♥ Listening – Listening effectively is at the heart of a lovable business. Everything else is built around listening. When businesses are listening effectively they are able to make the right decisions at the right time to delight their customers. This ignites referrals and advocacy and leads to more customers and more profits. For service businesses it is crucial to find out what customers are saying about their customer-facing staff. Customer-facing employees are their sales staff, sales support staff, customer service staff, technical support staff and their key customer-facing managers. Feedback on how your customers feel after interacting with your customer-facing staff is essential for responding to anything that puts them off from coming back. The questions that you need answers for are: a. you need to know if the customer was promptly attended to, b. you need to know if the staff member was polite and attentive c. you need to know whether the staff member was knowledgeable enough to provide the right answers from the customer’s point of view and finally d. you need to know how well your customer was communicated to by your staff member.
♥ Storytelling – Storytelling is probably as old as language and we seem deeply attached to it. Storytelling is what captivates people and drives customers to take action. If you are able to tell a captivating story about your employee who interacted with them while asking for feedback to improve your service, you would have done two things at the same time and both effectively. Firstly helped the employee create a lasting impression, a reason to come back while at the same time leaving the customer satisfied that their voice is heard. Listening and storytelling are at the heart of creating a lovable business.
♥ Authenticity – Vulnerability and humility create positive and attractive energy. Customers, employees, and media all want to help an authentic person to succeed. There used to be a divide between one’s public self and private self, but social media has blurred that line. Lovable employees are transparent about who they are online, merging their personal and professional life together and in this transparency helps create that vulnerability that triggers authenticity.
♥ Responsiveness – Responsiveness to customers and the speed of it is key to building up a lovable company. All stakeholders are potential viral spark plugs these days so responsiveness matters. Responding shows you care and gives your customers and employees a say, allowing them to make a positive impact on your business.
♥ Team Playing – No matter the size of your business as long as you are in business you’ll need to interact with customers every day. How effectively you interact relies on teamwork. Letting employees shine, encouraging them to innovate and while keeping a sharp focus on team working will help you become a lovable business.
♥ Don’t Come on Too Strong – Respect Your Customers – A third of consumers say they experience rude customer service at least once a month, and 58% of them tell their friends. This is exactly how word of mouth can work against your company’s reputation for the long-term. It’s very important to be respectful of a customer’s mood when trying to resolve an issue they have with your company.
Keeping your patience is key to giving your customer the time to air out their issue. And, in turn, it creates the opportunity for you to help resolve the issue and make them comfortable. The more comfortable the customer is the more likely they’ll share valuable feedback that can help prevent similar issues from occurring again in the future.
♥ High Quality Products & Services – You should strive to create high-quality products and services. For example, If you write e-books and reports make sure all the content is accurate and timely. Most folks remember good-quality and won’t hesitate to recommend products and services they truly like. This is one of the easiest ways to build a lovable business. In addition, when you are consistently creating quality content and products, you are building expert credibility and authority in your niche.
♥ Treating the Customer Like a Valued Partner – Take your customer’s feedback seriously and act upon reasonable requests. What’s the point of listening if you’re not going to act on that feedback? Make sure it’s clear that you want your customer’s feedback and that your business truly values them as a partner.
♥ Gratefulness – Lovable companies are grateful to people who contribute to their success. Being appreciative and saying thank you to customers keeps them feeling appreciated. When it is easy for your employees to express their gratitude to customers, it’s also easy to build a lovable company.
Finally, should a business have someone in charge of ensuring lovability? Everyone in the company should be involved in ensuring lovability, and it starts at the top. It’s not a task that is assigned solely to one person. For a business to be truly lovable, everyone from the boss to the delivery guy needs to be working together to make it happen. Managers leading by example will be able to set pace in building a team of amazingly lovable employees and a lovable business.
About the Author
Gordon Conner is a Marketing & Branding Consultant/Coach who helps build WOW brands for small local businesses. He has been providing advertising, marketing and branding and services for 40 years and lives in Midlothian, Virginia. He can be reached at Gordon@BranWorks.com, or read more at https://branworks.com/customer-experience-2/