Asking for Customer Feedback: You Can Do It!
Over the past few weeks, we’ve lauded the benefits of surprising and delighting your customers, and shared some fantastic examples from the customer service experts at Ritz Carlton. Today, we’re going to help you ask your customers a question you might not want the answer to: “How are we doing?” That is, we’re going to help you ask your customers for feedback on your business.
We’re not talking about soliciting online reviews (although, those are helpful too). We’re talking about targeting your loyal, regular customers and asking them for feedback on different aspects of your business. Actively asking them for their feedback shows that you value their opinion and want to make your business better – for them!
So, how does this relate to surprising and delighting your customers? Well, first of all, they might be surprised (and delighted) to know that you want and deeply value their opinion. We’re sure that not every business they patronize does the same. But, if your customers give you feedback that they then see incorporated into your daily operations – you’re sure to create more memorable, surprising and delightful experiences for them in the future.
Asking for Customer Feedback 101
Take a half hour out of your day to make a very short list of your most valued customers (these may be your “regulars,” the highest spenders, loyal friends or VIPs). You don’t want the list to be too long – too many opinions will make it impossible to see the way forward (nor will you be able to please everybody on a long list). Then, figure out the best way to ask them for help. Some might prefer a phone call to schedule an in-person meeting, others might prefer an email exchange, so they can draft their thoughts. You know your customers and how they prefer to communicate, so put that information to use.
As you are asking your most valued customers for this information, you should be ready to take this feedback to heart and put it into action. Chances are, these customers enjoy patronizing your business, and want you to succeed – so, hearing what they have to say (and doing something about it) is a win win!
Have you every actively asked customers for feedback? How did it go?