Creating “Comfort Copy”
I may have coined a phrase: "Comfort Copy."
Embedded in advertising headlines and promotional copy, the hype, benefits, excitement and urgency should be calming words that answer the lurking question in the minds of customers and prospects:
"If I am ever unhappy with your products or service, will you guarantee to make it right for me with no hassle or unpleasantness?"
The Greatest Comfort Copy Ever Written
[See the first image in the media player.]
I do not consider a sale
complete until goods are
worn out and customer
still satisfied." —L.L. Bean, 1916
Note how Mr. Bean started with "I"—and not the colorless CYA "We," from a bunch of bureaucrats pointing fingers at each other and the customer.
Old Leon Leonwood Bean himself—founder and owner—signed this deeply personal guarantee.
No asterisks, footnotes or disclaimers.
Just 17 straightforward words.
You have got to feel immediate comfort doing business with this gent.
What triggered this column was Pam Goodfellow's report in the March 30th Forbes:
L.L. Bean Boots Amazon.com From Customer Service Champion Pedestal.
What followed was a list-based on Prosper Insights & Analytics research—detailing the 10 retailers offering the very best customer service.
#1: L.L. Bean—founded in 1912.
This magnificent organization displaced Jeff Bezos' Amazon.com launched in 1994.
Comparing Guarantees: Which Are Great and Which Suck
Let's assume all 10 of these retailers are world-class at customer care.
How do their wordsmiths reassure customers and prospects they will be loved and coddled throughout the browsing, buying (and possibly returning) journey?
I Googled each company's name followed by the word "Guarantee."
The second image in the media player is what I found on the L.L. Bean website.
L.L. Bean is The Greatest—the Muhammad Ali of Comfort Copy!