As businesses reopen their physical locations and customers adapt to the new normal of all kinds of virtual experiences it has become more important than ever before to deliver consistently great experiences. Customers today have higher expectations than ever for their journey with your organization. They expect speedy, frictionless treatment that telegraphs they are valued, special and unique, not just one of the masses.
This level of expectations represents a dramatic shift in what is required to ensure customer loyalty–the stuff of growth and profits. That shift has resulted in customer requirements for value being very out-of-sync with the tried and true methods organizations have relied on for years. When front line employees deliver service that fulfills the customer’s stated needs, they are taken aback when customers give them less than satisfactory grades. When a small gaffe triggers volcano-like customer uproar, front line employees believe they have met a deranged deviant with an attitude problem, not just a typical customer acting on instincts honed from countless disappointments.
Customers today are much quicker to leave. We are all operating in a most challenging environment with the pandemic seemingly coming back for round 2. One sure way to drive customers away at such a difficult time is to leave them with a feeling they are not appreciated. What are you doing in every customer interaction to welcome customers back, to ensure your customers know how important they are, and how much you appreciate their business?
Here’s one example from our work with clients before the pandemic. We were working with a client in San Jose, CA and staying at one of our favorite Marriott hotels. When we entered the hotel restaurant for breakfast the manager on duty remembered us (we had not been there in 6 months) and said you guys are here for breakfast with Susan (our favorite server) right? We were very impressed that he remembered us and responded absolutely! As he escorted us to our table Susan came into view and we were warmly welcomed back with a big smile and a loud hello.
We knew we were in for a great service experience with Susan keeping an eye on us but what happened next made our breakfast even more memorable! Susan stated that we probably didn’t need the menu since she knew what each of us ordered and we did want tabasco with our tomato juice as usual didn’t we? “Absolutely” we responded “this is awesome”! Remember we had not been there in 6 months.
What made this experience special was more than the fact that Susan and her manager remembered us and our order. What made this experience super special was the joyful spirit they both displayed in serving us and in the pride they took in knowing their customers. You better believe we talked about our special service experience in our client meetings that morning.
Is your staff committed to remembering your customers and to making certain every customer experience is a super special one? Are they adding “hot sauce” to make each experience a positively memorable one?
Please check out Chip’s recent post.