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Be nice to your customers

How do you treat your customers.

The title be nice to your customers seems extremely obvious, however, it is not practiced in numerous companies and even in some entire industries.
Think about your daily life: Companies put you on hold when you want to make a payment. Your cable company forces you to be home between 9am and 1pm to install services you ordered, and then they show up at 2pm. You have to stand in long lines to pay for products. You have to literally hunt down an employee to get help in a store. Phone support people treat you like you are stupid when you need help. Customer representatives are grumpy and in disbelief when you want them to solve a problem. Sales reps are disrespectful when you want more information. Ads are misleading. The list goes on and on.

Beyond the product or service, many company procedures and employee interaction policies put little or no emphasizes on being nice to the customer.

Why should you be nice to your customers?
In a competitive market with many players selling the same thing, the only thing that differentiate you from the rest, is how you treat your customers. You want the customer to be happy. A happy customer will come back and bring their friends. The customer’s experience interacting with you and buying from you will determine if they will return and give others positive feedback. A positive experience assures repeat customers. It is an inexpensive way of getting business. To keep a customer is usually a lot less expensive that getting a new one. It is also the best form of advertising: word-of-month. How you treat a person that is willing to give you money for your products and services is very vital in a competitive market. You want the customer to feel good about their decision to do business with you. Here are some easy and affordable ways to be nice to your potential and current customers:

Be truthful in your advertising. Don’t use misleading ads, small print limitations, exclusions, or conditions that can upset the potential customer contacting you. Your advertising show what you are selling and potential customers should not be negatively surprised when they come to you. You want your product to live up to your advertised promise. You want people to trust your ads. If you keep deceiving customers and making them unhappy, you will end up running out of people to deceive. Furthermore, each time you make a customer unhappy, your potential customer pool will decrease accordingly. As the potential customer pool decreases, the advertising cost per new customer will increase.

When potential customers are coming to you; Answer your phones, have enough people on the floor. Help them now. Smile and have a professional pleasant attitude. Thank them for considering you. Be courteous and respectful and don’t let them wait. Don’t let them stand in line, or sit on hold, and don’t be late for a meeting with them. You spent a lot of resources making your product, setting up shop, and advertising to get customers to come to you. Go the final mile by making sure that you are ready to serve your potential customers when they come knocking.

Be excited that a potential customer is considering your product. Be interested in what they are going to use the product for, what features they want, how they want it. Be flexible and work with their needs. Be excited about the decision they have made.

Don’t be pushy. Don’t treat them like they are stupid. Educate them. Let them make their own decisions based on all the information you will happily and excitingly provide to them. The more time you spend explaining the product, the more likely they will find it useful and beneficial, and the more likely they will be to tell friends about it.

Show appreciation and be thankful when customers want to give you money. Be positive, smile, and show appreciation that they chose to do business with you. Compliment them on their decision and encourage them to contact you with questions and problems in the future. Don’t give them second thoughts.

Follow through
Be understanding and helpful with any post purchase problems or question your customers have. You don’t want buyers remorse. Be patient in educating them and show them how the product works. Work with them if a problem or misunderstanding occurs. Take the time to fix problems. It is better to keep the sale and make them happy, than to refund them, lose the sales, and part on unhappy terms. Make compromises, make it right. Be there. Open, nice continuous communication will keep you in touch and they will think about you first the next time they are in the market for products and services you provide.

A service-oriented interaction with the customer is key for word-of-mouth and repeat customers and increases chances of a long-term sustainable business. It can be your competitive edge. Build your business around making the customer happy, not what is convenient for you. Make customer service and appreciation for your customer the company culture. Make your customers your ‘free' sales people’ and long term business partner by keeping them happy. Be nice to your customers!


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