Customer-Obsessed Culture

Jeff Bezos_Amazon

In his annual letter to shareholders#,'s Jeff Bezos listed 21 things the company is doing commercially, many in support of its customer-obsessed culture.

Bezos missives are a good example of content strategy to keep business promises. As ordered in the letter, he addresses:

  1. the growth or Prime
  2. the company's investment in readers and authors — ever since the company rolled out the first Kindle reader, it's been moving into the fertile terrain of book publishing by helping connect authors with their audience — part of its secret to online dominance is knowing what we read and comment on, literally sitting on our side of the table by giving us what we want and redefining digital ROI with immediacy and accessibility to exclusive content
  3. solid Prime Instant Video metrics
  4. access to entertainment content with Fire TV — I remember thinking if this was the new retail experience when Amazon rolled out Fire
  5. the entree into content development with Amazon Game Studios 
  6. a global Amazon Appstore grown to include over 200,000 apps and games
  7. Audible (Spoken Word Audio) hitting its stride with a special mention of Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance of The Great Gatsby, which has already sold 100,000 copies
  8. expansion of Amazon Fresh Grocery beyond Seattle to Los Angeles and San Francisco after trialing the service in the company's home town for five years
  9. the eight year old Amazon Web Services (AWS) going strong
  10. borrowing from Zappos on the Employee Empowerment front by encouraging people to quit: Once a year, we offer to pay our associates to quit. The first year the offer is made, it’s for $2,000. Then it goes up one thousand dollars a year until it reaches $5,000. The headline on the offer is “Please Don’t Take This Offer.”
  11. Veteran Hiring
  12. a kaizen program at the base of Fulfillment Innovation — they do offer tours, and we discused how your service is content using Amazon centers as example
  13. new construction at the already large Urban Campus
  14. experimenting with Fast Delivery on Sunday in some geographies in the US, with plans to roll out countrywide; more last mile connections in the UK, and delivery improvements in China and India.. with bike couriers
  15. continuous experimentation on the proprietary Weblab platform
  16. product photography and selection are making bestsellers in the Apparel and Shoes category
  17. implementation of Frustration-Free Packaging — though you can see from the image below, my package was also protection-free for the glass jar the product came with
  18. 65% growth in the number of reseller using Fulfillment by Amazon
  19. expanded the Login and Pay with Amazon capability so customers can also sign in using their Amazon account credentials to pay on other sites, such as Kickstarter, SmugMug, and Gogo Inflight
  20. launched Amazon Smile, a simple way for customers to support their favorite charitable organizations every time they shop
  21. the innovative Mayday Button, on-demand and on-Fire HDX-device tech support, with an average response time of only 9 seconds on Christmas day

A few of the Maydays have been amusing. Mayday Tech Advisors have received 35 marriage proposals from customers. 475 customers have asked to talk to Amy, our Mayday television personality.

109 Maydays have been customers asking for assistance with ordering a pizza. By a slim margin, Pizza Hut wins customer preference over Domino’s.

There are 44 instances where the Mayday Tech Advisor has sung Happy Birthday to the customer. Mayday Tech Advisors have been serenaded by customers 648 times. And 3 customers have asked for a bedtime story. Pretty cool.

Data to support customer service. That is indeed pretty cool.

My Amazon Order

My box was easy to open, easier to break packaged this way. A rare occurrence from Amazon, yet still not cool.

Is your business ready for 'net natives? Amazon is.


Valeria is an experienced listener. She designs service and product experiences to help businesses rediscover the value of promises and its effects on relationships and culture. She is also frequent speaker at conferences and companies on a variety of topics. Book her to speak here.

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