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50 Tips to Keep a Customer


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50 Tips to Keep a Customer

  1. 1. by Jim S Miller, President, Prime Performance Inc.50 Tips to Keep a Customer50 reinforcement tools for developing enduring client experiencesThis collection of tips is a free gift from Prime and proactively educate our clients on how toPerformance. It is an insightful tool that helps use them to the best possible benefit of theirto reinforce positive behaviors that contribute to organization. In our 20 plus years of experience,an exceptional client experience. We believe so we have seen the direct relationship that thesemuch in the impact of these behaviors, that we behaviors have on sales results. Yes, creatingmeasure each one when surveying customers a great client experience drives sales! 50 Tips to Keep a Customer | 2012
  2. 2. Dear ReaderPlease feel free to use these tips as ahandout with your employees or sendto friends via e-mail. It is meant to beshared.I wish you great success in the future,and I know that your clients willbenefit from your interest in creatingan experience that will help keepthem around. If you would like to geta significant lift in both retention andsales, please contact me via any of thelinks below. I’d be more than happy totell you how Prime Performance canhelp you do just that.If not, congratulations on being a topachiever who constantly strives toimprove. Here’s to creating great clientexperiences!Jim S Miller 50 tips that reinforce exceptional client experience behaviors TIPS
  3. 3. PASSION COURTESY FOCUS THINK : -)1The best companies 2 Treat colleagues 3 Stay focused on the 4 Speak with a smile.have a clear passion for politely. Remember that customer relationship. Your customer, yourserving their customers. customers watch the You can’t know the colleagues, and theBefore you meet your interaction in your branch details of every product person on the phonefirst customer each day, or even call center. If you you offer, but you can will have a positiveremind yourself that this enjoy your colleagues, know that customer association with youris an ongoing relationship the customer will trust better than your branch if they hear youthat should deepen with the environment. competitors. Uncover smile. A good attitudeevery interaction. at least one new detail is as contagious as a about your customer in bad one. every interaction.ADD VALUE DON’T PUSH BALANCE RESPECT TIME5Understand that all 6 Stay focused on what 7 Be professional and 8 Do everything you canbuying decisions are first is important to your friendly at the same to prevent wait time.emotional ones. Speak customer. Don’t product time. If you’re friendly but Customers have busyin benefit language that push if it doesn’t fit your don’t meet their needs, lives, and they need toacknowledges what is customer’s needs. they won’t deepen their know you value their time.valuable to that customer. relationship with you. If there is a wait, let them know (honestly) how long it is and offer them water or coffee. 50 Tips to Keep a Customer | 2012
  4. 4. PROACTIVE “HI MARTHA” TICK TICK TICK CURIOUSITY9Offer solutions, not just 10Use the customer’s 11 Welcome customers 12 Be a detective.order-taking. When a name. Nobody wants to immediately. Don’t let Have an insatiablecustomer needs help, feel like a number, and them stand for even curiosity about areally listen. Take care of the use of their name 20 seconds without customer’s needs.their request, but think reminds them that to somebody calling out a Do they own a smallabout better ways to your company they greeting or making eye business? Have smallserve them. Proactively are Sue or Joe or Mark contact. children? Do theyoffer those solutions, or Linda. They’re not have accounts at otherand they‘ll start to trust number 24. institutions?your expertise.LOOK SMART BE FAIR CULTIVATE EXCELLENCE THE RIGHT SPIRIT13Dress professionally. 14Treat customers fairly. 15 Don’t ever stop 16 Greet the customer withThe first impression If you made a mistake improving your skills. energy, not made in a matter of that cost them money, Any person that interacts An energized, positiveseconds. Most people then fix it. Don’t defend with customers should tone makes all thedon’t feel comfortable yourself; do what‘s fair. constantly improve their difference in a customerhaving someone in conversation, service, interaction. If you smile,shorts managing their and sales skills. Seek make eye contact, shakemoney. Let customers out training that can hands, find something toknow you value them help you better serve the laugh about, you’re goingenough to dress nicely customer. to have a customer for aseach day. long as you’re around.
