Does Your Customer Experience Build Loyalty?


Today’s customer is very different from customers of the past. Customers today are Picky–more cautious in their choices.  Made smarter by the internet, they are empowered and emboldened to accept nothing short of value.  It has made them Fickle—quicker to leave if unhappy.


44% of customers stop doing business immediately after a less than satisfactory experience and another 15% exit as soon as their contract is up! Making certain you make strong emotional connections with customers throughout their entire journey with you and having a very strong service recovery process in place is critical to attracting and retaining today’s wired and dangerous customers.


Some years ago one of John’s children played college soccer for the University of Georgia. Go Dawgs! This story still rings true in terms of how you build loyal customers.


We arrived at the new Springhill Suites in Athens, GA on the way to see our daughter play soccer for the University of Georgia. We were on our way to our traditional pregame tailgate event so in addition to my fatherly pregame jitters I was in a hurry to check in and get to the soccer stadium.


Rick, the front desk clerk offered a warm hello and asked if I was checking in. I replied yes and provided my name. Rick seemed perplexed and I began to develop a severe case of service anxiety! “I don’t have a reservation for you” he replied with courtesy and grace.


My wife brought me the printed confirmation which Rick studied carefully. “This is for last weekend Mr. Patterson.” Now in addition to my increasing service anxiety, I felt like an idiot! Rick said he would get Jan to see what could be done. Jan appeared instantaneously, offered a warm greeting and said she would look into it but not to worry they had plenty of rooms.


She quickly found my old reservation and changed everything to the correct date. With her best hospitality spirit she told me they had one more room on the first floor. When I replied we preferred higher floor rooms away from the elevator Jan responded immediately by showing me a diagram of the top floor and asking if room 524 would be ok. I responded with an enthusiastic perfect! Jan completed our check in with supersonic speed noting we were in a hurry which was easy to see since we were in our “team game gear”.


We went up to our wonderful room dropped our bags and quickly headed out. On the way out Jan asked if our room was ok and we replied; “it is fabulous!” After the game we returned to the hotel. Rick was still there and inquired as to how our evening went. We responded, “Great a 3-0 victory!”


Jan and Rick displayed a high level of service hospitality; they made us feel welcome and cared for. They also took an interest in our reason for the visit. And best of all they turned my mistake into a wonderful and warm service experience! How much hospitality are you displaying in your customer’s experience? What can you do to warm up their service experience?


Be sure you check out Chip’s recent post: