Over 25 years ago, I read some words of wisdom in a business publication, entitled "A Sound Business Philosophy." It stated as follows:
• "In order to be successful, we must sell our goods at a profit and still satisfy the customer."
• "If we satisfy the customer, but fail to get the profit, we will soon be out of business."
• "If we get the profit, but fail to satisfy the customer, we will soon be out of customers."
• "The secret of doing both lies in the word SERVICE. Service means doing something so valuable for the customer, that he or she is glad to pay a price that allows us to make a profit."
These sentences were followed by an explanation of how the finest managed companies; with the best trained and motivated employees; who render consistent superior service to their customers; always end up with the BEST CUSTOMERS in the marketplace….have the strongest earnings among their competitors, and continue to grow steadily.
Service is not a favor that you perform occasionally to impress someone. It is instead a strong value that each and every employee in an organization must believe in every hour of the business day. It must be consistent over a long period of time. The company must strive not only meet the expectations of those willing to pay for it – but to exceed those expectations. Service is a total commitment to Excellence.
Whenever someone in your organization slips up, you leave yourself open to send your best customer shopping. Anytime errors do occur, total responsibility should be taken as the organization acts swiftly to remedy the slip-up.
You may now ask, "How can I service my customer so that they will buy my product at a price that I can make a profit and keep my customer loyal to me?" The answers are basic. They haven't changed in the last 25 years, or for that matter, a thousand years.
A loyal customer wants VALUE for their hard earned money. If a potential customer doesn’t believe that your product or service is MORE valuable than the money in his or her pocket, then you will not make the sale. You must be able to show potential customers how your product or service exceeds the VALUE of the price they must pay.
A loyal customer wants to trust you. This may sound basic, but DON’T lie. Don’t choose a short-term gain over the potential of maintaining a long-term customer. Your customers don’t want to be lied to anymore than you do. You may make a quick buck by bending the truth, but once the gig is up, you not only lose your customer, you lose your reputation. That customer has a mouth that can tell his or her family, friends, and associates about the lousy business you are running.
A loyal customer wants you to solve their problem with as little pain to them as possible. A loyal customer does not repeatedly come to you to hear your problems and excuses. They come to you because they know that you’ll get the job done as promised. Bombarding your customers with problems and excuses will send your customers straight to your competitors.
A loyal customer wants to feel that you care about their needs. Showing your customers that you care will give them every reason to come back. A happy customer is the most valuable long term asset of a business. They form the core of any successful enterprise.
Always set your sights on delivering more than you promise. The BEST CUSTOMERS are worth the effort and they are out there just to waiting to be impressed by you. If you don’t believe this, it may be because they are patronizing companies that are giving better service. Become the best and you will attract the best customers in the marketplace.