If you need to cut spending, do it right

Migros, a major Swiss retailer, aired an ad cam­pai­gn a few mon­ths back. It fea­tured a Migros employee brea­king a pla­te and han­ding half of it to a custo­mer who had just bought a (who­le) pla­te. Illus­tra­ting the extra value they are giving to their custo­mers: «Always a bit more».

Cur­r­ent­ly it seems like many Swiss com­pa­nies fol­low a slight­ly dif­fe­rent slo­gan: «Ever­y­whe­re a bit less». Spen­ding that is. And I’m wor­ried that they are doing it like the employee in the ad: By redu­cing costs undif­fe­ren­tia­ted across the ent­i­re orga­ni­za­ti­on and dama­ging their offe­ring.

I tru­ly belie­ve that this down­turn offers enor­mous oppor­tu­nities to smart com­pa­nies. Now is the time to save money while deligh­t­ing custo­mers by offe­ring more value at lower costs. And I’m not the only one to say so: Even HBR has jum­ped the band­wa­gon.

Of cour­se, an invest­ment advi­so­ry pro­cess is not like the new iPho­ne that pro­fits from Moore’s law: Cli­ent advi­sors do not dou­ble their speed at half the pri­ce every 18 mon­ths.

That’s why it is even more important to focus on what can be done wit­hout shy­ing your custo­mers away. After all: They pay your bills.

We are cur­r­ent­ly working on a packa­ge that is cal­led «Smart Saving». The idea: Ana­ly­ze the chain of expe­ri­ence your custo­mers are having, iden­ti­fy what is important to them and what is not. Then defi­ne the oppor­tu­nities and imple­ment them in a way that saves money and delights your custo­mers at the same time.

That’s pos­si­ble. We’ve pro­ven it in a pilot pro­ject for Switzerland’s lar­gest lan­guage tra­vel orga­ni­za­ti­on.