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10 Top Tips to Keep Your Customers Coming Back

Part two

If you have not read part one you can Read it here…

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6. Know what niche market you serve. Put yourself into the shoes of your customer so you can tailor your products and service to provide a solution to your customers’ wants and needs. Customers buy on an emotional decision. Anticipating their desires gives them a feeling of specialness. They’ll see your business providing extraordinary service.

7. Make your system simple. If customers can’t navigate quickly to what they want, they’ll walk out frustrated and angry. Look to have…

a. Clear signage

b. Obvious pathways.

c. Appropriate illumination.

d. A sense of openness or intimacy to reflect the of your business.

e. Prompt host/hostess, if in the hospitality industry.

8. Be ready to apologize. Offer to remedy the situation quickly but be supportive of your staff too. Learn to use this phrase…“It’s so not like our staff, but I’ll immediately…

9. Develop or secure the services of a rewards system to build great customer relations. Have a system that:

a) Can be set up to communicate with your customers regularly.

b) Provides first-rate value in your customers’ minds and encourages shopping.

c) Is simple for you and your customers to use.

d) Provides details in numeric and graph formats so you can ‘see’ at a glance what your customers like, how often they visit and more.

e) Has a survey option get immediate customer feedback.

f) Has a built-in referral system to expand your customer base.

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10. Whenever you go shopping, make note of what you like or don’t like about your experience. Then ask yourself…how can I improve my business?

 

What new action will you make today to keep more customers coming back?

May your customers even be more excited to shop with you!

Peter

Season Greetings

At Plenty Full Services we have enjoyed making a match for your personalized customer satisfaction program to keep your customers engaged with your business.

Wishing you a…

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And may 2016 bring you all the customers you need.

2016 Merry Christmas & Happy New Year

We are here to help keep on bringing them back… throughout the Year.

Here’s to Your Success,

Peter

Customer Loyalty Programs Don’t Work: Part Two

(Remember to charge the battery!)

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What happens to your cell phone, laptop, iPad or other electronic devices when the battery is dead? Not Much! Like your device, a Customer Loyalty program needs to be charged too.

You can have the best Customer Loyalty program out there but if you don’t know how to best use it, how powerful is it? In the beginning, there are two things to keep in mind.

  1. You have to be clear about the results you want your loyalty program to create. What are your goals?
  2. Create a checklist of what to look for in a program. It is critical that it fits your business. When you decide a loyalty program is the future for your business, learn how to use it and run full out with it.

A loyalty program does nothing until you take the actions to implement it (charging its battery).

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  • Invite people to enter their contact information into the program’s database so you can keep in touch with them.
  • Decide what incentives you will give to your customers and how often? The incentives have to be something your customers value; it must answer their W.I.I.F.M. (what’s in it for me) question.
  • Train your staff to actively promote the program. Face-to-face invitations get the best results. Your program needs to be promoted as an advantage to your customers…to show that you care about them…you appreciate them…because customers are your bread and butter.
  • Provide incentives for your staff to promote your new loyalty program. They have W.I.I.F.M. questions too. Most of them will be dealing directly with your customers; you want your best image put forward. Make it fun for everyone.
  • Most importantly, devote time every day/week in the beginning to become familiar with how to operate your program. It will save you time and eliminate frustration.

Click here at plentyfullservices.com for a checklist of what to look for in a loyalty program. PlentyFULLServices is designed for business owners who want a flood of customers coming through their doors and a simple, effective way to extend customer satisfaction.

Here’s to Your Success,

Peter

Why Say Thanks to your Customers?

Thank-you with a smile is one of the most powerful words in the English language and in customer relationships. It is an expression of politeness between two people which creates a connection. Subconsciously it says ‘I respect and value you’. It sets the standard to begin a mutually polite conversation and keeps you in integrity. Said with 100% sincerity, it can overcome many obstacles. It’s like a bridge over a chasm of misunderstandings or a welcoming handshake inviting the person to a closer circle of friendship.

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Loyalty Programs are Hot

Loyalty programs are not just for ‘Big Business’. If you want to stay in the game, consider having a mobile-friendly loyalty program to keep your customers engaged.

Nation’s Restaurant News (NRN) highlighted the latest trends for eating establishments in an August 20, 2014 article..

