What Are Your Customers REALLY Thinking?

Tom Egelhoff

How many customers do you service in a year? For some companies it might be only one or two. For others it could be thousands or even millions. But do you have any idea what or how they think?

Some customers will never darken your door because some friend told them you are too expensive, or you have lousy service, or inferior products. What if none of those things are true? How do you combat that kind of erroneous thinking?

There is an old axiom in business that says, “Exceed your customers expectations!”
We’ve all heard that right? Blow their sox off. There is only one problem with that thought process. How are you going to blow their sox off the next time they come in and the time after that? The short answer is you can’t — at least not for very long.

How To Give Your Customer What They Want
How many people wanted or needed a “Hula Hoop” the day before they came out? Or, a “Pet Rock?” They didn’t.

Marketing and advertising told customers that these products existed. Customer service works the same way.

Your marketing and advertising will clearly explain the level of service that your customers can expect. It’s much easier to meet, and from time to time exceed, customer expectations if you have defined them to your customers in advance.

How to Overcome Negative Perceptions
Remember that friend above that said you were overpriced; have poor customer service and inferior products?

If you can use testimonials from satisfied customers in your marketing and advertising materials and commercials it’s really hard for the friends assertions to hold water.

The more positive your message is the less fear and negative perception on the part of your customer. We all want to shop where there is a perception we’ll be well treated.

How to Overcome Price Objections
There are two kinds of customers in this world — Valid and Invalid. If I’m having a sale on size six shoes and you are a size 7 you are not a valid customer for that product. So it’s not a price issue yet.

Suppose I have the same shoes in stock in the right size but not on sale? Then price competes with the emotion of the customer owning those shoes.

Will the customer give up the sale price to have the shoes? Or, if my profit margin allows I could adjust the price of the shoes to make the customer happy.

Some Final Thoughts
Let’s face it. Customers are thinking only of themselves. What will make me happy? The right car, the right shoes, the right TV, or the right trees in the front yard.

Customers are thinking, “How will this purchase make me feel?” It’s not as selfish as it might sound. We all want to be happy. Almost every purchase we make is based on some kind of emotion. So make your customers happy. 

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