Published on: January 13, 2011Now available on iTunes…
To hear Kevin Coupe’s weekly radio commentary, click on the “MNB Radio” icon on the left hand side of the home page, or just go to:
Hi, I’m Kevin Coupe, and this is MNB Radio, available on iTunes and brought to you this week by Webstop, experts in the art of retail website design.
There’s been some discussion here on the site this week about the importance of providing relevant services to consumers, especially as they get older and have more need of various kinds of assistance and less need of stuff. That sort of plays into my continuing refrain - that to be successful in the 21st century, retailers need to be not just a source of product, but a resource for information. And I recently ran into a situation that illustrates both the problem and the solution.
You may have noticed that last week there was no MNB Radio podcast. The reason is simple. Early in the week, I bought and downloaded onto my laptop the new edition of iLife, which contains the Garage Band program, which is what I use each week to do MNB Radio. It always has been simple to use, making the process of recording and editing the podcasts fairly simple, even for someone like me who has no facility for such things.
But last week, a couple of hours before deadline as I went to edit my MNB Radio piece, I found that the new Garage Band program did not work the same way as the old one...and I couldn’t figure out how to edit the damn thing, no matter where I looked online for assistance. So, we went without. It was a perfect example of having the latest, new and improved product, but since I had no idea how to use it, the product was useless to me.
Until this week, when I made an appointment for some One-To-One training at the Apple Store, and they showed me how to do what I needed to do in about five minutes ... and then spent the rest of the hour helping me with my iPad and various other questions I had. It was a perfect example of providing a relevant service that made the product useful ... and especially helpful to people in my demographic - which is to say, people who love using Apple products but possess a personality flaw that keeps them from intuitively figuring out the solutions to computer problems.
As always, Apple solved the problem, as it almost always does with its Genius Bar and One-to-One services. It is a perfect model of what many 21st century retailers need to do in order to remain relevant and compelling to their shoppers - providing not just product, but being an accessible resource for information.
I have to go now. I need to edit this podcast into usable form, and then start researching the new Verizon iPhone, which I am really, really looking forward to.
For MNB Radio, I’m Kevin Coupe.
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