Tips for Displaying Appreciation to Your Customers

Customer Service Expert, Gary Brewster of Oneida Provides Tips for Displaying Appreciation to Your Customers

By taking a more direct and proactive approach to managing your customers, you can open up a new avenue of success for your business.

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Customer relationships are a core part of your business success. Many businesses that outperform their competitors are just more responsive in this area. By taking a more direct and proactive approach to managing your customers, you can open up a new avenue of success for your business. How can you display genuine appreciation to them? Here are tips and practices from customer service expert and accomplished entrepreneur, Gary Brewster in Oneida, Tennessee that you can adopt.

Event Sponsorship

There are many small signs of appreciation you can show to customers, but hosting an event provides significant evidence to customers that your business genuinely acknowledges and cares for their support. With these events, you can treat customers as guests - which can be a great way to elevate your relationship with them. After these events, you can follow-up with your customers, build upon that relationship, and gain additional insights into their expectations.

Customized Products and Services

Customers will be pleasantly surprised to see products specifically catered to their preferences. This shows that you do respond to their feedback and are appreciative of the information they provide. Also, you are reinforcing the fact that your business firmly puts a priority on their needs and is committed to elevating their experience. You can personalize your products through a couple of means, including offering them in certain colors, modifications, labels, and more.

Use Handwritten Notes

A handwritten note is one of the best ways to convey authenticity in your messages. When you use this medium for sending messages of appreciation to your customers, it generates a more positive response. In a world saturated with emails, social media messages, and mobile text, a handwritten letter can stand out. You can work with your team in organizing a schedule where customers are sent handwritten notes. These can especially work great for the holiday season as customers are more receptive to goodwill messages during this time.

Develop a Loyalty Program

While your business benefits form loyalty programs, they also make the customer feel more appreciated. For your most consistent customers, you are sending the message to them that their loyalty has not gone unnoticed and that you are truly grateful. When repeat business is rewarded, the long-term benefits will be valuable. Instead of merely creating a loyalty program from scratch, consider doing research and recognize specific purchasing patterns within your customer base. You can then highlight certain products they favor and make that the focal point of your loyalty program.

When it comes to maintaining a high standard of customer service, communication and goodwill are valuable. Showing appreciation to your customers is more than simply communicating with them, but also conveying a general sense of commitment to their needs. Your business stands to gain immensely by developing this unique approach to customer service. Consider adding more of these elements as you build your customer service strategy with your team.


About Gary Brewster:

Gary Brewster in Oneida, Tennessee is an entrepreneur and commercial roofing expert. Driven by building excellent relationships, he takes pride in providing the best customer service possible. As a business owner, his goals include delivering exceptional service, solving complex problems, and giving back to the community. Outside of the office, Gary enjoys spending time on his family farm with his wife, children, and grandchildren.


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My Friend Got Sick In The Dominican Republic

From visiting the beautiful beaches to spending six hours in a hospital of a foreign country.

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I visited the Dominican Republic from June 7 to June 14 this summer for my high school graduation trip. My family and best friend Jordan stayed at the Hard Rock Resort in Punta Cana. I'm not hopping onto the bandwagon of all these stories coming out about this country that relies so much on tourism. I'm not here to condemn the resort or the country, because despite all the trouble I went through, I had an amazing time. I'm simply here to tell my story about what happened.

Right before we left for the trip, we heard all the stories about people dying in the country. This obviously made us all paranoid because we didn't want to end up like those people. We wanted to be careful. Most of the people who died at resorts had a drink from the minibar in the hotel and were poisoned by insecticides, had bloody diarrhea, throwing up blood, and had eventually had respiratory problems. We were aware of the symptoms and were knowledgable before going into this foreign country.

The first four days of the trip we were all having an amazing time. We enjoyed the beautiful beaches, swimming in the fourteen different pools, and eating like gluttons. I met so many beautiful and kind people from the Dominican Republic. Every person welcomed us as "familia", Spanish for family. On the fourth day, we decided to go on an excursion through the hotel. We went snorkeling and swam through the clear blue water. Jordan and I danced with the crew members on the boat. We shopped for souvenirs from locals and finally called it a day.

When we got back on the bus to the resort, my dad was shivering and was short of breath. His stomach was cramping and his forehead was on fire like he had a fever. After the longest thirty minutes of my life worrying about him, we finally made it back and he rushed to the bathroom. For the next twelve hours, he rested in the hotel room. The next day he was fine and had seemed to just catch a twenty-four bug.

Then, the next night Jordan was spending a lot of time in the bathroom. I figured it was just because she was adjusting the spicy food of the Dominican and that it would pass. In the morning when I had woken up, she told me had a fever and had been going to the bathroom every hour. My mom gave her anti-diarrhea medicine and she felt better the next day after resting in the room. We got her dinner of a small pizza and we went to bed, an uneventful day.

Jordan woke me up at 2 A.M. that night calling my name from the bathroom and asking for a trashcan. It was coming out of both ends at this point. After calling my mom and her dad, who was still in the U.S., we decided to call the resort doctor and have her come to the room. The doctor then determined that she was extremely dehydrated and needed to be transported to the hospital.

We got there at 4:30 A.M.. and Jordan had an IV put into her with anti-diarrhea medicine and saline. After multiple tests, the doctors said that she had a bacterial infection in her stomach. They gave her antibiotics and multiple packets of pills to take home and we left the clinic at 10:30 A.M. at last. She's going to be fine, but we were all scared because of all the news stories going on.

When we got back to the resort, multiple people who we had seen at the clinic came up to us and told us how their relatives experienced the same thing Jordan had. When I did some research, an article stated that 45 people had gotten violently ill from eating at the Toro restaurant at the Hard Rock Resort in Punta Cana, which is where we ate the night before Jordan got sick.

