Calling all geologists, rock-hounds, and science buffs: I just got word that the GeoFair will be held at the Cincinnati Gardens in a few weeks. Scouts (Cub, Boy, Girl, etc.) get in free if they wear their uniforms. Webelos (4th/5th Grade Cub Scouts) can even earn their Geology Pin there. As a Webelos Den Leader, this catches my interest, and rightly so. What really excites me about it, though, is this will be my second time there. You see, back in the 1970’s, my Webelos Den Leader took us to this event. On a Saturday in May. At the Cincinnati Gardens. Now, I’m not that old – it was the LATE 1970’s, mind you – but that’s an impressive run, don’t you think?
I’m not going to hazard a guess as to why the GeoFair has stuck around at the same time of year, in the same building, for so long. To the best of my recollection (and this is from a 10-year old boy from The Sticks’ perspective), it was a huge, well-produced event. Perhaps the dedication and faithfulness of geologists and rock-hounds cannot be underestimated. One might suspect it’s a combination of the two.
Not only did this get me nostalgic, thinking about sharing this experience with my Scouts, it also made me think about longevity. And its causes. My doctor tells me to eat right, move around a little more, don’t start smoking, etc., and, barring genetic predisposition or tragedy, I should live a good, long life. As long as my wife and I continue to share, respect, and listen (I mean really listen, guys – not just nod & think about what we’re going to say next), then we should be very happy together for the rest of our good, long lives.
In business, it’s all about cultivating the kind of loyalty that’s demonstrated by the folks who continue to make the GeoFair a successful annual event. Products and services are purchased every day. Thing is, except in very rare cases, someone else makes or does the same thing as you, and they’re vying for the same allegiance from customers as you. So what can set you apart?
Innovation. Make something new. Then make it better. Think “better mousetrap.” For example, look through EXAIR’s catalog, and you’ll find numerous “Product of the Year” nods, and a nomination for last year’s “Golden Mousetrap” award for the Chip Trapper.
Customer Service. Again, products and services are purchased every day. If you want to sell, you have to develop the relationship. Make yourself the one they think of when a need for your product or service arises. When you call EXAIR, a real live Customer Service Specialist picks up the phone, ready to serve you in real time. If you have detailed questions, you’ll be quickly transferred to a real live Application Engineer, ready to serve you in real time. As long as we’re open, you’ll never get anyone’s voice mail unless you specifically ask for it.
Availability. If products are sold every day, they need to be available every day. “If I wanted it tomorrow, I’d have called tomorrow!” Sound familiar? No problems here. If it’s in our catalog, we’ll ship it the same day with an order by 3pm EST. Specials and custom orders can be done fairly quickly as well.
This list isn’t all-inclusive, but these are some of the biggies that work for EXAIR and set us apart. Our company’s President is fond of saying “claims are easy; proof is hard.” Accept that challenge every day. It’s a great place to start.
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