About a month ago, I decided it was time to supplement (Not ready to replace) my HP 5P Laser Printer (Manufactured October 1996) with a printer that could go faster.
Man . . . I LOVE that HP5P . . . For nearly 17 years, it has cranked out crisp black and white documents with virtually ZERO jams at an unbelievably low cost. I figure I’ve been getting @ 3,000 pages per toner cartridge, and the cartridges cost a paltry $18 from Amazon.com. For as long as this printer lives (and I can buy the cartridges), I’ll keep on using it for large jobs that I’m not in a hurry to complete. This printer is a veritable work horse.
Have you EVER had an electronic device survive 16 years of use?
I have only 2 reasons to supplement this machine:
- It’s slower than molasses
- The only connection for it is one of those old fashioned 16 pin connectors that are only on old school CPUs, and I’m upgrading the CPU
My trusty 5P cost $1,200 in 1996
I began my search for a new printer by looking at the models HP has to offer (Why wouldn’t I – given the longevity of reliable service from my 5P?) and zeroed in on the LaserJet Pro 400 which promises an incredulous 35 sheets per minute, offers both side printing, 1 GB of on-board memory . . . and a whole PASSEL of other cool gizmos and capabilities . . . Cost? @$300.
The toner cartridges print 2500-3000 sheets and cost a cool $100 . . . but I figure 5X the cost for 5X the speed ain’t a bad trade-off, and I can still relegate the heavy print jobs to the el-cheapo work horse.
Now to that thing about setting this thing up . . . Oh! I DREADED setting it up so much that I botched it 3 times before I got it right.
Why did I botch it?
I was making that whole set-up thing more difficult than it needed to be.
I wanted to be able to print to this thing from any of my 6 devices (2 Desktops, Laptop, 2 Smartphones, and a scanner) and thought that this would require massaging the network settings for each device. Every time I added a new device, one of the ones I had already installed would stop working.
Finally, I threw my hands up and UNISTALLED ALL of the software . . . I decided to start with a blank slate and actually PAY ATTENTION and READ THE INSTRUCTIONS while installing it.
This is when I stumbled upon the brilliance of “HPePrint”
HP in all of their infinite wisdom had figured out that meshing multiple devices to a single printer tends to create a bowl of spaghetti that most “normal People” couldn’t possibly execute . . . SO . . . They set up a free service that allows the user to give the printer its own email address . . . and then to allow the user to designate specific email addresses from which it will receive . . . If I want to print something from ANY of my devices, it’s as simple as sending it in an email to the printer.
I couldn’t believe it until I actually witnessed it.
This printer ROCKS!
HP could have saved me a LOT of my time and angst simply by doing a better job of introducing the new-fangled capabilities of this printer as a cover sheet to the installation instructions as a way of putting me on notice that this installation would be different (in a good way) than any other printer installation I’ve done in the past 5 years . . . because “Configuring Wireless Network” is not necessary.
Without that message up front, I came into the experience expecting (and dreading) the inevitably horrendous experience of that bowl of wireless network spaghetti that has ALWAYS happened while installing new computer hardware.
So . . . I seldom write a blog post that I fail to tie back into Real Estate Sales and/or Business Development . . .
When’s the last time you bought a house?
Do you think the process is the same now as it was then?
In your work, you’ve kept yourself abreast of changes and developments relating to process and capabilities . . . how well are you communicating how these changes benefit your customers?
We “Non-Experts” don’t know and couldn’t POSSIBLY understand/fathom the depth and meaning of the changes to which you’ve adapted over time.
Preface EVERY new customer experience with the assumption that the process and intricacies of the transaction may very well be “Greek” to that prospect.
Take the time up front to clearly define the process as it is NOW . . . and to highlight the new technology (web) tools that are now available . . . followed by a brief tutorial and/or accompanied by an easy to understand “Cheat Sheet.”
Assume every new client knows NOTHING about your process and as you are communicating the differences, emphasize the direct BENEFITS of each one.
“Mr Buyer, you can register on my “HomeFinder” to perform all of your house searches . . . You benefit because you will be able to do ALL of searching and fine tuning of your wants and needs in ONE place rather than bouncing around amongst a variety of websites.”
Here’s how we do things NOW _________________
The benefit to you is ______________________
Thank you HP!