What Nonprofits Can Learn From Amtrak

I recently took a train ride from our offices in Poughkeepsie to Toronto – a cool 12 hour trip! I genuinely prefer train travel if I can do it so I don’t mind sitting in a train for that long because I know I am helping the environment and its a hell of a lot less stressful than flying!

One thing I noticed this last time I was traveling on the train was that Amtrak does a terrific job of identifying their customers enthusiasm for their service. You see, there are two types of train riders: Tourists and Commuters. Now when I say tourists I mean that these folks only go on the train every now and then, maybe once or twice a year. Commuters on the other hand try to take the train whenever they can. I’ve got about 325 hours logged on Amtrak travel this year because I choose to use it rather than flying or driving.

So to identify with its Commuters, Amtrak does many little things around the experience of their service to keep us coming back. I’ll talk more about this in a later post, but the thing I wanted to point out is that no touchpoint is too small for them. Here is a picture of a cup holder that tells the customer how good of a deed they are doing by taking the train. Love It!


Imagine what that would mean if you did the same thing for your organization? What if you had small touchpoints places where you come into contact with your supporters? Could it improve their overall giving experience? You betcha!

Image courtesy of amtrak_russ on Flickr.