Ideas for Improving Customer Service
After the job is done and you have a check in your hand, touch base with your customers periodically. Here are some key times and ways to keep in mind:
Flag your files and pick up the phone: One month, six months and one year are prime times to find out how the job site is holding up and if your customers are still happy with the work. If they aren’t, probe a little deeper. What happened and more importantly, what can you do to make it right? It might be an easy fix that you and a just-learning crew member can knock out together, or a bigger fix that’ll provide an opportunity to improve your customer’s satisfaction, and discover what went wrong on a deeper level.
Send a Survey
Email a questionnaire asking the hard questions: Did we meet your expectations? What could we have done differently/better? What did you like? What didn’t you like? Would you refer us to a friend? Why or why not? Would you be okay with us using your project as part of our online portfolio or testimonial? Use the information you learn to improve on your customer service.
Embrace Social Media
Use social media: On the days when business is slow, use that time to connect with your favorite brands, your customers and other contractors. Share pictures of how you’ve used certain products. Invite dialog by asking questions. Invite your customers to post on your pages. When customers ask questions, answer quickly and always ask if you can provide more information with a phone call. Post short videos of how to do small maintenance tasks around the home or office. You’ll reaffirm relationships and strengthen your ties within the community.
Cards Say You Care
Send out thank you notes and holiday cards: It sounds outdated, but mailing out thank you notes and holiday cards are great ways to show your clients that you appreciate their business. Customers are more likely to save a physical card than they will an email, and so your name and your business will be more firmly established in their minds. Be sure to sign every card. Add a personal message whenever possible.
Every week, set aside some time for reaching out to previous clients. You’ll learn how to serve future customers better and do right by your existing customers, and you’re much more likely to have more customers feel confident enough to refer you. It’s time well spent.