Is your Business ‘Fun’ to be with?

I made my usual pit-stop for coffee and a smoke before reaching the office, today. It struck me for the first time, what a joy that ten minutes really is, and it’s the coffee shop that makes it so. I had a chance to analyze what makes it so much of a pleasure, and it comes down to this:

They know me. They know my name, my order, are always pleasant, always ask a question about work, are fast enough in service to look efficient, and interested in me as a consumer, yet never look rushed or frazzled. This is not a little, local Mom and Pop exercise, either, it’s the ubiquitous  international brand, and there are three of these café’s on the same two block reach.

For the first time today, I actually luxuriated in the opportunity of both no line up, and a chance to interact with the serving staff. It was this moment that stuck in my mind.

They always appear to have the same staff, so I don’t mind my first name being known and remembered – something that I am generally wary of. They appear genuinely interested in what I’m thinking and feeling, they don’t know my order because they are clever, they ask it as a question to ensure that I haven’t suddenly changed my mind for a reason they are not aware of. They also, somehow, know how long I like to take in receiving my order. This may be because I have appeared rushed in the past, or short-tempered with the line ups that inevitably happen most days. In short – They appear to like me for me, not just my custom.

We are helping clients look more inviting to prospects, but how about their existing clientele? Will re-designing your website to reflect how to talk to your clientele, look better to others?

“Good Morning, Steve!”

How are you saying Hi? My coffee shop uses my name. You can’t personalize the experience, but if you use your analytic results to see where people go, how they find your site, and what they are interested in, you can greet them in a way that is warm, familiar, friendly and respectful.

“Is it the Usual this Morning?”

Try to not force prospects and customer to what you do, find out what they want information on, and check that they are getting the information they need.

“Yes, I would love some change.”

I like to get rid of change, and recognise that businesses my want it. My cost is usually paid for down to the last penny, or at least enough ‘shrapnel’ to earn me a single coin or note in return. Even if they don’t need it, I am asked if that is what I want, rather what they need. It makes me feel as if I am helping out.

“Have a great day, today.”

This isn’t thrown at me, but comes out as if they really do care about the 23 hours and 57 minutes we spend a part from each other. Make sure that your farewell to prospects and customers isn’t a rehearsed one, but one that sounds genuine. It will stay in people’s mind and they will return.

My coffee stop has a way of dealing with customers that isn’t a cookie-cutter of every other of their stores, it is an organic way of doing business to their clientele at the speed the patrons require. This is a great lesson for your business, too.

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