The food retail business is an ever-evolving industry that constantly needs to adapt to the latest consumer trends and preferences. From online ordering and delivery to sustainability and health-conscious options, retailers are always looking for ways to keep up with the changing demands of their customers. However, amidst all these trends and strategies, one of the most important strategies is often overlooked or even forgotten … The most effective way to increase profits is to create raving fans by providing exceptional customer service that everybody wants and likes. In this article, we will explore how a focus on customer service can help businesses stand out and thrive in a competitive market.
Everyone has experienced poor customer service.
We all know what it looks like and feels like. Yet, at the same time, we’ve almost accepted and become accustomed to the proverbial low bar, that we’ve become numb to the notion of what good customer service really looks like. We often lament that “it’s the same all over”, and resigned ourselves to the fact this is a new reality.
A Real Story of Poor Customer Service:
Marty Vanderwel at Global Reach Confections and More:
“One of our clients received a skid of Ice Cream tubs from their local supplier. It was in the middle of summer and 38 degrees in the sun. The supplier was in a hurry, so they dropped the skid at the back door and hastily left. When the store owner discovered the shipment, it was already too late. He was now in possession of a skid of warm milkshakes”.
But it doesn’t have to be that way!
There’s a thin, easy-read little book called “Raving Fans” by Ken Blanchard that we, here at Global Reach Confections, have adopted as a customer service guide, (or mantra if you will), that we all try emulating. It’s actually ‘required reading’ for each of us, and we’ve all embraced its contents and made it our own.
For a deep dive, we encourage you to pick up the book or audio CD and share them with your staff. It’s available at your favourite local book store, or the Ken Blanchard website, https://www.kenblanchardbooks.com/book/raving-fans/ or www.amazon.ca
For now, a brief overview of why we’re so excited to have this little jewel as part of our team. We’ll start with the “Three Pillars.”
- Decide what you want
- Discover what your customers want
- Deliver – PLUS 1
1. Decide what you want
Creating a customer-centric vision is paramount. Who is our customer, and equally as important, who are their customers? Discovering those connections and reaching out to connect with them is the basis for the second Pillar.
2. Discover what your customers want
Unless you ask, you’ll never know. Train your ear, listen listen listen. Gain trust over time. This can’t and should not be rushed. Knowing you can’t be everything to everybody, strive to know what’s important to your clients and do your best to fulfill those needs.
3. Deliver – PLUS 1
Know your vision and deliver! Walk the Talk! Not sometimes, not most of the time, ALL THE TIME! Customers EXPECT that you deliver what you promise. They depend on it.
PLUS 1 means “Constantly strive to improve what you have decided to achieve.” That may sound intimidating, but really, it’s simply delivering on everything you say and continuing to listen and watch for your customer’s changing needs. Realize that requires flexibility and commitment.
Great customer service is essential in today’s business environment because it can significantly impact a company’s success.
Here are a few reasons why:
- Customer loyalty: Customers are more likely to return to a business where they have received great customer service. By providing excellent service, companies can build long-term relationships with customers, which can lead to increased loyalty and repeat business.
- Word of mouth: Satisfied customers are more likely to recommend a business to friends and family. Positive word of mouth can be a powerful marketing tool that can help businesses attract new customers.
- Reputation: A company’s reputation is closely tied to the quality of its customer service. In today’s interconnected world, a negative review or bad experience can quickly spread on social media and harm a business’s reputation.
- Differentiation: In a crowded marketplace, great customer service can help a business stand out from its competitors. By providing a positive experience, businesses can differentiate themselves and create a competitive advantage.
In short, great customer service is important because it can help businesses build loyalty, attract new customers, protect their reputation, and differentiate themselves in a crowded market.
We’ve met many food retail store owners who said: “Oh, I knew that.” But it’s not about knowing what good customer service is, it’s all about implementing great customer service. (Deliver + PLUS 1).
So … how to create raving fans?
Order Ken Blanchard’s book ‘Raving Fans’ and read it. https://www.kenblanchardbooks.com/book/raving-fans/ or www.amazon.ca
At Global Reach Confections we are constantly reminding ourselves, and each other, that this is who and where we need to be. We know our competitors carry much of the same product, deliver in the same fashion, and battle the price wars much as we’re expected to do. But our responsibility is to set ourselves apart in other ways. We strive to do that daily. Curious to know why most of our clients are raving fans?
How to receive a FREE COPY of ‘Raving Fans’ by Ken Blanchard?
Set up a GUEST ACCOUNT with our Dutch Food Online Store (Retailers Only)