Friday, October 29, 2010

Zappos

Is that a blog title?  Yes it deserves to be.  When we refer to brand Apple we think about sexy products.  Zappos is such a brand name in shoes and soft retail goods.   When one thinks of Zappos it reminds him of excellent customer service.  Last night I saw an interview of Tony Hsieh on Business Insider (View it here).  It was awesome.  

Tony at 24 sold his company to Microsoft in 1999 at 265 million dollars.  He strongly believes in building a strong company culture.  A company's culture is the toughest part to tackle and also most difficult to change.  When you have a strong culture then you can build a solid product and give super customer service.   


I even ordered Tony's book "Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose".  Zappos has maintained to stay independent even after its merger with Amazon.  How is that possible?  Well you can find that in the interview above, as my explanation will not do justice.  


Many companies write their core values and mission statements which are hanging in their lobbies but rarely they make sense.  If you want to look at Zappos core values they are clear and make sense.  This is exactly what the book "Made To Stick" mentions, that your ideas should be concrete and not vague to make them stickier.  Try to build values and mission statements which are crystal clear.  


When you look at Zappos website you can feel the company culture and also you can make out what is going on in the background.  Their 800 number is on the top of every single page so any time a customer can easily find it. They believe in complete customer satisfaction.  Even if it costs the company still it is ok because they consider it as their marketing cost.  


An entire new approach is needed if you want to sell goods online.  Not many companies are successful.  In online retail everyone thinks it is the technology.  No it is not and never will be.  Company's people and processes will always be key in not only online retail but any business.  Any guesses why dot com bubble burst?