by Nancy Friedman
Think Before You Answer. There are all sorts of reports, polls and data about why customers leave a place of business due to poor service.
Here’s one that personally comes to mind. We had a rather costly copy machine installed at our office a while back. We have never heard from anyone at the company. No thank-you note. No follow-up. Oh, wait, we did get an invoice. And that’s just one product/item—one industry. I don’t recall the name of the brand or the name of the person who installed it. The entire process was nameless.
Here’s a three-point, short version of a longer article I have written about the art and science of follow-up after the sale. It’s a start.
- Plan to follow up and make it a priority. Your organization has competitors with comparable prices and similar features. How do you get customers to come back or send you referrals? You need a strategy. Give them a reason.
- Employ after-the-sale strategies. Follow-up programs can be as creative or as ingenious as you make them. Consider such programs part of the marketing mix and allocate funds to accomplish the objective. Or consider the simplest, least costly way to follow up: a personal, handwritten thank-you note. Many people send them on holidays. However, they’re easy to get lost in the mix. Be clever. Celebrate the customer, not the holiday. Send them anytime. Additionally, an unplanned hello or thank-you phone call speaks volumes and is normally appreciated. Customize, personalize and implement.
- Promptly address complaints. Most industries have issues after the sale. It’s an unpleasant fact. We all know negative word of mouth and negative social media are dangerous and costly. Manage problems or issues immediately. Most customers won’t fight—they will switch to your competition. That makes you a little weaker and your competitor a little stronger.
Nancy Friedman, Founder and Chairman of Telephone Doctor, is a popular speaker in the franchise and corporate world. Her Zoom programs have been very welcomed and successful. Call her for your next meeting, retreat or team/group get-together – 314-276-1012 (CST). Nancy@Telephonedoctor.com;