Business growth is essential if you plan on being in business for the long haul. In the beginning there never seems to be enough leads. The conversion rate is always too low, and each customer is expensive to acquire. Many businesses fail because they never make it past this beginning stage. However, there is a secret weapon that will accelerate your business growth, lower the cost of acquiring customers, and won’t cost you much, if anything, out of pocket. What is this secret weapon? It’s your existing customers. You can turn your existing customers into an unpaid sales force, bringing you qualified leads, and evangelizing your amazing service.
Exceptional Customer Service
The way to turn your customers into a super sales force is exceptional customer service. Regular, good customer service isn’t good enough. You need to get your customers to say “Wow” when they are dealing with you. How do you get to “Wow”?
What Does Exceptional Customer Service Look Like?
Exception customer service is mostly about the small things and can have a major impact on your business growth. Return emails quickly, don’t let them wait longer than an hour if possible. If someone is having a technical difficulty, call him or her and troubleshoot instead of just emailing back and forth. Exceptional customer service is exceeding customer expectations. If they bought $100 worth of service, give them $150 worth. Build an internal culture of treating every customer like they are the business’s only customer.
These little touches won’t go unnoticed. You do enough nice things for anyone the normal human response is to want to help you back. That’s when the conversion from customer to evangelist happens.
Making the Switch
If you have done your job and made your customers go, “Wow”, the next part is easy. You ask them to help you. The asking is vital. These evangelists are ready to go, but they need direction. Ask happy customers to do something specific for you. If you don’t ask, they won’t be as helpful. They don’t know what your business needs.
What to Ask
Ask your happy customers to write you testimonials. These act as social proof for your business and each one helps make the next sale a little easier. Once you have enough testimonials, ask your customers for referrals. Ask which of their friends could use your help. Make it easy for them to connect you to their friends. You could ask them to use social media to promote your business with their testimonial to their friends.