Amazon is now a pain reliever. A lesson for Broadway and all businesses.
Every great company has a “thing” that puts them on the map or pushes them to a new height. Think the iPhone or The Sopranos or The Frappucino.
For Amazon.com it was free and fast shipping.
Jeff Bezos recognized that what consumers wanted was to get what they paid for fast . . . and free. He knew his competitors were just a short drive away from most of his customers, so he had to compete.
That’s why he introduced Amazon Prime, which now has 100 million members, makes Amazon a ton of $$$ and attracts and keeps customers.
And like a fancy new Apple product or a new drink from Starbucks, it took the company to another height when it was introduced years ago.
Amazon got beaten up this on the stock market this past week, on fears of a slower than usual holiday season (there are similar fears on Broadway, by the way).
So what did Bezos do?
He announced free shipping on all holiday orders. For everyone.
Now that’s a promotion.
Not just because it’s so “out of the box,” but because it’s so simple. The formula for a fantastic Bezos-like promotion goes something like this:
- Ask your customer what their “pain point” is.
- Relieve that pain.
- Get customer’s business and get them to like you in the process.
I can’t help but think about our customers’ pain points. And the one I hear the most often?
Ticket service fees.
I blogged about a Prime-like idea to get rid of service fees once before, but Bezos inspired me to talk about it again . . . but this time in a more in a focused way.
What if we waived service fees during our dark times of September or February?
What if a show offered no service fees as a one-off promotion?
What if you got free service fees if you ordered more than 4 tickets?
I don’t know.
But I do know that service fees are a pain point . . . and we could sell more tickets and gain more customer loyalty if we could do away with them every so often.
Maybe it could be our industry’s Pumpkin Spice Latte.
Do you have an idea on how to heal a pain point in our biz? Tell me in the comments below.
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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.