Do you have a happiness guarantee?

bombas happiness guarantee

written by john c ashworth

Over Christmas in 2019 I purchased my very first pair of Bombas socks.

Bombas is the company that donates a pair of socks for every pair you buy. Pretty cool concept and aided by the Shark Tank, of course 🙂

When the package arrived, I hung on to it for a few weeks until Christmas morning when I opened and reviewed the contents. Three pair of calf compression socks and one pair of performance ankle socks.

Also enclosed was Bombas’ happiness guarantee along with the story about their business told in a creative way. A piece of direct mail that I have now taken the time to capture and share with you because it’s pretty cool, and that sat around in my workshop for a couple months before I finally through it away.

The compression socks were not as comfortable as I thought and I had a suspicion I was going to want to take advantage of their happiness guarantee, which is…

“Our happiness team is here to make sure that you’re 100% happy with your Bombas order. If you have any problem, no matter how small, our dedicated Happiness Team (yes in all-caps and I think that’s a very important copywriting note to make) will refund your purchase, issue an exchange, whatever it takes.”

As you will see in the picture, they included three separate ways to contact the company, including the telephone and provided one additional resource for frequently asked questions. I chose email and they made it very easy. Not like the random wireless router signal booster I purchased a couple months ago that was a piece of junk and needed to be returned, only to have the process drag out for a month and a half and require bullying on my end to get anyone to respond.

I told them I had already worn and washed one pair, and that ideally I would like to exchange the other two pair for something else, and indicated that I was happy to comply with whatever they deemed fair.

They wrote right back and asked what I would like to order in exchange. I made my choices and that was it and not every night when I go to bed, I eagerly await that moment where I sit on the edge of my bed with my Burt’s Bees almond milk cream and a fresh pair of Bombas‘ socks to keep my feet cozy at night, my spirit grounded in goodness, and my feet in tip top shape for all the walking I do each week.

Thanks, Bombas!

I love my socks and you’ve made me a Big Fan!


the Bombas story
notice the sense of belonging here?

Attention: Salespeople! Stay focused on your primary objective. You remember it, right?

Salespeople…Stay focused on your primary objective. You remember it, right?

written by john c ashworth

Right. Selling and sales.

Because on any given day there are a million and one things that have the potential to distract you from this one very important objective.


EVERYTHING you’re doing is in one of two categories.

EVERYTHING your’e doing is either contributing to or taking away from MORE sales.

How much time are you actually spending every day selling? And do you have any bad habits you can eliminate or refinements you can make to be better at what you do? Of course you do. We all do. Remember, the Japanese call it ‘Kaizen’ or, constant improvement. Don’t swish it away as cliche. Though in some ways it has become as such, it remains a core tenant of my own life philosophy and demonstrates in large part how I’ve been able to stay on top of my career over the last twenty five years with as much technological advancement as we’ve had in that time.

How much time you spend selling every day can become a very BIG challenge when you become more successful as a salesperson, because if you’re committed to serving your customers, you need to be there for them once they purchase of your stuff. Because that is really just the beginning of your relationship with them.

So, stay focused on your PRIMARY objective as a SALESPERSON.

SELLING! …and then doing whatever you need to to take very good care of your customers. But don’t let that distract you from MORE SELLING.

Lastly, manage your head trash daily. Constantly.

Is your glass half full or are you full of vinegar?

This is a choice every day.

Stay positive and enjoy your victories in the spirit that each one creates another and is a building block for your success. NEVER become satisfied with your progress. Stay hungry. Always!

Got it?

OK, get back to it, will you?


john c ashworth with another happy car customer at Smart Motors of Madison – circa 2014

Do you have a customer re-activation campaign in place? Here’s why you should…

written by john c ashworth

Do you have a customer reactivation campaign in place?

I’m assuming you don’t, because most small businesses tend to ignore this idea. Don’t be like everyone else. It’s time you put one in place. In fact, I consider this one of your marketing staples.

Here’s why…

Because just like so many other things I talk about here on this blog, there exists potential opportunity here for new business that will cost you a lot less than your efforts to obtain brand new customers.

