You know that feeling of being a 'regular' customer?
It’s the feeling you get when you walk into your favorite coffee shop, bar, or hardware store and it’s not a stranger behind the counter — it’s your friend. They get your favorite drink, know how you take your coffee, or ask about that project you’ve been working on. Maybe you chat about your day, or how the weekend was. You leave having had a positive experience in your day, and I’m sure you’ll be back soon.
Can you make your customers feel like regulars at your home services business, even though you're entering their home? Of course you can! Nurturing customer relationships has always been a best practice of business for as long as humans have been exchanging services and goods. People are more inclined to do business with a friend than with a stranger.
Let’s see how you could be growing your client base from customers into ‘regulars’ by focusing on technician and customer relationships.
The fact is, history builds bonds. That same principle is true for your home service business. Your techs, sales reps and staff should know the complete history of a client that has done business with you before. They should reference notes from previous jobs, or which services the customer needed performed. If they walk into the interaction with this background knowledge, they are building history with a client and ensuring future business with them.
What if your customer could have background knowledge on you as well? Having a stranger come into their house can be stressful for many clients. A software that connects the customer to the technician who will be working in their home can overcome this stress. Technician bios that have information and pictures of your tech will help grow a tech to customer relationship that builds familiarity and trust. Customers could also track their technician's arrival and get appointment reminders by text or email. The more transparency there is between your home services technicians and your customers, the more likely they will be to have a comfortable, positive experience with your company and become a loyal, returning customer.
Think about when you go to your doctor. They have to have your full medical history to be able to take care of you as best they can and do their jobs well. It is the same principle when tracking customer history.
You can build history and trust with a client by tracking and storing information from every interaction your business has with a customer. Having a database where these interactions are stored will ensure that the information is there for any of your employees — even if they haven’t worked with a specific customer before. This way, any employee that enters the customer home (or even takes a phone call) will always put the best foot forward for your company.
According to a study done in the book Marketing Metrics, the likelihood of selling to an existing customer is 60 to 70 percent while the probability of selling to a new customer is anywhere from 5 to 20 percent. The home service industry should be capitalizing on those metrics, and upselling to your clients becomes easier when you’ve built a relationship with them.
Using prior knowledge from a database, your tech might know that your client Kevin lives in an old home and has poor plumbing. The tech can go into that house prepared. This builds trust with the customer and offers the ability for the tech to make a tailored sales pitch to their specific needs. "While I’m here, do you want me to take a look at those pipes and make sure they’re up to snuff?”
Likewise, technician's efforts won't go unnoticed. A software that integrates your marketing efforts, and connects with the customer allows for greater insight into customer happiness and encourages high quality performance from your technicians. If a customer gives your technician a pleased shoutout for a job well done, you can see that. The next meeting you have that technician can get the pat on the back they deserve. Connecting technicians with the impact they have will add incentive and promote increased customer service.
Having this kind of information at your disposal requires organization. Too often, communication gets lost in translation. Mistakes can happen on so many levels. Maybe the CSR forgot to mention a key detail to the technician as he or she left the office on a call. A way to avoid problems like this one is to have a single source of truth for customer information, notes and anything your employees might need to know.
Having the technology to archive and pull customer info in an efficient way will show growth in your business. Soon those customers are going to feel like regulars and they are going to keep returning for your company’s great service. Your clients will spread the word about the positive interactions they have with your employees, bringing you new referrals.