One of the hottest areas of innovation is loyalty programs. Consumers especially younger generations demand technology-enabled speed and convenience in everything they do, including ordering and paying for restaurant meals. Beyond that, they have a hunger to belong. They want to align themselves with brands that reflect their lifestyles and values and they want to be rewarded for doing so.”

Further along in the same article they stated…Eight out of 10 participants in restaurant rewards programs affirm that they’re more likely to frequent a restaurant where they’re recognized as a loyal patron. And regardless of whether they currently participate in any loyalty programs, nine out of 10 consumers say they’d be likely to sign up for a new program inaugurated by a restaurant that was already a favourite of theirs. Of these enthusiasts, 94% say that after joining the new rewards club, they would likely patronize that restaurant even more often going forward.”

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Just like automobiles were in the early 1900’s, loyalty programs are the ‘wave of the future’. But remember your customers want great value and convenience. NRN also stated in their article that…

“Two-thirds of consumers say they’d likely turn down the chance to join a restaurant loyalty program if there were a joining fee, and almost half would take a pass if they felt the rewards weren’t worth the hassle of signing up.”

So you have to ‘know’ your customers to decide what they would find valuable and don’t charge a fee for signing up. That’s like closing your doors and expecting customers to come in.

If you don’t own a restaurant, it doesn’t mean you don’t need a loyalty program. In fact you probably need it even more. The NRN article also stated…

“Your best customers want to feel they’re special and part of the action. Reward loyalty members with frequent coupons and special deals, exclusive chances to sample and comment on new items, and other members-only perks.”

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Every day you delay implementing a loyalty program NRN notes you are “leaving money on the table”. A loyalty program is an increasingly powerful tool to keep your present customers, attract new customers and increase customer referrals.

In this digital age, what are your thoughts about making technology work for you to attract customers?

http://nrn.com/sponsored-content/diner-loyalty-digital-age Nation’s Restaurant News’ sponsored by American Express

Plenty FULL Services is a money-saving, mobile-friendly loyalty program that can be customized to fit any type of business. Remember, customers want to be rewarded.

Attracting Success to your business…

Peter

Tankful of Hot Water

It’s been a long time since I had to have cold showers but this past summer it was not by choice. My wife even partook in one or two much to her disgust. But back to the beginningin the spring time.First Sign of Spring

Just after we had an enjoyable weekend with company, we noticed our house had no hot water. We were thankful we hadn’t run out while our company was here. But after a day and the tank hadn’t recovered, we started to investigate.

A couple of years back we had installed a new high-efficiency gas hot water tank. As with all new equipment it came with a plethora of paperwork. Fortunately I keep all the warranty materials in one box and write the purchase date on the front page. Thankfully I found the instructions for the tank―unfortunately most of the warranty was expired―it has been more than the two years I thought.

After a coffee and reading the manual, I checked the tankyellow lights were on. The booklet explained how to reset the tank. It was simple. Everything fired up and we had hot water in an hour or so.

Things went fine for a day or two then one morning I noticed the water was getting cool. When I went downstairs to check the tank, those pesky yellow lights were on again. Once more I got things started but by evening my wife was mentioning the water seemed to be cool. Downstairs again and you guessed ityellow lights. I reset the tank once more. We kept doing this for about a month sometimes having to reset the tank half-an-hour apart.

When I finally had enough and called the gas company, they informed me they had run a special cleaning chemical through their lines. It sometimes fooled the sensors in the newer hot water tanks indicating there was low gas pressure. The gas company recommended we wait a month. If we were still having problems then call back.

Well by now I had shown my wife how to reset the tank which she reluctantly learned as she is not mechanically inclined. The month went by with each of us taking turns to check and reset the tank. Some mornings were frustrating because neither one of us checked the night before. We learned to shower like we were in a holiday trailer.

The problem didn’t go away. Further discussions with the gas company did not solve the problem either. But one of our sons is a plumber/gas fitter so we called him. He thought it could be a build up of lime or calcium in the water that was causing the problem with the sensor. He gave me instructions over the phone and told me to look for them in the warranty booklet. That was not the problem. Talking more with my son, it now looks like a part will have to be ordered and replaced. Did I mention we live in a small rural town which has no plumbers, gas fitters or electricians? The closest one is 80 km.

