The online marketplace is super competitive. You need a powerful marketing message to cut through the noise and to be remembered. Then, you have to make the sale. Then you have to KEEP your customers’ business for as long as possible.
Most marketers only focus on traffic and sales, treating fulfillment and customer retention as an afterthought. But when used right, fulfillment can turn your customers into your most powerful marketing force. .
Michael Montano, author of “Stop Marketing, Be Remarkable,” says that “Nobody can sell you like your customer can sell you.”
Okay, true enough.
But HOW do you get your customers to become promoters of your company?
Bribe them? Beg them? Threaten them? Put them on your payroll?
How about blowing their mind with an absolutely outstanding customer service experience? When you start thinking about fulfillment this way, you’ll realize that customer service is a powerful marketing strategy…IF you use it right. Here are three fulfillment practices you can start using today to get your customers to help you market your business.
#1: Always Respond Quickly
One of the most common complaints customers have about companies is that the company didn’t keep their word in following up. As simple as it sounds, you can create a much better customer service experience just by responding quickly to your customer’s emails and phone calls.
If you’re too busy to send a full response, send a quick one to let them know you got their email and tell them when they can expect a more detailed response. Most of us only do this when trying to earn the customer’s business. But a good marketer knows that they’re always marketing, even after the sale has been made.
If you approach your fulfillment with this “always be marketing” attitude, you’ll get a lot more repeat business and turn more of your customers into loyal promoters.
#2: Do More than Expected
“If you do more than what you’re paid to do, a day will come when you’ll be paid more for what you do.”
This saying is definitely true in service fulfillment and over delivering on your original promises to customers. Entrepreneurs have to do a lot of things that they’re not receiving direct pay for because they know there will be a long term payback. Take this same attitude into your service fulfillment. Do more than expected.
It doesn’t have to be anything over the top. Simply follow up with your customer a few weeks after the service has been fulfilled and thank them for their business. Ask them how things are going. Ask them how you can help. Customers are more likely to help you if you’re proactive about helping them.
#3: Earn and Solicit Reviews
If you’ve done a great job at following up and doing more than expected, It should be easy to ask for a review. Do this as part of your follow up call or email. Instead of directly asking them for a review or recommendation, ask for their feedback. Ask them how your product or service helped them and ask if they have any suggestions as to how you can improve your product or service.
Your customers will appreciate you for valuing their feedback. You’ll also gain useful insight for improving your fulfillment process. Once you get their feedback, ask permission to use their positive remarks as a testimonial.
Most important, remember that fulfillment and customer service are powerful marketing strategies…if you treat them that way. No one can sell you like your customer can. If your customers are they’re sold on how well you treated them, they’ll be happy to sell for you.