Self Employed Business Referrals
A warm welcome to what we call recommendation nation. A few years back, a man named Fred Reichheld working at Bain & Company wrote and published a book named The Ultimate Questions. I strongly believe that the book and the question is one the most vital discoveries of management history.
The most significant single question in the history of business is that would you recommend us to others? And perhaps this would lead you to success as a person. It plays the major role in the growth of any organization; rather it’s the key to everything as a referral is almost 10 to 15 times more effective than a cold call. And this is probably the only effective way for business growth, if someone recommends your business to be a good one.
Theodore Levin of Harvard Business School once said that the most important asset a business owns is its reputation and reputation may be defined as how the business is recognized by its customers and how they think about it.
Concern about The Grade You Earn from Customer
How your customers think about your brand, the products and services, and how they talk about you among themselves when you’re not present there, are very important as this surely determines the future of your business. After a customer is being served, they would be asked how their experience with your company was. If they say fine, they say it on a standard of one to 10. Customers who would grade their experience as 9 or 10, they’re very likely to come back. They’re likely to recommend your brand to their friends. They would also bring their friends. If they grade it 7 or 8 on a one to ten scale, it means they are quite satisfied with their experience but they might or might not come back, they won’t recommend others. The number being one through six, you can hardly expect the customers to come back or recommend other. Rather they would tell other not to use your products or services.
For example, if you ask someone how it was after watching a movie or how he would grade the movie and if he gives a 5 or 6, you’re very likely not to go for the movie. The same is applicable to a hotel or a restaurant.
And if the same happens with your customers who have used your products or services, you may surely ask them how you can do to improve their experience with you. You may ask for their suggestion to improve your grade. This is a sort of discovery. If you work according to their suggestion and make improvements to your brand, then again you can get back to those customers, thank them for their feedback and inform that you’ve done whatever they’ve suggested and you’re going to make it as an important part of your policy, they would be happy and likely to get back to you.
Satisfy Your Customers
Your customers can make you rich if you ask them how you can make them happy, they’ll surely tell you about their expectations. And if you do accordingly, they’ll certainly get back to you over and again. Not only that, they’ll recommend your brand to their friends. Ask them to grade your brand. And if they give you nine or ten out of ten, you may further ask them whether they’re going to recommend you as well as your company. But never ask them to provide two or three names who might be interested in your business; they won’t ever do that. But if you ask for referrals, they would do that happily being a satisfied customer.
Giving names of other people means the customers are risking their reputation. If they tell names of their friends and you fail to take good care of them, it would make them as well as their friends disappointed. The reverse may also happen. You might not be satisfied with persons whose names were told by your existing customers.
Good Service Makes Customers Happy
The bottom line is, good service makes customers happy. To retain them you must provide them with prompt and timely service. Ask them to grade your service. If they give you a score between 9 and 10, it’s fine. But being a lower grade, you must try harder to make them happy. However, that is just an unsure option whether they would come back after getting a dissatisfying service. So take care of your customer and provide them with excellent service right from the beginning.