Probably the best marketing device at your disposal is the ability to create an amazing experience for your customers. When they leave your business establishment, what they are motivated to speak about—positive or negative—has great power to influence. Word of mouth is a form of influencer marketing and is growing exponentially in the virtual world. But the product promos by reality stars and sports figures on Instagram don’t carry the weight of the customer who just left your store with the memorable experience they will share with their friends and family—online and off. Let’s give your customers something to talk about:
One chance to make a first impression. The old adage is true, and if you fail to make a positive, memorable connection you may never have the chance again to convert them from browser to buyer. The days of “how may I help you” need to be replaced with “welcome” and an attitude of “how can I make this a great experience”…and then actually creating an experience that they will want to repeat over and over again. They may have walked in to simply find something they need, but make sure they get what they want, too.
Value. It goes without saying, if your product or service isn’t worth what the customer paid for it, whether an issue of quality or price, they will share their product experience with others. Customers want to feel as if they got a great deal for a great product, which is why businesses like Kohls are so successful with their discount programs. Kohls has figured out how to make the customer feel taken care of in an area of high priority—the wallet—and they know their customers talk about it to their friends and family. Those last few minutes in Kohls is what causes them to return again—when they receive their Kohl’s Cash and receipt showing how much they saved which makes them feel happy. Make your customers feel happy by creating a sense of value in your product or service.
Authentic & Respectful. People have come to accept all the buzz words and jargon when they enter a business establishment. But when a server effectively communicates that they care that you enjoy your drink, or the cycle shop talks through your uses of a new bike and doesn’t try to close the deal on the most expensive bike in the shop, you feel respected and taken care of. As a business owner, you’ve been in the shoes of your customer too, so don’t try to sell them a product or story that you wouldn’t buy yourself.
The experience people are looking for when shopping online is both the quality of the product and the convenience of shopping. In your local business, people are wanting more. Enjoy having the opportunity for the face-to-face exchange and make the most of their experience. They will tell others about it and so will you. Give people something to talk about that is beneficial to you and continue to find ways to create a memorable experience for your customers every time they visit.
About Sarah Flashing
- Sarah Flashing is a business leadership coach and creative whose passion is to see businesses & organizations thrive in the new normal. As a successful business owner with experience in both the boardroom and classroom, Sarah helps leaders identify gaps in their business and marketing plans and implement innovative solutions. She holds an M.A. in Ethics from Trinity International University. Contact Sarah about coaching or invite her to speak at your next event.