to get their information?

Have you joined my incredibly non-annoying, once-in-a-while email newsletter?

Thoughts from a subway… Writing this on the downtown 1 train on a Saturday morning, on my way to 90 minutes of Boxing at Trinity Gym.

Our train conductor has just told us that because of construction, there is no service on this train past 14th Street.Subway

Why did I have to wait to get onto the subway to find that out? That’s like your GPS telling you there’s an accident ahead when you’re already sitting in the backed up traffic from it.

Now technically, I didn’t. I could have logged onto and looked before I left the house. But by that logic, I also could have brought the shopping list I made for Whole Foods, as well as the shoes I needed to bring to the shoemaker to be resoled. But I forgot to do those things, too. And yes, there is an email I can get from the MTA once a week with construction updates – It’s probably sitting in my inbox right now – but I haven’t bothered to look at it. It’s buried under email to which I have to respond first.

I’ve said it before – If you want to keep your customers, the best way to do that is to be proactive and find out how they like to get their information, then give it to them that way.

I would kill for an app that senses I’m walking into the Columbus Circle subway station, then texts me with “Hey, just so you know, there’s construction on the 1 train, jump over to the A train instead” or similar. If something exists like that, though, I don’t know about it – even though I’ve signed up for the MTA bulletins. And I bet lots of other people would, too.

Have you asked your customers how they like to get their information? If you haven’t, what are you waiting for? If you don’t, they’ll simply go somewhere else. Granted, I can’t simply take another subway in Manhattan, but then, the MTA isn’t your typical business. If you want to retain your customers and get new ones, you simply have to listen to them. You no longer have a choice.


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