Schedulefly Stories

Growing a software business one restaurant at a time

Month: September 2012

Another cool Schedulefly video testimonial

John-Mark Larter, GM at Jax Fish House and Oyster Bar in Boulder CO talks about how Schedulefly makes staff scheduling and communication at his busy restaurant easier. Thanks John-Mark!

If your reading this on your phone and don’t see the video, click here to watch it…

Wes

Daniel Holzman from The Meatball Shop talks shop…

Daniel talks about what he’s learned from chain restaurants and why it’s so important to use your connections to help foster your success…

We’re so fortunate to have the chance to capture all of these incredibly smart restaurant owners on video giving advice and talking about the lessons they’ve learned. This stuff is so valuable and we get fired up every time we post one of these vids!

Wil

ETDBW

Think of how many businesses are not easy to do business with. Long hold times when you call. Unhappy or un-empowered people (or both) who answer the phone. Your emails never get answered. Returning an item is expensive and the process is cumbersome. Rebates require tons of paperwork and the bet (by the provider) that you’ll lose or never use that rebate card. You get cut off when you get transferred to another department. You have to punch in and say your account number multiple times. The list goes on and on.

But the upside is that if you are easy to do business with, your audience will adore you.

Wil

Don’t try to do too much…

We received this email last week from a customer…

I just wanted to drop you a quick note to let you know how pleased we are with Schedule Fly. As advertised, it is very easy to use and set up. We have two locations and Schedulefly has helped bring the staff closer together! It is fun and easy to use so the staff picks up and drops shifts between locations much more so than they ever did in the past. Please keep Schedulefly Fun & Easy to use, and don’t try to do too much.”

It reminded me that if you just keep your application (or product, or menu, or whatever you sell) simple and easy and “don’t try to do too much,” you are well on your way to creating a successful business.

The problem is it can be very hard to keep things simple and easy and not try to do too much. Businesses almost always want to add things to their products. They want to make them bigger. Or better. Or both. But in attempting to do so they often make their products more complicated. Or more frustrating. Or both.

Recently I posted some items for sale on Craigslist. I had been to their site in a couple of years, and I was so relieved that it looked no different than I had remembered it. It hasn’t changed much because the people at Craigslist know better than to try to do too much! (By the way, I admire the heck out of Craigslist as a business – they are very profitable and don’t need many people to run the business, which I posted about here two years ago.)

So we promise to our users that we will keep Schedulefly fun and easy to use. That we won’t try to do too much. In fact, over time we’ll probably take more things away (by creating less clicks) than we add.

In other words, in a world of ever more complicated devices and applications and products, we’re focused heavily on being breath of fresh air for all of the members of the Schedulefly community…

Wil

The marketing hare vs. the word-of-mouth tortoise…

A few years ago our car needed some body work. I fell victim to taking it to the local repair company that advertises on the radio all of the time. They hooked me. I knew their name and immediately thought of them. Sparing the details, I had a bad feeling when I picked my car up. It had seemed like a rushed experience. The car looked fine, but for whatever reason my intuition told me to not use them again.

Sure enough, we needed more body work done recently (what can I say…three kids and a minivan = recurring fender benders and dingers). This time I wanted a word-of-mouth referral from somebody I trusted. I was pointed in the direction of a place I’ve never heard of, and was told they are excellent.

And guess what? They are. The guy told me he’s been in business fifteen years and has never done any advertising. He’s built his business one customer at a time through word-of-mouth by simply doing great work and treating his customers with honesty and respect.

Ironically, I never mentioned having work done before, but he noticed it and proceeded to show me where the previous company had cut corners and done shoddy work. It was plain as day. They had suckered me.

Meanwhile, this experience was fantastic. Great communication. The work was done right. And not only will I return to him the next time (unfortunately I’m sure there will be a next time), I will happily refer anybody who needs body work to him.

This process reminded me that while marketing rabbit may get out of the gate faster, the word-of-mouth tortoise will always win in the long run.

Wil

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