Satisfied Customers ? – One simple question

In all the many and various ways of measuring customer satisfaction here is the one simple question that you should be asking ; ” How likely is it that you would recommend us to a friend or colleague? ”

It was obvious really, because we are more likely to tell it like it is to the people we care about. But it took some serious research by Bain & Co and Fred Reichheld the author of The Loyalty Effect to convince us that this is so.

This work underpins the metric called NPS – Net Promoter Score which is a simple and effective way to find out just how satisfied your customers really are.
Bain & Co explain why they call it the One Number to Grow here

Exhibition Excellence 3: Sensible Sales

Selling at trade shows and exhibitions uses a number of skills including probing, active listening, staying on message and persuading.

  • Probe  – to get the client to tell you what his real needs are
  • Listen –  to understand what he is looking for
  • Stay on message – to make sure he understand the real benefits you offer
  • Persuade – Deal with questions naturally but convincingly

Here are some of the ways to manage those essential selling conversations.

“Let me show you some of the benefits we offer.”

“Would you like me to demonstrate/explain this………… for you?”

“It will (only) take about 5/10 minutes.”

“This product/product name is very successful and I’d like to explain why.”

“What would you say is the biggest challenge you’re facing?”

“How have you addressed that issue in the past?”

“How have you been dealing with challenge of ………?”

Listen, then follow up: “That’s interesting. This is what we have done for other customers…”

“You’ve seen the demo/presentation etc. Which features  could help you in your business?”

“What feature DIDN’T you hear about that might be something you’d be interested in?”

“What is your timeline for buying this  type of product/solution/offering?”

Exhibition Excellence 2: Who are you Speaking to?

One of your main challenges on a booth is managing your time. The reason you are there is to market your company or its products or services efficiently. You also want to find out what your visitors’ needs are and make sure you give them what they need.

All of this means that you must find out who they are, what they need from you and how you can best help them – given your and their time constraints. This is the reason for the Qualifying step which is an essential part of all sales conversations. Here’s some of the language you may use to do that.

What field are you involved in?

Which company do you represent?

(look at nametag)

I see you work for ……………… Which country/division/department is that?

What kinds of things are you looking for at this show?

Great show so far. What have you seen that you’ve really liked?

Exhibition Excellence 1: Stop them to Start Chatting

Language to start-up a conversation with show attendees.

Visitors to your booth are all potential leads or industry contacts. You need a way to start the short, focused conversations at trade shows and exhibitions that are the reason you are there.

Here are some ideas of the things that you can say to start talking to your booth visitors in a natural, friendly way.





Good Morning/Afternoon/Hello/Hi

Thank you for stopping by.

How are you enjoying the show?

Is this your first ( name of show) ?

Are you aware of our ………… products?

Can I interest you in…………………….

You seem to be interested in our product/name of product/this.

Am I right ?

Would you like some information about…………..?

Have you seen our new……..?

Can I help you with some information about ………………..?


Service with Humility

Here is a little disposable paper coaster that has no great ambitions other than to serve. It is not exactly representative of the service level that people are willing to give these days.  Neither should it be. The world has changed and the giving of service is a least partially dependent on how reasonable the client is.  Cheers!

You Never Stop Selling – Service & Social Media

This great article from Forbes makes the point that in the new world of social media your customers remain buyers, all the time.

“Customer” is an artificial label for counting and segregating buyers that have purchased your product.  The notion of “customer lock-in” is, in today’s world, a myth. Customers don’t stop evaluating their purchases or their vendors just because they bought. It’s actually the opposite; buyers are always buying even when they’ve just bought”.

Social media can help to find out what the buyers are saying and feeling.

How To : Give Bad News to Customers

What do you do when you know that you have not met your service aims?
How can you limit the damage done to the relationship with your customer?
Here are some of the ways to lessen the pain.
Before you break the bad news ( before the conversation)
  •  Look for a workaround or other temporary solution
  • Think about how you escalate this to management a service/other escalation next step and plan this ( with management?)
  • Acknowledge your negative emotions, but decide not to display them. 
  •  Expect some conflict or unpleasant reaction
  • Consider if this interaction may just be damage limitation 
  • Try to handle the conflict in a private setting 

As you break the bad news ( during the conversation)

  • Let the customer vent – do not interrupt 
  • Empathize
  • Be ready to explain fully if that is requested
  • Apologize ( in many cultures)
  • Offer escalation before it is requested
  • Consider offering compensation before it is requested 
  • Be ready to reaffirm the importance of the relationship
  • Make sure to follow up when things are calmer

Customer Care Skillset for Pros

How good are you at handling customers?

However good we are, we can always get better.

Take a snapshot look of where you are at the moment and where you could grow.

1 = not currently part of my skill set
5 = a strong part of my skill set at present
1.I realise the importance of service to the success of the organisation.
1   2   3   4   5
2. I include customer service in all aspects of my job.
1   2   3   4   5
3.I adapt my service approach to my different customers.
1   2   3   4   5
4.I feel I am continuing to gain knowledge and skills in customer care.
1   2   3   4   5
5.I adapt my speaking to better communicate service.
1   2   3   4   5
6. I know & use my organisation’s service models and processes well.
1   2   3   4   5
7. I am confident that I handle conflict well.
1   2   3   4   5
8. I feel I use listening skills well.
1   2   3   4   5
9. I feel that I am flexible in my communication style.
1   2   3   4   5
10. I am very solution oriented in my approach.
1   2   3   4   5
11. I am always courteous in giving service.
1   2   3   4   5
12. I am open to the subject of customer care skills improvement.
1   2   3   4   5