Great customer service can inspire emotional responses towards your business, making every customer a valuable brand advocate.
Trust, gratitude and loyalty. Three emotions that will inspire your customers to return to you again and again – and bring in additional revenue through word of mouth referrals. It all highlights the value of fostering a service culture.
To help you achieve this important goal we look at five proven steps to build your business through exceptional customer service.
1. Know your products.
Successfully selling or recommending a product is almost impossible if you don't have a clear understanding of the features and benefits of the products/services you provide. If your customers start asking questions (and they almost certainly will) you could be left floundering.
The need for product awareness highlights the value of training. In a franchise for instance, the franchisor will provide considerable upfront training and ongoing education.
The go-to goal is to have end-to-end understanding of your products and services. It's the only way you can make tailored recommendations and provide informed responses to your customers. If you don't know the answers, chances are your franchisor will.
2. Develop a culture of customer service.
Successful businesses have aservice culture shared by the entire team. Sure, you may start off as a sole trader but over time you are likely to grow your team. That's when it becomes critical to hire good people; develop a business culture, and find the right fit.
Importantly, drill the value of customer service into your team. All the training in the world won't help if your employees don't care about your customers.
To encourage employees to give customer service top billing, consider offering incentives that may be low cost to your business but of high value to your people - like buying morning tea for the team when a successful deal is clinched; offering a day off for birthdays; or handing out employee awards for staff who bring in new business. It all shows you care about your team, and when you care for your employees, they'll care about your customers.
3. Be a great listener.
Empathy is a key quality in delivering outstanding customer service. It's all reflected in the expression “People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care”.
The next time you meet with a customer, resist the urge to show how much you know. Instead aim to show how much you know about the customer because you have listened attentively to what they have said and applied your industry knowledge to provide tailored solutions. It tells your customers you are taking their problems seriously and you want to provide real solutions.
4. Deliver a great experience.
Automated phone systems can be a godsend when you're in business but always respond personally to each enquiry within a set timeframe. Speaking to a real person can be the key to high customer conversion rates.
5. Exceed customer expectations.
Make it the goal of your business to go beyond delivering a product that meets customer needs. Investing time getting to know your customers – and staying in touch with them, is a great way to develop strong bonds. The personal insights this will develop are the only way to proactively anticipate each customer's needs - and exceed their expectations - every time.
Mortgage Choice has built an exceptional reputation of customer service – one that our franchisees are able to take advantage of and build on. For information on the opportunities offered by a Mortgage Choice franchise and whether a franchise is right for you, call us today on 1300 650 330.