Get To Know Your Customers
Posted on 14th June 2021 at 13:22
15th July is Get To Know Your Customers Day and while these ‘days’ can sometimes be seen as a bit of a joke they do serve a purpose by making you stop and think.
It definitely made us think properly about the fact that caring about customers is the key to long-term relationships and, by association, leads to all-important business resilience. From our own work as Virtual Assistants, we are aware of how important it is to know our customers well, or in our case our clients. That’s because if we didn’t, then we wouldn’t be able to do our job the way we want to do it.
The other point that so many people are discussing in summer 2021 is about getting to know your customers again after lockdown. This is a funny one for us as VAs because, if there’s one thing we excel at, it’s working remotely and for clients we have often never met in person. So, we went into lockdown and… nothing changed much for us as VAs. In fact, we were able to help our clients learn how to manage this new way of working with their customers because it is second nature for us.
For us, customer knowledge and insight is so important, because it goes to the heart of what we do – providing a cost-effective service that makes a real difference to small business owners, where we take on the tasks that they find tricky and give them back time to focus on what they do well instead.
But there is always room for improvement and we’ve been reminded to ask ourselves:
– Are we really doing the best we can in terms of understanding our customers?
- What can we do to deliver an even better service?
- Are we so busy delivering that we’re missing some signals from our clients on opportunities for improvement?
So, like meditating, this will be a great day to stop, take time out from action and focus on exploring the big topics and asking questions.
This is therefore our commitment for 16th July and you’re very welcome to do something similar with your customers:
A fun meeting
We’re going to book a meeting, Zoom or real life, with each of our lovely current clients and take time over something to eat and drink to work through these 7 points. It doesn’t have to be bang on the 16th but definitely within 5 days.
We’d like to ask these questions but we’ll also go where the conversation leads us.
1. What have you chosen to eat during our catch-up? And where is your favourite eatery?
2. Where would you go on holiday for a week if money was no object? Is this the same plan you would have had before COVID?
3. Thinking of positive change, has the pandemic helped you to innovate in your business which has brought unexpected benefits?
4. Has the pandemic changed your personal and your business priorities?
5. If you weren’t running this business what would you be doing now?
6. If there was one thing we or anyone could do to make your working life (and by association your personal life) easier, what would that be?
7. What is the one thing your business could do that would make your customers even happier?
Let’s make no bones about it - this is undoubtedly a form of review and research but it’s the right time for it. So much has changed for people we can’t assume that it will be business as usual even when the pandemic becomes a memory.
We recognise it’s important to get to re-know our customers as much as anyone else, as they recalibrate for a new era. The pandemic has meant a loss of innocence and an acquired recognition of how important it is to create business resilience and to reset priorities.
These are the kinds of semi-structured conversations that are never less than fascinating and can throw up all kinds of interesting ideas and opportunities for improvement and clarity.
The reality is that customers will vary widely, with some determined on business conversations only and others happy to be more personal. That’s OK because part of getting to know your customers is understanding who likes to keep it brisk and work focused only and who would welcome a chat about anything other than work, before we start work.
Just like you, we have databases and customers who have moved on too. Which means we’re going to have a look through our list and reach out to people we haven’t spoken to in a while. Just to say hello and see how they are doing.
Clients and customers are human beings. Obviously true and it’s something we’re very aware of. We like to think we’re good at saying thank you but it doesn’t harm to say it out loud and consciously. It could be with words or a combination of words and a cupcake. The important thing is to be as thoughtful and personal as possible, as there’s nothing quite as empty as a generic message.
We’ve had a look around at ideas others are suggesting and here some of the best:
● Send a handwritten note recognising their contribution
● Offer prizes or gifts in exchange for feedback
● Host a party where your clients can meet you and each other
● Issue a survey which asks customers what you are great at and what could do with improvement
● Start a loyalty programme
● Start a birthday programme
● Send out an invitation to pop in on the 16th for a 5 – 7 meet and greet with a goody bag after closing time
● Send out a unique number voucher which people can redeem at any time in the following 100 days
At the heart of all these ideas is the fact that this day is a reminder to take a pause from being busy running your business and focus on getting to know your customers. They are the lifeblood of your business and deserve your attention. If you are authentic with your activities on Get To Know Your Customers Day they will appreciate it and reward you with a stronger relationship.
Take care of your customers – they will be delighted to support the people who take a real and genuine interest in them.
And if you’d like to find out more about how we can help you get to know and look after your customers, we’re ready to answer all your questions. Click Here to contact us now.
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