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What would you do if a Company Secret got in the hands of a Customer and you didn't want them to know?
November 10, 2010 8:30AM
by: Dean Bowen
Category(s): Managing Contacts
I was speaking to a client yesterday who was frustrated that a perceived “secret” had gotten out.  She was concerned... (more)

I was speaking to a client yesterday who was frustrated that a perceived “secret” had gotten out.  She was concerned that the Customer would tell everyone about the “secret.”  Using the evolve principal of knowing your “contact type” (prospect, customer, raving fan) we discussed what Content (message) could have changed the conversation.

What was the concern?  The customer now knows something the owner doesn't want anyone else to know.

The fact now remains - the customer now knows.  No going back.  What now? 

Opportunity:  Be mad?  Be proactive?  In relationship to work they are a Customer.  In relationship to the Secret they are a prospect.

Our conversation went like this:  Since the customer now knows, why not ask “what are their feelings about the ‘secret?’”  Do they feel it would be a good idea or a bad one?  Do they feel that they would be better off because of it?  As the conversation continued I could see the powerlessness and doubt decrease while the empowerment and confidence increased.  She could see being proactive could be in her favor instead of just trying to hide the “secret.”

We ended with the Owner will call the Customer and have the above conversation with them.  Ask them if they think this “secret” should be shared among other customers or if she thinks it should stay within those that now now?  In essence, treating this person as a Raving Fan (they know something that the majority of people don’t know and they feel empowered and in the know).  Now that someone outside of the company knows, is it better to try to “prevent” the secret from spreading or is it better to gather intelligence outside of the organization?

I’ll update as the conversation unfolds.

Have an idea what the “company secret” is or want to know?  Submit your comment below.

"New thinking.  New Results"