Should Company Restroom Costs be Included in the Marketing Budget?

October 13, 2021 –   

Business spends billions of dollars every year on marketing (advertising, public relations, and sales promotion) to attract customers. The strategy is an attempt to put the company’s best foot forward to win business.

The TV and radio commercials, print ads, web advertising, etc., try to build a positive relationship with customers. Too often, this strategic communication effort is undermined at a customer’s physical contact point.

Four Negative Customer Physical Contact Points 1. Unquestionably, incompetent and unconcerned employees 2. Unfriendly customer policies, rules, and procedures 3. Inferior products or services 4. Faulty or unclean company restrooms

I believe the first three of the four negative customer physical constant points need no further explanation. But item four, “faulty or unclean restrooms,” may require some explanation.

You say, “A restroom is a restroom.” I contend you responded too quickly if you believe that statement. As we go about our lives, we experience four classifications of company restrooms: l. The 4-Star, top-of-the-line restroom, 2. The 2-star, adequate restroom, 3. They let me get in and get out of the restroom, and 4—the restroom from hell. From personal experience, I believe the total number of restrooms in this classification is in reverse order, with number 4 being the most prevalent, number three the next most experienced restroom, and so on.

In a speech, the CEO stated that he had only two MUST company rules. “First, employees must treat every other person in the enterprise like family. Second, we must keep all company bathrooms in a 4-Star condition. He explained he is adamant about this rule because the cleanness of the company restrooms reflects how the company treats its “family.”

When my wife and I travel north on I-75, we stop in Tifton, GA, at Adcock’s Pecans. This store features great pecans, jellies, and candies. But the reason we stop is my wife believes Adcock’s has the cleanest restrooms of any business along I-75. She enthusiastically passes this information along to our friends for their travel north. We stop for the restrooms and make our purchases, feeling sure that the products we buy must also be good with clean restrooms.

We know the statement, “Cleanliness is next to godliness,” but does a business know that a clean — visually and hygienically restroom is close to their customer’s pocketbook? Dirty bathrooms, uncaring people, poor policies, and inferior products and services drive customers from the business. Spotless, hygienic-clean restrooms help build successful organizations, sell products, and create powerful word-of-mouth advertising.