The summer has now passed into fall and we are very grateful we only have to check the hot water tank once or twice a week. Most mornings there’s lots of hot water. The moral of the story…no matter what issues you have in your day be thankful you have a tankful of hot water.

Keep smiling,

Peter

Your Staff is Your Voice with Your Customers

It’s my experience savvy staff know politeness, helpfulness and a smile translate into cash tips in the hospitality industry. Your staff is your frontline face for your business no matter what industry. Smiling faces and voices welcome customers, put them at ease and give them the feeling they are respected. Yes, it is important to have well trained staff, but I find it is equally important for staff to feel they have the support of your business behind them.

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Anything you can do to make your staff feel part of the team is good for business. It is the little things that count. A word of gratitude for a job well done, a signed card with a bonus cheque at Christmas time, public recognition for their work…there’s lots of ways to build a team. When your business has teamwork you can guide your staff to talk with customers in the way you want. Their voices reflect your message with customers.

Of course there will always be staff that are there only for the paycheque, but others have deep personal values and always strive to do a great job. Those loyal staff members not only deserve to be rewarded but must be rewarded with satisfaction in both tangible and intangible ways. Staff can be your biggest asset or your biggest liability. If you have a system to reward your staff with things they value, some of your paycheque-only staff may change their attitude. Finding ways to make your staff into your greatest asset pays huge dividends. Remember, your staff is your voice with your customers.

It is the day-to-day actions that build or destroy a staff-management relationship.

  • Always speak with your staff like you would like to be treated.
  • Be flexible, but also clear about your expectations that come with the job. Give them a vision.
  • Voice your satisfaction immediately with individual staff when you see outstanding work, especially the ‘small’ things.
  • When you have a concern with one of your staff, begin the discussion by giving a compliment first.
  • At staff meetings start discussing what went right first. Then you can go into asking for input for improvements, setting goals for the team to focus on, asking for solutions when challenges crop up or whatever pressing topics need to be addressed.
  • Consistently be the example for your ‘Business Face’ to steep your staff in your business culture. After all, you cannot always be in front of every customer so your staff is your voice with your customers.

What is your experience with building staff loyalty?

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Visit Plenty FULL Services (PFS) for ‘Staff Management Tips’ to make your work load easier to manage.

Here’s to your success!

Peter

Creating Staff Loyalty

Recognition for staff efforts is important for building a loyal team atmosphere. It can be given many ways, but sometimes you need to use tangible rewards to build staff loyalty. It is the old saying, different strokes for different folks and I have seen a lot in my 30 years. Rewards are a great way to motivate your staff anytime, but especially when you are introducing a customer loyalty program.

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Loyalty programs are for customers and have to satisfy their ‘what’s in it for me’ expectation. Sometimes staff don’t see the big picture…how a customer loyalty program will benefit themselves. Staff incentives can make the difference because there is something in it for them while they are promoting your new program.

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It can happen several ways:

  • Some staff members enjoy a contest, but in the end only one staff member gets the ‘big’ reward.
  • Rewards for reaching milestones within a time-frame produces greater motivation among a larger number of your staff. Each one has an equal chance to get a reward.
  • Have different levels of rewards…
  • give a gift card prize for ‘x’ number of sign-ups
  • first staff member to get 100 customer sign-ups gets double the gift card prize
  • greatest number of sign-ups over a base number within the week gets a cash bonus of ‘x’ amount. Several of your staff may qualify, especially the competitive ones.Have fun with staff rewards.

Rewards directly linked to the number of customer sign-ups ensures your new loyalty program is promoted to as many customers as possible. The more sign-ups, the more perks staff can qualify for whether it’s a cash bonus, gift cards or a day off with pay.

How do you inspire your staff loyalty?

If a customer loyalty program is something you want to explore, send an email to peter@plentyfullservices to see how we can make it as simple as 1-2-3 for your business to bring in more customers over and over again and have a 1-2-3 way to reward your staff for their loyalty too.

