“People do not buy goods and services. They buy relations, stories and magic.” – Seth Godin
My first introduction to customer relations was my first job in college at May Co. as a sales associate. I was placed in the bed and bath department. There were numerous customer service expectations thrust upon me but these were the few that stuck:
• Greet customers within the first minute they set foot in my area
• Answer the phone with a smile (the customer can always tell if you’re happy) along with the phrase, “Thank you for calling May Company, this is Sandra. How can I help you?”
• When handling any transaction at the register address them by their name if possible
As sales associates we always had to be aware of “mystery shoppers”; these were individuals that were undercover shoppers performing specific tasks such as purchasing a product, asking questions, registering complaints or behaving in a certain way, and then providing detailed reports or feedback about their experiences. You always had to be on your toes. The feedback was given to management and you’d earn stars according to the positive feedback to wear on your badge showcasing your professionalism and dedication to customer service. The pinnacle was receiving the diamond star.
At the time, I really never thought I’d carry what I had learned into to my present profession.
My role in the agency is really, pretty simple: manage the client’s expectations and keep them happy. I could get really detailed and talk about my responsibility for keeping track of market trends, the industry, and the client’s competition while cooperating with the agency team to develop creative ideas and strategies for campaigns relevant to the client while managing day-to-day operations/projects.
Important? Absolutely. Trust and loyalty earned from my client? Priceless.
I pride myself in not only being transparent with clients, but I also pride myself in becoming immersed in their world so that I may better understand their goals and objectives; what makes them tick both professionally and personally. I think about what I’d want to hear from my agency if I was in their shoes. I think about if it was me opening my checkbook to pay for marketing services. I know for sure that I’d want someone that wasn’t merely blowing smoke up my a**, but someone who will go that extra mile and that truly cared for my business and its success. And someone that even cared to know my kids’ names…that’s an added bonus.
I’m the Willy Wonka of the agency…it’s my pleasure to have the highest degree of warmth, enthusiasm and the ability to communicate in a way that the client understands and responds to positively. I provide the magic….and in return, if I get a happy, satisfied client, I’ve earned my “diamond star”.