How many of your clients chose your business because their friend raved about you?
Or perhaps they saw a five-star review online?
Often an underestimated tool, word-of-mouth is still the most effective (and inexpensive) form of marketing for every industry.
As a business owner, you’ve likely experienced the power of the referral, but are you getting as many as you would hope for? What are you doing to give someone an experience worth writing home about?
The secret lies in creating real, meaningful connections with your customers. A quality customer service experience paired with a reliable product/service is a great place to start, but how you make your customers feel is what really drives brand loyalty.
And ultimately, your bottom line.
In taking the time to get to know your customers, you stand to gain valuable insight into what your customers want, and how to best serve them. Plus, work starts to feel a lot less like work when you’re making people happy.
But what exactly does this look like when you’re talking to a customer? How can you get the ball rolling?
Believe it or not, this can all happen pretty organically. We’ve put together five simple, actionable ways you can connect with your customers in a personal, authentic way:
1. Ask how their day is going
Start small. “How are you?” is a great question, but “How is your day going?” or “How are you enjoying this sunshine?” are more unusual queries and less likely to get knee-jerk responses (“Fine, and you?”). Even if your customer responds generally, use enthusiastic words like “Fantastic” and “Wonderful” and share a little about yourself to spark a conversation.
2. Follow up after your phone call
A follow-up email after saying goodbye on the phone can add another touch of thoughtfulness to the exchange. Sometimes it can be practical to make personal connections— send a customer a summary of what you discussed or even a simple, “It was great speaking with you!” Each customer experience is a chance to make your mark!
3. Try a compliment!
Who doesn’t love a verbal pick-me-up? A compliment can instantly make you smile and turn your day around. “What a lovely name; my niece is also a Kaden!” or remarking on their order instantly shows you’re paying attention and that you care— a surefire way to make personal connections!
Listening well is an art form and a rarity in business these days. Let your customers know you care by offering them your full attention. Take note of their tone and, when appropriate, match it. A light-hearted example of this might be if a caller stumbles when giving you their phone number and becomes embarrassed, share a laugh with them: “That’s ok! I get tripped up too sometimes!” Find ways to relate to your customers and you’ll be surprised by how much easier it is to anticipate (and fulfill!) their needs.
5. Send a notecard
Whether it’s for a big life event like a birthday or a wedding or is “just because,” a handwritten notecard is an unexpected gesture that harkens back to a time when life was a little less automated and a bit more human. Show your customers you’re thinking about them with a personalized note to add a little wow-factor.
Why make personal connections?
Through space and time and telephone wire, there is always room for meaningful connections. In addition to elevating your brand and earning your customer’s loyalty, you’re also improving moral for you and your team. It’s a win-win for everyone.
Looking for more ways to turn your callers into clients? We’ve put together a free ebook that will help you do just that.