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CD Baby Experience

15 Jul 2004 by Matthew Linderman

Retail sites often leave you in the dark about the cutoff time for next day shipping. Not CD Baby which comes right out and tells you, “You have 5 hours, 18 minutes until our next FedEx shipment.”

There’s a can-do attitude and lots of friendly copywriting at the site too. The human, conversational tone of these excerpts will give you an idea of what I mean…

If you have any suggestions on how to make CD Baby a better experience, please Email us now, and we will not only listen to your advice, but often send a free CD along with your order!
Any special instructions, comments, or questions? Gift-wrapping or a personal card? Tell us now! (There’s almost no request we can’t handle, so feel free to ask, OK?)
We have already sent you an automatic Email repeating your order. Please check your Email and let us know if anything looks wrong or if you’ve changed your mind…A real person will Email you again within 1-2 days to let you know when your package was mailed.
Password: Don’t worry, it can be low security. We never keep your credit card info on file.

10 comments so far (Post a Comment)

15 Jul 2004 | brian w said...

They send you a great little email when your package ships, too:

"Your CD has been gently taken from our CD Baby shelves with
sterilized contamination-free gloves and placed onto a satin pillow.

A team of 50 employees inspected your CD and polished it to make sure it was in the best possible condition before mailing.

Our packing specialist from Japan lit a candle and a hush fell over
the crowd as he put your CD into the finest gold-lined box that money
can buy.

We all had a wonderful celebration afterwards and the whole party
marched down the street to the post office where the entire town of
Portland waved 'Bon Voyage!' to your package, on its way to you, in
our private CD Baby jet on this day, Friday, June 6th.

I hope you had a wonderful time shopping at CD Baby. We sure did. Your picture is on our wall as 'Customer of the Year'. We're all
exhausted but can't wait for you to come back to CDBABY.COM!!"

16 Jul 2004 | Ed Knittel said...

And while not for every track on a CD, I do eNjoy the 2 minute previews. This certainly helps me to hear if a new Drum N Bass track has has the potential to capture my attention. My A.D.D. kicks in within seconds and I tend to give up on something quickly if it bores me. I like that I tell myself "be patient - there's still 1 and a half minutes left. Anything can happen."
Thanks for the link.

16 Jul 2004 | Stef Noble said...

My husband sells through CDBaby and we've been really impressed with the way they do business, both from the customer end and the musician end.

16 Jul 2004 | Derek at CD Baby said...

Wow! Cool! THANKS guys! I swear I'm not lying that...
(1) I read SvN blog every day
(2) I had advance-ordered Defensive Design, and read it the day I got it.
(3) I just re-read it LAST NIGHT, start-to-finish, since I'm designing a new project.
(4) I'm a happy BaseCamp customer.

I'm a big 37 Signals fan. Can ya tell?

I made CD Baby myself, and if anyone's interested, I'll be documenting my RE-WRITE (from scratch) of the entire site at my O'Reilly blog.

16 Jul 2004 | Mathew said...

This is why I love the Internet - hearing from the people behind the things you love. Cool.

16 Jul 2004 | Robby said...

Wow. I read this blog often and sell CDs on CD Baby as well. I've always been impressed with the straightforward text and clean site navigation.

Also - thanks to Derek, a lot of the CDs on CD Baby are now available via digital distribution.

16 Jul 2004 | Robby (again) said...

Shameless plug: I'm driving up from Memphis to play Chicago tonight. Come out 37 Signals. Info (band name: Mouserocket)

16 Jul 2004 | Michael Spina said...

Thanks Derek for checking in! I've always had a great experience at CDBaby. And with copywriting like that, shipping delays or other problems (not that I've ever had any) would easily be forgiven.

16 Jul 2004 | Derek at CD Baby said...

>> ...shipping delays or other problems would easily be forgiven

Another way of looking at it is that when something does go wrong, that's really your chance (as a business) to show how cool you are - to show them what you're really made of.

In other words: when business goes exactly as planned, you don't think about it much. But when something goes wrong, the company has a chance to go above-and-beyond to make the customer even happier than if everything had gone as planned.

I feel that's the sub-message behind Defensive Design. (Design philosophies and business philosophies are often the same.)

16 Jul 2004 | Camilo said...

Precisely, designing for the eventuality that something might go wrong, and giving robustness to the system.
And I would think that it is easy for CDBaby to respond, not encumbered by tons of corporate egos and policies. Very
And Derek reads this! +Very Cluetrain Manifesto.

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