ARE YOU MAKING YOUR CUSTOMERS MISERABLE?
I spent a large portion of my weekend trying to buy a product on line from a local company. It was needed this weekend and they promised immediate delivery. This small business automated everything with no possible access to a real person. Even their e-mail was automated to send answers, and their phones played a recorded message referring you to their website. Needless to say I was not able to get what I needed; I am sure that a lot of people heard about my frustration with this particular company.
While automation may be the future, I for one believe that a human touch has to be available somewhere in the mix.
Take a look at how you can be reached by prospects and customers and consider the following:
- Is there an e-mail contact for you personally on your website and in all your marketing material? I picked up a church bulletin today, and out of 26 ads only one had an e-mail contact.
- Is there a phone number in all your marketing material including print and on line that you will answer? Most businesses have an office number listed. A small business owner is the office and should be available unless they have too much business.
- If you are on the phone when another call comes in, what is your message? Does it say” I will call you back in ____ minutes?” In my opinion the recorded message that says “I am not available. Leave a message and I will call you back at my earliest convenience,” is one of the worst possible.
Relationships are built through our marketing material including websites, blogs, social media and all printed material. Your eagerness to serve your customers is shown by your availability. Yes, it’s quite alright to say that you are open between certain hours and that you are not available on certain days, for example a Sunday.
If your business is such that an emergency number is needed, make sure that it is readily available. That number can be answered by a human answering service and they can contact you if needed.
My research has determined that over 90% of small businesses list a lack of customers as their single biggest problem yet they do not make it easy for a customer to reach them. Unless you are selling a very inexpensive item, you should be available to receive calls, texts and e-mails from your prospects and customers.
Being available builds relationships!
Tips & Advice by Nick Petra – CFP, Mentor, and Founder of StrategicDuck and BizQuack
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