Enthusiastic Customers

What kind of customers do you want? How do you want your customers to feel toward you and your product? If you are like most people, your response is probably “satisfied.” We want our customers to be satisfied for having done business with us.

Well, you’re wrong! You don’t want your customers to be “satisfied.” You see, a “satisfied” customer is one who feels he/she received what they paid for. No more, no less. Let me give you an example.

If I go to a local gas/service station, clean my own windshield, check my own oil, pump $10 worth of gas into my car and hand the attendant $10 in cash, I’m satisfied. I received $10 in value for $10 in cash.

Now, considering that scenario, am I likely to tell you how great that service station is? Probably not. You see, I’m simply satisfied.

You don’t want “satisfied” customers; you want “enthusiastic customers.”

 The difference is simple but invaluable. While satisfied customers feel they received what they paid for, enthusiastic customers feel they received more than they paid for. Enthusiastic customers tell everyone how great it is to do business with you. And, they show their appreciation by giving you repeat business and quality referrals. Enthusiastic customers will make you wealthy!

So, how do you get your customers to be enthusiastic? Fortunately, the answers are simple but they demand your attention to small details. The key factor in whether a customer is satisfied or enthusiastic is not in your service toward that product. Always remember the definition:

“An enthusiastic customer is one who feels they have received more than they paid for!”

Okay, so what are the details you must pay attention to? Let’s review several principles that are necessary in the enthusiastic customer process.

PRINCIPLE 1: You must be enthusiastic. Be the kind of person people want to do business with. Be energetic. Get excited about your product and service. No one will continue doing business with a person who lacks enthusiasm.

PRINCIPLE 2: Never forget a customer and never let a customer for get you! Don’t assume that a customer remembers who you are simply because they have bought your product. In fact, if you assume anything, assume that the person has totally forgotten you immediately after he/she said, “Okay, I’ll buy.” Maintain high visibility with each and every customer.

PRINCIPLE 3: Set yourself and your customer up to win by knowing before you ever begin what results will be required in order for you to do more business with this company or individual. Simply stated, find out what it will take to make the person ecstatic about your product, you have an enthusiastic customer.

PRINCIPLE 4: “Perception is all there is.” – Tom Peters. No matter how good you feel your results are, no matter how much benefit the person tells you they have received, no matter how much documentation you have to support your results, unless the customer perceives (sees in the own mind) that your product produced results, you’re dead! Interestingly enough, even mediocre results will produce repeat business if the decision maker perceives your product and service to be valuable. “Perception is all there is.”

PRINCIPLE 5: Keep it simple! How many times have you heard this and yet over and over again, people try to make easy things hard.  Don’t complicate your product by adding unnecessary steps and procedures. Your customer didn’t buy instructions, procedures, raw materials, etc. They bought desired results. You simply use your product to help them get what they want. Keep it simple.

The difference in long term growth for your business between enthusiastic customers and satisfied customers is enormous. It might be compared to the difference in the purse between the first and second place horse in a horse race. Many times horse races end in a “photo-finish” – the race is so close they have to determine the winner by an electronic photo across the finish line. In other words, a horse can win by less than an inch, but will still receive 3 times, 5 times sometimes 10 times as much as the second place horse. With your customers, as with the horse race, it requires only a “slight edge” difference by you. Make a commitment today to develop your customers to be enthusiastic about your product, your service, and you. You will then have the “slight edge” working for you!

By Randy Slechta, CEO / President of Leadership Management International, Inc. a global leadership and organizational development company.

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