How do you become indispensable?
What kind of experience do want customers to have with you and your business?
The impact of customer retention is felt in 3 ways according to the Small Business Administration.
1) Profitability: 5-20% more expensive to find a new customer than to keep one.
2) Revenue: just 5% more retention can translate into 77% more revenue over 10 years.
3) New Business Development-reputation plus referrals equals growth!
I love the concepts in Seth Godin’s Linchpin, where he talks about the new world of work. He defines ‘the linchpin mentality’ as, working toward being “indispensable,” someone who makes a difference, leads and connect others. Treating your customers with this kind of attitude and mindset will set you and your business up for long term relationships and success.
Taking care of people during all stages of building a sturdy, authentic relationship is like building a house with a brick and steel foundation. It will last and stand up against the elements.
How can you become indispensable, someone your customers and community can’t envision living or being without? This is a such a key part of building your personal brand and branding.
Here are a few simple things that can help:
- Be Polite-speak and act respectfully no matter what the situation.
- Be Knowledgeable-really know your stuff, company, product, service, market, trends.
- Share your appropriate humor-nothing bonds people more than a shared sense of humor.
- Be more personable-own your time with people on the phone or in person. Focus on them when you are with them or talking to them.
- Find the service gap-what can you do that your competition is not and do much more of it.
Build your indispensability
Use all the social tools and platforms, both online and in person today, to build your indispensability. Customers and communities are so hungry for real live people to simply answer the phone and say, “welcome to Train with Shane, this is Deborah, how I help you, have a great day,” or open their snail mail and get a handwritten thank you note or card.
Simple but very powerful. Being indispensable may cost more, but it will cost way more when customers flee and go somewhere else!
Deborah Shane is an author, entrepreneur, radio host and expert. She is the heart and soul of her business education and professional development company, Train with Shane and is in her third year of hosting a weekly business radio show on blogtalkradio.com. She writes for several national business, career and marketing blogs, and websites including smallbiztrends.com, careerealism.com, Internationalbusinesstimes.com, Smartbrief.com and blogher.com Her new book Career Transition-make the shift-the 5 steps to successful career reinvention is available now on amazon.com. Connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Blogtalkradio @Deborah Shane, or visit www.deborahshane.com.