When I was running my fitness business, I developed a beautiful little three-step direct-response mail campaign designed specifically to deliver to those clients I had not seen for personal training or health coaching over the last 1-2 years. This effort always brought people back. Not everyone comes back, but some of them do, and it costs you a lot less, is a lot easier, and is easy enough to do.

Of course, in combination with this campaign, you should also have others that focus on keeping your relationship with current customers as sticky as possible so they stay longer, spend more money, and leave you less frequently. But in every business, there exists a finite timeline on which your customers exist, and when they begin to fall away, it’s very important to do everything you can to bring them back; and continue to look for ways to keep your customers around longer.

You don’t have to over complicate this campaign to get it started, either. Sometimes all it takes is a phone call or two and a conversation about why they might have left and why you haven’t seen them in awhile; and then asking them what you might need to do for them to motivate them to come back. You will find that many of them have departed for reasons that are easy for you to correct. Often, it’s simply that you ignored them for a little too long.

The specifics will depend on your business and your intentions and the customers you work with.

The important thing is that you put this campaign in place as soon as you can. Pick-up the phone and call 10 or these people right now. Take action!

Good luck.


The Rewards of Being a Salesman

expert car buyer john c ashworth

Here’s what being a salesman means to me – Part 2

Click here for part 1 of this series

written by john c ashworth

One of the things I really love about being a salesperson is all the people time. All the connection. All of the potential that each new contact holds. For sales. For learning. For inspiration. For Friendship. And for that special blend of human connection that comes when two people meet, discuss their goals, their businesses, and the potential to help each other, and then decide to make a deal that is serendipitous for both.

This potential for connection and friendship is one of the things I miss most about my personal training and coaching business. Traveling to people’s homes for an intimate hour of focus on self-improvement is a terrific way to spend your days. A terrific way to build a really good life.

Of course, I approach all of my work as a salesman in this manner. It is just that some situations lend themselves a little more seductively to those deeper and more meaningful relationships. In addition, you can do things your own way when you’re running your own business. I’ve since moved on from my own business and if there’s one thing I really miss about it’s the ability to do exactly what needs to be done right now in order to build these kind of powerful, meaningful, and hyper-connected relationships with people.

This morning, I was up reading early as I almost always am and I came across something that touched this topic and this idea in a way that both inspired me, and reinforced this idea. I wanted to make sure and share it with you.

When you don’t invest in your prospect and customer relationships in this manner, over time, you become commoditized. You become the same as every other salesman and business out there. You are boring. You are uninteresting. You are lame. You are not interesting enough for anyone to really want to know more about you, why you do what you do, and how that can help and serve both your potential and current customers.

When you choose not to invest in these relationships in this way, you will find that over time, especially when it comes to your customers, positive feelings begin to erode, and they begin to look elsewhere for other solutions to their problems. In addition, even if they are not looking yet, they absolutely will and you will begin to find them poached by other, cheaper, and more interesting (primarily as a funciton of being newer to them) options. You will lose them. And if you let this go on too long, you will suddenly find yourself in a dire predicament and wondering what in the heck is happening to your business.

Eventually you will discover that you either stopped connecting or you never really connected in the first place. Either way, It won’t matter. You’ll be running in the thick sand down the beach toward that last jetty. Hoping to get around it and back to safety before the tide comes in.

Most businesses and business owners are much more willing to invest much more in their new customers than they are in the cultivation and strength of existing ones. This is a big mistake. This is silly math. Ignorant. Foolish. Lazy. Bad business.

Direct-response marketing, a system of sales and marketing that I’ve studied for more than two decades and which I continue to work toward mastery, lends itself perfectly to building this kind of relationship with your customers and prospects. The problem is that most don’t understand it at all. Most only see it only as a graceless, unfeeling, annoying and efficient way to make a sale. Worse, they might not even know what it is.