  5. 5. INTERACT FOLLOW-UP OWN IT PRIORITY #117Ask customers how they 18 Follow-up when you 19 Hold yourself 20 Make happy customersfeel about your company. promise to, and some- accountable for getting your number oneThe only way to know times even when you customer satisfaction goal. Outstandinghow you’re really doing don’t. If you tell a numbers higher. customer experience,when it comes to serving customer you’re going to If you measure, then not free giveaways, isand retaining customers follow-up with informa- you should use the what results in happyis to ask them. tion, do it, sooner than information to help the customers. expected, if possible. customer and ultimately, The follow-up alone will raise your sales results. blow them away.ENGAGE EVALUATE ACCOMODATE REPEAT21Don’t try to ignore 22 Ask yourself how a 23 Make pleasing customers 24 Improve constantly.problems, handle them. customer might answer: a daily habit. Gauge your Understand thatCustomers don’t like What could we have done daily success based upon customer satisfactionproblems any more than to improve our service? the number of happy is always reliant on theyou do. If you will do Then do it. customers you create, last interaction. Creatingeverything in your power rather than the number of customer loyalty isn’tto find a solution, they’ll products you sell. You’ll a one-time marketingstay with you. find that the two are effort; it must involve directly related. daily action.UNDERSTAND UP-BEAT LISTEN TAKE NOTES25Try a little empathy. 26 Start your day by 27 Listen to every word 28 Unless you’re a teller,If you’re really frustrated listening to something the customer says. you should take noteswith a customer, put positive. To create a Try to block out other any time a customer talksyourself in their shoes positive tone for your distractions, and listen to you. Their problemfor a moment. Take a customer, you need to as if this is the most or request needs to bedeep breath, and try to create your own attitude important customer noted, so that the nextunderstand that they’re by listening to things that question in the entire time they come in, youbusy and tired and need make you feel good first. world. Don’t assume you can reference it and showyour help. know their problem, and your knowledge of their don’t interrupt them. needs. 50 Tips to Keep a Customer | 5
  6. 6. RELATE TRUTHINESS ANTICIPATE NO JARGON29Be positive in your 30 The customers’ percep- 31 Don’t just meet needs; 32 Use language thecomments. Say things tion is the only truth that anticipate them. You customer “I really appreciate matters. It doesn’t mat- should always be in Slipping into jargonyour business,” or “Drive ter if you remembered a hurry to help the means leaving thesafely,” or “Take good an interaction differently customer. Think about customer out of thecare of that hurt ankle!” than the customer. If the why they might be in conversational loop.Those comments let the customer believed the your place of business, They won’t ask you tocustomer know that you interaction was not posi- and proactively offer explain what an NSF is,care about the personal tive, then you need to help they might be they will simply leavethings. understand why, so you hoping to receive. and go somewhere else. can correct. ATTENTIVENESS RESPECT 33 Provide laser-like 34 Never let the customer attention. Avoid watching lose face. Even if a others around you when situation has occurred waiting on a customer; because of an incorrect if you have to answer action by the customer, a phone, explain why stay focused on the and get off the call as solution and let them quickly as possible. Your know that you are there undivided attention lets to help and appreciate the customer know you their business. are focused on them.ASSIST “I’M SORRY” TIME MANAGEMENT “HELLO, I’M ”35Provide unsolicited 36 Apologize. If a customer 37 Prioritize your time. 38 Introduce yourself byhelp. If a customer is upset, an apology is Don’t let forms and name. While you shouldmentions they’re going always appropriate. Let processes take away time use the customer’sto an appointment but them know you’re sorry from your customers. name, they should alsoaren’t sure how to get so you can move on to a There’s enough time to get know your name. Thatthere, offer directions or solution. that done when a cus- sets up a more intimateMapquest™ the route tomer is not at your desk. conversation that willfor them. Extras are Make sure you know that create a longer termremembered. customers get priority. relationship.
