How the Right Client Experience Can Make Clients For Life
We’ve all had experiences where we can’t stop raving about someone or something, the wait staff or the customer service rep, the hotel check-in experience or speed of the airport security (ha, that was a joke!). Have you ever stopped to analyze why you are raving?
My favorite story to showcase my point was when I had to purchase another router to replace the one that died. There are two lessons to draw from this experience:
Lesson 1: A Referral Made Based Upon Client Experience
I truly dreaded having to purchase a router. The last time I bought a router, I had to have my father install it. I know, router installation is four easy steps. Unfortunately, that never works out for me. One day, my router just up and died. The two people I know who are computer smart computer people couldn’t fix it, so I went without a new router for weeks, relying instead on my neighbor’s spotty, unprotected WiFi. Finally, his wifi was so erratic I had to pull the trigger and get a new one.
My father had good luck with Linksys routers, and I ultimately chose Linksys because he was very impressed with their customer service.
I bought the Linksys router, but waited until 10:30pm to install it. See, for me I can be calm in a car crash, but let my Internet go down without help to bring it back up and I become a raving lunatic. I followed the four easy steps and, of course, on the fourth step there were problems. Ah ha! My father said Linksys customer service was great, which was why I had bought the brand. So I called customer service and tried to keep my anxiety in check.
I got a very soft spoken young man who started to walk me through the process. Everytime my voice got nasty with anxiety, he calmed me down. Now. Wait for it. He spent THREE hours on the phone with me – 10:30 pm until 1:30 am. Yes, THREE hours.
Lesson 2: Value Pricing = Profit to the Client – the Cost of the Result
Finally, when the normal fixes weren’t working, he asked, ‘do I have your permission to access your desktop remotely?’ I was concerned and exhaustedly mumbled something about ‘what about all my private stuff?’ He said, ‘you will see everything I am doing on your desktop. IF I am successful there will be a charge of $9.99.’ At this point, I had reached my pain point: panic at loss of Internet, already on the phone for two hours. I would have given him $100 to make this problem go away.
This is the second lesson: Value pricing. When you know someone’s pain point you can establish the value to them for resolution. It’s not a function of time but ‘profit to the client’ less the cost for the result – but that’s for another post.
I agreed. Within the half hour this miracle worker performed his magic and the router was working. Turns out there were significant internal conflicting issues caused by my cable company, and no one else would have had the patience to figure them out. Or they would have charged me $30 or more per hour while they scratched their heads.
Once I confirmed the router worked, all the tension left my body and I became giddy. That’s how important this was to me. Linksys happens to be a good machine but without the customer service, it was worthless to me.
Moral of the Story
I would recommend Linksys to anyone because of the client experience. And I was referred to Linksys originally because of another client’s experience. It didn’t matter I couldn’t install myself and needed help. What mattered was if I needed help I got superior help. I’m officially a fan for life and in writing this post I am sharing my experience, too. I am a fan for life because I will not give up the comfort of knowing I will receive this type of client service. They have me for life. Is Linksys the absolute best product out there? I don’t know and I don’t care. Their customer service is and my client experience was the absolute best for me.
How this Applies to You
Many of you are competent, but still learning the ropes, understanding you need mentors for the more advanced areas of your substantive knowledge. But from the day you open your doors you can start creating an exceptional client experience and let these clients be evangelists for you and your services.
My favorite lawyer story to exemplify this is from one of my girlfriends. Her husband had a worker’s compensation case which was languishing for years. They shopped for a competent attorney based upon a recommendation. They did their ‘internet’ research and selected. When we started to talk about his case over lunch she could not stop gushing about her attorney. I asked, ‘what makes him so great?’ It wasn’t the results they were achieving which stood out, although they were ultimately pleased with them. She said, ‘he knows how to deal with John. He listens and answers all his questions, always returns our phone calls and this gives us peace of mind.’
You don’t need to be practicing law for twenty years to understand the value of this ‘prioritizing’ when discussing why someone will refer you over another. It doesn’t in any way diminish the importance of competence and ethics and proper pricing. But it does show a pecking order in your client’s mind.
Isn’t this your goal everytime a client chooses to hire you over another lawyer? Isn’t your goal a client for life who will become an evangelist for your legal services?
If you haven’t already considered this as a goal, I’m suggesting it should be.
Do you have a story to share about great client service? Do so in the comments!