Five Tips for an Exceptional Customer Experience

Five Tips for an Exceptional Customer Experience

You don’t have to be the Ritz-Carlton or Mercedes to provide your customer with a great experience. Just a little forethought and planning will make a huge difference. Here are five tips for your consideration:

1- Five Senses

What does your customer taste, touch, smell, see, and hear when they do business with you? If you have an office, could you bring fresh baked cookies in on days that clients will be coming to visit? Line it up with your local caterer and leave your client remembering that your place smells just like Grandma’s.

What does your client see when they first enter your office? Do you have a beautiful Oriental rug, nice mahogany furniture, and a delightful waiting room? Do you have a nice stereo system that pipes in contemporary music? (Or do you have stacks of loose papers everywhere that need to be filed?)

If you have a home office, what do clients hear in the background? Does your phone system headset cut out or sound crystal clear and high quality?

How can you spend a bit of time pleasing your client’s five senses?

2- Surprise

Everyone loves surprises. Delight your client with a gift, anniversary card (of doing business together), or a unique surprise or bonus that they are not otherwise expecting.

I’ll never forget The Oriental Hotel in Bangkok. When my laundry was returned to my room clean, it was gift-wrapped. That just floored me, and it happened 23 years ago. It’s such an easy thing to do to be remarkable.

Think of the best surprises you’ve gotten and how you might be able to apply it to your clients. It could be a project completed early, tickets to a much-desired event, gift certificates to a nice dinner, a public recognition in front of peers, or anything that’s completely unexpected. A really good administrative assistant can arrange all of this for you.

3- Image

One surefire way to get the price you want is to make sure you look the part. This means your image needs to match your price. If you charge premium prices, it’s not a good idea to wear shoes from Target or to get a $7 haircut. Your image includes your car, office, yourself, your staff, and anything that is customer facing.

4- Special

How can you help your client feel special? This one’s easy and costs nothing. In the presence of your client, turn off your cell phone, be prompt or early, and give them your full attention. Do not interrupt your client meeting for anything; this disrespects your client and their time.

Be sure to personalize and customize your service as much as possible. Have staff learn faces ahead of time and call clients by their name. Include the client’s name on proposals, handouts, and prospect kits. One of my pet peeves is how often my name is misspelled. Be sure you spell and pronounce your client’s name in all your emails and documents. It’s a small yet extremely important detail.

You can also make notes of client’s kid’s and pet’s names and ages, so you can ask how the family is doing. Consider noting hobbies and other comments you can refer back to. It’s fine to have a fancy CRM system for this, but don’t make excuses if you don’t have one; just open a Word doc and start typing.

5-Fun

Have a good time with your clients. Laugh a lot if you can. Keep your comments positive. When your clients can have an enjoyable experience, they will remember you.

Try these five easy ideas to create an exceptional experience for your clients.

I’d love for you to post exceptional experiences you’ve had as a customer. Share your experiences and ideas on my blog or on my Facebook page here http://www.facebook.com/sandismithleyva.

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