Here’s to YOUR Success,

Peter

The Golden Rule of Customer Loyalty

The Golden Rule of Customer Loyalty

‘Always provide the quality of product the customer expects with the best possible service for every sale.’

crowd_peopleIf your claim to fame is to provide the lowest price, then you provide the lowest price. If your claim to fame is quality then provide the best in the market. Whether all your products are just a few pennies or thousands of dollars, providing top notch service is the standard to gain and keep the loyalty of your customers.

What is customer loyalty? It is the kindness of a consumer to choose to purchase items from your business over and over again. The consumer is looking to fulfill a need or want. The way I see it, there are two main underlying emotions for customers. First is the emotion to purchase items for the best quality for the lowest price. They want the feeling of a great deal which is the joy of shopping. Second is the emotion of self-esteem. ‘I will look great in this!’

It is important for you to know which customer emotion(s) your business is targeting as a goal. Once you identify your goal(s), then everything you do as a business must be directed towards those goal(s). The more clarity you have, the more focussed your marketing can be.

So if you have focussed marketing, customers ought to flood your doors. Right? Wrong! Customers will try your products/services once to see if it meets the hype of your advertising. If they like it, there’s a better chance they’ll come back in the future.

If you want customer loyalty, follow the Golden Rule and go one more step…appreciate your customers and consistently let them know it.

Customer loyalty means a consumer will return to your business again and again because they feel they get the best service and product. Price is no longer their only criteria. They are prepared to pay slightly higher prices because the intangibles you offer at your business is worth the price difference. When consumers develop a loyalty to your business they have a sense of security…you will look after their best interests. Having ample loyal paying customers returning over and over again keeps you in business.

What would your business look like if you could consistently let your customers know you appreciate them?

Having a host of paying customers returning over and over again is what Plenty FULL Services helps you do consistently. If you want to find out more, take some time and visit plentyfullservices.com or if you want to know if we are a match for your business call us! If the line is busy please leave a message with a good time to call you back.

May your doors be flooded with Loyal Customers!

 

and by the way in case I have not told my loyal customers…

thank-you

Here’s to YOUR Success!

Peter

Customer Put on Hold

(then You Drop the Ball)

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Have you ever put a customer on hold on the phone saying it will take you 5 minutes to get an answer and then forgot them or it took 20 minutes? Somedays it seemed like the phone was permanently glued to my ear! I had the best intentions but there were so many things which happened in each day. It was tough to remember the customer who was on the phone earlier. Unless I wrote down a notethere was no physical reminder to trigger the thought to call them back. Sometimes even a note didn’t help.

Customers are not concerned with how busy your day is because they have pressing matters themselves. They just want to know if you can provide the service or item, when and for how much. So how do you make good when you’ve forgotten them, when you’ve dropped the ball?

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I found you usually can get the situation cleared up by…

  • phoning and starting with an apology for the delay.
  • thanking them for their patience. This tells them they are important to you.
  • giving them an offer to show how much you value them.

What if most days you could guarantee your customers being patient with you, especially when you drop the ball?

Imagine your business if all your customers truly felt loyal to you?

How do you think they would feel if you had an occasional ‘oops’, when you dropped the ball? My experience tells me most days they would overlook it. They would stay with your business because you gave them ‘special treatment’. Loyal customers stay with you through thick and thin.

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So how do you get loyal customers? First of all, you must have top-notch products and services. Then…

  • Develop a niche market. Your business must be unique is some small way so it remains memorable in your customers’ minds.
  • Listen to your customers. The’ll tell you what they like best and then give them more, or what they like least and then resolve it.
  • Be fully present with your customers. Really listen to them so they feel valued.
  • Reward them occasionally. Make it fun.
  • Do little things like keeping them informed of local events or places of interest such as museums.

Don’t have the time to do ‘all that stuff’? Then use a loyalty program.

A loyalty program lets you stay in touch with your customers consistently. Some will let you add a note to a customer’s account file so you can follow-up easily. Some have the ability to set up an immediate reward with a specific customer. This feature alone would pay big dividends in keeping your customers happy. Keeping customers thrilled is a great way to get more customers.

What one thing would you want a loyalty program to do to keep your customers happy even when you drop the ball?  Leave me a comment below.

Plenty FULL Services is an affordable loyalty program which makes it simple to keep your customers content. Visit www.plentyfullservices.com to get happy customers bringing customers to you.

Here’s to your Content Customers!

Peter