I just love random actions of kindness. My day started with one and it was fantastic!
Here is what happened:
I stopped in this morning at the Circle K, my new favorite place to get a cup of coffee. They have, in my opinion, the absolute best hazelnut coffee. So on my way to a meeting I decided to get a cup. I ran into the store and the hazelnut pot was empty so I reluctantly chose a different flavor. When I mentioned the hazelnut was empty to the cashier, he said since my only reason for stopping was to get a cup of hazelnut and they were out, my coffee was free. WOW! Now I realize we are only talking $1.29 here, but just the fact that he acknowledged that they did not meet my needs was huge. It was like a double whammy, an act of kindness and increased customer loyalty.
There is even a more amazing piece of this story. Yesterday morning I stopped into the same place to get my favorite coffee and at the time I was on my cell phone and never bothered to even acknowledge the cashier. So I went in this morning intentionally to apologize for my rudeness yesterday and, of course, to get another cup of this delicious coffee (Cup 3:Day 3). It was not the same cashier so I wasn’t able to apologize, but I will be sure to get this done in the next few days.
From the random act of kindness perspective, it’s not about the dollar value, it’s about the opportunity to make someone’s day a little brighter. A small deed had such a profound impact on my approach to the rest of the day.
We all have ample opportunities to do small kind deeds throughout the day. A smile, eye contact with a “How are you today?” or letting someone in front of you at the grocery line, a compliment, biting your tongue when someone irritates you. There are several ways to accomplish this small feat that has such a huge return. We should take these opportunities more often. Maybe kindness should not be so random.
Price is NOT the issue
From the customer loyalty perspective, I must tell you, that I make sure to buy my gas at this station. They don’t always have the lowest prices, but I want them to stay in business so I will pay the difference. That is very common with customer loyalty. If you give your clients more than they expect, make their interaction with you better than they expect, price will not be an issue.
What are the things you do in your business to create customer loyalty? If your customers were surveyed, what would they say about their experiences with your business? What makes them come back, or better yet, what makes them go elsewhere? In this volatile economy, maintaining and growing our customer base is critical to survival.
Does your company need help in this area? How will you know?
If your customer’s loyalty is as random as your kindness.