Sunday, November 05, 2006

Best Buy Tips: Free Marketing Advice

I just got done blogging about how poorly Best Buy treats its customers when it comes to digital cameras.

If I were in their shoes, I'd do the following:

  • Make sure every camera has a memory card in it. The amount of time it takes to snap a picture, write it to the memory card, and snap another one, is a critical measurement. You don't want your customers buying a digital camera without seeing this. In fact, your sales people could probably use this fact to get people to buy a pricier camera (naturally, only selling them what they need).
  • The camera sales people should use the shoe store model when they noticing that someone is browsing a specific camera. That is, offer to get them a model they can try on and play with. One with literally no strings attached. The battery on the floor model should be all charged up and it should be ready to go. Customers should be encouraged to shoot photos throughout the store. Perhaps posters should be hung, or a macro scene created, all with the hopes of demonstrating the capabilities of the cameras.
  • A 24 hour test drive program should be setup. If you are interested in a camera, the sales person should suggest that you take one home for 24 or 48 hours. Naturally, the customer would leave a credit card # behind. The idea would be to go home and use the camera in a real setting - take some snapshots of the memorials, try shooting pictures of your family in dim light.
  • Provide a service where you print out a free 4x6" or 5x7" snapshot to demonstrate how prints would turn out. Sure, you'll lose some money on paper and ink, but how many cameras would you sell if you could offer that kind of service? Again, showing the quality of prints could serve as justification for buying a more expensive camera.
  • Continue to hire and train employees so they can talk intelligently about cameras and digital photography.

The good news for Best Buy is that their cruddy service is currently par for the course. If they could just think differently, they could capture a market and blow away the competition.


  1. I totally agree with you. However, I have to say once you buy the extended warranty from Best Buy you can return items absolutely no questions asked. Which is a nice thing to have.

    However, you probably shouldn't have to pay for this pleasure.

    Doesn't buying a digital camera suck? I'm glad I bought my last one in Japan.

  2. That's good to know that they at least make an attempt to be somewhat customer oriented.

    In the end, I bought the camera off some non-name Yahoo store. Best Buy could have had my business, I would have paid a bit more to buy locally.

    But they just didn't earn it.