What’s in a name? Coke knows..one beverage at a time

imagesPerhaps William Shakespeare said it best, “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Everyone on the planet loves to hear their name. And the Coca Cola Company is helping many customers see their name in lights…or on a bottle and in the meantime, is driving sales in the process.

Their Share a Coke campaign began in Europe and came to the US this summer. More than 1,000 names and phrases are printed on various Coca Cola products with the message to “share a coke with (insert a friend’s name). It’s actually quite brilliant when you think about it. A small labeling change, a targeted, “personal” marketing campaign and poof…profits!

What has grabbed my attention with this product campaign is the attraction to customers by actually using their name. Whether you drink this beverage or not, there are some great customer experience principles we can learn from this carbonated beverage.

When you know and use your customer’s name three things happen:

#1  It connects.
Humans long to be part of something, a community where they are connected to others or a bigger purpose in some way.  When you know and use your customer’s name you invite them to be part of your business – your culture, your purpose and family.

#2  It remembers.
Coca Cola is doing with customer names.  Lowe’s is doing it with its Lowe’s Remembers loyalty program.  Each are finding ways to know each customer then takes it to the next step…they remember who you are and know your preferences.  They do the heavy lifting to make your customer experience easy and even…fun.

#3  It thrives.
The journey of great customer experiences never ends. In fact, when done well it sustains the organization.  We know that todays customer is more selective than ever with their buying dollars.  They demand quality and will pay for it.  Utilizing your customer’s names (and really knowing your customer) means every person on your team is integral to your customer service strategy.  When that happens, the business will thrive.

Kudos to Coca Cola. Well done on a fun, innovative way to reach your customers and perhaps attract some new ones.  So in your world, what is your “name strategy”?  Endear your customers to you.  Who knows, they may even want to share a coke with you.

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