HOW TO NAIL THE CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE:
Making the people who pay you money feel good about spending it.
Recently, I had an experience that made me take a long hard look at the essence of customer experience, and what as business-owners, we want our clients to feel when they interact with us.
I would hope that my clients feel helped and heard but these two experiences have now made me hyper aware.
I\’d been suffering from a painful pinched nerve in my neck that was giving me an annoying sharp pain in my shoulder so I found a place that offered both chiropractic and acupuncture services. It was the first place I was attracted to because it was called the “Pain Relief Center”. I was in pain and needed relief, so it called to me.
The center felt clinical which was not so bad in itself but the chiropractor was very quick in the room, and I definitely got the feeling he\’d taken a course in “How to be Profitable and Spend No More than Five Minutes with your Clients”. I loved the moving traction table but felt rushed off it and the doctor was quick to tell me what was happening and also super quick on touching my body. The ambience was neither relaxing nor peaceful. I didn\’t feel attended to, heard, healed or hopeful.
When I told the assistant that I had an acupuncture appointment shortly after the body adjustment, she replied, “If you say so.” What? It was an aloof response.
The acupuncture lady was lovely but she left me alone with needles – not my favorite thing – and disappeared for a long time into another room. I was very uncomfortable. She was too far away and I had no way of reaching her. No buzzer or bell.
The reception area was clinical, just a high desk with no seating. Heading in and out, I noticed that the doctor\’s Porsche was parked in the lot. I persevered but after five visits, I didn\’t feel healed in any way, did not feel like it was money well spent and so I looked for another place.
On recommendation from a friend, I found a man who also did acupuncture and chiropractic. It didn\’t have a sassy name that jumped out at me. It was something like “Chinese Medicine” and the doctor\’s name, but the waiting room was cozy and had tons of magazines. When I paid my bill I sat down at eye level with the receptionist who offered me water. Great care had been taken to make the atmosphere peaceful and calm. I happily handed over my money and felt like I got great care and value for it.
The doctor himself was warm, with a great bedside manner. I could see his degrees and awards on the walls of his office, which was also peaceful, and furnished with a lovely carpet. No flashy but classic. I didn\’t feel rushed. He asked me questions, was truly concerned and connected and I felt as if he had the solutions.
When he put needles in my body, he showed me how to use the buzzer if I needed assistance and then he left the room. Much better.
What impressed me is that although I\’m sure this man needed to be profitable and keep to time, I felt so much more cared for, serviced and healed. It felt like my body had truly been manipulated and touched. And, of course, within sessions I was healed. I referred this doctor to friends immediately.
My goal walking out of his clinic was that I wanted to ensure that my customers feel like I did when I saw this second doctor, and you should do the same.
You have to make your clients feel that they have had better service than anything else out there, and an experience they would want to repeat.
You must make your customers feel attended to. Don\’t let them feel as if they are alone in a room with needles stuck in their bodies and no way to get your attention.
You want your clients to be serviced and helped, and moved towards some kind of resolution, be it the end of project or trouble-shooting.
Offering value for your money is also exceptionally important. Even if you\’re staying at the Ritz Carlton, you can still feel that you are getting value for your money. It\’s not a price point that gives you value for money, it\’s also ambience and service.
So it comes down to this: What do you want your customers to feel when they are with you?
Here are three tips towards making that your goal.
What are the competition doing? Are they offering a better experience than you are, and if so, what are you going to do about it?
Go that extra mile. Seriously tune in to them. Wow your clients with a service so stellar that they will be forced to tell their colleagues and friends.
Invest in your business. Do you need a nicer carpet? A buzzer in your treatment room? Think about what extras you can offer your clients they will appreciate and that will make dealing with you more comfortable. At every turn, think about your business from your customer’s point of experience. That will bring you great success.
Sidenote: It\’ s always lovely when you have a Porsche but you might not want to park it out front. If you want to show off, at least do a good job and show you\’ve earned it well, and are not just a money-making machine!
To your health and prosperity!