The BizFilings blog covering business tips and trends.
How to Be a Hero to Your Customers - Without Wearing Tights
Published on Oct 3, 2012
Read our article, 'How to Be a Hero to Your Customers - Without Wearing Tights' at 'Time to Start Up,' the small business blog by BizFilings.
By Matthew Toren
Look! Up in the air! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s an effective business model that reaches out to customers and treats them as people, not as dollar signs! A hero is someone who gave you an umbrella when it was raining. A hero is someone who pulled over to help you out when your car stalled.
Becoming a hero to your customers is about serving their emotional needs by helping them overcome an obstacle. Gaining hero status in the eyes of your customers is not complicated and shouldn’t involve you bending over backwards to try and meet every possible demand.
Open up the lines of communication between yourself and your current or potential customers. If you can, try to engage people personally, and address their concerns specifically. If you simply don’t have the time to answer every question yourself, make sure you have trustworthy staff on board that can handle this important task. Let your customers know that you’re there to help. A hero always looks out for the little guy.
Your returning customers are the heart and soul of your business. Not only do they directly purchase your product or service, they act as your best form of advertising by spreading the word to other interested parties. Let these awesome customers know they’re appreciated by offering discounts, rewards, personal thank-yous, and other incentives that keep them coming back to you. A hero’s legend grows by word of mouth.
Assess Customer Losses
Take some time to try and figure out why a customer may have stopped using your service or product. The best way to do this is simply by asking them. If you notice customer concerns that appear regularly, step up and take charge. Let your customers know you’re listening and make the appropriate changes. A hero realizes when she’s made a mistake.
Rise Above the Noise
Don’t weigh yourself down by needlessly battling with competitors. Instead, let your company shine by its own merits. Likewise, concentrate on your own success and don’t dwell upon your failures. Your customers are looking for someone to admire, someone who offers solutions to their problems. By keeping a positive outlook and image, you’ll naturally attract those around you. A hero is someone to look up to.
Take On New Challenges
Don’t be content with just being adequate. If you see an opportunity and have something in mind, don’t be afraid to try it out. Even if a well-thought out idea doesn’t succeed as planned, your customers will view you and your company as energetic and adventurous. They’ll look forward to seeing what else you’ll bring to the table. A hero is a force to be reckoned with.
Create a Story
Paint a picture for your customer. They are in a disadvantaged position. You understand. You’ve been there yourself. As a hero, you’re there to give them the support they need to reach their goals. You’re a Sherpa scaling the Himalayans. You show up with a soothing voice and a step-ladder when their cat is stuck in a tree. Craft a narrative for your customer that puts yourself in a position to help them realize their desires.
Reach out to your customers as people with emotional needs and you’ll be rewarded with hero status in no time!
Matthew Toren is a serial entrepreneur, mentor, investor and co-founder of YoungEntrepreneur.com. He is co-author, with his brother Adam, of the award winning books, Kidpreneurs and Small Business, BIG Vision: Lessons on How to Dominate Your Market from Self-Made Entrepreneurs Who Did it Right. Their latest project is a free classified ads network called: iSell.com.