Chain and Control Handcuffs Get in the Way of On Line Branding Opportunities


I frequently blog over on Search Engine Guide, and a colleague just posted about seeing Tony Hsieh speak, who also spoke at NAA this year. I thought that some of the parts of the post could be valuable nuggets to apartment operators, IF they get past the Fear.

Here is an exert from Jason Dowell post

Tony Hsieh has been the Zappos CEO since 2000 after investing in Zappos with his venture fund. In a former life Tony was the cofounder of Link Exchange, which was acquired by Microsoft in 1998 for $265 million. Speaking of acquisitions, the Zappos acquisition by Amazon just closed November 1st and totaled $1.2 billion.

Here are a few highlights from his keynote address regarding Zappos.

  • They want to talk to their customers and actually consider it a marketing investment.
  • Their 800 number is at the top of every page of their site.Oh, by the way, they have about 11 subdomains linked from their www site.
  • Offer free shipping both ways.
  • 365 day return policy.
  • 75% of their orders are from repeat customers.
  • They often do surprise upgrades to next day shipping.
  • You can place an order at midnight and receive your shoes by 8am the following day.
  • Their number one priority is company culture (no surprise there for SEG readers).
  • They offer tours of their headquarters in Las Vegas and those tours are open to the public. You won’t be escorted by a PR liason but rather by a Zappos employee and after the tour you’re escorted to the lunch room and allowed to roam around and check out the company. Talk about trust, wow! Oh yeah, if you fly in for a tour of Zappos, they’ll shuttle you to their headquarters via the Zappos shuttle, not too shabby.

Now, contrast this to what we are presenting about on Friday at Brainstorming, Social Media in the Workplace, where we still here about Property Management Companies that block employees interenet access. What in the world are we thinking? Perhaps we should also not allow our employees to talk on the phone either.

So, Here is my question for the session to our panel;

Why are you allowing Chain and Control Corporate Policy and Procedure Handcuffs to Get in the Way of On Line Branding Opportunities?

This may well lead us to the whole lose of productivity yap and blocking of facebook and social media sites in the workplace, and I get the angle of alleged lost productivity yada yada, but suggest then, Focus on Productivity, not Chain and Control, that never works. Focus on Lowering the Cost per Lease, or what ever your productivity target is and really focus and drill down like a raving nut and the facebook and twitter noise dissipates, there is no time for it as your group begins to run circles around the competition while they are drafting Policy and Procedure Handcuffs.

We hope to see you all at Brainstorming this week. We are hosting a Houston Tweet Up Thursday evenging if you can make it,