Ken Schmidt

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Customer Loyalty Expert, Legendary Former Director of Communications at Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Author of 'Make Some Noise'

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2 Video(s) By This Presenter

Customer Loyalty
3 Abstracts

4 Programs By This Presenter

Ken Schmidt’s business keynote speech is a fascinating story of how businesses of any size and scope can—by focusing on understanding and harnessing the most basic drivers of human behavior—improve their competitiveness and avoid margin-killing commoditization in even the most difficult marketing environments. The road to building a fanatically vocal customer base, creating a passionately loyal corporate culture, and developing leaders who inspire and motivate starts here. Schmidt challenges audiences to consider what they are willing to do today that is different than what they did yesterday, for the people who can put them out of business tomorrow.

Why does Chick-fil-A always top customer satisfaction surveys even though its employees are paid the same as other fast food chains? According to Ken, it all comes down to expectations set by a solid corporate culture. Here, Ken examines the relationship between revenue and corporate culture, exploring:

-Why dominant market share is a culture-driven result, rather than a marketing function
-Why culture is the answer to growth challenges, employee turnover, and customer advocacy
-Why a focus on “selling product” ultimately destroys competitiveness
-Why loyalty to a company’s product means the business is at risk while loyalty to its people means it’s thriving

Ken’s talks are very high-energy, customized, and full of motivating examples of businesses getting it right and wrong. Pin-pointing how corporate culture either helps or hurts performance and customer experience, he offers an honest look at what we can all do better infused with his trademark business genius, solid strategic takeaways, and hilarious way of saying what everyone else is thinking. You will leave wanting to better your individual performance as well as that of your team and company. And you’ll know where to start.

As Director of Communications Strategy for Harley-Davidson, Ken Schmidt helped maneuver one of the biggest corporate turnarounds in history. With this talk, he looks at the major role company leadership must play in building a cohesive vision and company culture, as well as energizing employees to see it through. Sharing personal stories of his time at Harley-Davidson—during which time he helped lead a brand in flux through a time of great cultural change—Ken levels with executives and CEOs and raises important questions about the role of leadership in 2017, creating and cultivating behaviors that turn “noise” into profits.

We’re not wired to be loyal to products or services, no matter how well they perform. We’re only capable of being loyal to people and to well-managed brands that successfully humanize their presence by creating emotional resonance with us. It’s time for your customers to evolve from “folks who buy from us,” into “loyal friends who recommend us without being asked,” which means your relationships with them have to evolve from superficial to meaningfully permanent. Customers come and go. But loyalists, like Harley-Davidson tattoos, become part of you and never leave. Building tattoo-worthy customer relationships isn’t the marketing department’s job; it’s yours. This is how it’s done.

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