Too often today, we have either a substandard experience with those we do business with or, at best, an ordinary and unremarkable one. It’s rare to experience an excellent interaction and those that could be rated extraordinary are few and far between. That’s the bad news. The good news? It’s pretty easy to stand out in this crowded environment of mediocrity with just a little effort.
Case in point: Phischon Engineering
Our cabin neighbor, Scott, is an avid fisherman. And, while we can occasionally be enticed to go out with him and his lovely wife at daybreak on a nice summer morning to quietly fish for trout in Echo Lake, we count on him to bring in enough fish, no matter the weather, for an amazing fresh trout dinner at least once or twice a season. So far, they do not disappoint.
Last month, I received this email from Scott…
“I ordered some fishing stuff online for my new boat. Before I even opened the package, I read their letter and was impressed by it. The product was also excellent, so I will recommend it to anyone who asks. I thought the letter might be a good example for some of the work you do.”
As I read the welcome letter to a brand new customer, I was reminded of the numerous times I have recited an after-hours message to my audience during my Unscripted Telephone Skills presentation as an example of a great message. The message is well-written, energetic, and convincing to consumers that they have reached an above-average business. However, when I poll the audience, many feel the message is too long. That’s always my opening to implore them to go back to their offices, listen to their own message, and re-record it at any length they feel is appropriate but please, please, please… don’t make it boring or ordinary.
It doesn’t take that long to upgrade the touchpoints with clients that you’ve already got in place such as on-hold messages, after-hours voicemail, instructions, forms, new client gifts, and welcome letters such as this excellent example from Phischon (Fishin’) Engineering below. This enclosed letter single-handedly took Scott’s experience from ordinary to extraordinary with minimal effort. It’s personal and interesting. It’s different than the typical, boring new client letter and reinforces value, quality, and service as well as client loyalty.
This week, look at your client touchpoints one at a time. Work to upgrade them, by asking these questions: Is this boring or ordinary? Or, is it energetic, interesting, and extraordinary?
Ordinary is forgettable and therefore vulnerable to competition and price. Extraordinary stands out, cements value, and assures that you and your brand shine far above the rest.
“The customer experience is the next competitive battleground.”