Believe me there are those who don't know what VIP stands for, so just in case you happen to be one of them, now you know. And knowing is half the battle...
A healthy business knows who its VIPs are, and how to keep them happy. To spot a VIP there are a few clues that I can give you. They are not necessarily your biggest account. Your VIP can be one of your smaller accounts but they are definitely one of your consistent accounts. The VIP is the one who is always asking how you and your business are doing with genuine concern. They are the client that lets you know when things are wrong, but they have a way of doing it that makes it seem like they aren't even complaining; they sound more like they are watching your back. The VIP is one who is understanding (to a certain degree, not a doormat), when there are difficulties. In short, your VIP is your model client. This is not to be confused with friendly clients or soft clients, they will get you off your "A" game.
So once you have identified your VIPs, what do you do then? You turn on the charm of course! Now that you know how important that client is to your business, you want to make sure they know how happy you are to have them as a client. Once your VIP sees how genuinely important they are to you, they will be more inclined to tell others like them to use your business or your services. And who wouldn't want more clients just like your VIP?
Here are the 7 steps to excellent customer service, and of course my two cents is thrown in there as well:
1 - Be nice to those who are important to your clients. - Now this may take some digging but if your client is say a mom of three pretty rambunctious boys, it would be nice to make the office or your space a little kid-friendly. She'll be more inclined to tell others about you.
2 - Be a little eccentric. - You can do that by showing a little more of your personality in the choices you make. Be whimsical in color choices and in patterns of your products and in the decor of your space.
3 - Go for the heart not the purse. - Don't be afraid to be different. A splash of different goes a long way, especially when you know it will touch the hearts of your clients. Now how you're different would depend on your type of business.
4 - Be magical. - There are all types of ways to use magic. Remember things the client thinks you forgot. If you're an online business, give a birthday shout out! If you're a smaller service, fill an order early, or add a little something extra to their order.
5 - They trust you, trust them, a little. - Try using an honor system for some part of your business. It doesn't have to be much, but just a little something that shows the client you trust them. Now of course you're thinking there will be those who try to cheat you. Don't let that stop you.
6 - Personalize the service experience in surprising ways. - There is always something extra that can be added to your business or your services. Letting a person know that they are important to you and that you remember them with personalized notes.
7 - Master the small stuff. - This is where you add that genuine "we appreciate you" to make sure your VIP knows that you know they are an excellent client. This is also where you can show that not so great client, "we appreciate you, anyway".
Excellent customer service is deserved by any client in your business. But those VIPs need to be shown that extra special touch!