How a brand can deliver its promise + still turn a mom off for life.

DSC 0646 300x199 How a brand can deliver its promise + still turn a mom off for life.
No time is more stressful on moms than the holidays. And brands that support mom in getting stuff done shall inherit the earth. Those that stand in her way? Well, that should almost be a punishable-by-death crime. Here is the play-by-play of how one company let me down multiple times, doing the worst thing a brand can do: they robbed me of a superwoman cape that was rightfully mine.

November:

I get organized and get a good photo of my kids on Thanksgiving Day (see above). Success #1.

I take said photo and upload it to Tiny Prints, where I create a custom holiday greeting, even before returning from Thanksgiving travel. Success #2.

December:

I receive photo cards weeks earlier than I normally would. Success #3. I AM SUPER MOM!

I address half the cards, stamp, return address, and mail them. I even walk to the post office and burn off some Thanksgiving bloat. Success #4.

Days later, one of the cards is returned to me with a notice from the post office that square envelopes require 20 cents additional postage. FAILURE #1

With fear in my heart that all my cards will return, requiring readdressing, restamping, etc., I put a full stop on Gordon Holiday Card Production. I then engage in a Live Chat with a Tiny Prints Customer Service rep.

She informs me that the message about square envelopes requiring additional postage is on the card order page. “Why isn’t it on the envelope itself when it arrives at my house, in the upper right-hand corner, like I’ve seen it on greeting cards at the card store?” I ask. She has no answer. FAILURE #2

Live Chat Betty assures me she will rush ship me some regular sized envelopes that can accommodate my remaining cards without requiring me to go to the post office — AND WAIT IN LINE — to purchase 20 cent stamps. (I thought this was SUCCESS #5, but it wasn’t).

I wait a full week for envelopes to arrive. No dice.

My unaddressed square envelopes sit on the dining room table, next to my remaining cards and address book. Every day I see them I sense the taxi-meter of days until Christmas counting down. At this rate, I will be lucky if my cards arrive by Christmas Day. How far I have fallen from my early December mail schedule.

Finally I attempt to Live Chat again. The Live Chat feature is down. FAILURE #3

I attempt to call. I am told the wait time is 67 minutes. FAILURE #4

I randomly tweet my disappointment, not @ replying Tiny Prints, but mentioning their long wait time on the phone with a frown face icon sad How a brand can deliver its promise + still turn a mom off for life.

To my surprise, someone answers with a Tweet, asking me to Direct Message them my situation. It’s hard to fit into 140 characters. But I manage.

And now I am told that new envelopes are on their way to me and should be here overnight.

Yet, I don’t fully believe.

It’s one week until Christmas and I am receiving occasional returned cards from mailing #1, requesting additional postage. I am awaiting replacement envelopes like a jaded lover, unsure her date will show. And my cards — far from being early — will likely be just-in-the-Nick-of-time… or late.

Here’s the crazy part

Tiny Prints has delivered on its brand promise which is: “Great quality, large selection, attractive design.” They offered me a huge selection of attractive designs and I received great quality cards. Yet the entire house went down in flames in small details that weren’t considered. They robbed me of a moment of Mom Competence that I rarely achieve. And that, my friends, is the very opposite of Warm Blanket marketing.

Wishing you and yours happy holidays.

pixel How a brand can deliver its promise + still turn a mom off for life.


Germy Yoga Mat Wisdom.

Adult Wet Wipes1 300x300 Germy Yoga Mat Wisdom. It’s amazing how many good marketing insights I’ve had during exercise class. The linchpin of Maternal Instinct’s entire approach to marketing to moms — what we call Warm Blanket marketing — was formulated during a yoga class. I had another a-ha moment during this morning’s Pure Barre class that I wanted to share with all of you.


Meet Hot Mama, Erin Cox

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