This has been a marketing test as well as some personal exploration as to how I want to office DeSoto LLC. Don’t get me wrong, I love my office at West Gate, however there is always this thing that Marketing Pro’s always have to deal with. Perception.
Perception is reality, the marketing rule that when handled well will lead to sales. Think about it for a minute. When a company truly embraces marketing their brand from their best customers perspectives the results are measurable. Sadly more often than not when a company markets from their perspective they truly limit the results, even if they have a great offering. Anyhow! Which is precisely when a branding firm has a high end address, if the firm performs well, it will result in more sales with better clients.
I chose to use Regus as a vehicle to find a second location. Regus has done a phenomenal job with the layout, location and appearance of their offices. Everything from the paint to the furniture, the lobby and kitchen, the coffee service and clean water. Every detail has been thought through. If you want a nice office, if you want a fair price for rent and you want a location that fills the mental expectations of your service from your clients eyes, then Regus is the place to go.
However… They are missing something that is vital, is key and is imperative to their future success as well as the overall long term positioning of their brand.
In the past month I have utilized several Phoenix locations as a daily office. Meaning, I made a reservation and booked an office for the entire day at a new place, with new people and a new environment. My visits included North Phoenix, Scottsdale, Paradise Valley, The Biltmore and Desert Ridge. This is my sampling. This is my digging, my analyzation, my assessment and fact gathering before I make any decision on a second home for my company.
The best part of this whole arrangement is that I can use any location for the purpose of perception as you will see on my contact page.
Every visit resulted in beautiful consistency of the things that initially impact your perceived cognitive understanding of what Regus looks like. The buildings are nice, some more aesthetically pleasing than others. The lobbies are beautiful and the same coffee offering, water and ice existed in each location. Great. Even the way the signage worked was exactly the same.
But there is something missing. Not just something but something that is massively important and needs to be addressed.
- Location 1 - the staff was friendly and inviting, they were assistive and accommodating. The GM was very professional and was available for tours and questions without a hard sell.
- Location 2 - The staff was snobby and disengaged.
- Location 3 - The staff was awesome like location 1, the GM was not present and did not follow up when I requested pricing on a full time suite.
- Location 4 - The staff was completely disengaged to the point of having to stand at the front counter and wait for several minutes to be let back into my office after lunch while a personal conversation took place.
- Location 5 - The staff was attentive, professional and the GM was genuinely friendly. Professional in both appearance and human in his interests in my business and helping me solve my business needs. So much so that I had briefly mentioned I would be back tomorrow to work again which resulted in a call the day after by the GM who informed me he did not see my reservation so he took the initiative to make it for me and called to confirm.
At the end of the day the simple premise of human engagement is vital in running any business.
Two of my visits will mark a note in my mind forever, and I will never recommend or visit there again unless it is the preference of a client.
At two of the locations I had clients who came in that were not only important to me but one was the head of a massively large department of our State Government, the other was a client who owned a luxury transportation service. Impressions were in fact made on them as well. Why because they are human and engagement matters to both of them.
The one thing Regus is missing is a standard in client experience.
Regus has a great thing going and when they systemize the mission to treat every client like a VIP their brand will in fact see the next level of awesome.
Thank you to Phil and Carl the GM’s that rock, to Joe, Chris and Mrs. Oklahoma for treating me like a vip even if it was for one day.
“We’re in the people business serving coffee, not the coffee business serving people.” Howard Behar
Regus needs to invoke a program similar to Starbucks. When you walk into any Starbuck’s the experience is always the same. The staff is always engaging and welcoming.
Stay tuned for an upcoming article : What to watch out for when contracting with Regus .