Would you send your customer to a competitor in order to make them happy?
In describing the Black Tie Customer Experience in my seminars, I tell people it is changing your mindset to focus on the power of Hospitality and Service Excellence. If you can do the little things to go “above and beyond” when working with a customer or prospect, you have a much better opportunity to turn them into a loyal customer for your business. Then you have the opportunity to make them into a Brand Ambassador for your business.
What’s a Brand Ambassador? For me, it is that person who can’t wait to tell the story about how you made them feel as they moved along their customer service journey with you.
While I talk about this all the time, I never imagined that I would become a Brand Ambassador as the Black Tie Experience was delivered to me! And I thank “Jean” for this experience.
This was a few years ago and it was a Saturday morning and I was out running errands when I decided to stop at a book store to find a book from an author that I have been reading recently. I was greeted at the front door by Jean who asked me if she could help me find a product. When I told her “yes”, she actually took me to the section of books (rather than just pointing to it). We looked in the section on Business and Leadership, but they didn’t have the book I was looking for. I thanked Jean for help her and told her that I was going to continue to browse.
So far, do you think I was given pretty good customer service? Yes. But if you want your clients to become Brand Ambassadors you need to have a story to tell and that is exactly what happened to me.
I was still browsing when Jean mentioned to me that she does have the book, but it would take about a week or so to get. I told her that if would be okay if needed, but I was hoping for something quicker. Then, unbeknownst to me, she sprang into action. I heard Jean on the phone asking if they had this same book in stock at another store. When I heard this, I stood up and asked her, “Are you checking with another of your stores?” (for this store is part of a national Christian book store chain).
“No”, Jean said, “I am checking with ‘x’.” (She named the store, which is an even larger book store chain that is across the street from their location. While it is not a Christian book store, they do have a large selection of books on this topic). “They have the book, would you like me to put a hold on it for you?”
I actually said to her, “Wow, I can’t believe you just did this for me!” (You see, I was not even a regular customer of her store. BUT, I am now!) Jean just smiled and said “You are welcome. And I wanted to make sure you were able to get the book you were looking for.” She then proceeded to hand me the phone, so I could give her competitor my contact information, for they were going to hold the book for me.
Now, I understand that this was a $12 book, and not a $12,000 account. But here’s my point. Jean helped me solve a problem that she really didn’t have to solve. She not only LISTENED to me, but she was fully present in our conversation. And she was trained to look for those opportunities to go above and beyond. She made me feel differently leaving there than I was feeling coming into her store. At that point in time, I was her customer and she was empowered to help me and very confident that she could do so. And by her actions and service, she created an impression in me that will last.
Does your team stop at “just good enough” when working with a prospect or customer, or will they go for the WOW factor to create an impression that lasts? With our seminars and workshops, we can help create more "Jean's" for you!