Exceptional customer service is a key ingredient to a successful business. We all know that, right? No matter whether you lovingly craft handmade children's clothes or are an efficient organised book keeper, ensuring you provide a consistent, attentive service will ensure you have repeat customers.
In providing your service, never underestimate the value of personalisation in the process. Too many times I see cookie cutter responses, offers and emails. Personalisation is a unique selling point in this digital age. It will ensure that you are always remembered and will differentiate you from your competitors. Here are a few ideas on how you can add the personal touch in your business.
Hand write a message
A real estate agent who we had dealt with in the past recently changed agencies. Instead of sending a standard uncustomised email to let us know of this move, he hand delivered a hand written card. That blew me away. It was such a great piece of personalised and memorable marketing that now he is the first agent I recommend to friends.
If you sell hundreds of products a week a hand written card may not be a viable or efficient way of thanking your customers for their purchase. But for those operating on a smaller scale or who are a service provider, consider this personal, hand written approach to some of your customer interactions.
Remember you are never too big to get personal. At the very least personalise your newsletters and sales emails with the recipient’s name. Use it throughout the text as well to make it sound as though you are having a conversation with them.
Reply to mentions or comments on your social media posts
Once again this may not be feasible if you have hundreds of comments on every post, but still try to respond to as many as possible. Facebook and now Instagram make it very easy to at least acknowledge a comment by being able to simply like others' comments. So, no excuses!
I recently heard of an amazing story of personalisation whereby a business not only responded to a customer's comment on Instagram, but went out of their way to use her actual name - not just her handle. How do you think it made the customer feel? Pretty special!
Include something special or a surprise
Go above and beyond what your customer expects. With the customer in mind, include a sample of another product if you sell beauty items, include a voucher for a repeat purchase, wrap the product in a way that is unexpected, perhaps using their name on a gift tag. If you're delivering a service, add in something extra. Maybe a Facebook cover photo if you're a graphic designer, a template a customer could use if you’re a book keeper or suggested copy for a customer’s About Page if you’re a web designer. Something unexpected always gets noticed, and often shared.
Another personalised and unexpected surprise could be the recognition or celebration of an event. It could be a customer’s birthday or even the anniversary of them signing up to your list or making their first purchase. Whilst a discount code or offer would be great, just simply acknowledging the event is enough in itself. Everyone in our family loves getting their happy birthday video message from the players at the Geelong Cats!
Share the love
Find opportunities to personalise your interaction with potential collaborators or customers through sharing their stories. Mention and tag people in your social media posts, share customer photos and wins. Celebrate the good!
Personalising your customer interactions is one of the unique ways you can differentiate yourself in this fast paced digital world. If you can find ways to make your customer feel special, acknowledged, valued and wanted, then they are likely to either become a repeat purchaser or your biggest cheerleader. Either way, it’s win – win!