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First impressions do matter. I was all willing to change to a new eye care center as my current eye care center had quit wowing me long ago. Seeing an ad for a new center opening in my area, I decided to give it a try. You would think the experience would be designed to capture and make me a loyal life time-customer – what a great opportunity for a new business. Sadly, to say, it did not. And it wasn’t the product (the exam), it was the rest of the experience.

First impressions included:
• Lack of sincere greeting upon entering center, felt like a transaction from the moment I walked in the front door
• Very few magazines in the tightly squeezed space that was the “waiting” area
• My first name was yelled out from behind the counter when it was my turn to go back vs. Ms. Yanovitch as well as coming out to meet and escort me back
• Eye examiner had visible tattoos on arm and a diamond ring in her nose
• No “welcome and thank you for choosing us” by Doctor when first meeting in examination room
• Felt processed by Doctor vs. valued, felt he was hurried to move on to next patient
• Billed twice what was told on phone, they had failed to ask me upfront if I already wore glasses or contacts and added additional amount to bill for those fittings
• Had to go back for follow up visit in order to get prescription for contacts

You don’t get second chances in today’s world of choices. Look through the lens of your customer, do a Service Map of touch point opportunities and see where you are offering mediocre service and where you can tweak that to deliver excellent service, and treat each customer like gold. In this case, the life-time value of a customer like me could be substantial; especially if I converted my other family members to switch and told all my friends.

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