  7. 7. PROBLEM-SOLVE SERVE A to Z APPRECIATE39Handle objections with 40 Always ask how you can 41 Make sure you’ve taken 42 Thank customers for theiran eye on solutions. help. By starting every care of every need. business. Even if they’veDon’t perceive an conversation with “How Before a customer leaves, been your customer forobjection as a personal may I help you?” you always ask “Is there ten years, they need toattack; instead, look at let the customer know anything else I can do for know that you appreciateit as an opportunity to that they are not an you?” Most customers the fact they’ve chosenimpress the customer interruption to your day. will say no, but it lets you from thousands ofwith your solution. Instead, you are there to them know you are not competitors. Thank them serve them. rushing them out the every time you interact door. with them.SINCERITY POSITIVE ENERGY PRECISION USER FRIENDLY43Be friendly. There’s a 44 Enjoy your job. If your 45 Process transactions 46 Make sure your productsdifference between being goal each day is to help quickly and accurately. are easy to use. If apolite and being friendly. your customers to the Customers might not customer walks away andPoliteness can still be best of your ability, you’ll discuss accuracy but they then doesn’t understandcold. Friendliness is enjoy your job. If you will always expect it. A lack how to use your products,couched in the warmth enjoy your job, customers of accuracy, or taking too they’re going to quietlyof a smile and a desire to will enjoy coming into long to take care of a cus- leave. If a product is com-truly help the customer. your place of business. tomer, can cause them to plicated, ensure that there walk out your door and into is training before the cus- the door of a competitor. tomer walks out the door.BE INFORMED INQUIRE BENEFIT DRIVEN IT’S SHOWTIME47Be knowledgeable. 48 Ask, ask, and ask again. 49 Understand benefit 50 Recharge every day. StartEven if you’re friendly and Most sales people language. We often talk every day with a curtain-upcharming, a customer aren’t curious enough in features, giving the mentality. Each day is atrusts that you are an about their customer’s facts of a product. Talk performance, a chance toexpert in your field. Make needs. Determine three in language that means take care of people whosure that you know questions you want to ask something to your need your help.about the most common of every customer, and customer. If they’re busy,products, and can then ask more. talk about “saving time.”suggest them confidently. 50 Tips to Keep a Customer | 7
  8. 8. About the author About Prime PerformanceJim S Miller is the President of Prime Performance. Jim has Prime Performance works exclusively with financialworked for some of the nation’s largest financial institutions, institutions to help reduce customer attrition, increase shareincluding SunTrust Bank, Bank One and NationsBank. of wallet, grow market share and improve profitability byThrough senior roles in marketing, finance, market research, developing and implementing a superior client experience.customer analytics, incentive management and retail Since 1989, we’ve been pioneers in measuring clientadministration, Jim has acquired a broad understanding of satisfaction and converting that data into comprehensive,the many challenges faced by financial institutions. actionable plans for improving client experience.During Jim’s 20+ years in the financial services industry, Jim We know that service creates loyal clients. We also knowhas had a unique view into how the actions of front-line that loyal clients are more profitable clients. How do weemployees affects the behavior of clients which ultimately know this? Because we’ve spent over 20 years talkingdrives an organization’s bottom line. It is his personal to millions of people about what they want from theirmission to empower financial institutions to realize their full financial institution and what keeps them coming back. Ifpotential by improving their client experience. you’re looking to improve your firm’s bottom line, let Prime Performance put this knowledge to work for you.Jim majored in Finance at The College of William and Maryand earned his MBA from The University of Virginia’s DardenGraduate School of Business Administration. Jim now callsBoulder, CO home. 12340 W. Alameda Pkwy Suite 100 Denver, CO 80228 50 Tips to Keep a Customer | 8