Rue La La CEO Ben Fischman has a brilliant analogy about customer service.
There's a fool-proof way that the brand wins positive referrals, Fischman told Business Insider deputy editor Nicholas Carlson at the Social Commerce Summit.
"We take a customer whom we've maybe shipped the wrong thing to and they're so disappointed, and we go above and beyond to fix that problem for them," Fischman said. "We call it 'make-up sex.'"
And it's the make-up sex that prompts those customers to come back to the brand and spread the word about it.
"That person we helped becomes one of our greatest evangelists," he said.
The invitation-only online boutique rarely advertises and relies on word-of-mouth for the vast majority of its business.
People trust their friends' opinions more than any other channel, Fischman said.
"If you're visiting a city and staying in a hotel and the concierge tells you a great restaurant, it doesn't hold much credibility," Fischman said. "If a friend tells you, you write it down and remember."
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