Think of a recent experience in which you were wowed as a customer. The business probably gave you some unexpected bonus, delivered more than promised, or did something that made your purchase or the service you received memorably positive.
Whether you call it over-delivering, going the extra mile, or wowing your customers, this is a practice that yields huge dividends.
For instance, a friend was wowed recently by Harley Davidson. While on a weekend trip, he had stopped at a gas station to fuel-up his Heritage Softail and accidentally tanked up with diesel fuel instead of gasoline! He recognized his error when his Harley began belching black smoke, choked, and died along the roadside.
He called Harley Davidson and explained his dilemma. Within 20 minutes, they had a truck there picking up his motorcycle. He and his wife ate lunch in a nearby restaurant while HD worked on his bike. No sooner had they finished their meal than he got a call from HD saying that his bike was ready.
When my friend got to the HD dealership, they had not only drained and flushed all the diesel out of his bike, but they filled his tank with gasoline and washed his motorcycle. Their charge? Six dollars and some change for two spark plugs! The impact? A very loyal customer who loves to tell others his story. No wonder Harley Davidson has such a loyal following!
The Benefits of Going the Extra Mile
Here are just a few of the benefits of over-delivering:
- You Build trust. Doing what you said you’d do is the bottom line. That doesn’t wow anybody. But exceeding your customers’ expectations demonstrates that you’re not only true to your word, but that you consistently do more than you say you’ll do. And that builds trust.
- Sets you apart from your competition. When you exceed expectations consistently, you establish a reputation for yourself that gives you an edge over your competitors. People start coming to you because you offer those little extras.
- You create raving fans. People love to talk about the great deals they’ve made or the positive experiences they’ve had. When you go the extra mile with customers, they not only become loyal customers, they also become your biggest fans. They transform into volunteer marketers, referring other clients to you.
- You become more attuned to your customers. As you ponder how to exceed expectations, you get to know your customers better. You’re looking beyond their pain to their pleasure. And in doing so, you discover what makes your customers really happy.
- Lifts your outlook.Okay, this one might seem weird, but can we admit that just doing what’s expected is boring? There’s nothing remarkable or stellar about just meeting expectations. It’s predictable. But when you anticipate wowing your customers, it puts a spring in your step. You’re excited to give them that extra bonus. It’s fun making people happy.
How to Wow!
Have a blast figuring out how to wow your clients. Each of our businesses is different, so ultimately, you’ve got to decide what will work best to wow your clients. What you do must fit your personality, your culture, and the type of business you run. Sometimes it’s just good to be spontaneous. But here are a few ideas for wowing your customers:
- When they buy, give them an unexpected bonus: a free book, article, pen, candy, etc.
- If you’re mailing something, make the packaging extra special. Put a “bow” on it. Do something that tells them you appreciate them.
- Write a handwritten thank you note.
- Simply do more than what you agreed to do.
- Use their name and personalize their experience with you.
- Avoid cheap trinkets. Give them something they will consider valuable, even if it doesn’t cost much.
Wowing your customers is not only fun, it’s a great strategy for growing your business and creating a loyal following. Going the extra mile yields raving fans, and raving fans love to send you referrals, and buy more. What can you do today to wow your clients?
About the Author
Collin Dayley is SVP of Growth and Strategy for One Partners, a leading performance marketing agency with offices in Salt Lake City and Seattle. Learn more about how One Partners can help you Wow! your customers at www.one-partners.com