Cars, cars, cars.

They are a bane and a pleasure for us all.  Sometimes we buy them, sometimes we lease them, sometimes we trade them in, sometimes we get really good ones, sometimes we wreck them, sometimes we get real bad ones (not really—not anymore) and, God forbid, sometimes we buy them for teenage sons and daughters.  Boy am I glad that chapter is over!

We are always eyeing cars.  We find ourselves admiring the ones we have no business buying, looking at car ads and checking out the new styles which automatically make last year’s models look like a Model T.

This past weekend, Sandra and I went to Honda World here in Louisville to take a look at the new Honda CRV.  We’ve had dozens of cars in our car careers and the Honda CRV that Sandra currently drives may be better than all the cars we’ve ever had.  We’ve had Mercedes, BMW’s and bigger cars and smaller cars . These CRV’s are terrific cars.

Please Note: Honda is NOT an advertiser on this site.

So, we went to look at a new car and decided not to buy it.  We were very well-taken care of by the salesman.  The sales manager even dropped by to exchange pleasantries and talk about sports and other non-car related things.  Nonetheless, no sale was made.

So why am I so IMPRESSED?

The following day I received an email from the Managing Partner of the dealership we were visiting.  The dealership is a huge enterprise, so this isn’t like some guy that owns his own lot giving us a courteous call.  This was smart, unique, impressive and totally counter to the Customer Service Disaster in America.

Here is the letter from Michael Porro: (Michael—hope you don’t mind)

Paul,

My name is Michael Porro and I am the new owner of Honda World.  I would like to thank you for your recent visit.  I realize you have many options when buying a vehicle today.  I also know that there are always two sides to every story.  That is why I am leaving the right side of this page for you.

Please tell me, the owner, how I can earn your business. You see, at Honda World we appreciate open, honest feedback and communication from our customers.  Please write, telephone, or e-mail me with your comments.  I personally will make sure we do everything possible to earn your business.

If I need to personally re-evaluate your trade, or renegotiate your price or payment – I will.  All I need to get started is your feedback. You can work your deal directly with me- the owner.

 Let me prove to you that I want to earn your business.  I guarantee there will be no one more committed to earning your business than me. Now is your opportunity for a great deal and my chance at a second opportunity.  I appreciate your precious time and hope you will allow us a second chance!

 Sincerely,

Michael P Porro

Managing Partner

Honda World

How about that? A customer service review request sent to a non-customer!

That just knocked my socks off. Think about the three pieces of America’s Customer Service Disaster:

  1. Thin Skinned Behavior
  2. Misuse of Technology
  3. Disconnected Advertising

This guy has knocked all three of those items right on their fanny, or chassis.

He took advantage of technology to send a warm note. A note of recognizing and thanking us for the visit. He didn’t come back and fuss about not making a sale—and we’ve all been through that with a thin-skinned car seller guy. And he created some effective advertising because I am going to tell one hell of a lot of people about this—not to mention all my readers that see this ‘story’.

Congratulations, Michael! Well done. A customer service review request to a non-customer.

Excuse me. A customer service review request to a FUTURE customer!

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