[If you remember from Press Release: Nufloors Turning Flooring Customers Into Advocates, Canada Nufloors Group Inc., represents leading Canadian floor covering retailers with locations in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario.]
In addition to sharing my presentation titled "Retail Hospitality or Customer Service Before, During and After the Sale" about connecting with customers, I got to hear wise advice from Cynthia Dean, General Manager of Nufloors Coquitlam, as she shared her experiences ‘Turning Flooring Customers Into Advocates’
Here are points she addressed that particularly resonated with me.
Survey your customers. You'll find out that you don't know what you think you know. You'll also discover that customers are passionate about you and will give feedback.
Share what you learn from customers with your entire organization. Make everyone a part of the solution. From analyzing the responses, create an action plan that you implement. Then repeat the process. Be sure to measure results. What you measure, you can manage & improve. Furthermore, the process creates a halo effect from focusing on customers on an ongoing basis.
Simple ideas are effective in delighting customers. For example, have umbrellas with Nufloors imprinted available when it rains. Then, walk your customer to her car with the umbrella deployed!
From a practical perspective, Cynthia recommended the following process for dealing with customer survey results:
- Once you get feedback, don't get overwhelmed.
- Take the easy ones first
- Stay focused on 2 or 3 to work on
- Be sure to research so you have hard data vs. gut feel
- Develop an action plan. Tackle problems at their root cause. Make one person responsible for the action plan. Monitor progress once a month, and stay committed.
Here are my presentation slides:
Retail Hospitality or Customer Service Before, During & After the Sale
Finally, several resources in case you'd like to dive deeper into the subject of Connecting With Customers.
Customer Service [aka Retail Hospitality] ArticlesFrom Tom Peters' marvelous free resources, a document titled "The Independent Retailer Edge: 49 Points of Potential Dramatic Difference."
A Good Hug is Worth based on a presentation by Jack Mitchell, author of Hug Your Customers: The Proven Way to Personalize Sales and Achieve Astounding Results.
Businesses find benefits in giving customers the white-glove treatment.
Wharton: WOM Customers 16% More Valuable
Excerpt from The Gender Intelligent Retailer: Discover the Connection Between Women Consumers and Business Growth, by Joanne Thomas Yaccato
Statistics-Customer Service & Quality
Why Customer Service Buzz is the New Marketing
Will You Recommend This Article to a Friend?
Why Your Customers Don't Want to Talk to You
Classics on Connecting With Customers
- Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping--Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond by Paco Underhill
- Marketing to Women: How to Increase Your Share of the World's Largest Market by Marti Barletta
- You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation by Deborah Tannen
By the way, Kelowna is as magical a place as Rob Banks led me to believe, with vineyards, orchards, mythical beings - if you look carefully in the photo, you'll catch a glimpse of the Ogopogo, cousin to LockNess and active on Facebook and Twitter, who has promised to eat me next time I visit - and unexpected encounters. It's definitely worth a visit to savor marvelous wines - we visited Ex Nihilo Vineyards, Gray Monk and Arrowleaf Cellars - and feast your eyes on brilliant scenery.