-- Bandera Business Association -- What is the 'hidden treasure' in your business?
Ever notice how children love a treasure hunt? They enjoy the fun maps and the thrill of solving the map to get to the prize? What delight they have in retelling the hunt! They love to find a real treasure.
Good customer relations are like that - a real treasure in your business. When you build a good relationship with your customers they will return and make your business grow.
So how do we expand those relationships? One way is to have regular events in your store - and not just any event, but one that draws folks for specific reasons. Most people want more than just a new product. They want ways to solve problems and education about products. They are hungry for information.
So, what can we do for a special event? Often a supplier will have lots of information about a particular product that you carry. Maybe it is a gourmet line of salsas, jellies or coffee. Invite your customers to come in for sampling and hand out some recipes for the use of the products.
Most companies are willing to help and will often send in a rep to talk to your customers. If it is a line of clothing, have a trunk show. Make your store open to educating your clients and they will not only flock to your store but will tell everyone about it. You do not have to have a deep discount sale to expand those customer relations and get them coming back. The same goes for hardware, tools, salon products and even banking.
This sounds too easy. Sometimes, the type of retail or service store we have will make this a little more difficult. You might have to do a little treasure hunting to discover the types of problems your customers have before you come up with a problem-solving event.
Ask yourself what type of questions you answer most or what answers do you explain most to your customers. Ask the customer. Get feedback. Then pick one problem and solve it. The solution should help you lead to a seminar or demonstration in your store that will help solve that problem. That would be a key to the type of event that would work well for you.
It is best to deliver the seminar yourself, or use someone on your staff. You may not be a professional speaker, but your customers perceive you as an expert. The more you can encourage your customers to come to you and your store to solve problems, the better your customer relationship with them will be. You want your customers to see you as a solution provider, not just a product seller.
When customers see you as the solution provider or expert, they'll keep coming back over and over - and that's the hidden treasure in your business.