Note from Randy: This week features a guest blog by Shep Hyken, author of the new book Amaze Every Customer, Every Time. You can’t deliver results if you can’t deliver customer service that amazes people.
Don’t worry about the sale. Just take care of the customer. Give the customer the best customer service you can deliver, even if the customer isn’t buying, and eventually the sale will come.
This idea actually goes back to a concept I’ve been writing about for 30 years. Dr. Ted Levitt, senior professor at Harvard Business School, once said, “The function of a business is to get and keep customers.” However, when I ask many people what the function of a business is, most of them say, “To make money.”
Making money is not the function of a business, it is the goal. If you confuse the function of the business, getting and keeping customers, you don’t always reach your goal, which is to make money.
Dr. Levitt’s comment is brilliant. Focus on getting and keeping customers, and eventually you’ll make money. Simply put, you need customers to make money. Without them, there’s no money – and no business.
Once again, I’m bringing up Ace Hardware, who is the feature of my new book, Amaze Every Customer, Every Time. They are a role model case study for this concept. Here is a “Good Samaritan” story.
Maria lives in Mesa, AZ. Her eight-year-old-daughter saw one of those color-changing Mood Rings in the mall and pushed it onto her finger. Unfortunately the ring was too small and wouldn’t come off her finger. After struggling for an hour, she was showing signs of circulation problems. What did Maria do? She went to the local Ace Hardware store. Why? They help with everything.
Floyd, one of the Ace associates came to the rescue. With a special pair of pliers, Floyd carefully maneuvered the ring and eventually it came off.
Once the ring was off, Maria took a picture of her daughter showing off her newly liberated finger at the store. She was smiling and posted the photo on Facebook and told everyone how Floyd at the Ace Hardware store had helped her. The post received great response.
Maria bought nothing that day. But, that didn’t deter Floyd from delivering amazing customer service. While Ace didn’t make an actual sale, they made a customer very happy, so much so that the customer evangelized on their behalf.
Ace knows that the customer is more important than the money. Once customers recognize this, they reciprocate with business and loyalty – and that leads to profit.
Shep Hyken is a customer experience expert and the Chief Amazement Officer of Shepard Presentations. He is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author and has been inducted into the National Speakers Association Hall of Fame for lifetime achievement in the speaking profession. Shep works with companies and organizations who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. For more articles on customer service and business go to http://www.hyken.com.
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