What can Jack White and vinyl records can teach small business about customer loyalty?

What can Jack White and vinyl records can teach small business about customer loyalty

A couple of days ago I read a really interesting story in the Evening Standard called Sound Check: The shop that Jack White built, about a business that Jack White, most famously known as the lead singer and guitarist with The White Stripes, an American rock duo, has set up.

The business is called Third Man Records and it’s tagline is ‘Your Turntable’s Not Dead’.

Now, you might be asking ‘how and why is this relevant to me as a small business owner?’

Before I tell you why I think this is relevant let me give you a little bit of background on the business.

It was originally set up by Jack White in Detroit back in 2001 and in March 2009 moved into a physical location in Nashville, Tennessee. The business is a record store, record label, live venue, and full-service production and distribution house, including design and photography services. Their set up allows them to record and photograph and a musical artist in one day and then have their records on sale within weeks within their store.

However, that is not what makes them really interesting.

What makes them stand out is that they are at the forefront of the vinyl revival, in the music industry, and have produced most of their 68 releases so far as unique, limited edition, three-colour vinyl records making them a record collectors dream. This has meant that there is a burgeoning collectors market developing on eBay and other collector sites for one-off editions.

For its hardcore fans, the business has also created a monthly subscription service, called The Vault, that gives them access to exclusive content, offers and a quarterly package of records and other goodies only available to members.

In addition, you can still get all of their releases on original black vinyl and as digital downloads via iTunes.

I think this business has been created out of a passion for music and the idea that many music lovers still love to own and collect vinyl records that they can play on their record turntables. It has taken bravery and insight to do what they are doing but they are now reaping the benefits and As the Evening Standard article says:

“Third Man is swimming against everything the record industry does today. What an exciting way to do business.”

What does this mean for you as a small business owner?

Well, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you have fans in your business?
  • Can you create collectables, exclusive offers and deals for them?

If you can then I am sure it will help you create increased customer loyalty and at the same time help you stand out in the face of ever increasing competition.

Leave a comment below and let us know how you think you can create fans in your business.

Thanks to moriah.hodges for the image.

Adrian Swinscoe is an author, blogger and consultant who writes about cost-effective, customer-focused business growth at Ideas for Business Growth. He has a strong belief that any established business could dispense with its traditional marketing activities and still grow itself by focusing on developing and nurturing its existing customer base and retaining its current clients. Why not connect with him on Twitter @adrianswinscoe, LinkedIn or if you liked this article then why not subscribe to his RSS Feed?

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