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13th August 2012
Everybody in business wants more sales. Your business should satisfy the needs of your customers to such an extent that this experience resonates with them. Marketing is about buying customers and creating raving fans.
Last Valentine’s Day I went to purchase a gift online. After an extensive search, I found exactly what I wanted. I filled in all my details and hit the ‘confirm’ button. A message appeared asking for the post code field to be filled in. This was an Irish website, for an Irish company. WE DON’T HAVE POST CODES!!!!
Luckily, I had discovered how to outsmart the website. I wouldn’t let it beat me and prevent me from making the purchase!! Then I thought: “Why am I persisting in playing this game. I’m not playing it anymore. I’ll find another website, even if it means buying outside Ireland”.
Managers of SME’s should ‘mystery shop’ to evaluate their own sales process from their customer’s eyes. Find the opportunities to make improvements.
‘I spend more time in other people’s stores than I do in my own’ Sam Walton - Founder of Walmart: We have all lost sales and reconciled ourselves by saying, ‘sure they weren’t ready’ or ‘they didn’t know what they wanted’, but have you ever considered that it might be your sales process or even ‘you’?
A few years ago, I received a watch as a birthday gift. I was told to bring it back to the store, if it needed any adjustment, without incurring a charge. The strap on the watch was a size too big so I brought it to the store from where it was purchased. This was a shop that my family often used. I explained to the assistant that the watch was a present and so I didn’t have the receipt. I asked her if she could remove a link. She recognised my face and the brand of the watch, but was obsessed with the possibility that the watch could have been purchased somewhere else. She was more concerned about being ‘duped’ for a few minutes work, than my customer loyalty. She refused point blank to adjust it free of charge. With irritation, I explained that I was a regular customer, and asked why she would not believe me. I left and never returned, nor has any of my family. The store has lost out in thousands as a result of this petty event.
Marketing is about buying customers, but it takes the whole business to retain them!
What are you doing to instil in your staff, the importance of customer lifetime value?
Where are your sales prevention processes? If you know you have them, then eradicate them. If you think you don’t have any, you need to start looking!