AlwaysWoW! For a Great Great WoW in Life

Thoughts from me about things that are cool, that are WoW, that blow me away. Observations about businesses and people from a wide variety of life. Daily encounters - and thoughts outside the box, inside the box and without any box. New thinking, and challenging old thinking. Passionate about life, about respect, and about integrity.

Saturday, November 06, 2004

Putting his best foot forward

BusinessWeek cover story is about "China's Power Brands". The piece I like best is the one that describes Liangzi, a nationwide chain of foot-massage shops.

Its founder, 34-year-old founder Zhu Guofan opened his first store in 1997 when he "noticed the popularity of the local foot masseuses, who worked in rundown shops, and decided to offer an upscale version of the service. After founding his first shop in February, 1997, he was bowled over by its instant popularity."

Today, Zhu has 430 shops - two-thirds his own, with the rest franchised.

Do you know what is the greatest piece at the story? He doesn't advertise, and despite this made it to the best known new brand in China. His secret to success? Word of Mouth, according to Zhu who says:

"We have almost never used television or newspaper advertising -- it hasn't been necessary. The way we build our brand is through word of mouth. Satisfied customers tell their friends."

He build his company around the apparent need of his customers or clients - and they came. Isn't it a great story?


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