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When Brands Listen

By now, we are all probably aware of Domino’s Pizza Turnaround campaign. The pizza restaurant allowed us to watch it face the cruel honesty of its customers, who were brutal and spoke without a filter about Domino’s core product, its pizza.

The company let the world in by sharing its customers’ comments and feedback and then worked overtime to change. Domino’s not only changed its product’s ingredients but also the ingredients of its brand. What it had discovered was not only did the pizza not make the grade, but neither did the brand. By carefully listening to its customers, Domino’s transformed its product and its brand in a manner that changed its critics’ minds and cultivated new fans.

I honestly admire and am in awe of the approach Domino’s took in its turnaround mission. I believe the listening approach is truly the only way to go. Any company, organization, or brand that seeks to change or discover its missteps must do so with its customers.

Every business, no matter the category the business falls in or the industry it’s embedded in, is here to serve. Whether the business’s target audience is consumers, other businesses, members, or governments, serving its market is the name of the game. It is impossible to serve if there is no listening.

To serve means to perform duties or provide a product or service for another person or organization. The question I ponder is: How can anyone or any business serve or provide for others without understanding their needs, perspectives, and what they truly require from you?

That understanding is only gained through careful and precise listening — through ears that are tuned in to hear every single detail that is being said rather than what one wants to hear. Through attentive ears, you obtain so much insight and intel. Everything you learn and discover from what is termed “active listening” can then be applied to how you service your customers.

How often are you listening to what your customers are saying? Is active listening a regular part of your business strategy? Or do you only listen when trouble is in sight? I wonder how many mistakes and oversights could be avoided if companies, along with their marketing messages, promotional initiatives, and content creating and pushing, would make room for their customers to talk back to them.

I wonder what would happen if they did so not from a place of duty and to check the customer engagement box but with ears that are ready to listen.

To learn more about what a company can gain by listening to its customers, read about Domino’s Pizza Turnaround campaign in the winter issue of TRUSTED magazine.

TRUSTED a magazine that THuS Marketing created, project manages, and oversees for the Council of Better Business Bureaus. For more information about TRUSTED, visit


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