The truth is that it is in fact a very efficient way to make a sale; and to build incredibly strong bonds with your customers and prospects. Dig down just a little deeper and you’ll discover that it’s a whole lot more than that, and that it holds far more potential for your career, your business and your life than almost any other strategy you have the opportunity to implement in your small business.

Need an example or an idea that will help you understand this idea?

Dig down a even deeper into your products and services and reveal to me what business are you really in? What emotional triggers create your sales? What important problems are you solving with your products and services and how does your passion for this feed your desire to find potential customers, make a sale, and build a powerful relationship that can last a lifetime?

When you begin to think about your business in this way, you should also begin to see how many real opportunities you have each and every day to cultivate these connections and sales through your on-going and prolific communication with prospects and customers. And once you begin to make this connection, and you have happy customers with whom to build those relationships, you will also begin to see how powerful a regular printed newsletter could be, for example. Delivered personally to your customers’ mailbox and full of stories, expertise, and life-altering information that builds a stronger and stronger affinity to you, your products and services, and your brand.

The printed newsletter is just one of so many examples. I use it here because so few are committed to producing one. Or at the very least, producing a regular blog or email newsletter that will begin to help you accomplish the same things.

So why do so few understand this? Why are so few unaware of this method? Why do so few implement such a powerful business changing philosophy?

Direct-response marketing is the gritty blue collar factory worker with dirt under his finger nails, a little grease on his collar, and a lunch pale that looks like an old mailbox that he carries with him every day religiously because he’s devoted not only to his work, no matter how brutal, physical and demanding, but also to the nourishment he needs to feed himself so that he can feed his employer, his family, his loyal co-workers, and the American Dream.

Direct-response is NOT Madison Avenue. It is Main Street downtown. Where you eat breakfast at the same place every morning, not because the food is spectacular. You can get scrambeled eggs, toast, and a mediocre cup of coffee anywhere. What you can’t get anywhere is the true and lasting connections you build with the waitress, the cook and the owner who is committed to taking care of you because he loves you and makes you feel loved and earnestly does everything he can to ensure that he never loses touch with you.

I don’t go looking for customers to make sales. I work to make sales to get a customer, because once I make that sale, I’m fully aware and extremely grateful for how powerful and important that relationship, that friendship and that connection can become for both of us over time.

I look forward to our next conversation. Who knows what amazing places it might lead us 🙂


I would come from 300 miles AWAY any time to buy a car from John Ashworth

Dear Mr. Anderson (Josh Anderson, Our Business Manager at Lexus of Madison),

I just want to say “Thank You” to you, John Ashworth, and I believe his name was Todd Cadle for the friendly, professional service my wife and I received Saturday when we purchased the used 2009 Ford Taurus X Wagon. It was a pleasure doing business with you all. I especially want you to know how pleased we were with the service and courteous manner that John Ashworth extended to us. I know this was not a high dollar sale, but it was the type of car my wife likes and wanted. I contacted your dealership when I saw it listed on the internet and was fortunate to be put in touch with John. John was very helpful and I can’t commend him enough.

We live 300 miles away but I would definitely come back to John to purchase another vehicle!

Thanks again!!

Phil and Diane Duley
Memphis, MO

John & Kevin and the entire staff at Lexus of Madison treated my LIKE family :)

John (left) With Shannon and family. They were lucky to secure the White/parchment Rx 350 you see pictured here. This pre-owned color combination is rare!
John (left) With Shannon and family. They were lucky to secure the White/parchment Rx 350 you see pictured here. This pre-owned color combination is rare!


I came in to look at trading in my car for a used Rx 350. I was very specific to what I was looking for and John told me he would call me as soon as something came in that fit my needs. A couple of days later the exact car showed up on the lot, and John immediately contacted me. With the help of both John and Kevin, I was given direction and advice on the best way to get this car. I felt like each person at the dealership was extremely helpful and willing to take care of us (no matter who’s “deal” it was). In the end, John helped close the deal with all the information we needed before making our final decision. I am very happy as I now have the exact car I have been trying to find for several months (at several other dealerships). Lexus of Middleton will be my place for car shopping from here on forward. I couldn’t be more satisfied.

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