A Day of Don’ts29 Dec
Customer service is an essential piece of your marketing plan. I use the term “plan” loosely, as you may not have a plan. But, if you are open for business, and have customers, somebody is marketing for you…and it could be according to their own plan.
I’m sure you’ve walked out of your share of businesses and marveled at how they stay open with their staff’s stinky attitude and poor customer service. I walked into 3 different businesses recently, within about 20 minutes of each other, and discovered that this is a prevalent problem.
I am new to the area of town in which I live. I’m discovering new places to visit and to do business with. A few weeks ago, my son and I stopped to grab a sandwich in a shopping center where there were many choices.
We first went to an independently owned coffee shop. After walking in, I asked the barista how she was. She told me she’d seen better days. They had their own terminology for coffee on the menu board, so it was taking me a while to comprehend the new verbiage. With no help from the lady having a bad hair day, I ordered a tea and moved on to the next door, where there was a franchise sandwich shop.
A staff member was mopping in front of the door, so we carefully walked in, and were semi-greeted by a distracted woman who clearly wanted us to know what we wanted the second we walked in.
After being rushed along, with a disinterest in helping us with our decision making process, we completed the order and walked out to leave the staff engrossed in their own conversations. They clearly had no care about us or anyone else who wasn’t in on that day’s gossip.
To get something sweet, we visited the bakery next door. The treats from the window enticed us. As we walked in, a woman got up from her chair, walked behind the cash register and waited for us to decide on something. After we asked a few questions, she put the items in the bag and rang it up. It was a dull, lifeless experience.
I wasn’t drawn in by anything other than signs and convenience. No coupon, no billboard. That aside, what would make me return?
A great experience.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get one at these places and won’t be back to any of them.
So, if good marketing didn’t get me in the door, what kind of marketing would make me return, and tell all my friends? Marketing INSIDE the doors, and that’s done through customer service.
You don’t have to have a retail location to make sure people have a good experience with you. I’ve worked with independent dealers and representatives that I won’t work with again. No matter how good your product or service is, people do business with people. Make sure your people, and you, are constantly aware of opportunities.
I haven’t read Acres of Diamonds in a while, but I just downloaded a copy of it so that I could read it again.
Many of us are in search for the field of diamonds, when it can be found right under our noses.
Always ask yourself, and your staff (or team), where are your diamonds today?
(Originally published December 7, 2007 in Ricci’s publication – The Marketers Gazette)