Business Strategy For The REAL World
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Old Customers =
New Sales
Cheerful Mailings To Existing Customers

Do A Friend A Favor
“If you love your Troy-Bilt, please pass along your special owner’s discount to a good friend.”

The Troy-Bilt Roto Tiller was designed to last forever; it even had a no-time-limit warranty! But we helped the company convince these owners that they should trade up to the newer models, or ones with electric start, or even get a smaller model for their parents.

Deep discounts allowed existing customers to give “pass along savings” to their friends and neighbors. The company made excellent profits because the selling costs were far less than for finding brand new prospects.

Gold In The Filing Cabinet
--Pioneering the concept of Database Management

Old Customers Yield Best ProfitsDo you have a product that people buy only once? Think again! You may be able to sell additional products to them, plus their friends and relatives. The key is to have terrific customer service, keep in touch, and look for ways to add on revenue. So, open up that old filing cabinet of customers and call or write them.

The Situation
In the mid-1970’s, we were looking for ways to increase sales for Garden Way. The primary product was the Troy-Bilt, a 300-pound, $2,500 (in today’s dollars) garden tiller that had a lifetime warranty. Obviously, a gardener would only ever need one. Given all the efforts needed to make that one sale, it was a shame that the company couldn’t leverage that into more sales.

What We Did
We put together a team of people whose purpose was to love the customers to death. By doing so, we were able to get the customers so thrilled with us that they made thousands of sales to their friends. We gave them free gardening books; we gave them free repair parts; we gave them deep discounts on buying more products for themselves and their friends. We once gave away a total of quarter of a million dollars in tiller tines. The accountants thought we were nuts, but it was like the biblical “casting bread on the water”. It all came back tenfold!

How The Client Benefited
The “Owner Program” went on to become a major contributor to the company’s profit and success. The number of customers grew to a million, and then to two million. A dozen mailings per year were sent to them, including a 24-page newspaper that served as a quarterly cheerleader. The economics of these mailings were designed to leverage excellent profits from what had been considered a “dead” list. As the company grew and developed other products, the loyal owner base became a responsive market for each new innovation.

Back to more Portfolio Case Histories!
(Or go forward to Next Page to see Hot Mailings Sell Furnaces.)

the TBON 24-page newspaper

Troy-Bilt Owner News
This customer-appreciation newspaper was sent to all customers four times per year.

Its 24 pages were loaded with gardening tips & tricks, recipes, maintenance suggestions, and special offers on parts, accessories and new products. It profitably mined the list of customers using what is nowadays called database management.

What The Heck Is
"Direct Response Marketing" and Why Should You Care?

Direct Response Marketing skips all the middlemen and aims directly at your customer using techniques that objectively measure the results. It can be used B2C or B2B and applied to any level in your sales channel. But you can't bluff your way with this advertising; if it's effective, you'll know it, and if not, you'll know that, too.

DM is a great way to lower your advertising costs while increasing your sales and profits. But there's a lot of science and art to it. To learn more, please visit our page, Direct Marketing.

Next Step to Profits
(518) 753-9528

Sherwood Marketing
A division of the Sherwood Farm Group
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Johnsonville, NY 12094

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