As we enter the mid-year mark of 2019, so many people ask me, “How do you win and how do you have such a loyal customer base?” My response is fast, simple, and without hesitation…. Customer service. My team and I are committed to serving the underserved in our industry.
Over the years, we have done all that we can to ensure success for not just our PawnMaster users, but non-PawnMaster members of the industry as well. About seven years ago, we reformatted our focus and really brought collaboration and education to the forefront. Since making this change, we built out informational sites and resources like this blog and PawnLink.org, as well as providing industry-wide information through our social media channels. We’re known in the our industry as the first vendor to solve real problems with substance rather than promoting fluff. That’s why we recently entered into a partnership with Podium, a collaboration which will bring another level of education and service to the industry as a whole, while addressing some real issues that affect businesses of any size. Working with new people, companies and technology is one part of what we do but we also stay very close to our own community within our industry.
Growing up in the 80s and being around pawn shops my entire life, I was surrounded by the stigma that the pawn world was ruled by men, and women-owned shops were very rare. Also prevalent was the mentality that the shop will just run and grow by itself. Many of the stores I encountered in those days gave little to no effort in the way of growth strategizing, growth monitoring, or new idea implementation.
Every day we hear stories about vendors not helping their clients, not calling them back, and a host of other very frustrating and disappointing things, all of which are negatively impacting peoples' businesses. The Data Age/PawnMaster brand, company, and suite of products have been known for being world-class for the past thirty years. We always sit back and analyze how to improve. I recall an event held at the Ritz Carlton a few years back. I was walking to my meeting and in the hallway I saw three Ritz Carlton employees on their knees highly focused on removing a small piece of gum from the carpet. At first I said for the amount of money a room cost I would expect this but the establishment provided great value in so many areas. They don’t need to roll out three people to get a tiny piece of gum that cannot be seen removed. This is their strategy to customer service excellence and overall user experience. Let me be clear, customer support is a strategy that many miss the mark on in a big way.
We just had our annual Data Age awards dinner. Each year we recognize the performance of the Data Age team in appreciation of the work they have done with our clients. One of the awards we give out is our “Top Gun” award. This award goes to our top performing sales rep but it has so much more depth to it than just great revenue numbers.
Stone removal is, and should be, an important part of the pawnbroker’s and jeweler's process. If you’re not doing it, you should be, and if you’re not familiar with how to do it, that’s where I come in. Stone removal is a terrific, easy process. It’s incredibly affordable, and it’s a simple way to gather items of value to bring to a convention to be able to sell.
Competition... What is it? Someone else that does what you do? Do they do it better? Or are they just another company in the same field or on the same street.
Don't sweat competition; I try to never sweat competition. There will always be competition and sometimes I admit I don't like it (I'm not perfect).
However, I worry more about what I'm doing for my clients and my company start to finish day in and day out. So many people get wrapped up in what everyone else is doing or saying that they forget about themselves and what they have on their own to-do lists.