VW sold its soul to the capitalist devil

VW is an easy company to write about these days because of the emissions test “cheating” that took place. With most organizations in this situation, I would say that they will recover fairly quickly and within a year or two be back to where they were.

I don’t think this will be the case for VW. With this emissions cheating, VW has rocked its’ loyal customer base to the core. These customers love VW for its flower-bearing Beetles and its environment-sustaining engines. VW was supposed to be the earthy car company that made you feel good about buying driving. Like you were actually helping the environment while all other cars were hurting it.

That perception has been destroyed. It’s like a leader getting voted into office on a certain platform, and then reversing his or her position on controversial issues once elected. VW owners feel like they have been duped.

It’s not about fixing the cars….that part is easy. VW has destroyed any loyalty it had with customers. It succumbed to greed and capitalism, which it was supposed to be immune to.

People can forgive a PR mistake or a bad decision….those happen all the time. I’m not sure people can forgive a decision that goes completely against what an organization was supposed to stand for. Imagine UNICEF choosing to let children die or the YMCA discriminating based on race or colour. That would be unheard of.

But here you have a car company that built its’ reputation on sustainability and making our world a better place, lying about the emissions its’ cars give off so it could sell more cars. Does it get much worse than that?

Are you creating customer disloyalty?

In a recent post, I outlined the 10 key factors in maximizing customer retention. One of those factors was loyalty. When we look at organizations like Apple or Lululemon or Google, they have created such loyalty with customers, that those customers may never switch away from their products.

But what about creating disloyalty? Many organizations are doing that every day. Here are just a few ways organizations create disloyalty:

  • By not resolving customer issues quickly and to the satisfaction of the customer.
  • By offering new customers a better deal than customers who have been with the company for a long time (think cell phone providers).
  • By offering an inconsistent experience every time a customer enters your store.
  • By having product not available.
  • By offering products that break down well before they should.
  • By having employees who ignore customers when they enter your store, or even worse, have a rude facial expression.
  • By not having anyone available to help when a customer is looking for guidance.

Are you doing any of these things? If you are, then it won’t take you long to figure out why you’re having trouble retaining customers and creating the loyalty that you seek.

Site By: The Chad Barr Group