How to Exceed Expectations with Good Manners
When you ask a veteran insurance agent, “How do you retain clients?” The most common answer is, “exceeding their expectations and customer service.”
However, in today’s “give me now” society, it seems like client’s expectations are higher than ever. Delivering excellent customer service is your best opportunity to begin meeting your client’s expectations because let’s face it, products are not as high on their expectation list as “feeling important,” according to many Customer Service & Retention Polls. Additionally, to top the list off on how customers “feel important” and rate their customer service “high quality” is all associated with the manners of the salesperson.
Here are a few quick tips to mind your manners, eventually leading to higher quality customer service and putting you on the right path to exceeding client expectations.
- Do not interrupt.
Don’t make the mistake of not listening to your customer. Make understanding their wants and needs your top priority. Interrupting your client can sometimes make them feel insecure or less important. It is also critical that when you listen, you listen to hear what they are asking for, rather than looking to provide an immediate solution or answer.
- Be present and acknowledge their words.
Do not text or answer calls during a meeting with a customer. It is the one time you do not want to multi-task. Respect the person sitting in front of you and be fully engaged. If you are focused on other things, you cannot read the body language and non-verbal clues that could help you close a sale. Also, before responding to a customer about anything, give them full acknowledgment by repeating their remarks along the lines of “Thank you for telling me that and I agree with you.” Just listening without acknowledging your client’s words might prompt them to feel unheard.
- Say thank you.
Showing your appreciation and gratitude cannot be done enough! Use every tool possible to say thanks. Text the person 10 seconds after the exchange, then call and email and follow that up with a handwritten note. The message “I just want to tell you again how much I appreciate you as a customer” is a powerful written statement.
- Use a surname with Mr., Sir, Ms., Miss or Mrs.
No matter how well you think you know your customer, calling him or her as Mr. or Mrs. Shows respect and communicates you are there to serve. No matter how many times the customer says, “Just call me Bob,” it never hurts to continue with Mr. or Mrs. In fact, with Baby Boomers moving into the Medicare eligible age, it is more important than ever to focus on the formal language.
- Hold the door open.
Don’t be the first person to walk through the doorway to your office. Hold the door for all individuals, no matter their position. Well-mannered people are responsible individuals who look for opportunities to be decent and of service to others. Holding a door for a stranger is an act of kindness. Even when it is not your client you are holding the door for, it could be a future prospect. You do not want the first interaction with you to be the time they remembered you did not use your manners.
At the end of the day, great customer service leads to happy clients and increased retention. The bottom line is you need to keep learning how you can exceed your client’s expectations and do more to help them find solutions.
Take advantage of these and other valuable sales tips by contacting a Regional Sales Director. Agent Pipeline provides their agents with unique sales strategies and coaching opportunities. For more information, give us a call at 800-962-4693.