It was Valentine's day last week, and while we're sure you're buried in love notes from that, we wanted to tell you about a different kind of love note – and the industry that's sprung up around them.
Some of your customers love you. They really do. It's not the Valentine's Day sort of love, of course, but it's certainly worth paying attention to. You would never ignore your Valentine because you want to keep them. Your customer deserves the same sort of consideration. Same as with your real Valentine, it begins with communication.
Couples in love don't need a special day to share their admiration. Any day will do. You just have to give them the chance. You have to start the conversation. The same goes for your customers. Is there an easy way for your customer to tell you that they love you? Do you keep track of love notes from customers?
Most businesses do the opposite. Most of the time, when it comes to customer feedback, we focus on the complaints. They're usually the loudest. And way too often, a manager will come off a complaint all fired up to make sure it never happens again. It's a negative thing, and it hits a negative vibe – and yet, somehow, it jumps to the top of a manager's priorities.
Highlighting the number of negative complaints on your dashboard focuses employees on everything that went wrong. That number puts them on the defensive. They focus on what should not happen, and they make sure it doesn't. They worry. Worse, when they make their next external contact, the negative vibe goes straight through them and into your customer or your business partner. No love notes. No Valentine's Day. Just bummers.
Love letters are much more fun, and they create a completely different sort of impression. They're a positive thing, and they create a positive vibe, which you can turn into a positive feedback loop.
What would happen if you put a Positive Feedback number on your dashboard instead? What if every single time a customer said something nice about your business, you broadcast it to everyone in the company? And what if, when one of those notes was addressed to a particular employee, you broadcast their name just as loudly? That's a business-type Valentine's Day, and you can turn every staff meeting into one of them. That way, your team knows what succeeds, and they go about making sure that happens. They want to be buried in love notes and can't wait to get one from their next contact. Imagine the vibe that your customer and business partner will get from that.
So open up the communication. Create a way to collect positive customer comments, and you'll quickly find that they are truly valuable:
- They reinforce processes you've put in place to create great experiences
- They boost moral and staff confidence
- They highlight the value you deliver to clients every day
- They can be shared to build confidence with prospects
Just Ask Nicely
So, the concept sounds great, but exactly how does the communications part play out? Sure, it's easy for your customer to contact you. But how many of them will take the time to compliment you or thank you? Far too few.
In fact, one of the main reasons businesses focus on complaints is because that's all they've got on record. If you don't have any love notes, you can't broadcast them. So how do you get them?
This brings us to a new industry that's really gaining force with today's relationship-focused market. One of the leaders is our partner, Ask Nicely, which provides businesses with a simple, elegant way to ask customers for feedback. Ask Nicely makes it easy by emailing or texting them a link to a form they can fill out on their phone.
It seems simple, but it changes everything. Now it's a breeze for your customer to respond. Most people want to spread a positive vibe. Writing a love note is too difficult. But give them a simple, fast way to do the same thing with a click or two, and many of them will.
You get your love notes, and you get your love metrics, and you can make every staff meeting a Valentine's Day. Spread it around.