While in Taipei last week to work on the Yao Ming Charity Tour, I hopped in a Taipei cab to get to a meeting. I sat in the front, while two of my Chinese colleagues sat in the back. The cab was spotless. The cleanest cab I’ve ever seen outside of London. The driver, smartly dressed in a coat and tie, sized me up and pressed a few buttons on his entertainment system. “Rush Hour” began to play on the 2 small flat screens he had in the cab. But not at the beginning. It was the classic scene where Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker dance to “War”. I was surprised, and the cabbie cracked a million dollar smile.
Moments later, in very broken English, the cabbie asked “You like rock and roll?” Uh, yeah cabbie. It’s what I live for. He presses another button or two, and “Satisfaction” is cranking. This is some cab ride!
The cabbie then starts talking to my friends in the back. They explain to me that this cabbie’s goal is to make his customers happy, even if it is just for a few moments while they ride in his cab. He sizes each customer up, and takes a guess on what kind of movies or music they might like. He says he is right 90% of the time. I ask if all Taipei cabs are like this. Apparently not. Just this one.
I immediately realize that literally everyone can do effective marketing. This guy loves his job. He wants to make his customers happy. He reads them, and takes a shot at delivering what they like. He would take the same approach if he was a CEO or an elevator operator. The guy is a genius, and I was lucky enough to ride in the best taxi cab on the planet.