Dave Goldberg, Director of Marketing, AP Intego
A few days ago AP Intego reached a milestone. We sold an insurance policy to our 50,000th customer. We knew we’d get there, but we didn’t know exactly when it would happen. It was a significant, albeit fleeting moment. A few minutes later we sold another one to our 50,001st. Nonetheless, we announced it on social media. We sent thank you messages to our customers, employees, partners, and carriers. We had cake. We also wanted to blog about it, because that’s what companies do at times like these. So here goes ...
My initial, drifty idea for a post was to use a metaphoric device to make a powerful statement that would widen the eyes of readers, such as figuring out how high 50,000 customers would reach if they all stood on each other’s shoulders. To the moon? That would be a terrific claim to make. (Why do marketers and other slingers of superlatives like to think about milestones in these completely impractical and far-fetched terms? That’s another very different post for another very different blog.)
So I did some math.
Let’s see, the average height of an American male and female is 5’9” and 5’4” respectively. Remove 5-6 inches to account for the fact that they’d be standing on each other's shoulders and not heads (because that would be uncomfortable). Add, divide, carry the one and voila, our 50,000 customers would reach a height of 45.6 miles! Wait, what? The moon is nearly 240,000 miles from Earth. Damn, not as spectacular as I imagined. In fact, that’s not even close to the altitude of a low Earth orbit satellite.
How about some staggering horizontal distance, as if instead the customers were laid end-to-end from one point on the map to another? That’ll make my point about the impact of achieving 50,000 customers for sure, right?’
So I did some geography.
Our largest office is just outside Rochester, New York. It’s where you’ll find most of our extraordinary talent—our insurance engine room if you will. It’s where the agency magic happens, and a very appropriate starting point for my metaphoric map quest since one way or another, the pros in our Rochester office have touched nearly every one of our 50,000 small businesses. According to Google Earth, the Rochester location is 45.6 miles away from places like Kanona and Glenora. Now that’s a claim! If you laid all 50,000 small business owners end-to-end they’d reach from Rochester to Glenora. Glenora? I've been there, it's a really pretty spot, and totally worth visiting, but not the stuff of show-stopping, imagination-defying, marketing declarations. Foiled again.
What started out as a creative exercise that would spin (or as we marketers like to say, “strategically position”) our achievement had quickly turned into a nonsensical journey through outer space, Upstate New York wine country and other dead ends. I began to realize that embellishment wasn’t required. Surpassing the 50,000 customer mark stands on its own.
In the course of just a handful of years, AP Intego has had the pleasure of enabling 50,000 businesses to protect employees, property, cash flow and reputations, and their owners to maintain that high-octane fuel they burn every day: confidence. That alone is noteworthy. What’s more, winning and retaining customers in our industry isn’t easy. Ours is a market of discerning, decisive and determined folks, as they should be, and we couldn’t be prouder to call so many of them customers.
Best part? They really like us. We continually survey our customers about their experience working with AP Intego. This cohort of very astute people gives us a sustained 96 percent+ customer satisfaction score. If net promoter score (NPS) is your preferred telltale we turn in scores above 60—which is rock-star territory in NPS terms, and double-digits higher than our industry as a whole. It’s one thing to attain 50,000 small business customers, it’s quite another to know that we’re thrilling them, too. That’s all the spin that’s necessary, and it’s no spin at all.
Let’s see, if we invited all 50,000 customers to a ball game, it would take how many Fenway Parks to hold them? … Never mind.
On to the next 50,000.