There is a great counterintuitive marketing technique sometimes expressed as under promise and over deliver. I want to tell you about it because it works, its free, it does not matter if you don’t under promise and over deliver sometimes room for error and it applies to absolutely any size and type of business. All it requires from the business owners side is a measure of consistency and of course putting mechanisms in place in the business for under promising and over delivering, if not all the time then most of the time.
There are number of great businessmen and brand marketers currently espousing this tactic as the panacea to all marketing dilemmas but it is in fact a time honored technique. Take for example Mr Bigtow who was the piano tuner in the little town where I grew up. The first time I heard of him was when my mom told us he was coming to tune my sisters piano which my dad had bought at an auction. I remember her telling me how he didnt charge much and all he needed was an hour or two. Imagine my surprise when Mr Bigtow was guided in by his wife. He was blind
He sat down at the piano and began the rigorous business of bringing that old upright to perfect pitch. Four hours later he had not moved from the piano. We offered him something to drink, something to eat, but he declined. After six hours we noted that the twanging noises had stopped. Then there issued from the room where the piano stood the most perfect sweet music. Mr Bigtow was playing the piano We looked wide eyed at one another. After a few pieces he pronounced the work done and he called his wife to come and fetch him.
All we had expected was for the piano to be tuned. Instead we had an aural expert come into our home and put six intense hours into bringing the instrument as near to perfection as it could get. Plus we got the confirmation of that in the form of a performance of great piano playing, unasked for but most appreciated. Mr Bigtow certainly under promised we didnt expect much for the few dollars he asked and over delivered what an expert, what a pianist. We will never forget Mr Bigtow.
Here is the bottom line on under promising and over delivering:
1. Don’t advertise that you are doing it because that defeats the purpose
2. Don’t advertise the extra mile that you go for your clients, just remain modest
3. When you have a customer in your grasp, over deliver on your promises
4. Don’t bring it to their attention but let them discover for themselves how exceptional your business is
5. Stick to what you openly promise save money, good service etc. but over deliver dramatically when the time comes.