Sunday, April 09, 2006

Knowing Your Customer

We just received a junk mail advertisement to join Frog's Fitness. What's interesting about this advertisement is that it's on nice quality, heavy stock paper, multi-colored and attractive. It's flashy and talks about the exacting standards of the club and how it will exceed our every need for a fitness center in every way - "from services and amenities, to classes and equipment". Awesome! I'm actually looking to join a gym in the near future as I'll be graduating this semester and won't have access to the campus rec center anymore. I would be really interested in joining Frog's cuz this advertisement makes it sound super-keen.

The only problem is the gym locations are a bit of a commute for me.

You see, Frog's only has locations in Long Beach and San Diego. My wife works for a company headquartered in the San Diego area so I'm sure she's on some sort of employee mailing list that Frog's has paid to access. Living in Houston, Texas means that I'm not the customer that they're looking for. Now any rational person who thought for more than two seconds would realize this, but Frog's probably just had a list and sent out the mail on auto-pilot like all good companies do. Better yet, they hired a third-party to do it for them. It's advertising. That's how it's done.

The problem is, that model really sucks. They just wasted postage, printing costs, employee time, and a whole host of other expenses just to send me an advertisement that I have no chance of ever responding to in a positive way. Yet they claim that their gym will "exceed my every expectation" of customer service. Well, the primary expectation I have for a gym is convenience- and so far Frog's hasn't exceeded that one.

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