Retail Is In The Details
When I worked for lululemon we were all fond of saying, "Retail's in the details". It's the plants in a sunny window. The perfectly folded stack of pants. The reusable tote bags we sent everyone home with that had our inspiring manifesto printed on the outside. On and on it goes. The product itself was great but in order to get people to notice that product... to buy it... to remember it... you have to add value, and whenever possible, a sense of delight.
I often share with my clients that their job isn't done once the service is provided. How a client or customer feels AFTER they make a big purchase is crucial in whether or not they return again. Did you leave them with a feeling of care? Did you go above and beyond their expectations? Will they be likely to use you again in the future because they enjoyed how the product or experience made them feel?
This is where things like hand-written thank you notes and "check up" calls are so crucial. A simple, "How's it going? I was thinking about you!" can go a long way in connecting your client base to your brand and making sure they feel truly taken care of. Details like this are often overlooked for very good reasons:
1. We're busy! It takes extra time and energy to add detail and quality.
2. We don't believe it really matters.
3. We believe it costs a lot and we don't believe we have the money.
4. It's not something we receive often from other brands (services or products) so we feel like it's a special extra but not essential.
As an entrepreneur, I get ALL of these excuses. Our time and money are precious and we want to be efficient. Having said that, the details are the very thing that may set you apart from your competition and make you stand out as "the one who gets it" or "the one who has great taste" or "the one who take care of me with the most attention". Remember: people don't buy a product. They buy an experience. There are a zillion photographers out there. They'll end up choosing ONE. There are a zillion candlemakers out there. They'll end up choosing ONE. They'll choose the one that makes them feel a certain way as long as it's within their price range. Sometimes they'll throw caution to the wind and "splurge" if your brand really makes them swoon.
We've all considered a brand and then gone to their website to discover it's a disaster. You can't find the information you're looking for, the colors and fonts are not attractive, the content is messy and/or poorly written. We close the tab and move on with our lives. You have seconds to capture a consumer's attention. SECONDS. Once you do, then you have to KEEP their attention. Once you keep their attention, then you have to REMIND them of your attention so that they come back.
Capture, Keep, & Remind
Investing in your brand by hiring a professional photographer, ordering thoughtful business cards, curating an easy-to-navigate website, sending a handwritten thank you note or small gift... these things matter. They absolutely do. I've long considered myself a details connoisseur and my friends sometimes tease me about it. I notice EVERY SPECIAL DESIGN DETAIL there is to notice out in the world. I'm enchanted by the thought and creativity that goes into making things special and not just "getting it done" by cutting corners and saving on cost. To me (and to many) it translates to quality and care. If you put that much thought into your business cards then maybe you'll put that much thought into ME. If you took the time to write that note, then maybe you'll take that much time to go the extra mile to make my service or product as perfect as it can be. We don't always think these things consciously but they're often there beneath the surface. It's the reason I hand my clients a pink pen when it comes time to take a note. It's why I make their passwords things that apply specifically to them. It's why I send them presents at the end of our time together. I want them to feel special.
Of course not everyone appreciates these small gestures, but your dream customers will. I promise.
PS - Need help with your details? I've got you covered. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the form at the bottom of my homepage. Worried you can't afford my support? Let's talk.