A prominent multiplex in India has a luxury seating space. The guests are treated the best when they opt for luxury seats. There are special waiters to serve them, the food is served on the seats.
The same multiplex does not treat its other customers in the similar manner. If you are an ‘ordinary’ customer, you are treated badly and many times you are rudely talked to. The smile that you see on the ticket checkers sadly goes off on the face of the ticket checkers on “normal” seats.
I have a rule. I do not go to normal class. I will not watch five movies a month in normal class. Most of the time I patiently wait for the movies to appear on DVDs or VCDs. I would rather go once to watch the movie in luxury seats. I love the experience.
I however absolutely detest the multiplex. Given an alternative, I would never go to their halls. They will never have my loyalty. I will never speak or write nice about them I am not their frequent customer. I am just there because I do not have an alternative.
A customer would feel loved where he/she is provided the best attention. No doubt some take it for granted and start misbehaving but they are the exceptions. The multiplex earns from me once a month but loses on at least three to four movies because of their rude behaviour.
Don’t I have choice? I do have. I will have to just drive a little longer. I do that most of the time. I spend more on petrol than I would if I get a better experience. Experience is what matters. That is why you would see parks and resorts filled all the year round. A fairly decent customer service with a great natural experience make people drive hundreds of kilometers just to be there.
Loyalty is relevant today. A loyal customer is not only who comes back but who talks about your business, who gets you more business and who talks about his experience in various forums. A customer shares your page on facebook. He or she tweets about it. He puts the experience on the blog as I have put it. That is what is loyalty.
You can have a thousand loyalty program launched. A customer will not be loyal till he or she experiences your business and that should be good.