People remember when they have been wowed in their experience with your company. What is the difference between average and being wowed? To wow your customer you must exceed their expectations. When you wow your customer by exceeding expectations your customer creates an emotional bond with your company and your services. They become loyal customers.
But there is more to this. Sometimes you will disappoint a customer. No one is perfect but how well you react to make it right can create an even bigger emotional bond.
Here is the way one of my Westchester County Businesses handled critical customer situation. They are an HVAC provider. There had been a spike in temperatures in our area causing an unusually large number of air conditioning units to fail. The company received a large number of calls and the service team was working overtime. They were honest in telling clients that they could not respond in 12 hours but would respond in 24 hours. They did their best to keep the customers informed of progress including when the customer was next on the list. Unfortunately, they could not keep their 24 hour promise. However, they kept in constant communication with the customers and the service providers did more than expected when they arrived. The typical service person had been working continuously. Wow! In spite of this each one was very courteous and explained in detail the customer’s system and said that it was working at the end of the call. The failure to respond as quickly as promised was forgotten by the super over delivery of service when they arrived.
So here are some things to remember when serving our customers.
Answer your phone promptly. If you are with another client then return the call when you are finished with your face to face client. Why is this important? How good do you feel when you call and get a live voice instead of going through an endless cue of phone mail prompts?
Keep your clients informed. Let your clients know each and every step you are taking. Keep them up to date on the good and the bad. The worst thing you can do is ignore them when you have to deliver bad news. They may not be happy but you have a chance to keep them in the loop with as much information as you can. At least you remove suspense for them.
Know your business. Stay current with your industry and participate in continuing education. Maintain a commitment to excellence. That commitment requires that you be well-educated in the industry, the market and the changes.
Don’t forget the points of connection. You have the opportunity to cement the bond or lose a customer based on how you handle each one. During a long transaction such as in real estate there are many points were your client must interact with you, attorneys, mortgage companies, inspectors, and so on. If you are helping them in each step, or at least being there to provide support, your customer will value you service and consider you a trusted advisor.
Are you under-promising and over-delivering? If not why not start now.
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