The New Reasonable

Marketing expert Seth Godin recently blogged about “unreasonable is the new reasonable,” saying that unreasonable product performance and customer service are what customers now expect. It seems that as people everywhere have tightened their belts, they’re looking harder for great values- or, as Godin says, unreasonable ones.

A case in point: my wife recently told me a story about how she’d decided to order a $50 pair of shoes from a website that was promoting free shipping with a $100 purchase.  She called the company numerous times to ask if they might give her free shipping for her $50 purchase, each time getting a different customer service agent. The first few times she attempted this, she was turned down, but she continued to call until she found an agent who would extend her the offer. While her purchase was only half the minimum price for the promotion, she had a feeling- correct, as it turned out- that someone at the company would bend the rules for her. She was looking for unreasonable service.

How business will adjust to this, time will tell. It seems clear, though, that a 10% discount is no longer good enough for many people. Have you seen similar attitudes in patients? Who out there is providing unreasonably good service to the dental industry? Would you yourself own up to unreasonable expectations from a company? You certainly wouldn’t be alone.


1 comment so far

  1. David on

    Hi Keith, This is an excellent truth in marketing under today’s environment. I believe that it is a cycle and is a reflection of our economic performance as a nation the last few years.

    I do know of at least one group that refuses to advertise on Groupons.

    Those who rely on razor thin margins play a dangerous game.

    The economy will cycle again and when the nation becomes more prosperous – the discounts will get smaller again as well.

    There will always be people who hunt for a deal but there will be less of them in more prosperous times.

    That’s my 2 cents….

    I predict the dental industry will not be as affected as other industries are. A strong enough pain demands attention regardless of the times…

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