Greetings. If you follow this blog regularly you know that I love guarantees and the companies and organizations that offer them. Real guarantees. The kind that show an honest commitment to stand behind the products, services and solutions we offer. The kind that demonstrate just how serious we are about exceeding the real needs of customers. It's why I'm a big fan of companies like L.L. Bean that guarantee everything they sell by letting the customer decide if they have received the value they expected. Or companies like Hyundai who reversed their fortunes by providing the best warranty in the automobile business and backing it up by offering cars that were designed and built with greatly improved quality and style.
Real guarantees are powerful. But do they work in any business? I'd like to think so. Assuming, that is, that it offers something of real value. So I was particularly amused when I read that Dr. Ravi Godse, a Pittsburgh physician and filmmaker was offering a money-back guarantee to customers who purchase his latest film titled "Help Me Help You." Now before you dismiss this offer as a marketing ploy or a simple act of desperation, you should know that this is not his first film. He's made two other films that very few of us have ever heard about with the somewhat intriguing (or at least amusing) titles of "I'm a Schizophrenic and So Am I" and "Dr. Ravi and Mr. Hyde." You should also know that he stars in all of his own movies. Though you probably guessed that already. But in "Help Me Help You" he's hired several well-known TV and movie actors including Steve Guttenberg, Richard Kind, Rondell Sheridan and Sabrina Ryan, along with former Pittsburgh Steelers star Franco Harris to join him. And while I haven't seen it yet–though I obviously have nothing to lose by buying it (other than 82 minutes of my time)–I am somewhat curious about the story line…in which Ravi plays a doctor with a terminal illness who decides to spend his remaining days making other people happy.
The big question is whether the guarantee, and the publicity it created, will be enough to get me and others to buy the film.
We win in business and in life when we stand behind the things that we offer. And when we stretch beyond the confines of our day jobs to tell a story with humor and hopefully meaning.
Cheers and have a great week ahead!