We were lucky, you could say. I'm not sure it's necessarily all the resort's fault or the country's though. Although all these things happened to us, I believe that it's a matter of doing your research before you go to any country. Any country's food could make you sick. We don't know exactly where Jordan or my dad got sick from. All these bad news stories coming out could've played into why we reacted so harshly.

Saying all this, I would still love to visit the Dominican Republic again. I want to visit so many other countries across the world. For anyone else that is reading this and is scared to visit a country like this, I say just go for it. Know the risks, but know that there are rewards. You can't let fear hold you back from living your life, because dying in America is just as likely from other things.

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Victor Mitchell, CEO of Lead Funding, Reveals 5 Things that Increase Employee Satisfaction

Different things work for different people when it comes to having a productive work ethic.

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According to a Gallup poll conducted in 2013, around 63 percent of workers surveyed across countries all over the world claimed to be disengaged from their jobs. In other words, almost two-thirds of employees are unhappy in their current positions, although not necessarily enough to quit. Instead, they tend to push through each working day with little energy and enthusiasm, while a further 24 percent despised their jobs altogether.

The same study found that only 13 percent of workers felt actively engaged with their jobs, genuinely enjoying their typical working days and taking their responsibilities seriously. Unsurprisingly, these workers tend to be the most loyal and productive ones, since they have a genuine interest in the direction the companies they work for are heading.

Naturally, not all employees share a deep connection with their employer and company. However, Victor Mitchell, a life-long entrepreneur and successful businessman who has successfully founded, acquired, and/or turned around numerous diverse business ventures over the past 30 years, firmly believes in five elements conducive to greater employee satisfaction:

1. A Good Team

Studies have shown that by far the most common reason people like their jobs is that they like the people they work with. After all, it shouldn't come as any surprise that a workplace without a team-driven atmosphere can be an awkward and unpleasant working environment for everyone involved. It's difficult to have everyone get along at all times, but building a good team is undoubtedly crucial to success.

Morale in the workplace is heavily determined by the integrity of your team and how people work together to complete common goals. While no employer wants to sacrifice productivity, it is essential to adopt a work-hard-play-hard philosophy by allowing time for personal projects, encouraging teamwork through fun team-building activities, and recognizing both individual and group achievements.

2. Flexibility

Many organizations adopt an unyielding approach that feels like a soul-destroying chore to become a part of. Those office cubicle farms, fluorescent strip lighting, and grey carpets hardly make for pleasant places to work in. While building a comfortable, bright, and enjoyable workplace is essential for keeping your employees happy, it's also important to give people a reasonable degree of flexibility.

When employees have the freedom to work independently, make improvisations, and feel their actions and decisions are supported, they'll feel more responsible and more important. The risk of becoming disengaged with the job will be significantly less as well. Some ways to increase workplace flexibility include allowing employees to work at home on occasion or choose flexible working hours.

3. Productive Work Ethic

Having a good team and a pleasant physical environment to work in is essential, but those factors alone will not lead to a productive work ethic. After all, no employer wants their staff to be having fun during working hours if it comes at the expense of productivity. A productive working culture requires clear communication and trust above all else, as well as recognition of good work.

Different things work for different people when it comes to having a productive work ethic. Some work better when they prioritize persistence, while others need focus, and others work better when under a sense of urgency. By recognizing the strengths of individual employees, you'll be better equipped to help promote and encourage their skills to increase their productivity.

4. Variety

Some jobs are inherently dull. For example, not many people would claim anything is exciting about data entry, accounting, or telephone marketing. Nonetheless, with creative thinking, it is possible to break the tedious routines typically associated with such jobs by adding some variety. When each day is slightly different, and there's an opportunity to learn new things, people will be happier.

To help keep employees engaged, it is essential to offer the option to carry out other tasks as much as possible. However, this solution may not always be possible, in which case you'll need to take some steps to make boring jobs less so. Short but regular breaks by the water cooler can help a lot, but others might work better when multitasking or setting themselves some productivity goals.

5. Being Challenged

If an employee isn't being challenged at work, then their job is just a job and nothing more. They won't ever have that feeling of pride they would have if they have just completed a challenging task, and there won't be that important sense of accomplishment that helps push people to work harder and earn greater rewards. Challenge often marks the difference between a follower and a leader.

The average person spends almost 100,000 hours of their lifetimes working, so it stands to reason that they want to spend this time learning, developing, and bettering themselves, rather than wallowing in boredom and frustration. Pushing employees to their limits by giving them new responsibilities might sound harsh, but when combined with a highly motivational rewards-driven system, it will more than pay off.

Final Words

Everyone needs to earn a living, but money is not the only thing that influences job satisfaction. Employers often underestimate the importance of other factors, instead offering pay raises to keep people happy. However, about half of the employees who accept such offers still leave within the next two years. When it comes to longevity and loyalty to the company, employee satisfaction cannot merely be bought.

About Victor Mitchell:

Victor Mitchell, 52, of Castle Rock, Colorado is a successful businessman and life-long entrepreneur who has founded or turned around varied companies ranging from wireless to technology to real estate services to finance. Currently serving as CEO of Lead Funding, Mitchell is widely known for his innovative business strategy.

Mitchell previously founded several successful wireless communications companies and turned around several others. His innovative management strategies allowed numerous "mom-and-pop" wireless retailers to achieve financial success by aggregating their selling power to bargain successfully for favorable rights from national wireless service providers. In 2000, one of his companies was named "Colorado Small Business of the Year" by the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce. The Denver Business Journal placed Mr. Mitchell on its coveted "top 40 under 40" list of business executives, and Mitchell was also a finalist in Ernst and Young's nationally recognized "Entrepreneur of the Year" contest.

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