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There are countless articles on how hard it is to create a truly loyal customer and how easy it is to lose one. Creating customer loyalty is a challenge that all businesses face. There are many techniques and strategies that can assist you along this path but, at times, we’re presented with opportunities that can accomplish this instantaneously.
Earlier this year, a young boy went shopping with his father and managed to lose one of his Lego mini-figures after his father had told him not to bring them since – surprise – he was likely to lose them. Well, turns out the boy actually did. The boy had saved all of his money to purchase a Lego set that cost upwards of $80, so he was very upset. The father then suggested that the boy write a letter to Lego to see if he could get it replaced. This was the letter:
My name is Luka Apps and I am seven years old.
With all my money I got for Christmas I bought the Ninjago kit of the Ultrasonic Raider. The number is 9449. It is really good.
My Daddy just took me to Sainsburys and told me to leave the people at home but I took them and I lost Jay ZX at the shop as it fell out of my coat.
I am really upset I have lost him. Daddy said to send you an email to see if you will send me another one.
I promise I won't take him to the shop again if you can.”
Lego could have handled this any number of ways but this is how they chose to:
“We are very sorry to hear about you losing your Jay minifigure but it sounds like your dad might have been right about leaving it at home. It sounds like you are very sad about it too.
Normally we would ask that you pay for a new one if you lose one of your minifigures and need to have it replaced.
My bosses told me I could not send you one out for free because you lost it but, I decided that I would put a call into Sensei Wu to see if he could help me.
Luka, I told Sensei Wu that losing your Jay minifigure was purely an accident and that you would never ever ever let it happen ever again.
He told me to tell you, "Luka, your father seems like a very wise man. You must always protect your Ninjago minifigures like the dragons protect the Weapons of Spinjitzu!"
Sensei Wu also told me it was okay if I sent you a new Jay and told me it would be okay if I included something extra for you because anyone that saves their Christmas money to buy the Ultrasonic Raider must be a really big Ninjago fan.
So, I hope you enjoy your Jay minifigure with all his weapons. You will actually have the only Jay minifigure that combines 3 different Jays into one! I am also going to send you a bad guy for him to fight!
Just remember, what Sensei Wu said: keep your minifigures protected like the Weapons of Spinjitzu! And of course, always listen to your dad.
You will see an envelope from LEGO within the next two weeks with your new minifigures. Please take good care of them, Luka.
Remember that you promised to always leave them at home.”
– RICHARD, LEGO
These figures retail at $2.99. The thoughtfulness and creativity involved in this Lego representative’s response was above and beyond anything he was required to do. Not only did he replace the figure with a better one but he also included an additional one for the boy. All things considered, this ~$5 investment by Lego probably created a loyal customer out of this 7-year old. He will not only continue to enjoy Legos through his childhood, but more than likely introduce them to his children, and maybe even grandchildren. In addition, this act of generosity and great example of customer service went viral with numerous blog articles (including this one) being written, as well as national media coverage.
Creating a loyal customer isn’t hard if you’re paying attention.