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For your convenience


When we're talking about positioning and messaging, I always reflect on the falseness of many messages: customers come first; we're here to help you; we're scalable.

Just saying it doesn't make it so.

Here's my favorite:

For your convenience.

Just think about the number of times you see that phrase. How often do you think, "Wow! This is really convenient!" (For me, it's never).

I mean, if you want to be honest, shouldn't the sign read: 'For OUR convenience'?

On my airline, "for your convenience we no longer take cash; we only take credit cards." Whose convenience again? That's a benefit to the operator, not the customer.

I get it. Taking cash is annoying. You have to be able to make change for all those $20 bills people are carrying around. You have to bundle up the cash to make sure nobody steals it after the flight is over. You have to have lots of money tied up, not earning interest.

But wait, what if a customer has cash and doesn't want to use a credit card? Not really for your convenience any more; "our" convenience is more important.

Air blowers for washing your hands are provided for your convenience. Really? I find paper towels more convenient; I feel like my hands are cleaner from the rubbing. I feel like the blower doesn't actually dry my hands nearly as well. I think air blowers are much cheaper to operate and maintain. And that's a benefit to the operator, not the customer.

For [y]our convenience, you should change your password every 7 days to one with uppercase, lowercase, numbers, and punctuation.

For [y]our convenience, we stopped new charges to your credit card because a hacker got access to our unencrypted passwords file.

For [y]our convenience, we now accept loan applications from our automated teller.

For [y]our convenience, we no longer accept…

For [y]our convenience, we now require…

Look again at your positioning and messaging. How much of what you're touting is about the value you provide to your customers and how much is about your unique capabilities. How much is about them? And how much is about you?

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